Market Commentary

Weekly Jobless Claims

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Every week the government reports the number of people that claim unemployment benefits. This is a leading economic indicator and is watch closely. This week the number rose to 234,000 for the week ending on May 19th. That was substantially higher than expected at 219,000. Is this a problem? Does it foreshadow danger for the […]

Market Commentary

Sowing Seeds

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Recent manufacturing and service data suggest continued growth pressure. Makers of goods say they intend to boost production in the coming months and the service sector, although showing a slight slowdown, have the largest backlog of orders since 2015.   This data suggests a higher GDP number reaching 3.5% with high optimism and pressure to […]

Market Commentary

New Home Construction

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This week April’s new home construction report was released and it fell 3.7%. That top line number likely worried some but in fact it is not something that should affect anyone. In fact the market shrugged it off the day it came out.   The reason it is not a worrisome number is because it […]

Market Commentary

April Retail Sales

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Retail sales came for April growing .3% from March, but March was revised higher at .8% growth instead of 6% originally reported.  So April’s number was actually .5% higher if March was not revised up by .2%. The important point here is that consumers spent more money in the last two months probably helped by […]

Market Commentary

Current Inflation

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This week the PPI (Producer Price Index) and the CPI (Consumer Price Index) numbers were released for April. These are two main inflation gauges, one at the wholesale level and the other for us consumers. Both were significantly lower than expectations. Even the ‘core’ CPI number was below expectation and lower than the month’s before […]

Market Commentary

Moving Averages as Timing Models

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The 200 day moving average is one of the most durable timing models that investors use to get in and out of the stock market. It would have saved you a lot of money if you got out of the market when the index broke below this moving average in the dot-com and financial crashes. […]

Market Commentary

Interest Rates

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The FED met this week and decided not to increase interest rates. They control only one rate and that is the FED funds rate – the rate they charge banks to borrow money from the FED. The current rate is 1.5% to 1.75%. They also stated that they think inflation will meet their target of […]

Market Commentary

Personal Income and Construction Spending

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The two areas that drive our economy are consumer’s wealth factors, how much are they earning and are they getting raises. Also construction spending because housing is an important part of wealth-building for most people, and if they are buying, builders build to meet the demand. On Monday personal income and construction spending for March […]

Market Commentary

Housing Date

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Three reports out this week on housing; first the Existing Home Sales report for March was up to 5.6 million from 5.54 million and better than the expected number of 5.53 million. Then the New Home Sales numbers for March up to 694,000 sold from 667,000 and much better than the expected fall of 630,000. […]

Market Commentary

Retail Sales for March

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After 3 months in a row of falling retail sales in the face of a strengthening economy something had to give. Either the economic conditions were not as robust as other numbers were telling us or it was a temporary glitch affected by weather and other anomalies. In March the sales rebounded as reported this […]