Weekly Economic Update

Economic Update 8-22-2016

  • Economic data for the week showed a combination of strength in housing and jobless claims, continued mixed results in manufacturing, and tempered consumer inflation.  The FOMC minutes showed conflicting opinions, which has carried over into recent Fed member communications.
  • In continued low-volatility summer equity market activity, stocks were slightly higher in the U.S. and emerging markets, and lower in the developed markets generally, even with help from a weaker dollar.

Continue reading

Posted in Economic News | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Weekly Economic Update

Economic Update 8-15-2016

  • Economic data for the week included a flattish/disappointing retail sales report and continued weak productivity, but, on the positive side, ongoing strong labor market metrics.
  • U.S. equity markets reached new highs again for the week, before pulling back to flattish returns; foreign stocks outperformed, with generally positive gains globally.  Bonds gained some ground with interest rates falling.  Commodities with help from a weaker dollar and higher oil prices.

Continue reading

Posted in Economic News | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Weekly Economic Update

Economic Update 8-08-2016

  • Economic data for the week was highlighted by weaker than expected but still-expansionary ISM manufacturing and non-manufacturing reports, while the July employment situation report was much stronger than anticipated, pleasing investment markets.
  • Equity markets were higher in the U.S. and somewhat mixed globally.  Government bonds declined with interest rates moving higher, with the exception of high yield corporates, which gained.  Commodities were mixed with oil little changed on the week on net.

Continue reading

Posted in Economic News | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Weekly Economic Update

Economic Update 8-01-2016

 

  • Economic data for the week was highlighted by no policy action at the FOMC meeting, while GDP for Q2 underwhelmed compared to expectations.  Housing numbers were relatively good with home sales reaching pre-recession levels.
  • U.S. equity markets were mixed, and were outperformed by foreign developed stock indexes which benefitted from a weaker dollar for the week.  Bonds generally gained some ground with lower interest rates.  Commodities fell as the price of crude oil fell to 3-month lows based on stronger inventories.

Continue reading

Posted in Economic News | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Fed Note

Fed Note:

The July FOMC meeting came and went with no action.  This was of no surprise to investment markets, which didn’t expect anything.  Since there were no updated projections and no planned press conference, it implied the meeting was not going to be an ‘important’ one requiring additional clarification and Q&A with the press. 

The Fed’s statement acknowledged a strengthening of conditions in the labor markets and moderate economic expansion, including a frequent comment on stronger household spending but continued softness in business capex.  Importantly, the FOMC noted that near-term risks to the economic outlook have diminished, although global conditions continue to be under review.  Overall, the message was a bit more optimistic than some recent statements.  As has occurred in a few prior meetings over the past year, there was one dissenter (KC President George again), who wanted a quarter-point rate increase.

As of late, in the aftermath of Brexit, political uncertainty and lack of significant upside results in economic data like manufacturing and business spending, the calls for rate hikes have largely fallen silent.  Based on the Fed’s own estimates, and a variety of economic departments, the chances of some kind of rate hike towards the latter half of this year lie around 50%.  While September remains a possibility, December has looked to be at least equally likely, and, on the more extreme end, a well-known prominent firm or two have made predictions of no action until next year or even 2018. 

A look at the dashboard of current conditions:

  Continue reading

Posted in Economic News | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Weekly Economic Update

Economic Update 7-25-2016

  • In a slow week for economic news, home sales and housing starts surprised on the upside, while the index of leading economic indicators has shown some flattening of momentum as of late.
  • Stocks gained for the fourth straight week, as a flurry of earnings reports came in better than expected, with U.S. equities outperforming foreign due to a strengthening of the dollar.  Bonds ended up with generally tempered returns, as interest rate volatility calmed down from prior weeks.  Commodity prices slipped across the board, with oil ticking down a few dollars upon higher inventories.

Continue reading

Posted in Economic News | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Weekly Economic Update

Economic Update 7-18-2016

  • Economic data for the week was fairly positive, with improvements in retail sales, industrial production and jobless claims.  Inflation ticked a bit higher due to housing costs and energy, while manufacturing remained mixed.
  • Global equity markets gained ground on the week, with foreign stocks outperforming those in the U.S., particular in emerging markets.  Bond prices fell back on the week as interest rates rose.  Commodity prices were slightly higher as oil and industrial metals ticked upward.

Continue reading

Posted in Economic News | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Weekly Economic Update

Economic Update 7-11-2016

  • Economic data for the week took a turn for the better, with strong results from non-manufacturing ISM as well as an improved employment situation report on Friday.
  • Equity markets in the U.S. gained as Brexit returns were tempered by the stronger jobs report, but foreign stocks struggled.  Bonds rallied globally with interest rates falling to low if not record-low levels in many locations.  Crude oil prices fell backward with shorter-term supply disruption concerns fading and production rising again.

Continue reading

Posted in Economic News | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Weekly Economic Update

Economic Update 7-05-2016

  • Economic data for the week was highlighted by stronger manufacturing results in the ISM and Chicago PMI surveys and higher consumer confidence, while real estate activity was mixed—a combination of higher home prices but weaker building activity for the prior month.
  • Investment markets recovered sharply following the ‘Brexit’ surprise last week, with equities higher globally.  Interestingly, bonds also fared well with bond yields falling on net for the week in both developed and emerging markets.  Commodity prices, including crude oil, generally showed continued strength during the week.

Continue reading

Posted in Economic News | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Weekly Economic Update

Economic Update 6-27-2016

  • Most global attention was focused on the U.K. ‘Brexit’ referendum, which was assumed to be doomed to failure earlier in the week—until final results showed it passed by a small margin.  In a slower week for U.S. economic releases, housing results were mixed, with home prices higher but building activity lackluster.
  • Equity markets gained ground early in the week globally as concerns over ‘Brexit’ dissipated before actual voting but reversed as results came through, causing a broad sell-off of risk assets.  Bonds fared well in the week in response, and commodity markets declined with oil and agricultural futures falling back as well as a stronger U.S. dollar.

Continue reading

Posted in Economic News | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Weekly Economic Update

Economic Update 6-20-2016

  • The week was highlighted by the FOMC meeting, at which no interest rate policy changes were made. In other data, retail sales surprised on the upside, manufacturing and production data were mixed, and inflation came in little changed as expected.
  • Markets suffered through a week of negativity generally due to the mixed economic data, digesting of Fed communications and heightened ‘Brexit’ concerns. Bonds fared better with lower rates, especially abroad, while commodities fell slightly as oil production and inventories appeared to pick up.

Continue reading

Posted in Economic News | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Fed Note

Fed Note:

It was rumored again in recent months that Fed might use June as another jumping off point for a 2nd rate hike, but it was again not to be.  With the poor employment situation report for May and tight polling for the upcoming ‘Brexit’ vote in the U.K. that could cause market disruptions, the FOMC was provided with several ready excuses to not proceed.

In today’s statement, it was noted that the pace of labor improvement has slowed, while economic activity appears to have picked up, as has housing.  As household spending has improved, business spending/capex has remained soft.  Inflation was acknowledged as remaining little changed, and running below target. Continue reading

Posted in Economic News | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment