Month: April 2013

April
29

Provided by: Jon McGraw

The Markets If anyone doubted the power of Twitter, their skepticism was laid to rest this week. Early Tuesday afternoon, a tweet from the Associated Press reported President Obama had been injured by explosions in the White House. Stock, bond, and commodity markets fell sharply on the news and then rebounded when the Associated Press…

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April
29

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Economic Notes – April 29, 2013

(0/-) The advance estimate of real GDP for the first quarter came in a bit weaker than expected, at an annualized +2.5%. It was better than last quarter’s +0.4%, but a bit slower than the +3.0% consensus estimate. However, some of the underlying figures were improved (which is why this is considered more of a…

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April
23

Provided by: Jon McGraw

A Wild Week & Debt at Death

It was a wild, wild week. Last Monday, bombs exploded near the finish of the Boston Marathon. Not long after, media outlets let the public know letters to President Obama and a senator from Mississippi contained the poison ricin. On Wednesday, the town of West, Texas was flattened by an explosion at a fertilizer plant….

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April
23

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Economic Notes – April 22, 2013

It was a busy economic week—particularly in terms of housing and inflation indicators. (0) The March Consumer Price Index declined -0.2% on a headline level, which was lower than the flat reading expected. The core CPI, which excludes food and energy prices, rose +0.11%, which was below the forecasted +0.2%; so this, too, was tempered….

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April
15

Provided by: Jon McGraw

A Reversion to the Mean

Last week, the term ‘Easy Money’ conjured both comedian Rodney Dangerfield and the U.S. Federal Reserve, and no one was certain how much respect either one should get. The Fed accidentally e-mailed its market-moving Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting minutes to congressional staffers and trade lobbyists on Tuesday at 2 p.m. The minutes weren’t…

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April
15

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Economic Notes – April 15, 2013

(-) Retail sales for March came in weaker than expected, down -0.4% on a ‘headline’ level as opposed to consensus expectations of a flat reading.  The biggest impacts resulted from a -0.6% drop in auto sales and a -2.2% drop in gasoline sales (is that really bad news?).  Removing auto sales from the equation didn’t…

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April
08

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Soft Markets, Stimulus & BRICS

U.S. investors puzzled over disparate pieces of economic and world news last week. By the end of the week, major U.S. markets had tumbled indicating investors didn’t like what they’d seen. Under new leadership, the Bank of Japan (BOJ) announced an aggressive stimulus program that will inject $1.4 trillion into its economy over the next…

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April
08

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Economic Notes – April 8, 2013

As a whole, last week was a fairly downbeat week, at least relative to many so far this year.  That said, we knew there needed to be a pause in the flurry of good news at some point.  This did not come as a drastic surprise, as a few positive factors have begun to even out during the last…

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April
01

Provided by: Jon McGraw

The New Normal Growth Rate

U.S. stock markets finished the week – and the quarter – on a positive note. The Federal Reserve’s accommodative monetary policy and strong profit growth helped provide the lift needed to propel the S&P 500 Index to a record high. The Dow Jones Industrials Index also finished the week above its previous record close. For…

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April
01

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Economic Notes – April 1, 2013

(+) Durable goods orders were stronger than expected overall for February, at a gain of +5.7% versus an expected +3.9% increase.  The ex-transportation component, however, lost ground of -0.5% for the month, which lagged the forecasted gain of +0.6%.  Finally, the ‘core’ capital goods group fell -2.7% versus a consensus drop of -1.1%.  In the…

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