Financial Review

Fuld Again

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Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 13:16 — 6.1MB) Subscribe: iTunes | RSS Financial Review by Sinclair Noe DOW – 115 = 18,010 SPX – 13 = 2107 NAS – 27 = 5070 10 YR YLD – .04 = 2.09% OIL + 2.62 = 60.30 GOLD + 2.20 = 1191.00 SILV + .04 = 16.80   The Dow Jones industrial average ended about 115 points lower after falling more than 150 points during the session. The blue chip index posted a 0.9 percent gain for May. The S&P 500 ended up 1.1 percent for the month, and the Nasdaq outperformed with a 2.6 percent monthly gain.   Year to date the Dow Industrials are up about 1 percent, the S&P 500 is up about 2 percent, and the Nasdaq is up about 7%. This has been an extremely tight trading range to start the year. Another way to look at it is consolidation. And at some point the markets will break out of this tight range. The question is whether it will be a breakout or a breakdown. And if you’re looking for a divergent signal, the Dow Transports traded down for the day, for a 3.4 percent loss in May. The index is down 9 percent for the year.   Today’s big economic report was that first quarter Gross Domestic Product in the U.S. shrank at a 0.7 percent annualized rate, revised lower from a previously reported 0.2 percent gain. The revisions showed the trade gap widened more …

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Financial Review

The Deadline Is Near

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Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 13:16 — 6.1MB) Subscribe: iTunes | RSS Financial Review by Sinclair Noe DOW – 36 = 18,126 SPX – 2 = 2120 NAS – 8 = 5097 10 YR YLD + .01 = 2.14% OIL + .46 = 57.97 GOLD – .02 = 1188.20 SILV + .01 = 16.76   The National Association of Realtors’ index of pending home sales increased in April for the fourth consecutive month to reach the highest level in nine years, signaling that upcoming deals could pick up. The pending home sales index climbed 3.4 percent to 112.4 last month. The index now is at its highest since May 2006.

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Financial Review

Lie or Be Lehman

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Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 13:16 — 6.1MB) Subscribe: iTunes | RSS Financial Review by Sinclair Noe DOW + 121 = 18,162 SPX + 19 = 2123 NAS + 73 = 5106 10 YR YLD – .01 = 2.13% OIL – .38 = 57.65 GOLD + .20 = 1189.00 SILV – .07 = 16.75   Yesterday the Dow posted a triple digit loss, today a triple digit gain; not enough to cover yesterday’s losses. The Nasdaq was higher on strength in semiconductor stocks; the Nasdaq posted a new record high close, taking out the high from April 24. The dollar was slightly stronger, oil was down again.   Severe storms and devastating floods over the weekend in Texas and Oklahoma have killed at least 19 people. Another 14 people are missing in Texas, including eight members of two families whose vacation home was swept away. The flooding has also resulted in complications for business travelers. About 11 inches of rain fell in Houston on Monday while parts of Austin have been hit by as much as 7 inches. Helicopter crews in both cities rescued people who had been stranded in cars and on top of buildings. The National Weather Service issued a new flash flood warning today.   The IRS says tax return information for about 100,000 U.S. taxpayers was illegally accessed by cyber criminals over the past four months. The stolen information included tax returns and other tax information on file with the IRS. The IRS said the …

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Financial Review

A Short Week

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Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 13:15 — 6.1MB) Subscribe: iTunes | RSS Financial Review by Sinclair Noe DOW – 190 = 18,041 SPX – 21 = 2104 NAS – 56 = 5032 10 YR YLD – .08 = 2.14% OIL – 1.37 = 58.35 GOLD – 18.10 = 1188.80 SILV – .35 = 16.82   The S&P/Case-Shiller Home price index shows prices for existing homes rose in March. Both the 10- and 20-City Composites increased significantly, reporting 0.8% and 0.9% month-over-month increases, respectively. Both the 10-City and 20-City Composites saw year-over-year increases in March. The 10-City Composite gained 4.7% year-over-year, while the 20-City Composite gained 5.0% year-over-year.  Phoenix saw prices increase 0.6% in March,

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Author Interviews

Harry Boyte

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Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 7:10 — 3.3MB) Subscribe: iTunes | RSS Listen to Sinclair Noe audio interview with Harry Boyte, editor of “Democracy’s Education: Public Work, Citizenship, and the Future of Colleges and Universities.”

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Author Interviews

Charlene Li

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Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 19:50 — 9.1MB) Subscribe: iTunes | RSS Listen to the audio interview with Sinclair Noe and Charlene Li, author of “The Engaged Leader: A Strategy for Your Digital Transformation”.

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Financial Review

Proactive in the Face of Volatility

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Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 13:16 — 6.1MB) Subscribe: iTunes | RSS Financial Review by Sinclair Noe DOW – 53 = 18,232 SPX – 4 = 2126 NAS – 1 = 5089 10 YR YLD + .03 = 2.21% OIL – .78 = 59.94 GOLD SILV   Central bankers are speaking out. Earlier today, Mario Draghi, the President of the European Central Bank reiterated his call for euro zone countries to reform their economies, warning that future growth would remain modest. Draghi said: “It should…be clear that the argument that accommodative monetary policy constitutes an excuse for governments and parliaments to postpone their reform efforts is incorrect. Recently, economic conditions have improved somewhat in Europe…but growth is too low everywhere.”   This afternoon Federal Reserve chairwoman Janet Yellen delivered a speech in Rhode Island. Yellen said: “the U.S. economy seems well positioned for continued growth.” And she said: “If the economy continues to improve as I expect, I think it will be appropriate at some point this year to take the initial step to raise the federal funds rate target and begin the process of normalizing monetary policy.”   The Fed has consistently stated that they would be data dependent, but today Yellen said “Delaying action to tighten monetary policy until employment and inflation are already back to our objectives would risk overheating the economy.” So, apparently data dependent is subject to interpretation.   Yellen expressed confidence that the economy will get better and the first quarter weakness …

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Financial Review

A Tight Range

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Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 13:16 — 6.1MB) Subscribe: iTunes | RSS Financial Review by Sinclair Noe DOW + 0.34 = 18,285 SPX + 4 = 2130.82 NAS + 19 = 5090 10 YR YLD – .07 = 2.18% OIL + 1.71 = 60.69 GOLD – 3.00 = 1207.80 SILV + .05 = 17.23   The S&P 500 closed at a record high today.   We had a slew of economic data this morning. The leading economic index rose 0.7% in April, indicating the US economy is still expanding.   Initial claims for state unemployment benefits increased 10,000 to a seasonally adjusted 274,000 for the week ended May 16. Despite last week’s increase, claims remained below 300,000, a threshold associated with a strengthening labor market, for an 11th straight week. The four-week average for jobless claims decreased to 266,250, a 15-year low.   The National Association of Realtors reports sales of existing homes fell 3.3% in April to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.04 million. April’s sales pace was up 6.1% from a year earlier. The median sales price of used homes hit $219,400 in April, up 8.9% from the year-earlier period.   The jobless claims and existing home sales are pretty important because they are strong indicators for second quarter growth. We know the Fed is watching the labor market. It would be very difficult for the Fed to hike rates if the labor market starts showing signs of weakness. The housing data is important …

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Financial Review

Ongoing Criminal Enterprises

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Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 13:15 — 6.1MB) Subscribe: iTunes | RSS Financial Review by Sinclair noe DOW – 26 = 18,285 SPX – 1 = 2125 NAS + 1 = 5071 10 YR YLD – .01 = 2.25% OIL + .77 = 58.76 GOLD + 1.80 = 1210.80 SILV un = 17.18   April 29 and 30 the Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Market Committee met to determine monetary policy; today, they published the minutes of that meeting. There were no surprises. Policymakers have no plans to increase interest rate targets in June. We all knew that. Officials in April “had increased uncertainty regarding the economic outlook,” the minutes showed. They had no good reason to explain why consumer spending was so weak.  “Most” Fed officials think the dramatic slowdown in growth in the first quarter was transitory and that a moderate rebound would resume in the second quarter. Inflation was also expected to move higher.  The international context isn’t helpful to the US economy. Fed officials deem “foreign economic and financial developments” as constituting “potential downside risks,” and they specifically mention Greece and China. Moreover, despite its recent partial retracement, the dollar’s appreciation is “likely to continue to be a factor restraining US net exports and economic growth for a time.”   This suggests that they see a rate hike coming sometime later this year. Only a “few” on the U.S. central bank questioned whether the Fed was providing enough stimulus for the economy at the present …

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Financial Review

Another Record

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Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 13:15 — 6.1MB) Subscribe: iTunes | RSS Financial Review by Sinclair Noe DOW + 13 = 18,312.39 (record) SPX – 1 = 2127 NAS – 8 = 5070 10 YR YLD + .03 = 2.26% OIL – 2.17 = 57.26 GOLD – 17.80 = 1209.00 SILV – .61 = 17.17   Record high for the Dow Industrials.   Construction starts on new U.S. homes was up 20% in April to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.14 million. That’s the biggest monthly percentage gain in over 24 years and the highest level since November 2007.  Total housing starts remain far below an average pace of about 1.5 million over the 20 years leading up to the housing bubble’s 2006 peak.   A board member of the European Central Bank says the ECB will “frontload” its asset purchases in May and June – that is, step up buying in those months – to maintain its monthly average of $67 billion, given an expected drop in liquidity in the summer vacation period. The policymaker also said the recent selloff in German bunds and other sovereign bonds is not a cause for concern but the rapidity of the move is worrying.   Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis told a Greek TV channel last night that Greece is “very close” to a deal, other officials are less enthusiastic. European Commission President Jean-Claude Junker said this morning that there will be no agreement for Greece at this week’s summit. At …

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