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Thursday, February 20, 2014 – Searching for Inflation

Searching for Inflationby Sinclair Noe DOW + 92 = 16,133SPX + 11 = 1839NAS + 29 = 426710 YR YLD + .02 = 2.75%OIL + .02 = 102.86GOLD + 12.10 = 1324.00SILV + .29 = 21.92 The Conference Board’s Leading Economic Indicators rose 0.3% in January following no change in December. Over the six months through January, the LEI rose 3.1%. The LEI tracks 10 indicators designed to signal business cycle peaks and troughs. In the most recent report, 5 of the 10 indicators were positive, including a drop in jobless claims and a pickup in factory orders; on the negative side, declines in building permits and hours worked. Meanwhile, the Conference Board’s index of coincident indicators, a gauge of current economic activity, rose 0.1 percent for a second month. Overall, the leading indicators point to moderate expansion once the nation gets past inclement weather, with the caveat that consumer demand needs to pick up. No surprises in that report. The Consumer Price Index rose 0.1% in January after a 0.2% gain in December. The CPI measures prices at the retail level. The core rate, excluding food and energy prices, also rose 0.1%. Over the past 12 months, consumer prices were up 1.5%, and the core CPI was up 1.6%. Energy costs increased 0.6% from a month earlier and were up 2.1% over the past 12 months. Food costs rose 0.1%. Gains in the cost of hotel rooms, medical care and rents were mostly offset by declining costs for new …

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Friday, February 14, 2014 – Cold, Cold, Cold

Cold, Cold, Cold by Sinclair Noe DOW + 126 = 16,154SPX + 8 = 1838NAS + 3 = 424410 YR YLD + .01 = 2.74%OIL – .05 = 100.30GOLD + 16.30 = 1320.10SILV + 1.02 = 21.61 The cold weather back East has left its frozen footprints all over a variety of economic reports from payrolls to new home sales to retail sales. Estimating the extent of the weather effect is a guess at best, and it is possible that consumer spending might have slowed even with more pleasant weather. The best guesses from economists are that the snow, ice and bitter cold this winter will shave about 0.3 percentage point from economic growth; that works out to about $47 billion in lost productivity and about 76,000 jobs. Other estimates suggest fourth quarter GDP could be revised from 3.2% to as low as 2.2%(so maybe – $15 bln). Fortunately, a revision in GDP does not mean you have to write a refund check; whatever you made or lost in the fourth quarter is unchanged. Schools closed, traffic non-existent, or massive traffic pile-ups, businesses closed, thousands of flights cancelled, electricity outages, the Great Lakes are 75% frozen over; it’s all a big frozen, expensive mess. The most recent storms, the ones going on right now in the East, could cost $20 to 40 billion. The Federal Reserve reported this morning that manufacturing output fell 0.8% in January; they blamed the severe weather. At the same time, utility use jumped 4.1% last …

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Wednesday, November 20, 2013 – Fed Minutes, Fed Conundrum

Fed Minutes, Fed Conundrum by Sinclair Noe DOW – 66 = 15,900SPX – 6 = 1781NAS – 10 = 392110 YR YLD + .09 = 2.79%OIL – .01 = 93.33GOLD – 32.40 = 1243.80SILV – .49 = 19.95 The Federal Open Market Committee, Federal Reserve policy makers, met October 29-30, and to no one’s surprise they did not change monetary policy. Today, minutes of that meeting were released. The policy makers “generally expected that the data would prove consistent with the Committee’s outlook for ongoing improvement in labor market conditions and would thus warrant trimming the pace of purchases in coming months.” They think the economy is improving, despite the government shutdown and ongoing political dysfunction, the economy is getting better and the FOMC is considering how and when they can exit Quantitative Easing; they would like to scale back $85 billion per month in purchases of Treasuries and mortgage backed securities without triggering a rise in interest rates that could slow economic growth and wipe out gains in the labor market. That is not to say they are ready to raise their Fed Funds target for interest rates. That target has been right at zero and will likely remain at zero for at least a year or more. They want to get out of the bond buying business without the market noticing, and independently pushing interest rates higher. It’ll be a fine trick if they can pull it off. In a speech to the National Economists Club, Ben Bernanke …

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Thursday, August 15, 2013 – Who’s in Control?

Who’s in Control? by Sinclair Noe DOW – 225 = 15,112SPX – 24 = 1661NAS – 63 = 360610 YR YLD +.04 = 2.75%OIL + .41 = 107.26GOLD + 29.60SILV + 1.14 = 23.11 Let’s start with the economic data: The Labor Department said its producer price index (PPI) remained flat in July, surprising economists who were expecting a rise of 0.3%. Meanwhile, core prices, which exclude food and energy costs, edged 0.1% higher — less than the 0.2% climb projected by economists. By comparison, June saw gains of 0.8% and 0.2%, respectively. Meanwhile, the consumer price index (CPI) showed retail prices rose a seasonally adjusted 0.2% on gains for gasoline, housing, clothing and food, among other goods. Excluding energy and food, the core consumer-price index also rose 0.2%. The core CPI increased 1.7% in July from the same period in the prior year, slightly up from June’s annual growth. Overall consumer prices have increased 2% over the past 12 months. That year-over-year growth in the overall CPI has trended higher in recent months. Just the other day, James Bullard,  the St. Louis Fed president said he is concerned about low inflation levels, which he said will be a factor in whether the Fed will scale back its bond-buying program. Bullard said: “There has not been much indication, so far, that it has been ticking back up toward target.” Also, the number of people who applied for new regular state unemployment-insurance benefits fell 15,000 to 320,000 in the week that …

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Tuesday, April 16, 2013 – Love That Dirty Water

Love That Dirty Water by Sinclair Noe DOW + 157 = 14,756SPX + 22 = 1574NAS + 48 = 326410 YR YLD + .02 = 1.72%OIL + .20 = 89.90GOLD + 16.70 = 1370.30SILV + .65 = 23.44 If home is where the heart is, then Boston is everybody’s hometown today. No significant developments to report. The death toll stands at 3, with 176 people reported as injured, some in very critical condition. Officials now say it was just two bombs; yesterday, there was speculation there were more. There is no indication that the bombing was part of a broader plot. We still don’t know if it was one evil lunatic or a group of evil lunatics. We don’t know if it was done by someone from this country or elsewhere. There have been no arrests, and it is a very intensive ongoing investigation. We should not speculate on some things. What we do know is that people responded by running toward the blast to help the victims. We do know that the medical personnel and others responded heroically. And we do know that the good, decent, and heroic people outnumber the evil lunatics; always have, always will. Total housing starts in March were up 46.7% from the March 2012 pace, although some of that increase was due to a surge in multi-family starts in March. Single family starts were up 28.7%. Even with this significant increase, housing starts are still very low. The consumer price index decreased 0.2% in March, led …

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Thursday, March 28, 2013 – The Good Shepherd

Mark your Calendar, April 5 & 6 and make your reservations for the 2013 Wealth Protection Conference in Tempe, AZ. For conference information visit www.buysilvernow.comor click hereor call 480-820-5877. This year’s conference features Roger Weigand, Nathan Liles, David Smith, Mark Liebovit, Arch Crawford, Ian McAvity, Bill Tatro, and I will speak on Friday. There is an expanded Q&A session with all speakers on Saturday. I hope you can attend. The Good Shepherd by Sinclair Noe DOW + 52 = 14,578SPX + 6 = 1569NAS + 11 = 326710 YR YLD un = 1.85%OIL + .59 = 97.17GOLD – 8.90 = 1597.50SILV – .33 = 28.46 For the week, the Dow rose 0.4 percent, the S&P 500 advanced 0.8 percent and the Nasdaq gained 0.6 percent. Thursday marked the end of the trading week. The US stock market will be closed tomorrow in observance of the Good Friday holiday. For the month of March, the Dow climbed 3.7 percent, the S&P 500 rose 3.6 percent and the Nasdaq added 3.4 percent. For the first quarter, the Dow shot up 11.2 percent, the S&P 500 jumped 10 percent and the Nasdaq climbed 8.2 percent. The best performing stocks in the S&P since the start of the year: Netflix, Best Buy, Hewlett-Packard, H&R Block, and Micron Tech. The worst performers included: Cliffs Natural Resources, JCPenney, US Steel, Garmin, Apollo Group, and Newfield Exploration. For the Dow Industrial Average and the S&P 500 it was a record high close. Whoopee! The last all-time closing …

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Thursday, February 21, 2013 – the Big Coincidence

Note: I will be a speaker at the upcoming 2013 Wealth Protection Conference in Tempe, AZ on April 4th and 5th. Click here for details and registration information. Hope to see you there. The Big Coincidence by Sinclair Noe DOW – 46 = 13,880SPX – 9 = 1502NAS – 32 = 3131 10 YR YLD + .04 = 1.98%OIL – 2.23 = 92.99GOLD + 12.10 = 1577.40SILV + .12 = 28.78 We had a bundle of economic reports to start the day. Let’s run through them. First, the CPI report, which measures inflation at the retail level, shows prices were unchanged in January for the second month. Consumer prices are up just 1.6% in the past 12 months. One striking subset of the CPI report showed energy prices dropping 1.7% in January on a seasonally adjusted basis. Of course we all know that gas prices were climbing almost every day through the month; most likely, we’ll see a significant bump in the February report. A couple of manufacturing reports showed weakness. The Philly Fed’s  gauge of regional manufacturing activity fell to negative 12.5 in February from negative 5.8 in January with declines in overall activity and new orders. And Markit, a financial information services company, said its gauge of manufacturing activity dropped to 55.2 in February from 55.8. Any reading above 50 indicates expansion but the purchasing managers index showed a slower expansion, with weaker new orders and employment. Initial jobless claims rose 20,000 to a seasonally adjusted 362,000 in …

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