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Tuesday, August 13, 2013 – Metric Disconnects

Metric Disconnects by Sinclair Noe DOW + 31 = 15451SPX + 4 = 1694NAS + 14 = 368410 YR YLD + .11 = 2.71%OIL + .42 = 106.53GOLD – 15.90 = 1322.40SILV + .03 = 21.56 Retail sales rose 0.2% in July, following an upwardly revised 0.6% increase in June; retail sales are now up for 4 consecutive months. The retail sales report is important because consumer spending accounts for about 70% of the economy. We’ve heard that so frequently that it sounds like a cliché, but when we spend, that money circulates through the economy and it is the vital life blood of the economy. Areas showing gains included restaurants and bars, grocery stores and sporting goods outlets. Within general merchandise, department stores showed a 0.6 percent increase in sales last month Another Commerce Department report today showed inventories at US companies were little changed. Merchants had enough goods on hand to last 1.29 months at the current sales pace in June. Atlanta Federal Reserve bank President Dennis Lockhart says he thinks policy makers should move cautiously this year to scale back its bond buying program. Lockhart says the Fed might make its first reduction before the end of the year, maybe as soon as September, and that it should be thought of as a cautious first step. So, Lockhart was a bit more dovish than other Fed policy makers of late, and as he made the comments, small losses on Wall Street gave way to modest gains. The …

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Monday, July 15, 2013 – Lazy Days of Summer

Lazy Days of Summer by Sinclair Noe DOW + 19 = 15484SPX + 2 = 1682NAS + 7 = 360710 YR YLD – .04 = 2.55%OIL + .52 = 106.47GOLD – 1.60 = 1284.20SILV + .01 = 20.03 On a quiet Monday in the middle of the summer, in the middle of July, stocks pulled out modest gains today, but it was good enough for another record for the Dow Industrials and the S&P 500. The S&P posted its 8th consecutive advance. The Nasdaq 100 posted its 14th consecutive advance. Volume was light, the slowest trading session of any full trading day this year. So, this record setting rally is looking a little long in the tooth. The Commerce Department reports retail sales rose a seasonally adjusted 0.4% last month, that was less than expected. Let’s break it down: Sales got a big lift in June from the auto industry, with purchases up 1.8%. That’s the biggest gain since last November. Gasoline sales, meanwhile, climbed 0.7% on a seasonally adjusted basis.  Sales also rose for home-furnishings, pharmaceuticals, personal care, clothes and hobby items. Sales fell 2.2% at home-improvement stores, by 1.2% at bars and restaurants and by 1% at department stores. The auto sector generates about one-fifth of all retail spending. Excluding autos, sales were unchanged. So, here’s what is happening; the price of gas is going up; people are trading in their old gas guzzlers for more fuel efficient cars; the savings on gas pay for the newer car. …

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Monday, November 19, 2012 – Debtmageddon: the Non-Problem Problem

Debtmageddon: the Non-Problem Problem by Sinclair Noe DOW + 207 = 12,795SPX + 27 = 1386NAS + 62 = 291610 YR YLD +.04 = 1.61%OIL + 1.22 = 86.67GOLD + 18.20 = 1732.90 SILV + .80 = 33.21 Pete Domenici and Alice Rivlin are co-chairs of the Bipartisan Policy Center for Debt Reduction Task Force, offering the following recommendations in an article in the New York Times over the weekend: Economic growth must precede full-scale debt restraint. Congress should take action now to pass legislation phasing in tax reform that yields new revenues and restructuring entitlements to curb the continued growth of federal spending, particularly for health care. We cannot resort to such ham-handed mechanisms as the approaching sequester cuts, large across-the-board tax increases and other elements of the “fiscal cliff.” In late 2010, the task force recommended a holiday from the full 12.4 percent Social Security payroll tax, not the partial 2 percent cut that Congress ultimately passed. The idea is that whether it comes in the form of a payroll tax holiday, an income tax rebate or another similar mechanism, the most pressing priority is to get the economy out of “stall speed.” The task force also suggested a possible “framework” for the lame-duck Congress to pass a modest down payment on deficit reduction in December, while pursuing a comprehensive agreement, a “grand bargain” of sorts, in 2013. If I may break it down in a nutshell; growth before austerity. Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke will travel …

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