1) The U.S. Federal Reserve elected not to raise interest rates, thereby signaling borrowing cost will most likely remain unchanged, and they expect moderate economic growth and low unemployment to continue into the presidential election year. The Feds left the benchmark overnight lending rate at its current range of 1.5% to 1.75% with 13 of the 17 fed policymakers supporting no change.
2) American consumer prices rose more than expected in November, giving credence to the Fed’s decision not to raise interest rates. The consumer price index increased 0.3% last month, in part from households paying more for gas. In the twelve months through November, the CPI (Consumer Price Index) increased 2.3% after a similar gain in October. Gasoline prices rose 1.1% after rebounding 3.7% in October.
3) China is accused of dumping cheap mattresses which is disrupting the U.S. bedding industry, in an attempt to gain a foothold in American markets. In recent years dozens of Chinese companies have been flooding the market with super low priced mattresses, selling them to retailers for as little as $18 each. In turn, the mattresses are sold under a wide range of labels at national chains, online businesses, local retailers and mattress stores. In recent years the industry has been troubled by disruption including thousands of job losses, multiple bankruptcies and hundreds of store closures. In 2018, about five million mattresses were shipped to the U.S. from China.
4) Stock market closings for – 11 DEC 19:
Dow 27,911.30 up 29.58 Nasdaq 8,654.05 up 37.87 S&P 500 3,141.63 up 9.11
The Big Ep. #10
is huggeeeeeeeeeeeeee (*Prez Donald Trump voice here*). We had the
pleasure interviewing a youtube sensation & internet presenter, who
brings all the relevant show biz and internet news to your tube (Youtube
that is ;).
had the pleasure of interviewing Youtube’s very own Nique at Nite
(Nique Laclaire). Nique has been making waves on youtube and on the
internet, her youtube page @NiqueatNite
has accumulated over 170k (170,000) followers. Nightly, Nique presents
show biz, entertainment news and gossip (with a few drama stories here
and there), but her content has been well received by the public and her
Nique interviewed with us and brought insight about
the Youtube game (hussle & bussle)and her attributes on being
successful on Youtube. She explained the Do’s & Don’t on what to do
& not to do on Youtube, and the policies that Youtube/Google keep
1) Volkswagen’s diesel emissions scandal raised it’s ugly head again with the German public prosecutors raiding VW Wolfsburg headquarters looking for documents. The scandal broke in 2015, but there are still questions about newer engines which succeeded the diesel engines with fraudulent testing for emissions. So far, Volkswagen’s cheating test has cost the company about $33 billion dollars in fines, vehicle refits and legal costs.
2) Richmond California is moving to ban the export of coal through their port facilities citing coal dust pollution in parts of the town. Coming from western states such as Wyoming, the coal is shipped to China, India and other far east countries still making heavy use of coal fired electric generation plants. However, the city may be facing legal challenges against the city ban. Richmond, Stockton, Los Angeles and Long Beach are now the only major west coast ports that handle coal.
3) President Trump has suggested that the trade war with China could drag on for some time, that it might be better to wait until after the 2020 election to sign a trade agreement. The next deadline is 15 December when 15% levies on an additional $160 billion dollars in Chinese goods. The news cause another drop in the stock markets, in addition to the drop from news about metal tariffs on Brazil and Argentina.
4) Stock market closings for – 3 DEC 19:
Dow 27,502.81 down 280.23 Nasdaq 8,520.64 down 47.34 S&P 500 3,093.20 down 20.67
1) Deere & Co., the famous manufacture of green and yellow tractors, reported lower earnings blaming trade tensions and poor weather in the U.S. farm belt. Last year’s difficult growing and harvesting conditions have made farmers cautious about investing in new farm equipment. Sales of the construction and forestry division are expected to be down by 10% to 15%, while agricultural is down 5% to 10% next year.
2) Texas oil explorers say predictions of shale production isn’t reflecting the industry’s slowdown. Producers are being starved of funding, stocks have plunged and little interest in public offerings, which may cause a downturn to be more enduring. Seeking to cut costs, drillers have laid off 1,000 workers. There are predictions that U.S. oil production growth will flatten as early as 2021. There is a rapid decline of shale well production, partly a result of placing wells too close together.
3) Global manufacturing has been dragging the world economy down this last year. Weak auto sales have added to the problem, with China’s auto market the worst with a 11% decline in sales. Slow auto sales have cut production at auto plants, with Audi cutting 7,500 jobs. U.S. dealerships are struggling to clear inventory for the new year, with a 12% rise in incentive spending in November, compared to a typical 4%.
4) Stock market closings for – 29 NOV 19:
Dow 28,051.41 down 112.59 Nasdaq 8,665.47 down 39.70 S&P 500 3,140.98 down 12.65
1) Farmers are facing a potential $24.5 billion dollar market for pork in China within ten years if America can gain unrestricted trade access. The reason is that Asian hog herds have been devastated by the disease of African swine fever. The disease has driven up the price of pork, a major staple of the Chinese diet, by more than 69%. There is a 12% duty on frozen pork, which the Chinese added a 60% punitive tariff, with China imposing customs restrictions to non-frozen pork.
2) U. S. home prices increased modestly over the last year with a 2% annual gain. Housing prices have increased for the last seven years, making houses unaffordable for many. Prices have steadily outpaced wage growth for several years. The low interest rates have helped alleviate the problem.
3) The arts and crafts retailer chain A.C. Moore is closing all of its 145 stores, although up to 40 of these closing locations will become Michaels, another arts and craft retail chain. Retailers nation wide have succumb to the changing patterns of American consumerism, with nearly 9,100 store closures in 2019, including big name well known stores such as Payless ShoeSource, Dressbarn and Gymboree.
4) Stock market closings for – 26 NOV 19:
Dow 28,121.68 up 55.21 Nasdaq 8,647.93 up 15.44 S&P 500 3,140.52 up 6.88
1) America’s largest manufacturer of truck engines plans to lay off 2,000 workers. Orders for heavy duty trucks is down last year by 51%. This market dip is forcing Cummins Diesel to cut back on its production, reducing its 62,610 workforce by the 2,000. The company is forced to do a more aggressively cost cutting program because the down turn is happening faster than anticipated. Other manufactures of parts and assemblies, such as drivetrains, braking and axles used in large trucks are also forced into layoffs and bankruptcies.
2) The national debt has just passed $23 trillion dollars the first of November. This is a record high for the amount of money owed by the Federal government brought on by the growing budget deficits and is roughly equal to the Chinese, Japanese and German economies combined. Both parties have abandoned fiscal conservative spending and are intent on spending more on the domestic and military fronts, a contest over promises of who will spend more while cutting taxes.
3) The Ford Motor Company has $37 billion dollars in cash and short term assets on its balance sheet , but is strapped for cash. This makes Ford one of the top ten U. S. companies flush with cash. But Ford faces so many future challenges, it must hold onto every penny it can. First is a major multi-year restructuring, principally in Europe and South America. Also, Ford is overdue to refresh its key vehicles, including the company’s best selling F series pickup trucks, which will cost several billion dollars. Finally, Ford’s efforts to join the rush into electric vehicles, with seven new electric models due by the end of 2020.
4) Stock market closings for – 25 NOV 19:
Dow 28,066.47 up 190.85 Nasdaq 8,632.49 up 112.60 S&P 500 3,133.64 up 23.35
1) American retailers, such as Home Depot are facing a new crime wave driven by drugs and fueled by the opioid crisis. Known as organized retail crime, people steal for crime rings in exchange for cash they can buy drugs with. The stolen merchandise is then resold at pawnshops, online or directly to a buyer. Worst yet, the thieves are using violence against store employees who try to stop the open theft, even using guns and knifes. The store is left to just stand and watch as thieves roll shopping carts of merchandise out the door to sell for drugs.
2) The tuna supplier Bumble Bee Foods announced they are filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection to be purchased by its largest creditor FCF Fishery, for $925 million dollars. Bumble Bee’s debt burden has forced the bankruptcy, which in turn was caused by a $25 million dollar fine for forming a cartel with Chicken of the Sea and Starkist to fix prices. The fine was levied by the Department of Justice. Additionally, the popularity of packaged tuna has been declining with a 42% per capita drop over the last 30 years.
3) There are growing fears that phase one of the China-American trade deal may not get signed before the additional tariffs take effect in mid-December. Phase one would not eliminate tariffs on either side, instead would address issues of intellectual property and financial services access including sizeable purchases by China of American agricultural products. Phase one is considered a starting point for resolving trade differences.
4) Stock market closings for – 22 NOV 19:
Dow 27,875.62 up 109.33 Nasdaq 8,519.88 up 13.67 S&P 500 3,110.29 up 6.75
1) For 80 years Boeing Aircraft has operated as an ‘association of engineers’, but this changed in 2001 when the upper management who came from MacDonnel Douglas (a failed company), elected to move Boeing’s corporate headquarters to Chicago. The rational was upper management shouldn’t be close to a principal business, because the corporate center is inevitably drawn into day to day business operations. With this, Boeing became a financially driven business instead of engineering driven, with decision based on cost cutting instead of safety. This has resulted in the 737 MAX fiasco now being played out.
2) Apple has started construction of its $1 billion dollar campus in Austin Texas, which is beside its new MacBook Pro laptop manufacturing facility. The 3 million square foot campus will have 5,000 employees with capacity to grow to 15,000. Currently, Apply employs 7,000 people in Austin. This is seen as another move by Apple to limit its manufacturing in China.
3) Walmart is redesigning its grocery department in order to counter impending competition to traditional brick-and-mortar from online giant Amazon. Already the country’s largest grocer, Walmart will widen aisles, add low profile displays in the produce departments, an organic shop and update signage throughout its stores. These changes are expected to be improvements for the customers and workers.
4) Stock market closings for – 20 NOV 19:
Dow 27,821.09 down 112.93 Nasdaq 8,526.73 down 43.93 S&P 500 3,108.46 down 11.72
1) The KKR & Co. is offering a deal to take the drugstore giant Walgreens Boots Alliance private in what could be the biggest ever leveraged buyout. The New York private equity firm is proposing to buy out shareholders of Walgreens Boots, but there are no details on the proposed transaction. Walgreens Boots has a market value of $53 billion dollars and debt of $16.8 billion dollars. A buyout would give Walgreens Boots time to adapt to a fast changing retail landscape.
2) Some U.S. oil and natural gas production companies are planning to pump less petroleum thereby reducing production for this next year. Several producers, including EQT Corp and Chesapeake Energy Corp have announced their intention to alsoreduce production thereby reining in spending and forecasting slower growth, while other fracking companies like Diamondback Energy Inc., Cimarex Energy Co. and Callon Petroleum Co. plan to hold next year’s spending the same.
3) The Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba has shattered their single day sales from last year. Alibaba had $33.9 billion dollars in sales, which eclipsed last year’s numbers of $30.8 billion dollars in sales for 24 hours. Alibaba’s annual shopping extravaganza is equivalent to Black Friday or Cyber Monday in the US. The eleventh of November was originally created as a student holiday in China to celebrate single people, but has been transformed into a massive day of sales on Alibaba.
4) Stock market closings for – 11 NOV 19:
Dow 27,691.49 up 10.25 Nasdaq 8,464.28 down 11.03 S&P 500 3,087.01 down 6.07