1) Increase in spending on gasoline and cars is expected to boost retail sales for March above the dismal sales of February. These numbers are being watched closely because there are conflicting statistics in reports that will indicate if there is a down turn of the economy. The retail sales numbers are the last to be coming in.
2) Contributions to restore Notre Dame continue to come in, now totaling almost one billion dollars. Notre Dame didn’t have any insurance, but Lloyds of London estimates that full restoration will require about eight billion dollars. Initial investigation found that the church structure came close to total collapse.
3) Fears of ‘medicare for all’ caused the health care stocks to drop. So far, health insurance and hospital stocks are down about $28 billion dollars, but in general today’s markets closed unchanged.
4) 17 APR 19 Stock market closings:
Dow 26,449.54 down 3.12 Nasdaq 7,996.08 down 4.15 S&P 500 2,900.45 down 6.61
1) The ride service Uber’s long awaited IPO (Initial Public Offering) filing is being watched for. The IPO is coming just two weeks after Lyft’s IPO. Uber and Lyft have been running neck and neck in competition in the rider market.
2) Signs that the US economy is strengthening is indicated by the number of new jobs rebounding from February with 196,000 new jobs in March. The unemployment rate held steady at 3.8%, while consumers spending is also accelerating, another sign that the US economy is regaining momentum..
3) Disney corporation is entering the streaming competition against Netflex. The streaming service will be called Disney Plus. Right now, Disney also owns 60% of the Hulu streaming service. Disney Plus is coming out just when Netflix announced its price increases plus it’s the lowest cost of any of the streaming services.
4) 11 APR 19 Stock market closing:
Dow 26,143.05 down 14.11 Nasdaq 7,947.36 down 16.88 S&P 500 2,888.32 up 0.11
1) The IMF (International Monetary Fund) has reduced their forecasted for world economic growth from 3.5% to 3.3%, which is the third reduction since last October. It forecasted 2.3% growth for the US economy, as well as reduced growth forecast for Germany and Great Britain.
2) Walmart is rolling out thousands of robots for use in their retail stores across America. These robots will automatically scan shelves and clean floors. With a million employees, Walmart is seeking ways to keep labor cost down.
3) Bank of America is raising it’s minimum wage to $20 an hour over the next two years. Starting the first of May, the rate will increase to $17 per hour. The bank has 205,000 employees.
4) 9 APR 19 Stock market closings: Markets pulled down by industrial sector.
Dow 26,150.58 down 190.44 Nasdaq 7,909.28 down 44.61 S&P 500 2,878.20 down 17.57
1) The European Union has offered to extended the exit date in an effort to avoid a unplanned crash-out. Prime Minister May asked for an extension to 30 June, but the EU countered with a offer for a one year extension, which could be terminated early if an exit plan is agreed upon before the one year is up.
2) Samsung has forecast the lowest quarter profits in more than two years. The first quarter outlook looks ugly with a 15% decline from last years first quarter. The poor performance is a result of poor semiconductor sales coupled with a slowing growth in the smart phone market.
3) New jobs in March is six times that of February. The US added 196,000 new jobs, many claiming this indicates solid growth in the economy, and therefore the economy is doing just fine. But some worry about the unemployment rate holding steady, because an upturn in the unemployment rate usually signals a recession in the near future.
4) 5 APR 10 Stock market closings:
Dow 26,424.99 up 40.36 Nasdaq 7,938.69 up 46.91 S&P 500 2,892.74 up 13.35
1) Ghawar, the biggest Saudi oil field is declining faster than was generally accepted by the world oil market. Oil production and reserves have been a state secret for more than forty years, but in a just released prospectus, Saudi Arabia open it’s books to reveal that their largest oil field has a maximum production three quarters what was assumed. Still, the Saudis claim they are able to pump oil at the maximum capacity of 12 million barrels a day, enough for another 52 years.
2) Signet Jewelers plans to close more than 150 of its stores in the fiscal year 2020. This is part of their plan to turn around the company and includes stores from Kay, Zales and Jared. Signet based their decision on a decline of mall foot traffic and increasing promotions required to get sales. They expect sales to drop 2.5% next year.
3) As the dollar weakens, gold has shown little change. Some claim gold prices reveal the true state of US economic health. When high, the economy is not healthy, while when low, it is healthy. People invest in gold as a hedge, a heaven or as a direct investment. The price of gold is more than just supply or demand since gold production is just a small fraction of the world gold supply.
4) 3 APR 19 Stock market closings:
Dow 26,218.13 up 39.00 Nasdaq 7,895.55 up 46.86 S&P 500 2,873.40 up 6.16
1) Venezuela has 1,700,000% inflation rate, its money now so worthless that the people are now using the Columbia Peso to do business such as paying for labor and buying goods. This has come about because so many Venezuelans are buying what supplies they can get from Colombia.
2) Wal-mart announced they will no longer employ store greeters. This was a job that many handicapped people could do, and there are thousands of disabled workers whose jobs will be lost with limited prospects of re-employment. No reason was given, but the slump in big box retailing was most likely a significant factor.
3) The Central Bank Chief warns that dangers are brewing ahead, the bank closely watching the situation. While the current economy is heathy, fears of the impact of China’s and Europe’s economic future are of particular concern from effects of Brexit and trade negotiations. Also considers the Federal debt making an unstable economic environment.
4) 26 FEB 19 Stock market closings:
Dow 26,057.98 down 33.97 Nasdaq 7,549.30 down 5.16 S&P 500 2,793.90 down 2.21
1) PMI readings released for America, Japan and the Eurozone indicate a slowing down. This is a result of international tensions, with America having a one in four chance of a slowdown.
2) Honda announced it is pulling out of England, with a loss of 3,500 jobs. Honda claimed their decision wasn’t a result of Brexit, but Britain is considered to be a business friendly country and therefore a portal into the European Union, but with Brexit that will now be going away. Presently, about half the cars in Britain are Japanese models, and Honda’s withdrawal is raising fears that the other Japanese automakers will decide to also withdraw.
3) Fears deepen that the sharp rise of the yen may hurt Japan’s economy. Japan is plagued by low growth, tepid consumer purchases, fast falling of exports and an aging population, all which contribute to Japan’s economic woes.
4) 19 FEB 19 Stock market closings:
Dow 25,891.32 up 8.07 Nasdaq 7,486.77 up 14.36 S&P 500 2,779.76 up 4.16
1) American retail sales dropped in December to their lowest in nine years. This weakness shows an across the board slowdown of the economy.
2) The US student debt delinquency tops $166 billion dollars. These are debts that are ninety days or more behind. Wide spread defaults could drive the federal deficient higher if not paid.
3) There is a record seven million Americans that are three months or more behind in their car payments, a red flag economic warning that many Americans are struggling to pay their bills. This is especially true for showing duress in the low income working class.
4) 15 FEB 19 Stock market closings:
Dow 25,883.25 up 443.86 Nasdaq 7,472.41 up 45.45 S&P 500 2,775.60 up 29.87
New article posted below titled, “Failings of the Fourth Estate!”
1) An appropriations bill to keep the government open must go on the floor this Monday if it is to be passed and signed by the president to avoid government shut down this Friday.
2) The policy of South Africa appropriating the private property of white people, without any compensation, is driving South Africa’s economy downwards. This policy has been tried with other African nations with the devastating results of their educated white people fleeing, leaving no one knowledgeable in running the businesses. South Africa is also experiencing the beginnings of ‘brain drain’. With fears of South Africa becoming a failed state, and the threat of a socialist economy, investment is declining with the economy now static while its bond rating is now junk.
3) Representative Ocasio-Cortez’s proposal ‘Green New Deal’ is getting cool reception even from members of the Democratic party over the feasibility of its proposals. Plan makes no mention of how it would achieve its goals, but does raise fears of massive debt while also doing huge damage to manufacturing sector of the economy. One congressman ask why anyone would want to make America into another Venezuela. The Green New Deal looks like it will be a major topic in the 2020 election.
4) 8 FEB 19 Stock market closings:
Dow 25,106.33 down 63.20 Nasdaq 7,298.20 up 9.85 S&P 500 2,707.88 up 1.83
1) The executive and CEO of Quadriga, Canada’s largest crypto exchange, dies with $145 million dollars of customer money electronically locked away. Only the CEO knew the pass words needed to unlock the money.
2) EU economic slow down, with EU experiencing its weakest growth since 2013, amidst manufacturing slowdown. The German economy is accelerating while Frances is slowing down.
3) Tech companies Slack, Airbnb and Uber are making their IPOs this year, but several other tech companies are pulling their plans for IPO because of the uncertain world economic.
4) 5 FEB 19 Stock market closings:
Dow 25,411.52 up 172.15 Nasdaq 7,402.08 up 54.55 S&P 500 2,737.70 up 12.83