16 October 2019

1) The IMF (International Monetary Fund) has made another cut to its 2019 global growth forecast, the fifth in a row. The reason given is a broad deceleration of the world’s largest economies with trade tensions undermining the expansion. Their projections of world economic growth has gone from a high of 3.9%, down to 3.5%, then to 3.4%, to 3.2% and finally to 3%.

2) The low mortgage rates has caused an epic housing shortage. The average mortgage rate for 30 year fixed was over 5% last November and stayed above 4.5%, but now is around 3.5%. Inventory trends in the mid-market indicate lower levels of inventory in early 2020. Housing starts have been moving up slowly, but mostly in the higher end homes, leaving the ‘starter home’ market depleted.

3) The production and delivery of Harley-Davidson’s new LiveWire electric motorcycle has been halted with the discovery of a problem with its charging mechanism. There was a non-standard condition in the final quality check, which halted deliveries of LiveWire bikes, however customers can continue riding their LiveWare motor cycles. Additional testing and analysis is progressing well.

4) Stock market closings for – 15 OCT 19:

Dow         27,024.80    up    237.44
Nasdaq      8,148.71    up    100.06
S&P 500     2,995.68    up       29.53

10 Year Yield:     up   at    1.77%

Oil:    down   at    $52.93

1) There are expectations that global growth will slow this year to a rate that can become a financial crisis. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development claims new data showing the US-China trade dispute is increasingly threatening the outlook of the two largest economies as well as others. Furthermore, the uncertainty from the Brexit and a possible crash out would further aggravate economic growth in the European sector.

2) Saudi Arabia is avoiding a global oil crisis by using the crude it holds in reserve until production can be fully restored. The Saudi’s claim necessary repairs will be completed in two to three weeks, thus restoring production levels prior to the attack. However, oil experts are skeptical that these repairs can be done in such a short period of time. This uncertainty is due in part from Saudi Arabia’s lack of transparence of their oil operations.

3) Good news for home owners, sales of used homes rose to its highest in more than a year, with the median price up 4.7% from last year to $278,200. This home sale bonanza is fueled in part by the low interest rates now available and by income gains. However, there are fears of a global economic slow down darkening this rosy picture in the near future. Presently, it would take 4.1 months to sell all the available houses, with realtors considering anything below a five month supply a tight market.

4) Stock market closings for – 19 SEP 19:

Dow              27,094.79    down   52.29 
Nasdaq           8,182.88          up     5.49
S&P 500          3,006.79          up     0.06

10 Year Yield:    down   at    1.77%

Oil:    $58.68

26 July 2019

1) Tesla, the manufacture of all-electric automobiles, has suffered a worse than expected loss. Additionally, there has been another major management shakeup, all of which is casting doubts on the future of the unique automaker. While Tesla delivered a record number of cars in its second quarter, its stock dropped 14% with a loss of $1.12 per share. Nevertheless, Tesla has opened twenty-five new stores and service centers.

2) Concerns grow that the trade tensions may be pushing U.S. economic growth downwards. Fears that the gross domestic product figures due out this Friday will show business investment has weakened. Additional factors stem from slow global growth and falling oil prices. The gains in jobs and wages are preventing growth from sinking. It’s anticipated that the Federal Reserve will lower interest rates by a quarter point to check softening of the economy.

3) Nissan, the world automobile manufacture, has announced the layoff of 12,500 employees worldwide, or about 10% of its work force. Nissan is striving to rein in the costs increases incurred during the former CEO Carlos Ghosn tenure and alleged financial misconduct. Japan’s number two automaker has suffered a collapse in its quarterly profits, a result of sluggish sales and rising cost. This is another indication of the world’s depressed auto market with other renowned automakers like Ford suffering similar major financial problems.

4) Stock market closings for – 25 JUL 19:

Dow             27,140.98    down    128.99
Nasdaq          8,238.54    down      82.96
S&P 500         3,003.67    down      15.89

10 Year Yield:    up   at    2.07%

Oil:    down   at    $55.91

16 July 2019

1) Chinese economic growth has slowed to its lowest level in twenty-seven years, a result of the prolong trade war. Additionally, global growth has slowed, coupled with external uncertainties increasing. China is reporting a fall in both exports and imports for the first six months of this year. The Chinese are working on more stimulus measures to stabilize growth such as boosting infrastructure spending and interest rates cut, while also seeking loans from abroad.

2) Just like all youth, the millennials and generation-Z, have aspirations for their lives and the direction they want to go. Presently, these two groups comprise 40% of the American population, but like previous generations they disdain much about the older generation’s lives such as cars, big houses and material wealth. They want careers that make a difference even if not paying much, where they can provide some greater good to society. The fly in the ointment is their exploding student loan debt coupled with the growing obsolescence of American workers, in particular the younger ones.

3) Huawei, the Chinese telecommunications giant recently in the news so much, plans hundreds of layoffs in the near future. These layoffs are expected to be in Huawei’s U.S. development subsidiary Futurewei, a technology development center, which employs 850 people across several states. Blacklisted by the American government because of security risk issues, the company expects to lose $30 billion dollars in sales over the next two years.

4) Stock market closings for – 15 JUL 19: All three markets set new record highs.

Dow              27,359.16    up   27.13
Nasdaq           8,258.18    up   14.04
S&P 500          3,014.30   up      0.53

10 Year Yield:    down   at    2.09%

Oil:    down   at    $59.30

20 June 2019

1) The $800 billion dollar trucking industry is in a slowdown as retailers and manufacturers are shipping less. Freight rates have declined for the last six months with the spot market dropping 62.5% for May verses last year. Already, a few major trucking firms have gone bankrupt, with one laying off 550 employees. Even the major trucking companies FedEx, UPS and J.B. Hunt have experienced declines sparking fears of a slowdown of the economy.

2) Harley-Davidson is making good its promise to build more motorcycles outside the United States by partnering with China’s Qianjiang Motorcycle to produce smaller motorcycles. The new bike will have a 338 cubic centimeter engine verses the 601 cc engine for its domestic motorcycles. Harley-Davidson is trying to boost its overseas sales as its domestic market shrinks.

3) Expectations for future global growth and corporate profits have shrank as investor confidence continues to decline amid the trade war. Concerns of an economic slowdown further fuel fears of investors for the demise of global growth, despite America’s stock market now trading near its record high. Global profit expectations fell by the second largest amount on record. The giant retailer Walmart announced they will be laying off nearly 600 employees later this year.

4) Stock market closings for- 19 JUN 19:

Dow                 26,504.00    up    38.46
Nasdaq              7,987.32    up    33.44
S&P 500             2,926.46    up      8.71

10 Year Yield:    down   at    2.03%

Oil:    up   at    $54.14

8 May 2019

1) Tomato prices could raise 40% from U.S. withdrawing from trade pact with Mexico, called the Tomato Suspension Agreement which expires this Tuesday. This will trigger duties of more than 17% on tomatoes coming from Mexico. Tomatoes from Mexico are selling below domestic production cost.

2) The Dow Jones slid down 648 points, before rising to 473 points on closing, over news that America will impose higher tariffs on Chinese goods late this week. The Nasdaq and S&P 500 also experienced similar significant drops over fears of a full blown trade war with a down turn in global growth and a drop in China’s GDP.

3) Analyst say that a breakdown in the semiconductor field is a warning sign that a trade war with China is coming. This industry is more sensitive to U.S. – Chinese trade tensions. Watch the Philadelphia Semiconductors SOX index, for if the index falls below about the 1,430 level, that indicates trouble.

4) 7 MAY 19 Stock market closings:

Dow             25,965.09    down    473.39
Nasdaq         7,963.76    down    159.53
S&P 500        2,884.05    down      48.42

10 Year Yield:    down   at    2.45%

Oil:    up   at    $61.44

15 March 2019

1) GE (General Electric) paid $1.5 billion dollars civil penalty for sub-prime house loans prior to 2007, to resolve claims over residential mortgage loans made by their WMC Mortgage unit, a company purchased by GE during the boom prior to the economic collapse in 2008. Their lending activities concealed the poor quality of the loans being made.

2) The Chevron oil company is buying the Anadarko Petroleum Corporation for $33 billion dollars which will put Chevron Corporation in the top ranks of energy companies. Chevron will be the third largest oil producer behind Exxon and Shell.

3) The GE20 group announced the global economy is slowing down faster than was expected, with an anticipated global growth of 3.3% for this next year. This is the lowest expansion since 2016, which may become worst if US-China trade tensions should increase.

4) 12 APR 19 Stock market closings: JP Morgan-Chase and Disney pushed stocks up.

Dow             26,412.30    up    269.25
Nasdaq          7,984.16    up      36.80
S&P 500         2,907.41    up      19.09

10 Year Yield:    up   at    2.56%

Oil:    down   at    $63.76