20 May 2019

1 ) Hewlett Packard is buying the supercomputer maker Cray for $1.4 billion dollars. HP is intent on strengthening it position against IBM by expanding its high end computer line, expanding into AI (Artificial Intelligence), Internet of things and distributed computing offerings, and is expecting to see a return on investment in the next two years.

2) There are reports that the U.S. China trade talks have been put on hold, causing a reversal of the markets. The holdup is the increased scrutiny of Chinese telecom companies. This scrutiny is making it harder for Chinese companies such as Huawei to do business with U.S. companies.

3) Airline baggage fees is becoming an increasingly lucrative source of income. The U.S. airlines brought in $4.9 billion dollars from luggage fees, an 80% increase from 2009. Typical fees is $30 for the first bag, $40 for the second and $150 for the third. There are also expensive payments for heavy or oversize bags.

4) 17 MAY 19 Stock markets closing:

Dow                  25,764.00     down    98.68
Nasdaq              7,816.28      down    81.76
S&P 500             2,859.53 down 16.79

10 Year Yield:    down   at    2.39%

Oil:    down   at    $62.71

16 April 2019

1) The British business climate is expected to get worst after Brexit. A survey of chief finical officers finds that a full 80% consider Britain’s economy will slump after Brexit, especially if an unplanned exit occurs. The long term outlook for investment is poor, so with little investment, the economy will flatten.

2) Battle lines of banking are being drawn in China between virtual banks and conventional banks. A banking shakeup is in progress between hi-tech companies and traditional banks, who find it hard to quickly react to the challenges of virtual banks, much as with Amazon is to retailing or Urber is to transportation.

3) The auto maker Mercedes-Benz is being investigated for software cheating of emissions test. Germany has ordered recall of 238,000 cars using illegal software to defeat government testing for compliance of emissions standards.

4) 15 APR 19 Stock market closings:

Dow            26,384.77    down    27.53
Nasdaq         7,976.01    down      8.15
S&P 500        2,905.58    down      1.83

10 Year Yield:    down   at    2.55%

 Oil:    up   at    $63.57

4 April 2019

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

10 Year Yield:    up   at    2.52%

Oil:     unchanged   at    $62.46

21 March 2019

1) Fears of climate change is causing some retired seniors to pull up and move out of Florida, which for many years has drawn the ‘sixty plus year olds’ demographics for a life of peaceful retirement with its low cost of living, no income tax and nice warm weather. But the threat of hurricane damage from flooding and rising sea levels is also making the associated insurance cost soar, in turn causing retirees to reconsider and move more inland, the result some are claiming from global warming.

2) Losses from the flooding in Nebraska is estimated to be over one billion dollars with more flooding forecasted. But even worst is the anticipated impact on farmers. Last year, 19% of Nebraskan farms filed for bankruptcy, and many more are now anticipated to file as the consequence of the flooding pushes more farmers under.

3) The Feds have elected to not raise interest rates again this year, expecting an economic slowdown ahead. There isn’t any need to guard against inflation coupled with indicators of slower growth from household spending and business fixed investment. The GDP was 2.1% instead of the expected 2.3%.

4) 20 MAR 19 Stock market closings:

Dow                25,745.67    down     141.71
Nasdaq             7,728.97          up         5.02
S&P 500            2,824.23     down         8.34

10 Year Yield:    down   at    2.54%

Oil:     down   at     $59.99

26 February 2019

1) British farmers and produce workers divided over how Brexit could effect trade. Produce imports comes mostly from European Union and many of the produce workers in Britain are foreign. There are just 32 days left until Brexit automatically happens.

2) Rwanda is being courted by invertors amidst booming economic growth. The government is stable with 7% growth last year and 7.8% growth expected this next year. With the $2 billion dollars invested so far, there are now thousands of new jobs.

3) Fears of sub-prime mortgages could cause another 2007 bubble bust which then caused the 2008 economic crash world wide. Presently, 21% of those sub-prime mortgages are five years without payment because the word got out that mortgage companies were not foreclosing.

4) 25 FEB 19 Stock market closings:

Dow               26,091.95    up    60.14
Nasdaq            7,554.46    up     26.91
S&P 500            2,796.11    up      3.44

10 Year Yield:    up   at    2.67%

Oil:    down   at    $55.42

19 February 2019

1) Saudi Arabia has invested $20 billion dollars in Pakistan, including $10 billion dollars for an oil refinery.

2) Seven members of the British parliament have resigned over Brexit. They couldn’t abide the labor parties movement towards the left with anti-semitism and racism.

3) A Spanish warship tried to intimidate a British civilian ship to exit the waters around Gibralter to assert Spain’s sovereignty claim over the British territory of 300 years. With Britain exiting the European Union (Brexit), Spain is renewing its efforts to reclaim the territory.

4) 18 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

10 Year Yield:     up   at    2.67%

Oil:     up    at     $56.06

7 December 2018

1) The arrest of a top Chinese executive of Huawei, a major Chinese high technology company, caused world markets, including the Dow, to fall.  The Dow dropped 777 points before news that the Feds planned to slow down on increasing the interest rate was announced.

2) Research finds that millennials don’t have the money to spend that previous generations had.  The assumption has been a shift in spending habits, but with a millennial male making $6,600 dollars less than 1978 men, it appears they just don’t have the disposable income.  Working women haven’t made up the difference, opening the question about the future viability of our hyper-consumerism economy.

3) The EPA is expected to rollback back emission standards allowing coal fire powerplants to operate again without having to remove the carbon dioxide from burning coal.

4) 6 DEC 18     Stock market closings:

Dow                24,947.67         down      79.40
Nasdaq             7,188.26               up      29.83
S&P 500            2,695.95          down        4.11

10 Year Yield:     down   at   2.88%

Oil:    up   at     $51.52

29 November 2018

1) America had the fastest expanding GDP by growing 3.5% in the third quarter. The Feds hint that they might hold interest rates at present level, which would further stimulate growth.

2) There are threats of a partial government shutdown next week over funding for the border wall, the shutdown coming one week from this Friday.

3) Google is facing a $4 billion dollar fine for using smart phones to track people without their consent.  Last May, Europe passed regulations controlling the use of digital technology with people, which allows them to level such a large fine. The American Congress is considering similar legislation to regulate the digital industry.

4) 28 NOV 18   Stock market closings:   Biggest Dow rally in eight months.

Dow                    25,366.43            up         617.70
Nasdaq                 7,291.59            up         208.89
S&P 500                2,743.79            up           61.62

10 Year Yield:      down    at     3.04%

Oil:     up    at     $50.52

28 November 2018

1) There are reports that Apple stock holds key to end market slide, that the markets can’t turn around until Apple is going up, because the markets are being driven by the tech stocks, and Apple is the lead technology stock.  In the last two months, Apple stock has lost 25% of its value.

2) While home values have continued rising, the gains have shrunk to their lowest amount in the last two years.

3) Economy tiny houses are being offered in Silicon Valley costing $280,000.  The houses are prefabricated units.

4) GM has spent $10 billion dollars in buying back its stock, but then cut jobs to save $4.5 billion dollars.

5) 27 NOV 18      Stock market closings:

Dow                24,748.73     up      108.49
Nasdaq             7,082.70     up          0.85
S&P 500            2,682.17     up          8.72

10 Year Yield:     down    at    3.06%

Oil:     up    at     $52.02

23 November 2018

1) Global economic slowdown is due to rising interest rates and the trade war. The international slowdown is faster for other nations than for America, while England’s growth rate is slowing because of the additional problem of Brexit.

2) Government funding may run out on the seventh of December, when Congress might shut down the government over the boarder wall funding.

3) Worries are growing about high corporate debt, which might cause economic problems in the future, with corporate debt now totaling nine trillion dollars. Furthermore, increasing interest rates on debts may pull corporations down who are unable to service that debt. Corporate debt has double over the last decade.

4) 21 NOV 18    Stock market closings:

Dow                        24,464.69       down        0.95
Nasdaq                     6,972.25             up     63.43
S&P 500                    2,649.93             up       8.04

10 Year Yield:      up   at     3.06%

Oil:       up    at      $54.72