1) At a time when auto sales are slowing or even sagging, pickup truck sales continue to rise even with hefty yearly price increases. The industry average for full size pickups is $45,260 in 2019. Chevrolet has announced an all new version of its Silverado that tops the $100,000 price. Profit margins for pickups are large compared with standard automobiles, about $10,000 per truck, with high end trucks bringing as much as $20,000.
2) Importers are dodging the tariffs on Chinese goods by entering the U.S. via third countries such as Vietnam. This practice is called transshipment where Chinese goods are minimally processed or altered in a third country then shipped to America as exports from that third country. The administration has spent this last year investigation strategies to best counter this ploy, which cost America billions of dollars in uncollected tariffs.
3) As global demand for oil weakens amid America’s shale oil boom, OPEC considers extending its production cuts for another nine months. The supply growth in oil is expected to exceed the demand growth for 2020 with OPEC members wanting to get ahead of the situation to avoid a drastic drop in world oil prices. Russia in particular is pushing for extension as it strives to raise its production capacity.
4) Stock market closings for- 1 JUL 19:
Dow 26,717.43 up 117.47 Nasdaq 8,091.16 up 84.92 S&P 500 2,964.33 up 22.57
1) Wall Street is expecting another surge upwards of the markets, which they are terming a ‘melt up’ and analysts are recommending call options contracts which pay off in a move higher. Call option contracts give the investor the option to buy in at an agree price, but are not obligated to buy.
2) Pork prices are expected to jump this year because African swine fever is ravaging the hog population of China, a big consumer of pork. Because there still isn’t any containment of the disease, analysts estimate it will be at least twenty months of elevated pork prices. Non-domestic pork demand will continue into 2020 at a minimum.
3) With U.S. crude stockpiles rising, traders are fearing oil prices will slide despite bullish forces traditionally pushing oil prices up. The tightening sanctions on Iran, the unstable state of Venezuela and OPEC’s desired to reduce production, are all forces that push oil prices up, but U.S. domestic production and rising stockpiles may counter these forces.
4) 1 MAY 19 Stock market closings:
Dow 26,430.14 down 162.77 Nasdaq 8,049.64 down 45.75 S&P 500 2,923.73 down 22.10
1) The Russian company Rusal plans to build an up-to-date $200 million dollar aluminum rolling mill in Kentucky, which they intend to start construction of after sanctions have been lifted. The mill will provide about 1,500 jobs and is expected to open in 2021.
2) Gasoline prices are quickly rising to the three dollar a gallon mark, even four dollars for parts of California. This rise in price is attributed to several different factors, such as problems with loss of refinery capacity, reduced production from OPEC, higher domestic consumption, flooding reducing grain production for ethanol and sanctions on oil exporting countries.
3) Donations are already coming in to restore Notre Dame less than twenty-four hours after the fire. So far, several billionaires have contributed $700 million dollars to restore the 850 year old church. No doubt, the restoration will require substantially more money and will probably take decades to accomplish.
4) 16 APR 19 Stock market closings:
Dow 26,452.66 up 67.89 Nasdaq 8,000.22 up 24.21 S&P 500 2,907.06 up 1.48
1) German economic forecast for growth has been reduced as foreign industrial orders fall. Last year, Germany narrowly skirted a recession. The forecast for economic growth was reduced from 1.8% down to 1.0% due to slower global economic growth and the uncertainties from Brexit.
2) There are about 54,000 bridges in America which need urgent repair, and it’s estimated it will take 80 years to rebuild them. The report by the American Road and Transportation Builders Association says that about 9% of the highway bridges are deficient with 174 million vehicles crossing each day. On a rating scale of 0 to 9, a rating of 4 or below is considered deficient.
3) Oil prices briefly topped $70 for the best grade of crude oil, but was unable to hold because of signs of tightening global supplies plus uncertainty over world economic outlook. Prices were pushed up by forecast of declining OPEC exports.
4) 4 APR 19 Stock market closings:
Dow 26,384.63 up 166.50 Nasdaq 7,891.78 down 3.77 S&P 500 2,879.39 up 5.99
1) Oil hits its highest for 2019 as demand outlook improves, spurred on by positive manufacture PMI numbers for China and US, both the worlds largest economies. This caused US stocks to rally, in addition to China-US trade talks continuing. Additionally, OPEC has cut it’s production while sanctions on Iran and Venezuela add to pushing oil prices up.
2) The breakfast cereal company Kellogg is selling several of its brands for $1.3 billion dollars, divesting itself of its cookies and sweet brands as sugary fast foods seemed to be on the decline. Brands being sold include Keebler cookies as well as Mother’s and Famous Amos cookies. The Italian confectionary company Ferrero will acquire six manufacturing plants in the US from the deal.
3) The low cost Iceland air carrier WOW Airline, which started up in 2012, suddenly collapsed fiscally leaving an estimated 10,000 people stranded. The airline abruptly ceased operations by repeatedly delaying flights for hours on end, until finally announcing that all flights were canceled and customers would have to make other arrangements on their own. There had been rumors for the last several months of a possible sale of WOW Airline.
4) 1 APR 19 Stock market closings:
Dow 26,258.42 up 329.74 Nasdaq 7,828.91 up 99.59 S&P 500 2,867.19 up 32.79
OPEC has insisted that oil output from Libya and Nigeria are not on the agenda in meeting in St. Petersburg, Russia next month to discus the pact OPEC members currently made to reduce oil supply flow.
Nigeria will cap oil production if it can maintain 1.8 barrels pumping, while Libya wants to maintain 1.25 barrels of oil flow. Libya and Nigeria are currently exempt from the curbing of oil production by OPEC. -SB
Opec may soon be curbing oil prices, after releasing extensive amounts of oil for the past two years, without limitations. Opec is negotiating with Iran other body members about placing a cap on production, and perhaps reducing production to what it was in the first quarter of 2016.
Saudi Arabia and Opec members have been pumping out almost 34 million barrels a day, this has led US output to increase 11% from previous. Opec is assumed to take some type of action before the end of the year, exactly what transitioning may take place; no description has been presented yet to the media.
There is some speculation that the Saudi led Opec will take on some reduction of the output, maybe before the end of the year. It makes no sense to have increased oil output, when the Saudi’s have already retained the market share, the so called “oil war crusade” with the western oil companies and distributors should be neutralized. -SB
Opec (Conference of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) concluded its 168th meeting in Vienna, Austria. Opec elected , Dr. Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu presided as the new conference president. Dr. Kachikwu is also Minister of State for Petroleum for Nigeria.
As Opec president Dr. Kachikwu took over from former Nigerian petroleum minister, Ms. Diezani Alison Madueke. The president of the Opec conference is elected yearly, with the term beginning Jan. 1.
At the current meeting, Opec decided to continue to watch how the commidity market playsout throughout the first and second quarter. They decided to keep the output levels at 31.5 million barrels. Their next meeting is scheduled June 2, 2016. -SB
Wall Street looks ahead after the Thanksgiving holiday, as Chinese stocks headed lower Friday, a day after Thanksgiving. The Asian session saw a 5% retracement for the day, as major Chinese indices hovered lower.
Next week US Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen, will be speaking about raising the interest rates in the middle of December 2015. She will hit her point home about why the time is good now to raise the rates, as she has been indicating for the past several months.
The ECB (European Central Bank) will be meeting next week to speak about their easing rates program.
OPEC (Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries) will also meet to discuss oil prices, and oil production measures.
Week after Thanksgiving looking to be a very busy and tumultuous week for the economy and in finance: Economy & Finance Report, no pun intended. LOL-SB
Opec has indicated that the demand for oil will rise the latter year of 2015. This is indication by Opec is noted because they stated that they are winning the war on oil prices. Opec has been targeting the United States in oil prices as US oil shale producers have been succeeding driving the prices of oil downward. Opec believes this will eventually change in the coming months, as many shale producers are deteriorating and going out of business, because of limited production.
The shale production in the US has levied Saudi Arabia from becoming the U.S. partner to eventually becoming the United States main competitor. In 2015 the majority of oil growth seems to be coming from Asia, countries such as China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand seem to be leading the way in oil demand…-SB