A little good news on Business Equipment Investment

by Laura Ehrenberg-Chesler on August 25, 2016

in Economic Indicators

A report today from the Capital Economics group suggests there is some improvement in business equipment investment. This improvement is likely to lead to a pick in GDP for the second half of the year.

Excluding the transportation category, core durable orders rose by a strong 1.5% m/m, which was much better than the consensus forecast of 0.4%. The 1.6% m/m rebound in non-defence capital goods orders (ex-aircraft) provided further good news, bringing the three-month-on-three-month annualised growth rate up to -1.1%, which was its highest reading since November 2015. The one downside was that shipments in the same category fell by 0.4% m/m.
Overall, the data suggest that, after contracting at a 3.5% annualised pace in the second quarter, business equipment investment may be set for a modest recovery in the third quarter. Admittedly, the latest survey evidence suggests that the upturn in capital orders might not last for long. Nonetheless, now that the drags from mining-related investment and net trade are fading, we still expect GDP growth to pick up over the second half of the year.”


Low Rates Continue to Stimulate New Home Sales

by Marilou Long on August 24, 2016 in housing

New home sales in July were up 12.4% from June.  This annualized level of sales is the strongest in nine years.  From the linked UsA Today article: New-home sales surged in July to the highest level in almost nine years as strong demand amid low interest rates and low existing inventory helped boost the housing market. Sales […]

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Americans kicking the retirement can down the road

by Laura Ehrenberg-Chesler on August 21, 2016 in Investment Strategies

I read an article today on the CNBC website (linked here:http://www.cnbc.com/id/102111128) that confirmed a discussion we have around our office on a regular basis; Americans have not saved enough for retirement. And, it is almost impossible to ever catch up. More than half of middle-class Americans say they plan to save more for retirement “later” […]

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The Cajun Navy

by Marilou Long on August 17, 2016 in Recommended Reading

In the midst of all the devastation in Louisiana, CNN has put up a wonderful story about all the people rushing to help rescue and evacuate residents and their pets from the historic flooding.  From the linked article: Baton Rouge, Louisiana (CNN) They’re out in force, patrolling in jon boats, motorboats and even canoes through […]

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Policy Makers Confused About Their Policies – not from The Onion

by Marilou Long on August 9, 2016 in Banks

The WSJ has an article today titled “Are Negative Rates Backfiring?” that describes how economists are seeing unintended consequences from various countries’ negative interest rate policies.  From the linked article: KORSCHENBROICH, Germany—Two years ago, the European Central Bank cut interest rates below zero to encourage people such as Heike Hofmann, who sells fruits and vegetables […]

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New Rules on Money Markets hinder liquidity

by Laura Ehrenberg-Chesler on August 4, 2016 in Credit Crisis

While the new rules governing money market funds are not fully implemented yet, they will be in the next three months. As a result, almost 500 billion dollars has been pulled out of prime money-market funds in the past year, and there will likely be more turmoil to come. Liquidity will be reduced, as well […]

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Words of Wisdom and Inspiration from Phil Knight

by Laura Ehrenberg-Chesler on July 19, 2016 in lifestyle

Phil Knight is the founder and Chairman of Nike. He also served as CEO for four decades. “The secret of happiness …lay somewhere in that moment when the ball is in midair, when both boxers sense the approach of the bell, when the runners near the finish line and the crowd rises as one…I wanted […]

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Ed Yardeni on the Brexit, Free Trade and Immigration

by Laura Ehrenberg-Chesler on July 8, 2016 in Brexit

Over the past few weeks I have posted two blogs about the Brexit, quoting Peggy Noonan from the Wall Street Journal and George Friedman from Stratfor. Today, Ed Yardeni gave much the same explanation the other two gave for why the Brexit as well as the rise of Donald Trump. I found it fascinating that […]

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Keep an Eye on UK Fund Withdrawal Freezes

by Marilou Long on July 5, 2016 in Brexit

A large UK property fund, Standard Life, closed off fund withdrawals citing “exceptional market circumstances”.  From the linked article: In a statement, Standard Life said the decision followed an increase in redemption requests from investors. “The suspension was requested to protect the interests of all investors in the fund and to avoid compromising investment returns […]

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A follow up to my post on the Brexit from June 24

by Laura Ehrenberg-Chesler on July 1, 2016 in Foreign Markets

On June 24th I posted a piece on why/how the Brexit happened. I quoted a seminal piece written by Peggy Noonan back in February of this year in which she asserts that in the U.S. and Europe there is a peaceful uprising of the “unprotected”. Today I read a similar article from Stratfor, a geopolitical […]

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