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Jun 11

Breadth Slightly Weakening

The S&P 500 hit another new all-time high yesterday; something it has accomplished once a week on average this year. It has been quite the run higher since November 2023 - moving higher by roughly 30% (although Nvidia alone is responsible for 1/3 of that gain!). However, since April, the... read more →
Jun 05

Labor market softening resumes

Following a brief acceleration in the first quarter of the year, the labor market appears to have resumed its softening trend. The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) released yesterday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that job openings across the economy fell by 300,000 to 8.06 million.... read more →
May 31

PCE Friday

Consumption data was released this morning. In April, real consumer spending declined 0.1%, which a slightly weak start to Q2. Personal spending rose 0.2% and Incomes rose 0.3%, which were both weaker numbers than March. The savings to income ratio stayed at 3.6%, and should start to flatten out in... read more →
May 30

A Low VIX is a Good VIX

Before popping back up this week, the VIX Index briefly fell below 12 last week, reaching the lowest level since right before Covid. The VIX is a measure of the expected volatility of the S&P 500 Index over the following 30 days, and it is derived by the market price... read more →
May 24

Corporate Animal Spirits Percolating Again

After spending the better part of the past couple of years bracing for a recession that never materialized, corporate CEOs are showing signs of renewed optimism lately.  The CEO Confidence Survey plunged to a very recessionary level in the low 30s by the beginning of 2023, but as the economy... read more →
May 16

Inflation Takes a Step in the Right Direction

The streak of hotter than expected inflation data that we have witnessed so far this year finally shows signs of letting up, according to April CPI figures released yesterday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Specifically, headline CPI came in at 0.3% month-over-month, which was 0.1% lower than expected and... read more →
May 14

Inflation Week Starts Off on the Warm Side

It’s another big week for the economy and markets with the latest reads on inflation for both consumers and businesses.  First up this time is the Producer Price Index, which measures the change in prices paid at the wholesale level.  At first glance, it came in worryingly above expectations with... read more →
May 09

Q1 Earnings Smiling at Investors

As of today, roughly 90% of companies in the S&P 500 index have reported earnings for Q1. As we wrote a few weeks ago, a weak start to the season initially caused the aggregate earnings-per-share (EPS) estimate to drop to just below $54, which would have implied roughly 0% year-over-year... read more →
May 07

Food for Emerging Thought

You have to love the market. As soon as an investment is utterly hated, it springs to life with incredible vigor. China might have been the worst place to invest since 2021, falling roughly 60% through January of 2024. ‘Univestable’ is what we were told. Since that time, however, that... read more →
May 03

A Goldilocks Jobs Report

Not too hot, not too cold, but just right – that sums up today’s employment report nicely.  Capping off a very busy week full of corporate earnings reports and the latest Fed announcement, this morning’s jobs report showed that hiring remains at a healthy level but also helped to reassure... read more →