4 Confidence Charts – August 2011

Here are four charts reflecting confidence survey readings.  These are from the SentimenTrader.com site. I find these charts valuable as they provide a long-term history of each survey, which is rare. Each survey chart is plotted in blue, below the S&P500: (click on each chart to enlarge image) Conference Board Consumer Confidence, last updated 8-30-11: – … Read more4 Confidence Charts – August 2011

The Near Term Direction Of The Stock Market

There seems to be consensus that the stock market, as represented by the S&P500, “bottomed” during its August 9th low at 1101.54.  Here is the daily 1-year chart of the S&P500 for reference: (click on chart to enlarge image)(chart courtesy of StockCharts.com) – Was that August 9 low a “true bottom” – i.e. one that … Read moreThe Near Term Direction Of The Stock Market

Ben Bernanke’s Jackson Hole Speech – Notable Excerpts

On Friday August 26 Ben Bernanke gave a speech at Jackson Hole titled “The Near- and Longer-Term  Prospects for the U.S. Economy.” I do not agree with various comments in the speech.  However, here are a few excerpts that I found most noteworthy: As I will discuss, although important problems certainly exist, the growth fundamentals … Read moreBen Bernanke’s Jackson Hole Speech – Notable Excerpts

Updates On Economic Indicators August 2011

Here is an update on various indicators that are supposed to predict and/or depict economic activity.  These indicators have been discussed in previous blog posts: The August Chicago Fed National Activity Index (CFNAI)(pdf) updated as of August 22, 2011: – The Consumer Metrics Institute Contraction Watch: – The USA TODAY/IHS Global Insight Economic Outlook Index: An excerpt … Read moreUpdates On Economic Indicators August 2011

Philadelphia Fed – 3rd Quarter 2011 Survey Of Professional Forecasters

The Philadelphia Fed Third Quarter 2011 Survey of Professional Forecasters was released on August 12.  This survey is somewhat unique in various regards, such as it incorporates a longer time frame for various measures. The survey shows, among many measures, the following expectations: GDP: full-year 2011 : 1.7% full-year 2012 : 2.6% full-year 2013 : 2.9% full-year … Read morePhiladelphia Fed – 3rd Quarter 2011 Survey Of Professional Forecasters

PPI,CPI & Profit Margin Trends

In various past posts I have written of the challenges businesses face in pricing, given today’s economic environment.  One aspect that I mentioned in the April 25 2011 and December 16 2010 posts was how the PPI (Producer Price Index) growth was significantly outpacing that of the CPI. Since those posts, this PPI-CPI growth rate issue has remained … Read morePPI,CPI & Profit Margin Trends

Walmart’s Q2 2012 Results – Comments

I found various notable items in Walmart’s Q2 conference call transcript (pdf) dated August 16, 2011.  I view Walmart’s results and comments as particularly noteworthy given their retail prominence and focus on low prices.  I have previously commented on their quarterly results; these previous posts are found under the “paycheck to paycheck” tag. Here are various excerpts that I find … Read moreWalmart’s Q2 2012 Results – Comments

Financial Stocks – Update Concerning Poor “Price Action”

On June 29 I wrote a blog post titled “Financial Stocks – Notable Price Action.” I continue to believe that the “price action” of various financial stocks is disconcerting.  I view the poor performance of these financial and brokerage stocks to be one indicator among (very) many that serves as a “red flag” as to … Read moreFinancial Stocks – Update Concerning Poor “Price Action”

The Bond Bubble – Update

In previous posts I have discussed the Bond Bubble and its many facets.  In particular, I would like to highlight my post of October 4 2010, “Thoughts On The Bond Bubble.” During the recent market tumult, bond yields have once again dropped sharply to very low levels, as seen by the yield on the 10-Year … Read moreThe Bond Bubble – Update