• This week was chock-full of ups and downs thanks mostly to the rumor mill but nevertheless, US indices ended the week in the black with the S&P up 0.9%, the DOW 1.4% higher, and the NASDAQ up 0.8%.
• Business growth seems to be gaining some traction. Add a somewhat stabilizing housing sector, an uptick in consumer sentiment as well as an expanding use of credit, things should be on the up (if we were to believe the Ben Bernank). The bummer though is that the ISM services index dropped to its lowest since January ’10, which doesn’t bode well considering how big a chunk the services industry is to the economy.
• Canada’s also starting to feel the heat, Brazil too. After record gains in exports, Canadian trade fell into a deficit, surprising analysts and adding fears that Q4 growth will be hampered. Housing’s starting to get crushed as well. Meanwhile in Brazil, almost every piece of the GDP pie has contracted. Brazilian exports did gain YoY but with everything else as it is, Victoria’s Secret models will be their only commodity seeing a lot of growth this quarter.
• The volatile European markets closed mostly higher last Friday, with the FTSE rising 0.8%, the CAC 2.5%, while the DAX gained 1.9%.
• The GBP, as well as gilts rallied for most of the week in what looked like a Euro-centric "flight to safety.” Kinda weird but that says a lot considering how fucked up the British economy is. Anyway, traders have been putting some downside pressure on this trend last time I checked but nevertheless, I think it’s something to look into.
• The S&P put on 17 Euro countries on downgrade watch.
• Draghi cut rates by 25 bps, finally.
• Asian markets were mostly in the red at the end of thesession with the Nikkei closing down 1.7%, same with the Kospi, -1.1% for Taiwan and Singapore, while Shanghai, Hong Kong, and Australia fell 0.6%, 2.6%, and 1.6% respectively.
• Chineseand PPI dropped to their lowest since late last year, but property prices in the mainland as well as in HK are getting killed. RE in the region is apparently running out of buyers and the only segment where property is still moving – the luxury market – is losing its steam. Tip of the iceberg?
• The RBA cuts interest rates while the BoK kept rates unchanged.
Anyway I guess that’s it, here’s my clip of the week:
Here's Jim Rogers on... Drumroll... Glenn Beck! This should be interesting.
Enjoy your weekend monkeys.