Optimism Index finally showed increased optimism

Amazon sold $16 billion in bonds this week and they had demand equivalent to the gross domestic product of the country Belarus. The money will be used to fund its acquisition of Whole Foods. (CNBC) Factory output fell 0.1% in July, as auto production slowed. Overall industrial production, which adds output by mines and utilities,…

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1973-1974 bear market, the 1987 crash, and the tech bubble in 2000

U.S. home building fell unexpectedly by 4.8% in July. Single-family home building slipped 0.5%. Despite strong demand for housing, groundbreaking on single-family homes has slowed since posting 9-1/2-year highs in February. Homebuilders say they cannot find skilled labor, especially framers, and that buildable lots remain in short supply. Multi-family housing fell 15.3%. (CNBC) Do transports…

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Retail sales jumped

Retail sales jumped 0.6% in July, the biggest increase in seven months. June was upwardly revised to a 0.3%. Consumer spending accounts for more than two-thirds of U.S. economic activity, is climbing at a 2.8% annualized rate in the second quarter. The savings rate dropped to 3.8% in the second quarter of this year from…

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Papé Group has purchased

Eugene-headquartered Papé Group, has purchased Rowand Machinery of Spokane. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Rowand Machinery is a John Deere dealer and has been in operation for 55 years. Papé now has 23 locations in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, California and Nevada. (Spokane Tribune) Data related to economic activity remains largely supportive of slow…

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International earnings season

International earnings season is typically a week or two behind the U.S. So we are just now getting a clear picture of how Q2 is shaping up. In Europe, with about 76% of companies reporting, earnings are up 18.5%, better than expected. Almost all Japanese corporations have reported, and the 23% increase is far better…

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All streaks must end

All streaks must end. It was the calmest three weeks ever for stocks. You would never know it by reading the headlines, but the S&P 500 was in the midst of the calmest three-week period ever. In fact, during the past 15 trading sessions, ending 8/9/17, it had closed between 0.3% and -0.3% every single…

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