The two hallmarks of 2017

Producer prices rose 0.1% in June as increases in the cost of services offset declining energy prices. In the last 12 months, the PPI increased 2.0%. Energy prices fell 0.5% and food prices jumped 0.6% in June. (Reuters)

Chinese trade data, both imports and exports, were greater than forecast. In general, we look to exports as a sign of global economic health, whereas imports tend to tell us more about the country in question. Chinese exports to other emerging markets were steady, with greater improvement in shipments to developed markets. Exports were led by electronics, while steel exports declined. Chinese imports of oil by volume increased again, suggesting some strength in the Chinese industrial economy. (LPL Financial)

The two hallmarks of 2017 have been a steady climb higher for stock prices amid historically low volatility. The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) just marked the 45th time this year it has closed between 10.0 and 11.0. This is already a record, topping the 32 times it closed in the 10s in 2006. The VIX has averaged 11.54 so far, this year the lowest annual average ever. The current low record is 12.42 in 1995. (LPL Financial)

The S&P 500 is flat and the NASDAQ is up 5. The MSCI international index is higher.

Oil is up 32 cents at $46.40 a barrel.

Gold is up $4 at $1221 a Troy ounce.

With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, a Registered Investment Advisor I am Troy Reinhart.

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Financial Focus • July 14, 2017


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