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Market Snapshot

Market Snapshot
Sep 16

Watch what they say, not what they do...

The Fed: Watch the words, not the numbers

Fed-watchers will be focused on the week's press conference and the wording of the accompanying announcements, looking for signs of shifting consensus among the voting members of the FOMC. A looming question: are the world's central banks backing away from monetary cures for ailing world growth? Meanwhile, the oil glut deepens as world demand softens and the taps stay open.

Market Snapshot
Sep 09

Draghi: Steady as she goes

European Central Bank: If not now, when?

Was Mario Draghi simply being optimistic about Europe's prospects -- or sending a message to Europe's governments about the need for fiscal measures? Meanwhile, U.S. job demand was strong earlier this summer, Swiss insurers are starting to cover physical cash due to negative rates, and tin shorts are getting squeezed.

Market Snapshot
Sep 02

Slim pickings in the August jobs report

US jobs and the Fed: Ho hum

Despite the slight disappointment, markets seemed to say there wasn't enough to go on in the latest figures to tip the odds in favor of a September rate hike. Meanwhile, container shipping may be having its Lehman moment, and the IMF is lobbying for fiscal largesse at the G20 summit.

Market Snapshot
Aug 26

As planned, less than meets the eye

The Fed: Jackson Hole in one

Fed Chair Janet Yellen delivered a media-friendly quote while staying mostly non-committal on the timing of the next rate hike – no small achievement. Meanwhile, more good news arrived about 2Q in the U.S. and the ECB indirectly suggested that the most helpful boost to Europe's economy would be fiscal rather than monetary.

Market Snapshot
Aug 19

More mixed signals from the Fed:

When Doves Try...

Minutes from the July FOMC meeting revealed little consensus for a rate hike in September; new data suggest that Abenomics’ “three arrows” may be falling short; and three reasons that S&P 500 earnings could improve later this year.

Market Snapshot
Aug 12

How will this affect the Fed?

US retail: Not buying it

Retail sales for July disappointed, with auto sales the only major category making up for contraction in the others. Financial markets, however, focused on the impact of the shortfall on the Fed's September rate decision. Meanwhile, Germany issued more zero-coupon notes priced above par, and Brazilian President Rousseff's impeachment grew increasingly likely.

Market Snapshot
Aug 05

More signs of growth. Rate hike ahead?

US jobs: Nice work

July's US employment report was a solid win in just about every category, rekindling speculation about a Fed rate hike as early as September. Meanwhile, the Bank of England cut rates and more than doubled its bond-buying, and Europe's banks pondered the results of one of its regulators' latest stress test.

Market Snapshot
Jul 29

Look behind the headlines

US GDP: The angel's in the details

The disappointing headline GDP for 2Q masked underlying consumer and industrial strength; look for upward revisions in subsequent estimates. Meanwhile, the Bank of Japan held back on further stimulus, perhaps pinning hopes on fiscal expansion. In Europe lending is finally picking up; is growth around the corner?

Market Snapshot
Jul 22

So far, so good

US growth: Summer sizzle

The US economy is having a solid summer so far; with a dovish Fed, more growth may need new tools. Meanwhile, Europe is feeling the first impact of the Brexit vote; China's currency continues to play a supporting role in global trade.

Market Snapshot
Jul 15

Wallets at the ready

US consumers to the rescue?

Slow, steady growth spread to the consumer sector in June, with retail sales perking up right along with consumer prices. Meanwhile, Japan's election gave Shinzo Abe a historically free hand for reform, both economic and military, and China growth showed the benefits of government support.


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