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Pursuit of Truth in Finance & Economics
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The purpose of UPFINA.com is to seek the truth as it relates to economics, finance and money. We do not have all the answers, but our ethos dictates that we objectively analyze all information. 

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Demystifying The Confusing Retail Sales Report
The best summary is to say the 2-year growth stacks fell slightly and estimates for real Q4 consumption growth fell decently. Q4 GDP growth will still be good because of trade.
Will Stocks Be Disappointed With The 2020 Economy?
The CPI and PPI reports imply core PCE inflation will increase. The bond market shows investors don’t see above 2% GDP growth in 2020. However, the rally in stocks in the past 13 months suggests equity investors see economic growth accelerating.
Fed Ignores Inflation Which Is Eating Into Wages
Energy prices boosted headline inflation, while shelter inflation dragged down core CPI despite the rise in medical care costs.
Euphoria Combined With 1.8% GDP Growth
Stocks are overbought and have gotten expensive even though estimates call for just 1.8% 2020 GDP growth. The consumer will be hurt if real wage growth continues to fall.
Why Wage Growth Crashed In December
The December labor report showed another month of job creation. Wage growth was weak though as the sharp decline in non-supervisory and production wage growth in the past two months is troubling.
Sentiment Index Broken By This Market
Stocks have rallied so much that sentiment indicators haven’t worked as contrarian signals for the past few years. It’s still not normal for stocks to be showing extreme greed or excessive optimism.
3 Steps To An Earnings Turnaround
The economy might be starting to turnaround. If that’s the case, 2020 EPS estimates won’t fall as much as usual. The rally in 2019 will be justified.
Why GDP Growth Estimates Are Surging
Because of the global cyclical slowdown, the decline in imports from China, and petroleum exports, America’s trade deficit has been falling. This is a big deal for Q4 GDP growth as it could potentially drive half of growth.
5% Chance Of An Average Recession In 2020
The global manufacturing PMI fell slightly in December, but the percentage of PMIs above 50 increased.
2020 Minimum Wage Hikes To Help Or Hurt Economy?
With stocks on a high note, it’s easy to see numerous potential catalysts that could throw it into a correction.
No Sign Of Bottom Yet
Some have been calling for Q4 to be the trough of the manufacturing slowdown/recession. The initial reports from December don’t show any sign that the sector has bottomed.
Weakness In Business Investment Reviewed
Durable goods orders are important because they help us determine the health of business investment. The weakness in business investment in the past 2 quarters and likely in Q4 has been/probably will be masked by the solid consumer.
6th Best Year For The S&P 500 Since 1928
Stocks are overbought, especially tech. The November existing and new home sales reports were solid. CFOs were much more optimistic in Q4 2019 than in Q3, but most predict a recession occurring in the next 12-18 months.
Consumers & Low Income Wage Growth Look Good
The latest sales results and survey data on consumer spending in December look great. It seems like December retail sales and PCE growth should be strong especially since sales shifted from November.
Can The Fed Help Turn The Economy Around?
Rate cuts don’t always prevent recessions, but they can help the economy turn around if it’s just a slowdown.
Leading Index Gives Recession Warning?
The leading indicators index is almost signaling a recession, but that will reverse itself if the ISM manufacturing index rebounds in 2020 as it should.
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