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Stocks ended yesterday’s trading session mixed as investors face a big week for corporate quarterly results and economic data following an extended holiday weekend. Investors were also monitoring a jump in crude-oil prices as the U.S. said it would end waivers for countries that import Iranian crude oil.
The Trump administration moved to broaden Iran’s economic isolation on Monday by announcing it would fully enforce sanctions that were imposed last fall and stop allowing five large nations to buy Iranian oil with the ultimate goal of imposing full economic isolation on Iran.  The price of oil jumped 3% on the news. 
The number of existing-homes sold dropped nearly 5% in March as the on-again-off-again housing market retreats.  The median price of a home sold in March was $259,400, a 3.8% increase versus a year ago. At the current pace of sales, it would take 3.9 months to exhaust available supply, still well below the long-time average of 6 months.
Shares of Kimberly-Clark rose 5.4% after the company reported strong first-quarter earnings. The parent company of Kleenex, Huggies and Kotex reported $1.66 per share versus the expected $1.54 per share.

With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, I'm Tyler Simones

Futures are lower after the Easter long weekend that could make today a quiet lull before one of the busiest weeks of the earnings season. Earnings reports before the bell today include Halliburton and Kimberly-Clark, while Whirlpool and Celanese are among those reporting after the close. Big names printing later in the week include Procter & Gamble, Twitter, Facebook, Microsoft, Tesla, Amazon, Ford, and Chevron. (SA)


First-quarter revenue at Huawei rose 39 per cent from the previous year to Rmb179.7bn ($26.8bn), an increase that suggests US efforts to persuade countries to ban the Chinese group’s telecoms equipment from their 5G networks have not tempered growth.  Huawei is privately held and the latest figures, the first quarterly numbers it has published, are unaudited. (FT)


Shares in railroad stocks are trading near all-time highs after a trio of America’s largest train operators steamrollered earnings forecasts late last week, backed by higher shipping rates.  Union Pacific, CSX and Kansas City Southern cheered investors with first-quarter results that benefited from price hikes and cost efficiencies, which offset the financial impact of disruptive winter storms and record Midwest flooding that caused billions of dollars in damage in the region. (WSJ)


With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, a Registered Investment Advisor I am Josh Fenili.

US Stocks finished the week marginally higher on the heels of a slew of economic reports and earnings season in full swing.  US Markets are closed today in observance of the Good Friday Holiday.


The labor market continues to flex its muscle.  The number of people who applied for unemployment benefits in mid-April fell for the fifth week in a row to a nearly 50-year low of 192,000, a remarkably small level of layoffs that gives the economy a sturdy foundation on which it can continue to grow despite recent hiccups.


Sales at U.S. retailers surged in March by the most in a year and a half, the latest in a string of reports suggesting the economy is firming up after a soft spell of growth earlier in the year.  Retail sales soared 1.6% last month after slumping in the 1st quarter.

Two big tech IPO’s started trading yesterday on the NYSE and the NASDAQ.  Zoom Video Communications soared over 75% in trading giving the company a value of over $10 Billion.  A year ago, the company was valued at less than $1 Billion in a private funding round.  Shares of Pinterest also soared over 25% in their first day of trading giving them a $10 Billion valuation.  Wall St. is starting to feel frothy.


US Markets are closed in observance of the Good Friday Holiday.
With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, I'm Tyler Simones

U.S. stocks closed lower yesterday as the health-care sector slumped on concerns over potential adverse impact from future policy changes. Investors also parsed a steady stream of corporate earnings and the latest snapshot of the economy via the Federal Reserve’s Beige Book.
The social media company Pinterest raised $1.43 billion in its IPO yesterday after pricing the offering at $19 a share, valuing the company at $10 billion.  Pinterest, which is expected to start trading today on the New York Stock Exchange, had originally given a pricing range of $15 to $17. But investors appear to be showing an appetite for the social media companies.
The National Association of Home Builders’ monthly confidence index rose to 63 in April.  Any reading over 50 signals improving conditions.  Housing analysts remain optimistic about the housing market. Mortgage rates remain low, uncertainty around the 2017 tax law changes is receding, and macro conditions support homeownership for many more Americans.


Shares of Pepsi the beverage and snack company rose 3.8% after it beat Wall Street’s estimates in its first-quarter financial report. Pepsi reported earnings per share of 97 cents, while analysts polled by Refinitiv expected a profit of 92 cents.

With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, I'm Tyler Simones

The Chinese economy grew at a faster-than-expected rate during the first quarter of this year, after a stall in the escalation of US tariffs, and government stimulus measures began to take hold. The world’s second-largest economy expanded 6.4 per cent in the first quarter, just ahead of expectations. The figure matched the 6.4 per cent growth posted in the final quarter of 2018, but was significantly below last year’s first-quarter growth figure of 6.8 per cent. (FT)


Qualcomm shares jumped nearly 7% in after-hours trading after the company came to a settlement with Apple, agreeing to dismiss all litigation worldwide.  Qualcomm is due to receive a significant cash infusion as a result of the settlement.  The companies also reached a six-year license agreement, effective April 1, with two one-year option periods plus a multiyear chipset supply agreement. In a regulatory filing Qualcomm says it expects major revenue growth as shipments ramp up.  (SA)


On the earnings front, Netflix beat analyst expectations, but the streaming giant sees slowing subscriber additions, disappointing investors. The company also sees its 2019 free cash flow deficit increasing to $3.5B on higher cash taxes due to its corporate structural change, and additional investments in real estate and content. Netflix still sees free cash flow improving in 2020 and each year afterwards.  IBM also fell in after-hours action after Q1 revenue of $18.2B missed the consensus estimate, as overall revenue fell 5% from a year ago and cloud revenue slipped 2%. 


With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, a Registered Investment Advisor I am Josh Fenili.

U.S. stocks were slightly lower yesterday as investors appeared underwhelmed by earnings from Goldman Sachs and Citigroup as they looked for guidance on the state of the banking sector and the broader economy.
American Airlines announced that it will be extending its flight cancellations involving the Boeing 737 MAX aircraft until August 15. The extension would impact about 115 flights per day for American Airlines. This comes on the heels of multiple other airline companies announcing similar cancellations. Southwest will not be flying any Boeing 737 MAX airplanes until at least August 5, and United Airlines has cancelled flights until June 5.
Waste Management announced that it would be buying Advanced Disposal Services in a $4.9 billion deal. This purchase is the biggest in nine years for Waste Management. Advanced Disposal Services stock surged 20% in early trade, while Waste Management shares rose 2%.


Chevron agreed to purchase Anadarko for more than $47 billion, including debt, in one of the largest deals of the year. Anadarko stock is trading very close to the $62.83 value shareholders will eventually receive from Chevron an indication that investors expect another, higher bid to emerge from Occidental Petroleum bid $70 for Anadarko, about 11% higher than where Anadarko shares currently trade.
With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, I'm Tyler Simones

US Stocks traded higher last week and the S&P 500 crossed the psychological 2,900 mark on Friday, putting the market on track to take back its all-time highs if earnings reports are better-than-expected, and companies provide positive guidance.
Vancouver take-and-bake pizza chain Papa Murphy’s sold Thursday for $190 million in cash, a 32 percent premium on the company’s closing share price Wednesday.
The buyer is MTY Food Group, a Canadian chain that owns 75 quick-service and casual dining chains including Baja Fresh, Cold Stone Creamery, TacoTime and TCBY Frozen Yogurt. It had 6,000 locations prior to the Papa Murphy’s deal.
Shares of J.P. Morgan Chase surged higher after the banking giant reported first-quarter profit and revenue that rose above expectations.  In contrast shares of Wells Fargo swung to a sharp loss, after the bank lowered its outlook for net interest income, citing an unfavorable rate environment and an increasingly competitive marketplace.
Tiger Woods' winning the Masters yesterday was an even bigger win for Nike.  The advertising value of Tigers victory for Nike is roughly $22,540,000, according to Apex Marketing.  Shortly after Woods was declared the winner, Nike dropped a video on its social media channels starring the golfer.  By Sunday afternoon, some of the Tiger Woods-branded apparel and accessories for men on Nike’s website were sold out.
With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, I'm Tyler Simones

Stocks closed near the flatline yesterday as Wall Street looked ahead to the start of the earnings season.

The number of people who applied for unemployment benefits in early April fell below 200,000 for the first time since 1969, the latest sign that a strong labor market remains an island of strength for a slower-growing U.S. economy.  Jobless claims, a rough measure of layoffs, fell by 8,000 to 196,000. 

Uber has officially filed for an initial public offering with the Securities and Exchange Commission, setting up one of the most anticipated Silicon Valley IPOs since Facebook.  Uber did not list a targeted price for shares, putting in a placeholder target of $1 billion for the total amount the San Francisco company seeks to raise. Reports this week stated that Uber expects to raise about $10 billion at a valuation of roughly $100 billion.  It’s reported that 30 banks will underwrite the issue.
Georgia-Pacific notified employees at its Coos Bay lumber mill yesterday that it will close the site and lay off all of the facility’s 111 workers.  The Atlanta-based pulp and paper company said Asian competition for Oregon logs made it more expensive to supply the Coos Bay mill. And the company said the prolonged closure of Coos Bay’s swing span railroad bridge made it more difficult to ship products from the site.


With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, I’m Tyler Simones

Stocks ended yesterday’s trading session higher, with the Nasdaq closing at a high for the year.


Americans paid more for gas and rent in March, but broader inflationary pressures remained low amid a slowdown in the economy early in the new year.  The consumer price index jumped 0.4% in March to mark the biggest increase in 14 months, according to the government.


Rental home price growth is surging higher again, adding fresh urgency to policymakers’ considerations of how to address a worsening affordability crisis.  In March, the cost of rent was 3.7% higher than last year.  That’s the strongest annual growth in a year. What’s more, it’s still growing faster than wages, as average hourly wages grew 3.2% over the same time period.  In the aftermath of the recession, rental costs were subdued. But then household formation began to accelerate as the economy healed – but the housing industry didn’t. The U.S. now has a deficit of about 2.6 million housing units affordable to low- and moderate-income Americans.


The leaders of the biggest U.S. banks testified in a 7-hour hearing yesterday and they have a message for Congress: Take a closer look at the ballooning markets for student and corporate loans.  The House Financial Services Committee hearing asked what the banker’s thought were the products or markets that could threaten the U.S. financial system.  They all responded that leveraged lending and student loans, which are growing rapidly and deteriorating very rapidly.
With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, I’m Tyler Simones

U.S. stocks closed lower Tuesday, with the S&P 500 snapping its eight-day winning streak, on fears over escalation of trade tensions with the European Union and a weaker global outlook from the International Monetary Fund.


The International Monetary Fund again reduced its global economic growth forecast for 2019, citing risks like increasing trade tensions and tighter monetary policy by the Federal Reserve.  The fund said it expects the world economy to grow by 3.3% this year. That’s down from its previous outlook of 3.5%, which was also a downgrade. The IMF added that it expects the economy to expand by 3.6% in 2020, however.


The office of the U.S. Trade Representative threatened to levy tariffs on many European goods. The threat is a retaliation against European companies’ subsidies for aircraft manufacturer Airbus.  If the U.S. follows through, the proposed tariffs would affect about $11 billion in imports to the U.S., including helicopters, bicycles, cheese and wine.


The corporate stock buyback binge has reached historic proportions, with repurchases by S&P 500 companies in the last three months of 2018 marking the fourth straight quarterly record high.  Which has never happened before.  Companies continued to spend more of their tax savings on these share repurchases as they boosted earnings through significantly reduced share counts.  Companies in the S&P bought back over $800 Billion worth of their shares in 2018. 
With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, I’m Tyler Simones

U.S. stocks finished mostly higher yesterday, with the S&P 500 rising for eighth session in a row, as investors geared up for a new earnings season.
Warren Buffett has a message for Wells Fargo pick an outsider for the next CEO of the company.  In an interview with the Financial Times, Buffett said whomever the bank chooses will draw immediate scrutiny from regulators and lawmakers.  So, it's "just not smart" to grab a leader from a competitor or from inside the bank.  He wants them to pick someone with no affiliation with Wall St.  Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway owns over 8% of Wells.
The owners of Pinterest appear to be taking a cautious approach to their company's Initial Public Offering following Lyft's bumpy first week as a public company.  Launching its investor roadshow today, the online image website priced shares at $15 to $17, significantly below its last funding round, which sold stock at $21.54 and gave Pinterest a valuation of $12B.  The firm is set to begin trading on the NYSE next week under symbol "PINS" as part of a wave of high-profile but unprofitable tech startups that are now moving toward the public market.
With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, I’m Tyler Simones

Stocks closed mostly higher yesterday, with the S&P 500 extending its win streak to a sixth session, as investors continued to monitor trade talks between the U.S. and China, which are reportedly in their final stretch.
The pace of hiring sped up in March as the U.S. economy added 196,000 jobs, rebounding from a paltry gain in the prior month. The increase in new jobs beat the 172,000 forecast. The jobless rate was unchanged at 3.8%.  The government said 33,000 new jobs were created in February instead of 20,000. January's gain was little changed at 312,000.
Surprisingly strong auto sales for March are leading some economists to be more confident in their economic outlook after a rough start to the year.  Motor vehicle sales reached a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 17.45 million in March, up from 16.57 million in February. That’s the highest reading in three months and represents a recovery from a downbeat start to the year. 

The number of people who applied for unemployment benefits at the end of March fell to the lowest level since December 1969, a reassuring sign for the economy amid a bounty of other evidence showing slower growth early in the new year.
Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, I'm Tyler Simones

U.S. stocks followed the lead of global equities, which rallied on a report over progress with trade talks between the U.S. and China.  It appears that ninety percent of the deal with China is done.
Employers in the private sector hired 129,000 workers in March, according to the payroll company ADP. That was the weakest showing in 18 months and missed the consensus among economists for job gains of 165,000.
Service-oriented companies such as banks, retailers and tech developers expanded in March at the slowest pace in 19 months, but top executives remained “mostly optimistic” about the U.S. economy, a new survey shows.  The ISM non-manufacturing index slipped to 56.1% last month from 59.7% in February, which was among the highest readings in the past decade. Numbers over 50% are viewed as positive for the economy, and anything over 55% is considered exceptional.
Oregon’s projected “kicker” tax rebate will decrease by $108 million under a bill passed by Democrats in the state Senate yesterday.  For individual Oregon taxpayers, that would translate to a 14.5 percent reduction to their kicker rebate when they file their taxes in 2020, if state economists’ most recent revenue forecast holds.  In February, economists predicted the kicker could reach $748.5 million. It represents the amount of taxes collected above and beyond what state officials projected they would take in before the start of the two-year state budget cycle.

With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, I'm Tyler Simones

Stocks traded near the flatline yesterday as traders look for catalysts that will move markets.

Shares of the pharmacy Walgreens Boots Alliance were on track for their lowest close since 2014 after the company reported fiscal second-quarter earnings that missed expectations and slashed its full-year outlook.  Shares dropped 12% yesterday on the news.  The company CEO called the quarter “the most difficult quarter we have had since the formation of Walgreens Boots Alliance.
Shares of Delta Air Lines shot higher, to a 3 1/2-month high, and pulled all of the major airlines stocks higher after the air carrier raised its first-quarter guidance and announced an extension of its credit card pact with American Express. 
A key House committee passes the Secure Act, a bill intended to increase the flexibility of 401(k) plans and improve access to the accounts, particularly for small businesses and their employees.  The bill includes a host of provisions aimed at encouraging small businesses to provide private retirement benefits to their workers.  The bill is one of the few proposals with a significant chance of becoming law amid a bitterly divided Congress.


With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, I'm Tyler Simones

U.S. stocks traded higher yesterday, the first day of the new quarter, as Wall Street scored an apparent boost from better-than-expected economic reports here and in China, momentarily easing fears of flagging economic growth.


The Institute for Supply Management’s manufacturing index showed that activity in the manufacturing sector accelerated, coming in at a stronger-than-expected 55.3 in March versus a two-year low of 54.2% a month earlier. A reading above 50 indicates an expansion in activity.

Construction spending climbed 1% in February following a revised 2.5% gain in January, suggesting a rebound in early 2019 after a bout of weakness toward the end of last year.


The Lyft IPO is a good example of why retail investors shouldn’t be buying Initial Public Offerings.  Share of Lyft came public last week over $86/share, but are now trading at $68/share showing how institutions sell their shares to the public leaving them holding the bag.
with Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, I'm Tyler Simones

The S&P 500's 12.3% gain so far for the first quarter is its best quarterly gain in nearly a decade and its finest start to the year since 1998. (Wsj)
On the back of a booming consumer business, Huawei's revenue grew 19.5% in 2018 - surpassing $100B for the first time - despite its battle with the U.S. and its claims that the company's equipment could be used for Chinese spying. While Huawei has tried to counter the negative news through a public relations push as well as a legal offensive, some feel the developments will bode well for rivals Nokia and Ericsson. (Sa)
Lyft’s big day has finally arrived. Shares in the San-Francisco ride-hailing company begin trading on the Nasdaq today.  The share sale values Lyft at $24bn and is the first big US technology darling to hit the public markets since Snap debuted in 2017. It paves the way for a rush of expected listings by fast-growing Silicon Valley companies, including rival Uber, which is hoping to reach a $100bn valuation.
The Federal Reserve’s preferred measure of inflation eased to its weakest level in 11 months in January, a reading that may validate policymakers’ decision this month to reverse course on policy and drop plans to raise interest rates this year.  The core personal consumption expenditures index rose 1.8 per cent in January from a year earlier, according to the US Department of Commerce. That is down from the 2 per cent recorded in December and is the slowest pace of increase since February 2018.  (Ft)
With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management a Registered Investment Advisor I am Josh Fenili.

Lyft has increased its expected IPO share price range to between $70 and $72 per share (from $62-$68), raising up to $2.22B and valuing the ride-hailing company at around $20B. The firm is set to price its shares today and will begin trading publicly on the Nasdaq on Friday. While still not profitable, Lyft claimed 39% of the U.S. market at the end of 2018, up 17 percentage points over two years. (WSJ)


Lululemon Athletica, the Vancouver, BC-based clothing company whose upscale yogawear has taken Bend and North America by storm, is stepping up its international expansion after its annual profits nearly doubled.  The company, which is capitalising on the “athleisure” trend that sees leggings worn even in the office, said more than half of its planned 40 to 50 store openings this year would be in overseas markets. (FT)


Economic growth in the U.S. slowed in the final part of 2018, with GDP posting a gain of just 2.2 percent in the fourth quarter, according to final Commerce Department figures released this morning.  The final reading was in line with expectations of economists surveyed by Dow Jones. That was down from the previous estimate of 2.6 percent and leaves full-year growth at 2.9 percent. (CNBC)


With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, a Registered Investment Advisor I am Josh Fenili.

It's a big day for Boeing and federal aviation safety regulators as they try to rebuild trust following two deadly crashes of 737 MAX airliners. Boeing has scheduled a briefing for about 200 pilots and airline representatives in Renton, Washington - home of the 737 assembly complex - where it's expected to outline software changes that controls a system designed to automatically prevent a mid-flight stall. A Senate panel in Washington, D.C. will also question the acting head of the FAA, the DOT's inspector general and the head of the NTSB.  (SA)


China's industrial firms posted their worst slump in profits since late 2011 in the first two months of this year, falling 14% Y/Y to 708B yuan ($106B), according to the National Bureau of Statistics. Beijing has already propped up the manufacturing industry by cutting the value-added tax, increasing infrastructure spending and reducing direct government intervention, but more support measures may now be on the horizon. (SA)


The International Trade Commission ruled against banning the import of several iPhone models to the US, dealing a blow to chipmaker Qualcomm and overturning a preliminary finding issued the same day that found Apple infringed on the chipmaker’s patent. (FT)


With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, a Registered Investment Advisor I am Josh Fenili.

Ending another cutthroat ride-hailing battle ahead of an expected IPO, Uber has agreed to acquire Middle Eastern rival Careem for $3.1B. The company will pay $1.4B in cash and $1.7B in notes that will convert at a price of $55 a share, which is 12% higher than the $49-a-share value paid by investors in an Uber financing round in September. Careem is now active in 84 cities in about 15 countries in the Middle East, and will help Uber achieve its goal of having 1B users across the globe. (SA)


Without any tech companies of their own, The European Parliament is laser-focused on regulating ours – they’ve scheduled for a final vote today on a hotly-contested provision that would overhaul the EU's copyright system. Article 13 would place heavy restrictions on content sharing, ranging from videos to memes and GIFs. If the directive passes, platforms like YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter will be forced to implement so-called "upload filters" to ensure material doesn't run afoul of a copyright or risk being sued. (SA)


China’s President Xi Jinping is in Paris today as he continues his European tour trying to increase support for his signature Belt and Road trade project. His visit to Italy earlier this week proved somewhat controversial as it put further strain on the already shaky government coalition there. The welcome in Paris has been warmer as the delegation from China came with their checkbooks, signing a $35 billion deal to buy 300 new aircraft from Airbus AE. This morning Xi is meeting German Chancellor Angela Merkel and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker. (Bloomberg)


With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, a Registered Investment Advisor I am Josh Fenili.

Developed-market bond prices continue to climb with yields in Australia and New Zealand dropping to record lows overnight following the inversion of the U.S. yield curve on Friday, while Japan’s 10-year yield fell to the lowest since 2016. Money markets are now pricing a 90 percent chance that the Federal Reserve will cut rates by December.  (Bloomberg)


Pilots from five airlines tested a software update in a flight simulator for Boeing’s 737 Max aircraft following two deadly crashes in recent months. The accidents have driven a wedge between European and US aviation authorities, creating “dangerous” fragmentation of international safety systems.  (FT)


Apple is expected to introduce a new video streaming service on Monday, which it hopes will reinvent the TV guide with a personalized offering of programming and original content. The launch of the two subscriptions will culminate nearly 10 years of Apple interest in distributing news and TV content. (SA)


On the trade front -- China is refusing to budge on US demands that it relax its restrictions on digital trade — a priority for America’s largest technology companies, and one of several remaining obstacles to an agreement between Washington and Beijing.  Robert Lighthizer and Steven Mnuchin travel to Beijing on March 28 for meetings with Liu He, China’s vice-premier and leading economic official. Mr Liu is expected to return to Washington the following week, and the two sessions combined could be pivotal for the fate of the talks. (FT)


With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, a Registered Investment Advisor I am Josh Fenili.

U.S. stocks closed higher yesterday on the back of a rally in the technology sector, shares of Apple surged after an upgrade of the stock, helping to propel the Dow.  The market’s strong upside momentum comes a day after the Federal Reserve signaled that it was unlikely to raise interest rates this year amid worries over slowing economic growth.

Initial jobless claims, a rough measure of layoffs, fell by 9,000 to 221,000 in the seven days ended March 16th.  The number of laid-off workers who applied for unemployment benefits declined in mid-March to a one-month low, suggesting little deterioration in a robust labor market that’s powered the economy over the past several years.

 A survey of economic conditions in the U.S. rose in February for the first time in five months, perhaps a sign growth is poised to pick up a bit after a very slow start early in the year.

The leading economic index increased 0.2% in February, the Conference Board said Thursday. It’s the first uptick since September.  The improved reading in February was spurred by higher stock prices, lower interest rates and improved access to credit.

Levi Strauss is a publicly-traded company again, with shares opening at $22.22, 31% above the anticipated IPO price and reaching as high as 35% above the IPO price within minutes. The New York Stock Exchange helped celebrate the denim icon's first trading day by suspending its "no jeans" policy on the trading floor, with traders wearing Levi's instead of suits.  The $22 stock price gives the company a valuation of nearly $7 Billion.
With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, I'm Tyler Simones

Stocks traded in a wide range yesterday and finished lower after the Federal Reserve slashed its rate-hike outlook for 2019 to zero and said it expects the U.S. economy to grow at a slower rate this year.
The Fed brought down its 2019 rate-hike forecast to no increases down from two hikes.  The central bank also indicated it intends to end the reduction of its massive $4.2 trillion balance sheet by September.  Stocks initially rallied off their lows of the day on the announcement as traders cheered a more accommodative policy stance from the Fed, which is typically supportive of equity prices. However, the Fed’s announcement also dragged down yields, which in turn knocked bank stocks lower.  Shares of all the major US banks traded sharply lower. 
A new class-action lawsuit takes aim at real estate agents and their 6% commission.  The suit was filed in Chicago on behalf of anyone who sold a home through one of 20 of the largest listing services in the country over the past five years. It charges that the mighty Washington-based lobby National Association of Realtors, as well as the four largest national real estate brokerages, and the Multiple Listing Services they use, have conspired to require anyone selling a home to pay the commission of the broker representing their buyer “at an inflated amount,” in violation of federal antitrust law.  The suit is being brought by the lawyers who won some big cases against big tobacco.
With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, I'm Tyler Simones

US Stocks closed mostly lower yesterday in a bumpy trading session as investors await news on what the Federal Reserve is going to do with interest rates later today.
US factory orders rose a paltry .1% last month, another sign pointing to slower economic here in the US in the 1st quarter.  Economist had forecast a .5% increase.  Non-durable goods dropped by .5% last month.
The FDA has approved the first drug specifically developed to treat postpartum depression after childbirth.  Shares of Sage Therapeutics the company that developed the drug shot higher on the news.  The drug is likely to be priced at $35,000 per treatment.
Shares of FedEx dropped 6% yesterday after the company reported earnings that missed expectations.  The company also lowered expectations for the rest of the year for the 2nd time in 3 months over serious concerns about the global economy slowing down.
Google is planning to ask all Android smartphone users in Europe whether the want to switch to competing search engines.  One of two concession the search giant is offering to stave off complaints and fines from the European Union antitrust regulators.
With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, I'm Tyler Simones

The Fed’s plans for its multitrillion-dollar balance sheet are in focus ahead of its two-day meeting starting today. The pace at which the Fed has been offloading debt was a factor behind the turbulence in financial markets last year. Fed chairman Jay Powell said last month that an announcement on the future of the balance sheet would come “fairly soon”.  (FT)


Looking to diversify its revenue sources, Google will take a stab today at revolutionizing the $130B+ gaming industry currently dominated by incumbents like Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo.  Reports suggest that the main focus isn't on a console - rumored to be called "Yeti" - but instead on a streaming platform that can be likened to a "Netflix for video games." Cloud gaming can let users stream wherever they are - on a phone, computer or tablet - with a speedy internet connection. (SA)


Things are relatively quiet on the trade front, but there are signs of progress. U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue described negotiations as “dynamic,” saying China could triple its 2017 purchases of U.S. farm goods in the next five years. Perdue also confirmed that there would have to be an agriculture deal as part of any trade deal with the EU. (Bloomberg)


With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, a Registered Investment Advisor I am Josh Fenili.

US Stocks traded 3% higher last week and are at their highs for 2019 up over 12% year-to-date.  Investors will have plenty of economic reports to digest this week including a decision from the Federal Reserve on interest rates.
Job openings in the US reached 7.6 million in January the 3rd highest ever, which is a sign that companies are still eager to add new employees.  The most job openings are in wholesale trade, real estate, and IT.  The number of job openings outnumbered the ranks of the unemployed for the 11th straight month which has never happened.
The University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index moved higher in March for the 2nd straight month, with the index rising to 98.  The gain in March was due to households in the bottom two-thirds of income.  Those households felt better about their finances than wealthy households as wage growth has been more pronounced in lower-income households.
More proof that investors can't successfully time markets.  The average investor that owned and S&P 500 Index fund since 1989 received a 7.61% average annual return.  In that 30 year period if that investor had missed only the 50 best trading days their return would have fallen to a negative .47% per year.  It's time in the market, not trying to time the market which is the key to success.
With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, I'm Tyler Simones

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