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Mortgage applications fell 6.6% last week and 3.5% higher than a year ago, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. Applications to refinance fell 7% for the week and were 2.8% higher than a year ago. Mortgage applications to purchase a home fell 6% for the week and were 3% higher than a year ago.

The National Association of Realtors says existing home sales dropped 3.2% in January. Existing home sales, which account for about 90% of U.S. home sales, declined 4.8% on a year-on-year basis. At January's sales pace, it would take 3.4 months to exhaust the current inventory. A six-to-seven-month supply is viewed as a healthy balance between supply and demand. The median house price increased 5.8% from a year ago to $240,500.

Davos Brands, a New York wine and spirits firm has acquired House Spirits Distillery's Aviation American Gin brand. House Spirits will continue to produce the gin at its distillery in Portland. (PBJ)

Sometimes it is not all rainbows and unicorns in the market but it is somewhere.  Lucky Charms the magically delicious cereal is adding a new charm to the mix for the first time in ten years. A unicorn with pink-and-blue striped mane and horn.  It will appear staring in March. (FBN)

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

If you would like an audio version for use every business morning contact Troy Reinhart at Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management



The S&P 500 gained 4.3% last week, for the best weekly gain since early 2013. Of course, this comes on the heels of a 5.2% drop the week before. Nonetheless, after the quickest move to a 10% correction from a new high ever (9 days) for the S&P 500, the recent bounce is quite impressive. (LPL)

With about 80% of S&P 500 companies having reported fourth quarter 2017 results, earnings growth is tracking to a 15% year-over-year increase, 3% better than expectations. Quarterly revenue is tracking to an 8% year-over-year increase. After rising 3% last week, earnings estimates for 2018 are now up 7% since January and reflect a 19% increase over 2017. (LPL)

KFC has been forced to close almost all 900 of its British stores because of a shortage of chicken. The problem arose after the chain switched its delivery contract to DHL.

La-Z-Boy reported quarterly profits of $12.1 million. The furniture company posted sales of $413.6 million in the period. La-Z-Boy shares have fallen 7.5% since the beginning of the year and are down about 1% over the last 12 months. (AP)

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



The Labor Department said U.S. import prices rose 1% in January. In the last 12 months import prices increased 3.6%. Prices for imported oil increased 4.3%, and imported autos jumped 0.5%. Export prices rose 0.8% in January. They have increased 3.4% on a year-on-year basis.

The University of Michigan U.S. consumer sentiment index rose in February to 99.9, the second-highest level since 2004. The current conditions gauge climbed to 115.1. Year-ahead inflation expectations were unchanged at 2.7%.

The Commerce Department said new home construction increased 9.7% in January. Building permits surged 7.4%, the highest level since June 2007.

Rite Aid is merging with Albertsons in a deal that could generate $83 billion in revenue. Rite Aid shareholders will have the right to exchange 10 shares for 1 Albertsons share, as well as $1.83 in cash, or 1.079 Albertsons share. Albertsons would own about 72% of the combined group. The new company will have 4,900 stores, 4,350 pharmacy counters and 320 clinics across 38 states. (AP)

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



The S&P 500 has recovered about two-thirds of the losses from the recent sell-off, with the Nasdaq recovering about 80%. Both are on five-session winning streaks. (CNBC)

The Labor Department said U.S. producer prices accelerated 0.4% last month. The PPI rose 2.7% in the 12 months. Last month, the cost of hospital outpatient care surged 1.0%, wholesale goods prices increased 0.7%, and gasoline prices rose 7.1%.

The National Association of Home Builders Confidence Index was unchanged in February from the prior month, remaining at 72. A year ago, the index was 65.

Coca-Cola's profits dropped 20% for the quarter. Organic sales were up 6%. Earnings in the period were hurt by a $3.6 billion one-time charge related to new U.S. tax laws. For the year, Coke reported sales of $35.4 billion, down 15% from last year. Water sales grew 2%, coffee and tea grew 2%, carbonated soft drinks were flat and juice, dairy, and plant-based drinks declined 2%. Coca-Cola boosted its annual dividend by 5.4% to $1.56 a share.

Join us this weekend for Financial Focus Radio when Tyler and I will tell you how to respond to these rising interest rates.

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



The yield on the 10-year Treasury climbed to 2.904% its highest level since January 2014, and slightly above the levels of earlier this month. The yield on the 10-year note hit the high exactly midway through the trading day yesterday. (CNBC)

The Commerce Department said retail sales fell in January by 0.3%. Consumer spending increased at a 3.8% annual rate in the fourth quarter. Auto sales fell 1.3%, service stations rose 1.6%, sales at building material stores dropped 2.4% receipts at sporting goods and hobby stores fell 0.8%.

The Labor Department reported consumer prices rose by 0.5% in January That was up 1.8% from a year ago. The 1.7% gain in apparel prices was the biggest since 1990. Women’s apparel costs jumped a record 3.4%, the report showed.

The networking equipment and software company Cisco had a quarterly profit of 63 cents per share last quarter. That beat estimates. They had their first year-over-year rise in revenue in more than two years and announced a $25 billion addition to its stock buyback program. (CNBC)

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



The NFIB Small Business Optimism Index jumped two points to 106.9 in January. Now Is a Good Time to Expand registered at 32% an all-time record. Actual Earnings climbed up 11 points from December, the highest level reported since 1988. As small business owners struggle to find qualified workers for open positions, reports of higher worker compensation rose four percent, the highest reading since 2000 and among the highest in the 45 years of NFIB’s survey.

In its monthly oil market report, OPEC increased its forecast for crude supply by 1.4 million barrels per day.  The increase in its supply forecast is driven almost entirely by U.S. production, which in November topped 10 million BPD for the first time since 1970 and is expected to surpass Saudi Arabia's production levels this year.

The Department of Agriculture announced it projects farm profits will drop 6.7% in 2018 to $59.5 billion, the lowest since 2006 and down 52% from a record 2013.

A report by outplacement firm Challenger, Gray, and Christmas suggests this season’s flu epidemic is crippling small business productivity. The analysis projects that the season could lead to a total of $15.4 billion in lost productivity for the US economy.  

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


 



The S&P 500 gained 1.4% yesterday. The Nasdaq advanced 1.6%. The 10-year Treasury yield rose to a four-year high on Monday before closing at 2.858%. (CNBC)

With 70% of the S&P 500 reporting, fourth quarter earnings growth is up 14.7% year over year. A solid 78% have beaten earnings estimates. Energy, financials, and technology have been the biggest contributors to growth. S&P 500 revenue growth is tracking to an 8% year-over-year increase. Estimates for full-year 2018 now reflect an 18.5% increase over 2017. This week, 57 S&P 500 companies will report quarterly results. (LPL)

Restaurant Brands International owners of Burger King, Tim Horton's and Popeye's, said profits in the fourth quarter rose to $395 million. Total sales climbed 11% to $1.23 billion. Same-store sales at its Burger King restaurants jumped 4.6%. (AP)

Pepsi reported a fourth-quarter loss of $710 million. Earnings were hurt by a $2.5 billion one-time charge related to new U.S. tax laws. Sales growth in Europe Sub-Saharan Africa, jumped 11%, Latin America up 6% and North America down 6%. (AP)

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



The S&P 500 is officially in a correction, as it has pulled back 10% for the first time since early 2016. Since 1950, on average there have been about three 5% pullbacks a year, one 10% correction a year, and one 20% bear market decline every seven years. Also, this is the first time in history the S&P 500 went from a new high to a correction in 9 days or less. (LPL)

Volatility continues. Global equity markets fell again last week. Over the past 5 days the S&P 500 has lost 8.5%, marking the worst 5-day stretch since August 2015. To put things in perspective, the S&P 500 pulled back 2.8% (peak to trough) all of last year--the second smallest intra-year pullback ever. Two separate days last week saw larger pullbacks. (LPL)

The Commerce Department says wholesale inventories in December increased 0.4% to a value of $612.1 billion. At current levels, it would take wholesalers 1.22 months to clear their shelves.

Ford is increasing production of the Ford Expedition and Lincoln Navigator by 25%. It says it can sell every single vehicle it produces in the company's Louisville truck plant. (CNBC)

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



Stocks fell sharply on Thursday entering correction territory. The stock indices closed at their lowest level since late November. Stocks are on track to post their biggest weekly decline since October 2008. The 10-year U.S. Treasury yield rose to 2.88%, holding around multi-year highs. (CNBC)

 

The Chinese yuan was down more than 1% Thursday the currency's biggest one-day drop since August 2015. The move, which does not appear directly related to any government action, but was sparked by strong Chinese import growth (+37% in U.S. dollar terms), which dwarfed forecasts for an 11% gain. (LPL)

 

While the earnings expansion is global in nature, expectations for earnings growth in 2018 for the U.S. (+17-18% based on consensus estimates) are ahead of the 14% increase expected in emerging markets and the 10% expected in developed foreign markets. U.S. earnings are enjoying the highest number of positive revisions, in large part due to the boost from the new tax law. (LPL)

 

The S&P 500 is up 8 and the NASDAQ is up 10. The MSCI international index is lower.

Oil is down 90 cents at $60.23 a barrel. Down 8% for the week.

Gold is down $1 at $1319 a Troy ounce.

 

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

 



With about half of the S&P 500 having reported results, fourth quarter earnings are tracking to a 13.6% year-over-year increase. A solid 78% of companies have beaten earnings estimates for the quarter. Perhaps most impressive is the revenue upside, with 80% of companies beating consensus forecasts, well above recent and long-term averages in the 50s. (LPL)

 

Wilsonville-based Flir Systems makers of night vision equipment for the defense industry has sold its Canadian subsidiary Lorex for $29 million in cash. Lorex makes security cameras for retail and small businesses. (Oregon Live)

 

According the Department of Energy the United States will export more energy products than it imports by 2022. It would mark the first year the U.S. energy exports surpassed imports since 1953.

 

McDonald’s will spend its tax savings from President Trump’s sweeping tax bill into remodeling stores in the U.S. and opening an additional 1,000 stores worldwide this year. In the fourth quarter, sales at restaurants jumped 5.5% worldwide and 4.5% in the U.S. (CNBC)

 

The S&P 500 is down 6 and the NASDAQ is down 2. The MSCI international index is higher.

Oil is down 55 cents at $61.24 a barrel.

Gold is down $2 at $1313 a Troy ounce.

 

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

 



With a record 15-month win streak for the S&P 500 on a total return basis still alive as of the end of January 2018, there is little doubt that market participants have been spoiled by the lack of volatility and upward bias in equities. The past week has been a harsh reminder that pullbacks do happen and although it is never fun when it happens, remember that this is a normal part of investing and illustrates why having a plan in place ahead of such pullbacks is so important. Could this weakness continue? Absolutely. But, we do not believe this is the start of a new major bear market; more a potentially healthy shakeout of weak hands. (LPL)

Monday was Jerome Powell's first day as Fed chair, and the S&P 500 dropped 4.1%, marking the worst daily drop since August 2011. We also saw the largest jump ever for the CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) up 115%, closing above 37 for the first time since August 2015. The Dow closed down 1,175 points, which was the largest point drop ever. However, to put things in perspective, it was only the 112th largest percentage drop ever (since 1896). Some streaks ended as well, as the S&P 500 finally corrected 5% for the first time in 404 days (the longest ever), while the S&P 500 turned negative year to date for the first time in 403 days (fifth longest ever). (LPL)

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



Pullbacks like this are not uncommon historically and happen frequently in normal market cycles. In an average year there are typically pullbacks in a range of 5%-10% with an average recovery time lasting about a month. We hadn’t seen a 3% correction in 445 days until yesterday, which is the longest run in history. This pullback appears to be a very normal event. (Main Mgmt)

The S&P 500 fell 3.8% last week, for the worst weekly decline since early 2016. Volatility continues to rule so far in 2018, as the S&P 500 has now gained or lost at least 2% for the week 3 of the 5 weeks so far this year. To put this into perspective, not a single week last year changed 2% up or down. The 4.6% drop yesterday was the single largest drop for the S&P 500 since August 2011. (LPL)

The Institute of Supply Management index of non-manufacturing activity hit 59.9 in January. Anything above 50 denotes growth.

The Federal Reserve imposed penalties against Wells Fargo blocking its ability to grow and firing four board members following widespread consumer abuses. Wells Fargo will not be allowed to grow its $1.95 trillion in assets until the Fed approves a remediation plan. (AP)

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



Don’t let this market correction scare you into doing something silly.  This market correction is long overdue, healthy and part of a normal market. As long as your portfolio is well diversified, spread across the major asset classes and quality in nature you have nothing to fear.  If you have long maturity bonds, interest rate sensitive products and risky investments now is the time to seek qualified advice. Just to put this in perspective, markets are still up for 2018.

Wage pressures increased in January, with average hourly earnings rising 2.9% year over year, an expansion high. (LPL)

The Commerce Department said orders for U.S.-made goods increased 1.7% in December. In December, orders for machinery rose 0.4%, orders for transportation equipment surged 7.1%, orders for electrical equipment, appliances and components fell 0.9% and orders for computers and electronic products slipped 0.1%.

The University of Michigan's survey of consumer attitudes for January slipped to 95.7 in January. The index now sits only 1.1 points below the 96.8 average reading for 2017 – the highest yearly average in 17 years. The index reached 101.1 in October, the highest level since 2004.

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



The Labor Department says the US economy added 200,000 jobs in January -- 196,000 were private sector jobs. The unemployment rate is 4.1%.

The Labor Department said U.S. worker productivity dipped 0.1% in the fourth quarter. It was the first drop and weakest performance since the first quarter of 2016.
Productivity increased 1.2% in the 2017, the strongest performance since 2015.

The Commerce Department said U.S. construction spending increased 0.7% in December to an all-time high of $1.25 trillion. Spending on private construction projects rose 0.8% to a record high of $963.2 billion.

The Institute for Supply Management said its manufacturing index in January fell 0.2% to 59.1 in December.

Mondelez International beat the street by a penny with quarterly profits of 57 cents per share. Mondelez saw strong growth in emerging markets and strong demand for Cadbury and Oreo products in Europe. (CNBC)

Join us this weekend for Financial Focus Radio when we will tackle the question – Is the correction finally here?

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



The S&P 500 had its best January since the 1990s. The Dow hasn't fallen in February since 2009, and the S&P 500 and Nasdaq have only one negative February during that time. (CNBC)

The National Association for Business Economics found 47% of respondents said their sales rose over the past three months and half of the surveys’ respondents said that their wages rose over the past three months. (AP)

The Small Business Admin. found that small business loan origination is still only 40% of pre-financial crisis levels.

According to a joint report from the Food Marketing Institute and Nielsen 70% of US grocery shoppers could be buying online within five years.  

Columbia Distributing will purchase General Distributors based in Oregon City. The acquisition will allow Columbia to have a contiguous service area of the Portland Metro Area and from Salem to Hood River.

The third oldest McDonald’s in America will be demolished on Powell Boulevard in Portland in February. Built in 1962, it is the classic double-arches style designed by architect Stanley Meston. (WW)

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



Despite the blood moon eclipse earlier markets are in the green this morning following a two-day sell-off that shaved a good chunk off some big January gains. The Dow and S&P are still on track for their biggest monthly gains since March 2016, the Nasdaq since October 2015. (CNBC)

With 133 S&P 500 companies having reported, fourth quarter earnings for the S&P 500 are tracking to a 13.2% year-over-year increase. A solid 80% and 82% of S&P 500 companies have exceeded earnings and revenue targets, respectively. This week 118 S&P 500 companies will report. (LPL)

The Federal Reserve makes its interest rate decision and policy statement this morning after a two-day meeting. It is  Janet Yellen's final meeting as Fed chair. (CNBC)

The Eugene Register-Guard newspaper has agreed to sell  to GateHouse Media. The Register-Guard has been owned and operated by the Baker family since 1927. GateHouse Media publishes 630 community publications in 38 states. The deal will close on March 1st. The Register-Guard has 240 employees with a daily print circulation of about 37,500. (OBM)

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



The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note surged to 2.716% this morning to its highest since April 2014. (CNBC)

The Commerce Department says orders for long-lasting manufactured goods rose 2.9% in December. Orders for durable goods, which are meant to last at least three years, have risen in four the last five months.

The first release of fourth quarter GDP showed an increase of 2.6%. An inventory drag, possibly hurricane related pulled the number lower. Trade was also a drag-import growth strongly outpaced export growth and widened the trade deficit. (LPL)

The inflation component of the GDP report showed a pickup in inflation. Core personal consumption expenditures excluding food and energy, rose 1.9%. (LPL)

Intel says its shareholders can expect a $1.3 billion windfall in 2018 from the Trump tax bill. Half that will be given to shareholders through a 10% increase in the company's dividend.

K-cup maker Keurig Green Mountain will buy soda maker Dr. Pepper Snapple. (AP)

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



The S&P 500 finished at its thirteenth new high so far this month yesterday. This is already the most new highs ever during the month of January (the previous record was 11 in 1964) and it is the first month since February 1998 to see 13 new highs. The most ever new highs for any month was June 1955 at 16. (LPL)

The Commerce Department said sales of new single-family homes fell 9.3% in December. New home sales increased 8.3% in 2017. In December, there were 295,000 new homes on the market, an increase of 3.9% and the highest level since April 2009. At December's sales pace it would take 5.7 months to clear the supply of houses on the market.

The Conference Board Leading Economic Index for the U.S. increased 0.6% in December to 107.  This points to a continuation of strong economic growth in the first half of 2018. The passing of the tax plan is likely to provide even more tailwind to the current expansion. The gains were widespread, with most of the strength concentrated in new orders in manufacturing, consumers’ outlook on the economy, improving stock markets and financial conditions.

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



The S&P 500 is up 6.0% YTD in January. Since 1950, when markets are up greater than 5% or more the full year finished in the green 12 out of 12 times with an average gain of 24.8%. The final 11 months closed higher 11 out of 12 times with only 1987 lower. (LPL)

Disney will pay over 125,000 employees a one-time cash bonus of $1,000 because of the passage of a tax bill. The company will also make a $50 million investment into a new employee education program. (CNBC)

Toys R Us will close 180 US stores, about one-fifth of its U.S. stores. Closures will begin in early February. The company is trying to emerge from bankruptcy. (CNBC)

The National Association of Realtors said existing U.S. home sales fell 3.6% in December. Existing home sales, which account for about 90% of all U.S. home sales, rose 1.1% on a year-on-year basis in 2017, the highest level since 2006. The number of previously owned homes on the market dumped 11.4% to its lowest level since January 1999. Housing inventory was down 10.3% from a year ago. It has declined for 31 straight months on a year-on-year basis. The median house price increased 5.8% in 2017, rising for the sixth straight year.

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



According to a Bank of America survey stocks mutual funds and ETFs brought in $58 billion in new money last week. U.S. funds showed the strongest money gains with $6.4 billion for the week, while Japan attracted $3.6 billion, emerging markets saw $3.5 billion and Europe pulled in $2.2 billion. (LPL)

The latest Investors Intelligence poll of professional newsletter editors saw bulls outnumber bears by 66.7% to 12.7%. That is the biggest spread since April 1986. (LPL)

Budweiser used to be Americas top-selling beer, but seceded that position to Bud Light in 2004 and moved behind Coors Light to third in 2011. Now Miller Lite has kicked Bud to number 4. Corona is in fifth place, with Michelob Ultra and Modelo in sixth and seventh place. Overall, beer sales were down slightly in the United States last year. (CNN)

Bacardi is buying Patrón Spirits, who makes the world's top-selling premium tequila — in a deal valued at $5.1 billion. Bacardi is the largest privately held spirits company, with more than 200 brands including Bacardi rum, Grey Goose vodka, Dewars blended Scotch whiskey and Bombay Sapphire gin (USA Today).

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



The S&P 500 and Nasdaq are coming off record closes on Friday. The major averages have posted weekly gains for each of the past three weeks. But markets are under pressure as the government shutdown enters its third day.  (CNBC)

Electro Scientific Industries, Oregon's oldest tech company, says sales in the latest quarter were between $106 million and $111 million. That's a more than 200% increase from a year earlier. The stock is up 319% in the past year. (OregonLive)

The University of Michigan says U.S. consumer sentiment fell in the January to 94.4.  Seventy-percent of consumers said the impact from the new tax reform law would be positive.

The U.S. could be the world's leading energy producer according to the International Energy Agency. Growth should see the U.S. hit historic highs above 10 million barrels a day (in production) during the course of 2018.

Amazon Go an automated grocery store, will launch today. The store is billed as a game changer for grocery and retail with "no lines, no checkouts, no registers." (CNBC)

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



This weeks gains pushed the Nasdaq over its inflation-adjusted March 2000 highs for the first time in 17 years. Meanwhile, the Dow completed another 1000-point advance in a record nine trading days--the previous record was 23 trading days from 24,000-25,000. (LPL)

Of the 36 S&P 500 companies that have reported results through January 17, 78% have reported earnings above estimates, while even more impressively, 81% have surpassed revenue targets (Thomson Reuters data).

China's economy, the world’s second largest, grew 6.9% in 2017. (AP)

The Labor Department said initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped to 220,000 last week, the lowest level since February 1973. It marked the 150th straight week that claims remained below the 300,000, the longest such stretch since 1970, when the labor market was much smaller.

Join us this weekend for Financial Focus Radio on this great station, when we will take you through a wealth building boot camp.

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



This could potentially upset the apple cart. Concerns over a potential government shutdown have some investors on edge. By midnight Friday, Congress must pass a spending bill, in order to prevent a government shutdown.

Department of Energy reported U.S. oil production climbed to a 43-year high of 9.566 million barrels per day this last week. On a monthly basis it is the highest production since May 1972.

The Federal Reserve said U.S. industrial production increased 0.9% in December. For 2017, industrial output rose 1.8%, the first and largest increase since 2014. Capacity utilization increased to 77.9% from 77.2% in November.

The National Association of Home Builders Builder sentiment fell to 72 just off the 18-year high of December. The index stood at 67 in January of 2017.

The Mortgage Bankers Association says total mortgage applications for the week rose 4.1% it is up 5.6% from a year ago. Applications to refinance rose 4% for the week. Mortgage applications to purchase a home rose 3% for the week and are 7% higher than one year ago. The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate is 4.33%.

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



The National Retail Federation says “retail sales during November and December increased 5.5% percent, to about $692 billion. That represents the largest increase in holiday sales since the recession of 2008.

Stock funds pulled in $24.4 billion last week. It was the sixth-biggest equity inflow total ever and the most in at least six months. (CNBC)

President Donald Trumps tax overhaul will save Oregon taxpayers nearly $1.5 billion a year, according to Legislative Revenue Office.

According to Americans for Tax Reform, “at least 2 million US workers had received bonuses, pay raises or other new benefits from more than 130 companies as a result of the tax cuts.”

Walmart announced it would add its “Scan & Go,” technology to 100 more stores, bringing the total up to 150. The technology allows customers to download an app and scan and bag items, with a smartphone, allowing customers to pay on their mobile and walk out without interacting with a cashier. Kroger, owners of Food 4 Less and Fred Myer’s, recently announced a similar technology.

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



Earnings season is off and running. About 5% of the S&P 500's market cap reports this week. The focus for investors will be on company guidance on the impact of the new tax law. We look for upside in S&P 500 earnings for the quarter in the 14-16% range, while revenue growth may top 7%. The strong growth is expected to be driven mostly by a strong rebound in energy sector profits, as well as potential double-digit gains for the technology and financial sectors. (LPL)

The Labor Department said the Consumer Price Index, excluding the volatile food and energy, rose 0.3% in December.  Core CPI increased 1.8% in 2017. Rents increased 0.4%, the cost of medical care increased 0.3%, prescription medication surged 1% and hospital and doctor visits increased 0.3%.  

The Commerce Department said U.S. retail sales increased 0.4% in December. Retail sales in 2017 rose 5.4%, compared to 3.2% in 2016. Sales at electronics and appliance stores fell 0.2%, clothing store sales declined 0.3%, online retailers soared 1.2% and restaurants and bars rose 0.7%.

Wal-Mart is cutting 1,000 jobs mostly at its corporate headquarters, according to The Wall Street Journal.

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



Earnings growth is poised for double-digit increases in 2018, in both the U.S. as well as developed international and emerging markets. The credit for the increase in the U.S. is not surprisingly given to the new tax law. The U.S. earnings season begins today with reports from several big banks. Consensus is calling for a 12% year-over-year increase in S&P 500 earnings in the fourth quarter of 2017. (LPL)

The Labor Department said U.S. producer prices fell 0.1% December. That was the first drop since August 2016. In 2017 the PPI rose 2.6%.  Last month, the price of services fell 0.2%, wholesale food prices fell 0.7%, and energy prices were unchanged.

J.P. Morgan Chase reported Q4 earnings of $1.76 a share topping Wall Street’s expectations. Revenue was $25.45 billion. The company returned $6.7 billion in capital to shareholders during the fourth-quarter with $4.7 billion in net stock buybacks. The company’s stock is up 29% in the last 12 months. (Reuters)

Wells Fargo reported fourth-quarter earnings of $1.16 a share, or $6.2 billion, on revenue of $22.05 billion. The profit represents a 17 percent increase from the same period in 2016. (Reuters)

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



The Labor Department said U.S. import prices edged up 0.1% in December, their smallest increase in five months.
In 2017 import prices increased 3.0% after advancing 1.9% percent in 2016. That was the biggest calendar year increase since 2011.

The Mortgage Bankers Association says total application volume rose 8.3% last week. Refinance applications were up 11% from the previous week. Mortgage applications to purchase a home rose 5% for the week but are 1% lower than one year ago. Rates were higher at the start of 2017 than they are now. The average interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgage was 4.23%.

China may reduce or halt U.S. Treasury purchases. After building up its stake in U.S. Treasuries during 2017, China's central bank is rumored to be mulling over the idea of reducing or even halting purchases of U.S. government debt. The news helped push the yield on the benchmark 10-year note past 2.55% for the first time since March of 2017. (LPL)

Coca-Cola is releasing four new flavors of Diet Coke aimed at millennials -- Diet Coke Ginger Lime, Diet Coke Feisty Cherry, Diet Coke Zesty Blood Orange and Diet Coke Twisted Mango. (Washington Post)

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



The NFIB reports that its latest Small Business Optimism index remained in the stratosphere for all of 2017, making last year an all-time record setter. NFIB President and CEO Juanita Duggan said, “2017 was the most remarkable year in the 45-year history of the NFIB Optimism Index. ... With a massive tax cut this year, accompanied by significant regulatory relief, we expect very strong growth, millions more jobs, and higher pay for Americans.” December’s Optimism Index was “slightly lower than the near-record November report” at 104.9.

Columbia Sportswear will provide uniforms for ski teams from the U.S., Canada, Belarus, Ukraine, Brazil and Kazakhstan at the Olympic Winter Games in South Korea next month. (PBJ)

Visa is increasing its contribution to its 401(k)-match program to up to 5% of employee salary, due to the recent passage of a new GOP-backed tax code.  Visa contributes $2 for every $1 an employee contributes to the retirement savings of its U.S.-based employees. (FOX Business)

President Trump will attend the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland later this month. Davos is seen as the ultimate meeting concerning globalization (CNBC)

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



The S&P 500 closed higher for the fifth straight day to kick off 2018, with all five days also making new highs. This is the longest win streak to start a new year since six in a row in 2010, while it is closing in on the all-time record of new highs to start a year of six in 1964. Not to be outdone, the S&P 500 is up 2.6% after five days, the best start to a year since 2003. When the first five days of the year are up more than 2%, since 1950, the entire year has been higher 15 out of 15 times with an average return of 18.6%. (LPL)

The return of volatility? I noted many times how historically non-volatile 2017 was for stocks. From the S&P 500 not experiencing a single 3% pullback from peak to trough, to only having eight 1% daily changes all year. The first week of 2018 the S&P 500 gained 2.6%, which would have been the single largest weekly gain of 2017. Additionally, it snapped a 55-consecutive week streak without a 2% gain or loss. That was the longest such streak without a 2% change since the mid-1990s, and mid-1960s before that. Could this be the first clue that volatility is coming back in 2018? (LPL)

Kohl's same-store sales climbed nearly 7% for the 2017 holiday season when compared with a year ago. (CNBC)

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



The Dow closed above the 25,000 level for the first time in history last week. It took only 23 trading days to go from 24,000 to 25,000--the fasted 1,000 point move ever. Of course, as you go higher the percentage needed to reach the next milestone is smaller, but this is still an impressive feat. (LPL)

Let’s drill into Fridays big jobs report. The retail sector posted job losses of roughly 20,000 in December. The downward trend in retail jobs is believed to be a result of an ongoing shift to e-commerce sales. Retail posted a net job loss in 2017 of 70,000. The construction industry posted a monthly gain of 30,000 jobs. Much of those increases came from specialty trade contractors, which added roughly 24,000 jobs. Manufacturing added 25,000 jobs during the month and 196,000 jobs last year. Wage growth at 0.3% month over month and 2.5% year over year. (CNBC)

Helen of Troy Ltd., makers of the brands Bedhead, Vicks, Brut, Dr. Scholl’s and Bend based Hydroflask, reported a quarterly loss of $30.4 million, after reporting a profit last year.  That is a loss of $1.12 per share. The company posted sales of $453 million.  Helen of Troy stock price has declined 0.5% in the first week of 2018 and has decreased slightly in the last 12 months. (AP)

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



The Department of Labor says the economy added 148,000 jobs in December. The private sector added 146,000 and the government added 2,000 jobs.  The unemployment rate is 4.1%.

The S&P 500 closed at another new all-time high yesterday, making it three days in a row of new highs to start the year. The last time that happened was in 1964. The first three days this year gained 0.5%, or more which is how 2017 started as well. The best win streak to start a year ever is seven days in a row in 1976 and 1987. (LPL)

The global economy continues to surge. US ISM manufacturing rose in December, making the 2017 average of 57.6 the best in 13 years. In China, the December Services PMI rose to its highest level since August 2014. European data showed better than expected data as well, as the Eurozone December PMI came in at its best level since 2011. (LPL)

The Challenger report says U.S. employers plan to cut 32,423 jobs in December, bringing the year's total to a low not seen since 1990. Cuts in 2017 totaled 418,770, 20% below 2016. Last month saw 7.4% fewer job-cut announcements than November, and 3.6% fewer than in December 2016.

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



The Institute for Supply Management's manufacturing index climbed to 59.7 in December. That marks the 103rd consecutive month of growth for the manufacturing sector.

The Commerce Department said U.S. construction spending increased by 0.8% in November, to an all-time high of $1.257 trillion.

The Mortgage Bankers Association says applications to refinance fell 7% but were up 1.8% for 2017. Mortgage applications to purchase a home, increased 1% for the week and was 3% higher in 2017. The average interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgage was 4.25% to end 2017.  

J.C. Penney says same-store sales climbed more than 3% during the holiday shopping season.

Oil prices hit new highs yesterday as West Texas crude closed yesterday up $1.26, or 2.1%, at $61.63, marking its best closing price since December 2014. International benchmark Brent crude closed up $1.27, or 1.9% at $67.84, also a closing high going back to December 2014. (CNBC)

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



Now that  the first trading day of the new year is in the books, what does the first day really matter? Of course one day doesn’t make a full year, but it is quite interesting how much the first day of a new year can signal things to come. Over the past 20 years, the S&P 500 Index has been up 10 times and down 10 times; when the first day is green the full-year return has been up +14.2% on average, while a lower first day has resulted in the full-year return being in the red. (LPL)

Yesterday stocks were up about 0.80% making it a record-breaking start to the year. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq both closed at record highs. The Nasdaq closed above 7000 for the first time ever. (CNBC)

Year-end holiday retail sales rose 4.9% compared to last year, according to the Mastercard SpendingPulse report.  In addition, year-end bargain hunters were expected to spend another $69 billion last week.  

Argentina's peso fell 15% in 2017 and was down 34% in 2015 and 18% in 2016. Inflation rose 21% in 2017. (CNN)

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



Could this be the death rattles? According to The Wall Street Journal Sears has not run a paid national television commercial since late November. That compares to $8.4 million it spent a year earlier for the Sears brand and $6.5 million for Kmart.

Nordstrom stock was upgraded to "neutral" from "underweight" at JPMorgan Chase.  It says Nordstrom's had a strong finish to 2017 and the best holiday season in three years.

Today marked the first time since January 2014 that both West Texas crude and Brent Oil opened the year above $60 a barrel. The price of oil collapsed from almost $120 a barrel in June 2014 due to weak demand, a strong dollar and booming U.S. shale production. (CNBC)

The Nasdaq was up nearly 30% in 2017 and has posted 14 months of essentially uninterrupted gains. But there's one more record to add to the books: the technology-heavy index posted its sixth straight positive year, its longest annual string of gains since its six-year streak ended in 1980. (CNBC)

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



Investors are reflecting back on the big market events of 2017. The Highlights: Brexit negotiations, the future of U.S. trade, the unraveling of Dodd-Frank, the tax overhaul, U.S. economic growth finally above 3%, persistently higher stock index records, crypto-currency mania, media company M&A, OPEC output cuts, the Paris accord pullout, GE's restructuring, Korean Peninsula tensions, the EU's war on tax avoidance and new Fed leadership. Traders will also remember the bruising year for the dollar and the go-slow approach toward monetary-stimulus withdrawal in major economies.

It's still the most valuable U.S. startup, but Mitsuyushi Son's SoftBank has succeeded in its bid to buy a large stake in UBER at a steep discount, the WSJ reports. Investors and employees of the ride-hailing service tendered shares equal to about 18% of the company in an offer that values Uber at $48B - a roughly 30% discount to its most recent valuation of about $68B. (WSJ)

U.S. oil prices have reached their highest since mid-2015 due to an unexpected fall in American output and commercial inventories. Crude futures are currently edging higher to just over $60 a barrel. Since the start of the year, WTI has climbed around 12%, although the price rise from mid-2017 is much stronger, at nearly 50%.

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



During the last few days of 2016, the talk on Wall Street centered upon when the Dow Jones Industrial Average would top 20,000. A year on, the discussion has shifted to when the blue-chip index will hit 25,000, with only two more days in 2017 to claim the milestone. Dow futures are currently up 34 points in premarket trade, making the goal a real possibility. At that level, the DJIA's gain would total about 25% YTD. (SA)

Worldwide mergers and acquisitions activity has exceeded $3tn for the fourth consecutive year, extending a multi-year wave of deal-making that bankers say is set to accelerate in 2018.  The total volume of dealmaking hit $3.5tn this year, a 1 per cent drop from a year ago and the lowest figure since 2014, but it also marked the fourth straight year that deal levels surpassed $3tn, a record streak. (FT)

Copper prices continued their march higher this morning, rallying to their highest level in almost four years and putting the metal on track for its best year since 2010.  The red metal (aka Doctor Copper) is looked to as a powerful macroeconomic indicator, with price swings seen as leading indicators of economic shifts because of its widespread application in most sectors of the economy.  (FT)

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



U.S. stocks traded lower yesterday, as investors returned from the long holiday break, with technology stocks coming under pressure as shares of Apple declined.

Shares of retailers were broadly higher yesterday, with a key sector tracker surging toward a one-year high, after a report that holiday spending rose more than expected to record levels.  A SpendingPulse report on national retail sales, across all payment types, said retail sales during the holiday season increased 4.9% from a year ago, the fastest pace of growth since 2011. Dollars spent this season set a record, helped by an 18.1% jump in online shopping and heavy early-season promotions.

The S&P/Case-Shiller national home price index rose a seasonally adjusted 0.7% in the three-month period ending in October. It was up 6.2% compared to the same period a year ago. The 20-city index also rose a seasonally adjusted 0.7% for the month and it’s up 6.4% for the year.  The cities with the largest home price appreciation over the last year were Seattle up 12.7% and Las Vegas up 10.2%.

The e-commerce giant Amazon said yesterday morning that customers were shopping on its website at "record levels" throughout November and December, and over the course of one week, more than 4 million people became Prime members or started a free trial, sending Amazon's membership count to new highs.

And Oil prices touched two-and-a-half year highs in light volume, boosted by an explosion on a crude pipeline in Libya and voluntary OPEC-led supply cuts.

With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management I’m Tyler Simones



The Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq closed higher on Thursday for the first time in three days. The Dow is up 25% this year, the S&P is up 20% and the Nasdaq is up 29%. (CNBC)

Today kicks off the well-known Santa Claus Rally, which refers to a rise in stock prices during the last five trading days of the year and the first two trading days of the following year. Sure enough, these seven days are up +1.35% on average and higher 77.6% of the time--making it hands down one of the most bullish times of the year. (LPL)

According to Recode Walmart is rolling out new services aimed at high-end consumers. The report says the worlds largest retailer is working on stores without checkout lines or cashiers, like Amazon's Amazon Go stores.

The Minneapolis Star Tribune reported demand for grass-fed beef has risen due to “rising scrutiny from environmentalists, animal rights activists and consumers,” who are “looking for healthier, more environmentally friendly options.” “Sales of fresh grass-fed beef soared from $17 million in 2012 to $272 million just four years later,”.

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



News out of Europe, along with tax reform in the United States, has caused global yields to move higher. The 10-year Treasury yield jumped from 2.39% on Tuesday to 2.49% today, its highest level since late October. (LPL)

According to the National Association of Realtors existing-home sales surged for the third straight month in November and reached their strongest pace in almost 11 years. Total existing-home sales jumped 5.6% in November. The median existing-home price $248,000, up 5.8% from November 2016. November’s price increase marks the 69th straight month of year-over-year gains. Total housing inventory dropped 7.2% and is now 9.7% lower than a year ago and has fallen year-over-year for 30 consecutive months. Unsold inventory is at a 3.4-month supply which is down from 4 months a year ago. Matching the highest share since May, all-cash sales were 22% of transactions in November.

Bed Bath & Beyond reported a quarterly profit of 44 cents per share, beating estimates. Sales were slightly above expectations. Same store sales fell by 0.3%, a smaller drop than the 2.4% expected. (Yahoo)

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



The Commerce Department says single-family homebuilding climbed 5.3% to highest level since September 2007. Single-family home permits rose 1.4%.

The S&P 500 is officially up 20% for the year. Although you might think a big gain one year might mean weakness the next, that isn't usually the case. In fact, since 1950, the S&P 500 has logged an annual gain of 20% or more 18 times and was higher the next year 16 times, with 10 of those up double digits. Compare that to the 19 times it closed down for the year and one could argue there's about the same chance as a 20% gain versus a negative year. (LPL)

According to the Mortgage Bankers Association total mortgage application volume dropped 4.9% this week.  Applications are now 8% percent lower than one year ago.
Mortgage applications to purchase a home fell 6% for the week and are up 1% from a year ago. Applications to refinance were down 3% for the week.

Michael Saltsman, with the Employment Policies Institute, wrote in Forbes that California is raising the minimum wage to $15 per hour statewide by 2022 for large businesses. His recently released study says “California will lose approximately 400,000 jobs by 2022 when the $15 rate is phased in.

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



The Dow has closed at new all-time high 70 times so far, this year, busting the previous record from 1995. The Dow started trading in 1896. (LPL)

Hood River Distillers is selling its Pendleton Whisky brand to the Mexican liquor conglomerate who is the parent company of the Jose Cuervo tequilas.  Purchase price is $205 million. Pendleton Whisky was started in 2003 and sells 3 million liters a year. The Pendleton Round-Up rodeo made $1.7 million in royalties in 2016. Hood River Distillers will continue to bottle Pendleton on behalf of Proximo. (Eastern Oregonian)

The National Association of Home Builders' Confidence index in December rose 5 points to 74. This is the highest reading since 1999. Sentiment stood at 69 in December 2016. Of the index's three components, buyer traffic jumped 8 points to 58. Current sales conditions rose 4 points to 81. Sales expectations in the next six months increased 3 points to 79.

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Class A shares touched $300,000 for the first time on Monday. The shares have never split. Shares are up about 23% this year. Buffett, 87, started accumulating the stock at $7.50 a share in December 1962. (Yahoo)

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



The Federal Reserve said U.S. industrial production rose 0.2% in November. Mining activity, led by oil and gas, climbed 2%, production at utilities fell 1.9% and manufacturing activity rose 0.2%. Over the past 12 months, total industrial production is up 3.4%. Factories are using more of their capacity and added 189,000 manufacturing jobs over the past year.

 

Chocolate maker Hershey is acquiring SkinnyPop parent Amplify Snack Brands for about $1.6 billion. Amplify's stock is up by 70% on news of the deal. (CNBC)

 

The consumer products giant Procter & Gamble has appointed Nelson Peltz to its board of directors after a big proxy fight. The company said it held discussions with Peltz about a board seat because the shareholder vote was very close and that a large number of shareholders had voted for Peltz to be appointed. (CNBC)

 

Campbell Soup is buying  snack maker Snyder's-Lance, in a deal worth nearly $4.9 billion. Snyder's-Lance is the maker of Cape Cod brands; Snack Factory Pretzel Crisps; Pop Secret; and Kettle Brand; KETTLE Chips. (Yahoo)

 

Business software giant Oracle paid $1.2 billion deal to buy Australia-based project management software maker Aconex. (AP)

 

The S&P 500 is up 16 and the NASDAQ is up 47. The MSCI international index is higher.

Oil is up 31 cents at $57.61 a barrel.

Gold is up $5 at $1262 a Troy ounce.

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



The Commerce Department said U.S. retail sales increased 0.8% in November. That is almost three times expectations as the holiday shopping season got off to a brisk start.

The Labor Department said U.S. import prices climbed in November by 0.7%. Imported petroleum products had their largest year-on-year increase in seven months. In the last 12 months import prices are up 3.1%.

Costco had a profit of $1.36 per share for the quarter.  Sales came in slightly above forecasts. Same-store sales jumped a super-sized 10.5% and e-commerce sales surged a gigantic 43.5%. The stock is moving higher by 3% in early trading – those prices are all time highs, (AP)

Wells Fargo is cutting 60 jobs in its mortgage unit, according to The Wall Street Journal, as it continues to revamp its business following increased scrutiny by federal regulators. (CNBC)

Staring today select Regal Cinemas will offer Cheetos-flavored popcorn mixed with crunchy Cheetos pieces. Of course, the Beaver-like bright-orange, puffed corn snack will comes in a giant 32-ounce container. (TODAY)

Join us this weekend for Financial Focus Radio when we will talk about a Santa Claus rally.

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



The Labor Department said the Consumer Price Index increased 0.4% in November. The CPI is up 2.2% year-on-year. Gas prices climbed 7.3%, food prices were unchanged, and the cost of rental accommodation rose 0.3%.

Eugene-based Ninkasi Brewing will start putting three of its beers in cans starting in 2018. Ninkasi has 96 employees, with 80 of those in Eugene. The company is the 33rd largest craft brewery in the United States. Ninkasi is distributed in Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Maryland, Nevada, New York, Oregon, Utah, Virginia and Washington and Canada. (ERG)

Twenty-First Century Fox is selling its film and TV assets to Walt Disney for $52.4 billion in stock. The companies expect the transaction to close by mid-2018. (CNBC)

The IEA said that the rise in U.S. crude oil supply was likely to continue into 2018. The IEA says that non-OPEC supply will climb by 600,000 barrels a day in 2017, and 1.6 million barrels a day in 2018. It also noted that global oil supply rose 200,000 barrels a day in November to 97.8 million barrels a day. Good news for drivers.

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



94.6% said they were positive about their own company's outlook.  Almost 63% of CEO’s said comprehensive business tax reform would encourage their company to increase capital spending. 54% said they would hire more workers, and 49% said they would increase employee wages and benefits.

The Labor Department says producer prices jumped 0.4% in November. In the last 12 months the PPI is up 3.1%. That is the biggest gain since January 2012. Gas prices surged 15.8%, wholesale food prices rose 0.3% and prices for services increased 0.2%.

Facebook will grow its Prineville facilities by more than 80% by adding 1 million sq. ft. of data center facilities by 2021. Construction on a fourth data center will begin this month and a fifth building next year. The three existing data centers employ over 200 workers and represent more than $1 billion in construction investments. (PBJ)

The President of Toyota says he wants electric cars and hybrids to account for 50% by 2030. He made his statement at a news conference announcing an expansion of Toyota's battery partnership with Panasonic. (CNBC)

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



Central banks will dominate the news cycle this week. The Federal Reserve is expected to implement a quarter point interest rate hike tomorrow. The European Central Bank and Bank of England will meet on Thursday. (LPL)

The Hispanic unemployment rate dropped to 4.7% - the lowest in the history of the United States. The manufacturing sector added 31,000 jobs, while its unemployment rate fell to a record-low 2.6%. The unemployment rate remained near a 17-year low of 4.1%. (BLS)

The S&P 500 has officially gone 52 consecutive weeks without a 2% weekly change higher or lower. This is only the second time in history it has gone a full year without a 2% weekly change. The longest streak ever was 79 consecutive weeks without a 2% change in the mid-'60s. (LPL)

Can the S&P 500 go 12 for 12? Incredibly, the S&P 500 has been up on a total return basis all 11 months so far this year. There have been streaks of 12 consecutively higher months before, but never have all 12 months of one calendar year been higher. (LPL)

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



A bit of news from abroad to start the morning:
"We have made the breakthrough we needed," said European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, declaring a long-awaited Brexit deal and the opportunity to now discuss trade arrangements. A financial settlement was agreed that was "fair to the British taxpayer" and enshrined the "special rights of EU nationals," announced Theresa May, the British PM, adding a guarantee that there would be "no hard border" with Ireland. (SA)

Chinese trade unexpectedly accelerated last month in an encouraging sign for the world's second-largest economy. November exports rose 12.3% from a year earlier, while imports expanded 17.7%, resulting in a trade surplus of over $40b. Iron ore and copper imports also enjoyed a stellar rebound, which could help stem a recent pullback in commodity prices.  (FT)

Job creation exceeded expectations in November and wage growth gathered steam.  Employment rose by 228,000 jobs last month, the Labor Department said this morning, topping estimates of 200,000.  Friday's report reflected normalization in the labor market after a string of hurricanes battered the US earlier this year.  The report also showed the unemployment rate remained unchanged at 4.1 per cent, while average hourly earnings grew at pace of 2.5 per cent year-on-year.  (FT)

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



The U.S. government is urging a federal judge to reject the February court date sought by AT&T and Time Warner in a dispute over the firms' proposed merger, which the DOJ feels could raise prices and hamper the development of online video. It has requested that proceedings start on May 7, but AT&T will have to pay Time Warner $500M if the deal is not consummated by April 22. (SA)

Ford is expected to sign a deal tomorrow that may allow it to test selling cars in China through Alibaba's online retail arm Tmall, Reuters reports. The partnership would also include a new retail concept called the "Automotive Vending Machine" - a multi-story parking garage that partly resembles a giant vending machine - to cars sell directly to Chinese consumers. (SA)


Private sector employment increased by 190,000 jobs last month, slightly ahead of estimates, according to today's report by payroll processor ADP.  The data compared with expectations of a gain of 185,000 - and set an optimistic tone ahead of the closely watched monthly jobs report from the Labor Department, due to be issued tomorrow (FT).

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



The Commerce Department says new orders for U.S.-made goods for non-defense capital goods excluding aircraft, grew 0.3% in October. Business spending on equipment has increased strongly this year as corporations anticipated hefty tax cuts from the Trump administration. Business spending on equipment increased at its fastest pace in three years in the third quarter.

Global oil market is near balance, but U.S. Department of Energy forecasts call for a small surplus of about 1.1 million barrels per day of production in 2018. For comparison, in 2015 the surplus was approximately 6 million barrels per day. U.S. petroleum inventories are down about 100 million barrels from last year and have fallen within the 5-year range for the first time since 2014. But watch out for the likely supply response by U.S. producers at higher prices. (LPL)

In the 1987 movie Wall Street, Gordon Gekko is shown with his Motorola DynaTac 8000x cellphone. It weighed 2 lbs. and cost $3,995 ($9,835 in today's money). In 1989, just 1.4% of Americans had a cellphone. (Human Progress)

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



November was another green month for equities, with the S&P 500 up 2.8%, the Dow up 3.8%, and the Nasdaq up 2.2%. The Dow has closed green eight consecutive months, the longest streak since in 22 years. The S&P 500 is also up eight in a row, the longest since 2007.  On a total return basis, the S&P 500 is up 13 months in a row--the longest monthly win streak in history. (LPL)

The Dow closed at another new all-time last Thursday, along the way closing above 24,000 for the first time ever. It took only 30 trading days to go from 23,000 to 24,000--the third fastest 1,000-point milestone ever. Additionally, this was a record fifth 1,000-point milestone this year, with two being the previous record.

The Institute for Supply Management's manufacturing index decreased to 58.2 in November. Fourteen out of 18 manufacturing industries reported growth in November, including paper products, machinery and transportation equipment.

The Commerce Department says that construction spending increased 1.4% to $1.24 trillion in November. Public construction projects jumped 3.9%. Private construction projects increased 0.6%.

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



Get ready for December. Historically, December is a good month for the S&P 500. In fact, since 1950, no month is up more often than the 75% of the time December finishes in the green, and the +1.6% average return is also the best out of the 12 months. The month of December has never finished as the worst month of the year.

The Commerce Department said consumer spending rose 0.3% in October.  Consumer spending grew at a 2.3% annualized rate in the third quarter.

The personal consumption expenditures (PCE) price index excluding food and energy, rose 0.2%. The core PCE increased 1.4% in the last 12 months.

Personal income rose 0.4% in October. Wages rose 0.3%.  Savings increased to $457.3 billion or 3.2% increase.  

This weeks positive GDP revision to 3.3% was driven by business equipment spending, state and local government spending, and private inventory accumulation.

Join us this weekend for Financial Focus Radio when we will talk about how to set yourself up for a potential Santa Claus rally.

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



The National Association of Realtors pending existing home sales index rose 3.5% in November. That is the highest level since June. Existing inventory has decreased every month on an annual basis for 29 consecutive months, and the number of homes for sale at the end of October was the lowest for the month since 1999.

The former CEO and CFO of the Bank of Oswego were convicted of a conspiracy to conceal the bank's bad financial condition. A jury found them guilty of 12 counts of making false entries in the bank's books to hide bad loans. (PBJ)

The Municipal Bond Index is down 0.3% over the past month, while the high-quality U.S. Aggregate Bond Index has gained 0.5%. The main reason for the divergence in these two indexes is the ongoing tax reform debate. Language in the House tax reform proposal would remove tax exemption from private activity, tax credit, and advance refunding bonds that are issued after December 31, 2017.  This has led issuers to push to get new offerings in ahead of the December 31 deadline, which will likely lead to a increased supply through year end, which has put pressure on prices. (LPL)

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



The Conference Board's measure of consumer confidence hit 129.5 in November its highest level in nearly 17 years. That is much stronger than expected. The index takes into account Americans' views of current economic conditions and their expectations for the next six months.

 

For the week ending November 18, new claims for unemployment insurance dropped by 13,000 to 239,000.

The less volatile four-week average rose slightly to 239,750. Jobless claims have now held below 300,000 for 142 weeks, or nearly three years, the longest such streak since 1970. Analysts say, however, that the levels in fact represent an absolute low, given the increase in the population in the last 47 years. (AFP)

 

The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller home price index rose in September at a 6.2% annual rate. 

 

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development updated its gross domestic product growth forecast to 3.6% from 3.5%, supported by policy stimulus and being accompanied by solid employment gains, a moderate upturn in investment, and a pick-up in trade growth. It also noted that the global economy is now growing at its fastest pace since 2010. (LPL)

 

The S&P 500 is up 3 and the NASDAQ is down 0. The MSCI international index is lower.

Oil is down 10 cents at $57.86 a barrel.

Gold is down $2 at $1298 a Troy ounce.

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

 



The Commerce Department said new home sales in October rose 6.2%. That marks the third straight monthly gain and the best sales since October 2007. There is a shrinking supply of existing homes for sale. There is only 4.9 months' supply of newly-built homes on the market, the lowest reading since July 2016. The number of sales listings for existing homes has tumbled 10.4% from a year ago to just 1.8 million, according to the National Association of Realtors. That's the fewest number of homes on the market for any October since the Realtors began tracking the data in 1999. The average sales price of a new home jumped 13.6% over the past 12 months to $400,200. (FBN)

According to Adobe Analytics, online sales on Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday rose 17.9% to $7.9B. Online sales on Black Friday alone increased nearly 16% to a record $5B. Cyber Monday sales are estimated up 16.5% to a record $6.6B. According to ShopperTrak, Black Friday traffic at retailers was down by <1%. According to price-tracking firm Market Track, the average Black Friday advertised discount across 17 categories was 45% this year compared with 48% last year. Only three of eight major retailers offered deeper discounts than they did a year ago. (LPL)

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



The Commerce Department said new orders for capital goods unexpectedly fell 0.5% in October. That was the biggest drop since September 2016. Strong business spending on equipment boosted manufacturing, orders for machinery increased 0.6%. Manufacturing accounts for 12% of the U.S. economy. Last month orders for electrical equipment, appliances and components climbed 0.8%.

The University of Michigan's survey of consumer attitudes for November rose to 98.5 in November. Expected changes in inflation rates for the following year, also tracked in the survey, are expected to creep up to 2.6 after landing at a 10-month low at 2.4 in October.

The Chicago Fed National Activity Index, an aggregate of over 80 economic indicators that attempts to paint an overall picture of the economy each month, posted its best number in October since January 2012. Strong data over the last month is also reflected in the Citi Economic Surprise Index, which measures the performance of economic data versus economist consensus expectations, which hit a multi-year high Wednesday, reaching its strongest level since early 2014.

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



Stocks posted record highs yesterday. The S&P 500 gained 0.7% to finish at 2,599. The index broke above 2,600 for the first time ever during the session. The tech-laden Nasdaq rose 1.1% to 6,862. Markets are closed tomorrow and will hold an abbreviated session on Friday.

According to the National Association of Home Builders home builder sentiment rose to 70, up two points in November. This number is the highest since March of this year and the second highest on record. The index stood at 63 in November of last year.

Smucker, owners of Jif peanut butter, jams, Folgers and Dunkin Donuts-branded coffee, Meow Mix and 9 Lives hiked prices on Jif and Smucker's-brand jellies 6% last January. That pushed sales up 1% last quarter, and profits in its consumer food division was up 10%. (CNNMoney)

Mrs. Reinhart did not get the memo.  A survey of 1,000 PNW residents conducted by Washington State University's Carson College of Business said 64% aren't planning to partake in Black Friday 2017 by going out. 65% say they will likely shop online instead.

Join us this weekend for Financial Focus Radio when we will host a post-Thanksgiving wealth building feast.

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



As we head into Thanksgiving week, investors have many things for which to be thankful; from a global bull market in equities, to very few signs of a recession starting over the next 12-18 months. In honor of everyone’s favorite Thanksgiving Day bird, did you know that the size of your average turkey has grown substantially over the past 50 years? That’s right; the average turkey was 17 pounds in 1960 and was more than 30 pounds last year. (LPL)

S&P 500 earnings and revenue growth each ticked 0.1% higher over the past week and are now tracking to 8.2% and 5.4% year-over-year increases, respectively. Overall earnings growth is tracking to a more than 11% year-over-year increase. (LPL)

Leading economic indicators rose by 1.2% in October. The index "suggests that solid growth in the US economy will continue through the holiday season and into the new year," Conference Board research director Ataman Ozyildirim said in a statement. The index is a closely followed indicator for how healthy the U.S. economy is. The Conference Board tracks 10 components, including manufacturers' new orders, stock prices and average weekly initial claims for unemployment insurance. (CNBC)

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



The Labor Department said import prices rose 0.2% in October, less than expected. In the last 12 months import prices increased 2.5%. Imported petroleum increased 1.7%, imported capital goods prices rose 0.2% and imported food fell 0.2%. Export prices were unchanged last month. October as the biggest monthly increase in the price of agricultural exports in nearly 1-1/2 years. Export prices are up 2.7% year-over-year. (CNBC)

The Federal Reserve says U.S. industrial production leapt 0.9% in October. Manufacturing activity surged 1.3%. Mining activity slipped 1.3%. October hurricanes caused a decline in oil and gas drilling. Production at utilities rose 2%. Over the past year, industrial production has increased 2.9%. Over the past 12 months, manufacturers have added 156,000 jobs. That's the strongest annual growth since the middle of 2015.

The Georgia-Pacific Camas, Washington paper mill is eliminating 300 jobs. The mill opened in 1885 and employed about 2,400 workers in the 1980s. After the partial closure just 120 to 140 jobs will remain. (The Columbian)

Join us this weekend for Financial Focus Radio where we will talk taxes.

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



The Commerce Department said retail sales rose in October by 0.2%. An increase in car purchases offset a decline in demand for building materials. Retail sales were up 4.6% on an annual basis. Consumer spending accounts for more than two-thirds of U.S. economic activity. Sales at online retailers fell 0.3%. (CNBC)

The Labor Department said consumer prices rose 0.1% in October. That is a year-on-year increase in the CPI of 2.0%. Gas prices fell 2.4% and food prices were unchanged. (CNBC)

The New York Times reports the Trump Administration is encouraging Obamacare marketplace consumers to use “insurance agents and brokers. Advocates say this “could provide a lifeline for consumers in a confusing and troubled marketplace,” and could be better than nonprofit guides because agents are able to recommend specific health insurance plans.

Wal-Mart earned $1 per share in the third quarter up 2%. Revenue was $123.2 billion, up 4.2% year over year. U.S. same-store sales rose 2.7%. (CNBC)

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



The S&P 500 Index has now gone 50 consecutive days without a 0.5% close lower, the longest streak since 57 in 1968. Additionally, with the 0.1% gain Monday, the S&P 500 avoided its first three-day losing streak in three months or 66 trading sessions. This is the longest streak without a three-day losing streak in 7-plus years. (LPL)

The Labor Department says producer prices rose 0.4% in September and in the last 12 months is up 2.8%. That is the biggest annual increase in wholesale inflation in over 5-1/2 years. Prices for services climbed 0.5%, and gasoline dropped 4.6%.

According to the NFIB’s latest Small Business Optimism Index, small business owners expect higher sales and view the present as a favorable time to expand. The 103.8 October Index, an increase from the previous month’s 103, continues a months-long positive streak dating to last November. Four of the Index components rose, five saw a slight decline, and one was unchanged.

Target reported third quarter profits of 91 cents per share on revenue of $16.67 billion. Same-store sales climbed 0.9%. Higher compensation costs including an increase in employee incentives and wage rates drove expenses higher. AP)

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



Stocks' eight-week winning streak--longest in four years--ended last Friday. Small caps lagged for the week, partly due to tax reform challenges, with Russell 2000 losing 1.3%; Dow -0.5%, S&P 500 -0.2%, Nasdaq -0.2%. (Yahoo Finance)

After a year and a half of no sea going container service at the Port of Portland it will return in 2017. Swire Shipping will make monthly port calls with shipments of Daimler Trucks’ Western Star trucks to Australia, export containers going to Australia and New Zealand, and import containers coming from Asia. (PBJ)

Oregon based Roseburg Forest Products has sold its California timberlands to a New Forests. The transaction includes 170,000 acres. Founded in 2005, New Forests manages more than 2 million acres of land and forests around the world, with assets under management of more than $3 billion. They are headquartered in Sydney, Australia. (Building Material News)

Dick's Sporting Goods reported a third-quarter profit of $36.9 million. The sporting goods retailer had sales of $1.94 billion. Dick's shares are down 50% in 2017 and down 56% in the last 12 months. (AP)

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



The University of Michigan's index of consumer sentiment fell in November, but remains at its second-highest level of the year. The index stands at 97.8 which is off from October which was 101.1, the highest level since 2004. The report supports a forecast of personal consumption spending rising 2.7% in 2018.

 

Nordstrom had a third quarter profit of 67 cents per share, and revenue came in slightly above forecast. Same store sales were down a 1%, with Nordstrom pointing too negative impacts caused by hurricanes. (CNBC)

 

In November 2016 Columbia Sportswear relocated 50 employees to their new downtown Portland offices. Now the company is mulling the idea of closing that office. Confrontations with transients and frequent car break-ins are to blame.  (Oregon Live)

 

There were approximately 2.9 million nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses reported by private industry employers in 2016, a rate of 2.9 cases per 100 full-time equivalent workers, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

 

GE is cutting their dividend in half from 24 to 12 cents per share.

 

The S&P 500 is down 6 and the NASDAQ is down 19. The MSCI international index is lower.

Oil is up 10 cents at $56.83 a barrel.

Gold is up $5 at $1279 a Troy ounce.

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



Google is adding 8,000 sf to the 18,000 sf they already occupy in downtown Portland. The tech giant opened the location in 2010. Google now employs 60 people at the location. (OregonLive)

Summit Bank, with headquarters in Eugene and an office in Bend, reported profits of $955,000 in Q3. That is a 13.7% increase year over year. Total assets were up 24.5%. Net loans totaled $268.3 million up $57.9 million in the first three quarters. Deposits increased by $60.3 million in the same period. “This quarter marked our 13th consecutive quarter of year-over-year loan growth exceeding 15%,” said Craig Wanichek, Summit Bank president and CEO. (AP)

US small companies with open jobs in October was the second-highest on record and more businesses owners plan to raise worker wages. Thirty-five percent of small-business owners said they had jobs to fill and 21% said they plan to raise pay in coming months, the largest share since December 2015. (National Federation of Independent Businesses)

Ad Age reports online sales are up 21% vs. flat for brick-and-mortar stores. However, the segment remains small accounting for only 5% of household-product sales.

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



The Dow and S&P 500 are riding eight straight weekly gains. The Nasdaq has notched six positive weeks in a row. This year, the Dow closed at 57 all-time highs, the S&P at 52, and the Nasdaq at 64. That is an all-time record for the Nasdaq. (CNBC)

The largest solar power plant in Oregon has begun operation. The power will be sold to Apple through a long-term power purchase agreement. The farm is outside Prineville.  The plant can produce 56 megawatts and will produce 140,000 megawatt-hours of electricity annually, equal to what 13,000 Oregon households use in a year. The capital expenditure for the plant is pegged at $120 million. (PBJ)

According to the think tank HumanProgress.org the world consumes some 50 million tons of beef a year. Unfortunately, cows need to roam (land), eat (corn) and evacuate (green-house gases). And then, of course, there is the killing of the poor creatures themselves. A solution to the ethical, economic and environmental problems may be around the corner. Thanks to human ingenuity, we may soon be able to enjoy an affordable lab-grown meat that will taste and nourish just like the real thing.  

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



Digging in a little deeper into Fridays big job report, October saw a 261,000 increase in nonfarm payrolls. September's initially reported loss of 33,000 jobs was adjusted to an 18,000 gain. The unemployment rate ticked down to 4.1% from 4.2%. But the major driver of the move lower was a decrease in the labor participation rate, from 63.1% to 62.7%. Average hourly earnings were flat month over month. The underemployment rate, arguably a bigger factor in today's economy than the unemployment rate, saw a significant drop from 8.3% in September to 7.9% in October. This number has been trending lower since the financial crisis, but this was the biggest month-over-month drop since January 2014, and it is now at its lowest level since 2006. (BLS)

 

The tax proposal has been released, but is still just a proposal. Broadly, the reforms were in line with expectations--a corporate tax rate of 20%, fewer individual brackets, and a phase out of the estate tax. Surprises included decrease in the cap on the mortgage interest deduction (from $1 million to $500,000), and no changes to limits on pre-tax 401(k) contributions which had been widely discussed. There are likely to be many changes (and the potential for market-moving headlines) as the bill works its way through Congress. (FBN)

 

The S&P 500 is down 3 and the NASDAQ is down 2. The MSCI international index is lower.

Oil is up 36 cents at $56.00 a barrel.

Gold is up $3 at $1272 a Troy ounce.

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



The Department of Labor says the US economy added 261,000 new jobs in October rebounding from the hurricanes. The private sector accounted for 252,000 of the increase. The unemployment rate stands at 4.1%.

Bank of England raised interest rates for the first time in a decade yesterday to 0.5% from 0.25%. (Bloomberg)

The Labor Department said on Thursday worker productivity rose at a 3.0% rate. That is the fastest pace in three years.

Oregon’s Electro Scientific Industries reported sales growth in the quarter of 139% posting sales of $71 million. Profits were $4.3 million half what they saw a year ago.
ESI is Oregon's oldest technology company starting in 1944. It currently makes laser tools for electronics manufacturers. (OregonLive)

New York headquartered glass, ceramics and fiber-optics  manufacturer Corning is the buyer of the old Hynix computer chip factory in Eugene. The Eugene Register-Guard reported the 300-acre property's $13.4 million sale on Tuesday. Corning reported $9.4 billion in revenue last year and profits of $3.7 billion.

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



We've noted many times how the action so far this year is like nothing we've seen for decades, as it is a bull market amid historically low volatility. Well, here's another way to show that. The Dow has officially gone 52 consecutive trading days without a 1% intraday move--the longest such streak using data back to the 1930s. Additionally, the S&P 500 hasn't closed down so much as 0.5% for 40 trading sessions, the longest since 44 in 1995. Couple that with the usually volatile months of September and October that were historically dull in 2017 and this year continues to rewrite the history books. (LPL Research)

The ADP National Employment report says the private-sector added 235,000 jobs in September. The service sector accounted for the bulk of the job creation, adding 150,000 jobs. Professional and business services added the most positions, up 109,000. Job losses were seen in the trade, transportation, and information sectors, as well as education.

The Manufacturing ISM Report shows economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in October, and the overall economy grew for the 101st consecutive month. Manufacturing PMI in October 58.7 a decrease of 2.1 points from September. (ISM Report)

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



With the S&P 500 Index closing higher in October it is the longest monthly total return win streak ever going back to 1950. The S&P 500 has been higher an incredible 12 consecutive months on a total return basis, topping the streaks of 11 months in 1954 and 1959. The S&P 500 is up 23% over the past 12 months, which is a lot, but by no means extremely stretched. In fact, going back since 1950, this would rank in the top 76% for all 12-month returns. Again, this has been a solid 12 months, but when putting things in perspective, the past 12 months haven't been what we'd classify as an extreme blow off move; it has been more like slow and steady. It is important to remember that markets don't peak when things are calm, we tend to see more volatility near ultimate market peaks. (LPL Research)

The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller U.S. National Price Index was up 6.1% in August. The index posted a 5.9% year-over-year gain. Atlanta was the only major city to record a decline in prices. (Yahoo Finance)

According to the Conference Board Consumer confidence rose to 125.9 in October. That is the highest level in almost 17 years when in December 2000 the index stood at 128.6.

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



The Commerce Department says consumer spending jumped 1.0%, its biggest increase in more than eight years. Consumer spending, which accounts for more than two-thirds of U.S. economic activity. Consumer spending in September was lifted by motor vehicles, as hurricane victims replaced destroyed automobiles.  

The Federal Reserve's inflation measure, the personal consumption expenditures (PCE) price index, was up 0.1%. The PCE is up 1.3% in the last 12 months.  

Personal income rose 0.4% in September. Wages were up 0.4%. Savings fell to $441.9 billion in September from $521.4 billion in the prior month. (CNBC)

The first half of earnings season has been good relative to expectations. Earnings are tracking near a 7% year-over-year increase, 2% above prior expectations, with a solid 74% of companies having beaten estimates. Growth has slowed from the last two quarters, due partly to the impact of insured hurricane losses. Strong upside and big increases in technology and energy earnings have offset financials weakness. Solid earnings outlook continues to support U.S. stocks even at elevated valuations. This week 135 S&P 500 Index companies will report results. (LPL Research)

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



U.S. stocks are slightly lower as we await the latest batch of corporate earnings and economic data. Earnings season continues in full swing, with a number of major brands gearing up to publish their latest financial figures. Mondel?z International, AvalonBay, Texas Roadhouse and Dominion are some of the names set to issue their latest earnings reports.
 
It is merger Monday. Big homebuilder Lennar agreed to buy homebuilder CatAtlantic for $9.3 billion, creating the largest U.S. homebuilder. For-profit colleges Strayer and Capella agreed to merge in a stock-swap deal. (CNBC)
 
Climbing oil exports from Iraq are dampening gains in oil prices. But there are expectations that the OPEC production cuts will be extended past its deadline of March 2018. (Reuters)
 
Platinum is down 0.2% to $912.70 an ounce, while palladium is up 0.4% to $969.22 an ounce. (CNBC)
 
Apple moved to stop concerns of low demand for its iPhone X, saying pre-orders for the 10th anniversary phone were "off the charts." (Reuters)
 
With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, a Registered Investment Advisor I am Troy Reinhart.



The Nasdaq is in rally mode following solid results from Amazon, Alphabet aka Google, and Microsoft. The booming growth from three of the world's biggest companies will surely further enthuse investors. The tech giants added a combined $80B in market value in AH trading, with Alphabet and Amazon's stocks both surging past $1,000 on strong 3Q results. (SA)

 

In other earnings news, AbbVie, the maker of the world's top-grossing drug, Humira, posted third quarter earnings that beat Wall Street expectations and announced bullish financial targets.  Meanwhile, pharmaceutical giant Merck blamed an international cyber attack that shut down parts of its operation as it reported third quarter sales that were short of estimates from the Street. (FT)

 

Shares of pharmaceutical chains and drug wholesalers are looking sickly after the President's declaration that opioids are a public health emergency and a report that Amazon has secured wholesale pharmacy licenses.  Shares of health insurer Aetna jumped on Thursday, following a report that it was in talks about a possible deal to sell itself to pharmacy chain CVS. (WSJ)

 

Finally, third quarter GDP numbers are just out, and the US economy continued to grow at a steady clip during the third quarter, exceeding expectations despite the disruptions caused by hurricanes Harvey and Irma.  Gross domestic product grew at a 3 per cent annual rate in the July to September period, that was above economists' estimates for growth of 2.5 per cent (FT).

 

The S&P 500 is up 6 and the NASDAQ is up 44. The MSCI international index is down 7/100 of a percent

Oil is down 26 cents at $52.38 a barrel.

Gold is down $4 at $1265 a Troy ounce.

 

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



The European Central Bank has unveiled plans to reduce the pace of its mass bond-buying program next year, announcing that it will buy €30bn-worth of assets a month for at least the first nine months of 2018 to keep the Euro area’s recovery on track.  The eagerly-awaited decision marks a retrenchment from the region’s bond markets, where the ECB has been the most active investor since the program, known as quantitative easing, began.  (FT)

 

A couple more earnings reports from this morning and after yesterday’s close:  AB InBev, the brewer of Budweiser, Stella Artois, Corona, and 10 Barrel reported higher profit in the third quarter despite lower beer volumes as hurricanes hit the US market. (WSJ)  Bristol-Myers Squibb, a leading maker of cancer immunotherapies, narrowly missed Wall Street forecasts for third quarter earnings, but posted revenues ahead of expectations. (SA)

 

Asia is now home to more of the world’s billionaires than the US for the first time in history, according to research published on Thursday.  Powered by the rise of super-wealthy Chinese entrepreneurs, the number of Asian billionaires rose by 117 to 637 last year, while membership of the US billionaires club reached 563 after gaining 25 net new joiners, according to the report by UBS. (FT)

 

S&P 500 futures are up 2 and NASDAQ futures are down 3. The MSCI international index is up 7/100 of a percent.

Oil is up 4 cents at $52.22 a barrel.

Gold is down $3 at $1276 a Troy ounce.

 

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



After yesterday's big day on the Dow, we've got a slew of new earnings reports this morning:  Visa grew its revenues and profits at a more rapid clip than Wall Street forecast in its latest fiscal quarter, driven by growth in payment processing and the purchase of Visa Europe that closed last June.  The $250bn credit card processor said its fourth quarter net revenues climbed 13.9% to $4.9bn. (FT)

 

Defence group Northrop Grumman posted upbeat quarterly results driven by higher demand for its manned aircrafts and lifted its earnings outlook again. (WSJ)

 

Coca-Cola shares were flat in premarket trading, as the company reported sales dropped less than feared in its latest quarter.  The world's largest maker of fizzy drinks said sales fell 15 per cent to $9.1bn in the three months to the end of September (FT)

 

Finally, Boeing has raised its earnings and cashflow guidance for the second time in six months after beating market expectations in the third quarter.  Boeing is lifting its forecast for full-year cashflow to $12.5bn as a result of "improved performance" on the back of cost reductions in its aircraft programs and higher production rates. (SA)

 

The prospect of a more hawkish US central bank is setting the pace in the US debt market for a second successive day.  The yield on the 10-year Treasury is up almost 3 basis points at 2.45 per cent today, its highest since March . The yield, which rises when the price of the bond falls, is an important benchmark for global financial markets. Late yesterday, the yield broke through an important psychological threshold of 2.4 per cent that has been treated as a "line in the sand" for much of the year. (FT)

 

S&P 500 futures down 4 and NASDAQ futures are down 13. The MSCI international index is up 1/100 of a percent.

Oil is down 18 cents at $52.29 a barrel.

Gold is down $4 at $1274 a Troy ounce.

 

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



We're in the thick of earnings season this morning:

 

GM handily beat earnings expectations before the bell, but the Detroit automaker also reported production down 26 per cent for the third quarter, reflecting factory shutdowns due to model changeovers, but also softer demand in the US market which GM predicted could have its weakest year since the 2008-09 recession (FT).

 

Caterpillar shares rallied in pre-market trading this morning after the maker of construction and mining equipment lifted its full-year outlook and posted upbeat quarterly results citing strength in North American on-shore oil and gas markets, Chinese construction and investments by miners. (FT)

 

McDonald's global same-store sales climbed 6 per cent in the three months to the end of September, eclipsing analyst forecasts and reaffirming that the world's largest burger chain's turnround is on track. (FT)

 

In other earnings news this morning, 3M, United Technologies, and Eli Lily all topped estimates and raised guidance, while Lockheed Martin missed slightly, but still revised guidance higher (FT). 

 

Over in the debt markets, Venezuela has now missed $586M in payments tied to the debt of the government, state oil giant PDVSA, and utility Electricidad de Caracas, just days before the first of two can't-miss debt deadlines.  Sovereign debt investors will be a keeping a close eye on that one this week (SA).

 

S&P 500 futures up 5 and the NASDAQ futures are up 7. The MSCI international index is up 4/100 of a percent

Oil is up 29 cents at $52.19 a barrel.

Gold is down $3 at $1278 a Troy ounce.

 

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



Investors will hear Q3 results from 189 members of the S&P 500 in the coming days, marking the biggest week of earnings season and one that is sure to move markets. The group also includes 12 of the 30 companies that make up the Dow industrials. As the market rambles on, October is shaping up to be one of the best months of the year. The Dow is up about 4% for the month, suggesting that stocks could end the year with some serious momentum. (SA)

 

Shinzo Abe's convincing election victory lifted Japanese stocks to their highest in 21 years, with the prime minister on track to become Japan's longest-serving leader. The super majority will extend the lifespan of "Abenomics," allowing the BOJ to continue with massive monetary easing, even as the Fed seems determined to hike rates again in December. (FT)

 

Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser has sad the oil giant's initial public offering remains on track for the second half of 2018.Saudi Aramco, the world's largest oil company, plans to list its shares on the Saudi domestic stock market, as well as one or more foreign exchanges. However, it has yet to choose the overseas market, fueling continued speculation about the kingdom's plans. (CNBC)

 

S&P 500 futures are up 2 and NASDAQ futures are up 11. The MSCI international index is down 3/100 of a percent.

Oil is up 19 cents at $52.03 a barrel.

Gold is down $5 at $1276 a Troy ounce.

 

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


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