Joe Pags


Joe Pags

6:00pm - 9:00pm

Business News Archives for 2017-08

ADP says that private sector payrolls in August grew at its fastest pace in five months as companies added 237,000 positions. Service-related industries gained 204,000 jobs, construction 18,000 and manufacturing 16,000.

The Commerce Department says economy grew faster than initially thought in the second quarter with gross domestic product growing at a 3% annual rate.

A homeowner lawsuit accuses Wells Fargo of improperly charging thousands of customers nationwide to lock in interest rates when their mortgage applications were delayed. (Reuters)

Last week the S&P 500 Index posted its 50th consecutive week without posting a weekly decline of at least 2%. How meaningful is a streak of 50 consecutive weeks without a 2% drop? Well, for starters, this is only the sixth time in history it has happened. 2017 has been a very unvolatile year as far as markets are concerned. (LPL Research)

Gas prices could rise 25 cents a gallon or more for several weeks as the energy industry recovers from hurricane Harvey according to GasBuddy.  The flooding has shut down 13 refineries, erasing more than 10% of U.S. gasoline production capacity.

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

The Wall Street Journal reports that America’s retailers and manufacturers are adding inventories, resulting in near-record levels of shipments of goods through US ports. Some 1.72 million 20-foot containers worth of goods arrived at US ports in July.  Automobile parts, furniture, and goods related to back-to-school needs were seen to have the largest growth.

Amazon will open a fulfillment center in Salem, its second in Oregon. The $90 million, 1 million-square-foot facility will be completed in fall of 2018. (OBN)

The Commerce Department said U.S. goods trade deficit increased 1.7% in July as exports fell 1.3%. Exports were weighed down by an 8.0% drop in shipments of motor vehicles. Imports fell 0.3%.

The Commerce Department also reported that wholesale inventories increased 0.4% in July. Retail inventories fell 0.2%.

The Consumer Confidence Index rose in August to 122.9
Consumer confidence is at its second best level this year. Those saying business conditions are "good" increased to 34.5%, while those who said business conditions were bad was 13.1%.  (CNBC)

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

As August winds down the S&P 500 is up 10% this year. But gold, is up about 12% in 2017 to nearly $1,330 an ounce, putting it on track for the best performance since 2010. It has been a great year for emerging markets, as the MSCI Emerging Markets Index is up more than 25%, more than double the 10% gain for the S&P 500. This shows why portfolio diversification is important. (CNN)

The hazelnut crop in Oregon is predicted to produce 36,000 tons of hazelnuts this year, down 18% from 2016. There are less nuts per tree, and the nuts were smaller than usual. Most of the decline has been to blight. Oregon produces 99% of the U.S. hazelnut crop, but only about 5% of the world crop, according to the Oregon Hazelnut Industry Office. (Oregon Live)

Do you still have to tip? Ford and Domino's are doing research trial that will see Ford cars equipped with self-driving technology deliver pizzas, as a way of figuring out how everyday people will react to, and interact with, autonomous service vehicles in the future. (TechCrunch)

Small-business hiring showed a slowdown for the sixth consecutive month in August says a report from Paychex.
Small-business wages continue to rise, reaching a 3%, or 76 cents, annual growth rate in August.  

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

Orders for non-defense capital goods increased 0.4% in July. Shipments of capital goods jumped 1%. Business spending on equipment added 0.4% to the economy's 2.6% annualized growth pace in Q2, the most in nearly two years. Orders for machinery fell 1.4%, the biggest drop since May 2016. Orders for motor vehicles and parts fell 1.2%.  (Commerce Department)

Quintiles an integrated information and technology solutions healthcare provider will join the S&P 500 prior to the open on Tuesday replacing Whole Foods. (CNBC)

Hurricane Harvey will be impacting oil and gas prices. Oil prices initially rose on this news, but have since given back some of those gains. Gasoline prices are up, but this hurricane has hit the heart of U.S. refining; and as these refiners are shut down and this will result in a build-up of oil inventories, which will lead to lower oil prices. This is unusual, but not unheard of. How long any additional oil glut will last will be a function of how long refiners are closed, which is impossible to predict at this point. (LPL Research)

Remember you can also check out our blog at .

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

Debt ceiling negotiations may be difficult and cause some market volatility. Some of us have painful memories of 2011 when we first learned of an arcane piece of federal legislation that led to Standard & Poor's decision to cut the U.S. credit rating from AAA. Those events drove the S&P 500 Index down 19.4% peak to trough between April and October of that year. The deadline to raise the debt ceiling is October 1st. (LPL Research)

The National Association of Realtors says existing home sales fell 1.3% last month. Home supply was down 9.0% from a year ago. Housing inventory has declined for 26 consecutive months. The median house price is $258,300, a 6.2% rise from one year ago. The number of days homes were on the market in July was 30.

Sears posted a $251 million loss and a 11.5% decline in sales for Q2. They also plan to close 28 more Kmart stores this year. That's in addition to the 180 Sears and Kmart stores it has shuttered this year, and the 150 stores it plans to close by the end of this quarter. Sears stock has fallen more than 40% over the past 12 months. (CNBC)

Join us this weekend for Financial Focus Radio when we will answer your questions – with the truth in wealth building.

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

PacificSource Health Plans posted a profit of $22 million on sales of $687 million in the first half of the year. That is much than profits of $5.2 million on sales of $620 million last year. In 2016, Portland-based Legacy Health bought 50% of the Springfield-based PacificSource for $100 million. PacificSource insures more than 300,000 people and has 3,900 employer clients in Oregon, Idaho and Montana. It employs more than 900 people, including 472 in Springfield and Eugene. (Eugene Register)

As interest rates rise and refinancing falls this could become a trend. Wells Fargo has laid off 72 people at its Vancouver call center due to fewer home foreclosures.  
Employees received a 60-day notice on August 10th. They will receive pay and benefits through Oct. 9. The call center will be closed. (PBJ)

New single-family home sales fell 9.4% in July, their lowest level in seven months. The housing market is being constrained by a shortage of properties, land and labor, which are driving up home prices. The inventory of new homes on the market rose 1.5%, its highest level since June 2009. At July's sales pace, it would take 5.8 months to clear the supply of houses on the market, up from 5.2 months in June. A six-month supply is viewed as a healthy balance between supply and demand. (Reuters)

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

We're starting to enter a slower period of news flow, which along with weak August seasonals could make markets more susceptible to volatility from things like political discussions, geopolitical factors, or other unexpected events in the near term. Earnings season is over and the economic calendar is slow. (LPL Research)

Beware of this potential bomb in your portfolio. Despite year-to-date returns of 4.79% according to the Bloomberg Barclays High Yield Corporate Index, the sector is underperforming the Bloomberg Barclays Aggregate Index. Pressure in the lower rated credit spreads is leading to underperformance this month. (LPL Research)

Second quarter earnings season is over, and it was a good one. The S&P 500 has produced a solid 12% year-over-year growth rate. Energy, financials, and technology shared the load in making the biggest contributions to earnings growth. (LPL Research)

The SEC has approved Arcimoto, the Eugene-based electric vehicle maker, to start selling shares to the public. The stock will be listed on the Nasdaq. The company looks to raise $30 million to pay debts, set up a Eugene factory and start up production. (The Register Guard)

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

The Federal Reserve's annual Jackson Hole Symposium begins later this week, taking place from August 24-26. This gathering of central bankers has taken place annually since 1978 and tends to be closely watched by markets. (LPL Research)

Macy's has named eBay executive Hal Lawton as its new president.  He will report to CEO Jeff Gennette. Lawton will join Macy's on September 8th. Macy's is restructuring its management ranks, cutting about 100 jobs. (CNBC)

The U.S., Mexico, and Canada have completed the opening round of renegotiations of the North American Free Trade Agreement. However, tensions remain over certain areas, including the cars, signaling tough bargaining ahead. (WSJ)

Former General Electric chairman Jeff Immelt has become the front-runner candidate to become CEO of car-hailing company Uber. (Recode)

Goldman Sachs has received approval for a license to trade stocks in Saudi Arabia. The Saudi government eased restrictions last year on foreign ownership in its stock market. (CNBC)

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

Amazon sold $16 billion in bonds this week and they had demand equivalent to the gross domestic product of the country Belarus. The money will be used to fund its acquisition of Whole Foods. (CNBC)

Factory output fell 0.1% in July, as auto production slowed. Overall industrial production, which adds output by mines and utilities, rose 0.2%. Mining output rose 0.5% and utility production rose 1.6%. (AP)

Americans filing for unemployment benefits fell to 232,000 near a six-month low. That is the lowest level since the week ending Feb. 25th when claims fell to 227,000, which was the best reading since March 1973. It was the 128th week that claims remained below 300,000. That is the longest such stretch since 1970, when the labor market was much smaller. (Reuters)

After five months of either stagnation or decline, NFIB’s Small Business Optimism Index finally showed increased optimism. In July, the Index increased by 1.6 points to 105.2—due to a surge in the labor market with job creation and more hiring.

Join us this weekend for Financial Focus Radio when we will answer the question – Is the Trump Trade Dead?

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

U.S. home building fell unexpectedly by 4.8% in July. Single-family home building slipped 0.5%. Despite strong demand for housing, groundbreaking on single-family homes has slowed since posting 9-1/2-year highs in February. Homebuilders say they cannot find skilled labor, especially framers, and that buildable lots remain in short supply. Multi-family housing fell 15.3%. (CNBC)

Do transports matter? The weak action lately in transports has many wondering if this is a potential warning sign for the broader markets. The big worry stems from August 1, when the Dow closed at a new 52-week high and transports closed at a new 52-week low relative to the Dow. This rare combination also took place ahead of the 1973-1974 bear market, the 1987 crash, and the tech bubble in 2000. Keep your eyes peeled. (LPL Research)

Business inventories rose 0.5% their biggest increase in seven months as retailers accumulated stock. Car inventories increased 0.7%. At the current sales pace, it would take 1.38 months for businesses to clear shelves. (Reuters)

Wal-Mart beat the street as online purchases grew 60%. Same-store sales for U.S. stores climbed 1.7%. (CNBC)

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

Retail sales jumped 0.6% in July, the biggest increase in seven months. June was upwardly revised to a 0.3%. Consumer spending accounts for more than two-thirds of U.S. economic activity, is climbing at a 2.8% annualized rate in the second quarter. The savings rate dropped to 3.8% in the second quarter of this year from a rate of 6.2% in the second quarter of 2015. Car sales climbed 1.2%, service stations sales fell 0.4%, sales at clothing stores fell 0.2% and sales at online retailers jumped 1.3%.  (Commerce Department)

A federal judge says Costco owes Tiffany $19.4 million in damages over the sale of counterfeit Tiffany diamond engagement rings. Costco said it will appeal. (CNBC)

Reuters is reporting that a poll of economists says the majority believe that “the U.S. economic expansion will last at least another two years.”  The U.S. expansion has more than two years to go, according to 34 of 57 economists. Of those economists, 21 said it would last two to three years and 13 said more than three years.

The National Association of Home Builders sentiment index rose 4 points to the highest level since May and now stands at 68. Anything above 50 is considered positive sentiment. The index was at 59 last August. (CNBC)

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

Eugene-headquartered Papé Group, has purchased Rowand Machinery of Spokane. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Rowand Machinery is a John Deere dealer and has been in operation for 55 years. Papé now has 23 locations in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, California and Nevada. (Spokane Tribune)

Data related to economic activity remains largely supportive of slow and steady growth. Inflationary pressures remain elusive. Globalization, aging demographics, technological innovation, slow wage growth, and less than desired productivity gains have all combined to dim potential price increases, especially on the services side. Productivity continues to lag the average annual pace of +2.1% since WWII. Weakness in output-per-hour-worked has weighed on economic growth and living standards, and if it persists, will have a critical effect on the future trajectory of wages, prices, gross domestic product, tax receipts, and federal budget balances. This suggests a lack of urgency for the Fed to increase interest rates from current levels. (LPL Research)

Dick's Sporting Goods shares are down almost 16% as Q2 profits rose to $112.4 million, from $91.4 million a year ago. Sales rose 9.6% to $2.2 billion. Both fell short of street expectations.  Same-store sales for the year are now expected to be between flat to down. (CNBC)

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

It was the calmest three weeks ever for stocks. You would never know it by reading the headlines, but the S&P 500 was in the midst of the calmest three-week period ever. In fact, during the past 15 trading sessions, ending 8/9/17, it had closed between 0.3% and -0.3% every single time. That has never happened in the history of the S&P 500 and the previous record was 10 back in 1969. The S&P 500 was down 1.45% yesterday. (LPL Research)

Producer prices fell in July by 0.1%, the biggest drop in 11 months. In the last 12 months PPI increased 1.9%. Last month, prices for services fell 0.2%. That accounted for more than 80% of the decrease in the PPI. Energy prices fell 0.3%, declining for a third straight month. Food prices were unchanged in July. (AP)

Jack In The Box reported a quarterly profit of $36.4 million. The burger chain had sales of $357.8 million in the period. Jack In The Box shares have declined 15% since the beginning of the year. (AP)

Portland, Oregon-based Electro Scientific Industries reported quarterly profits of $2.9 million, after reporting a loss a year earlier. The semiconductor testing equipment maker posted sales of $72.7 million in the quarter. Electro Scientific Industries shares are up 43% since the beginning of the year. (AP)

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

Oregon headquartered Craft Brew Alliance is building a new $23 million, 30,000-square-foot factory for its Kona Brewing brand in Kona, Hawaii. The new brewery is designed to produce up to 100,000 barrels of beer per year. (PBJ)

Nautilus, the Vancouver, Washington-based fitness equipment maker reported a second-quarter profit of $2.5 million or 8 cents per-share. The results did not meet Wall Street expectations. The company posted revenue of $77 million. Nautilus shares have dropped slightly more than 5% in the last 12 months. (AP)

RadiSys, the Hillsboro, Oregon-based provider of wireless infrastructure systems reported a loss of $7.6 million or 19 cents per-share. They had revenue of $35.1 million in the period. For the third quarter, RadiSys expects to lose 13 cents per share. Shares are down more than 50% from a year ago. (AP)

President Trump is a drag on the gun industry. Industry leader Sturm Ruger saw gun sales plunged 21% last quarter and profit was cut in half. (Money)

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

The US economy added 209,000 new jobs in July.  The unemployment rate holds steady at 4.3% (Labor Department)

In the slew of earnings results here are some regional companies you may have missed.

Alaska Air and its regional Horizon Air subsidiary reported quarterly earnings topping $2 billion for the first time ever and a profit of $296 million, or $2.38 per share. That's up nearly 14% from Alaska's profit a year ago. Horizon Air accounted for just 1% percent of the company's overall profit in 2016. So far, this year, flight cancellations have been mounting since January as Horizon has lost $16 million. (Oregon Live)

Columbia Sportswear had record second-quarter sales of $398.9 million, but lost $11.5 million, or 17 cents a share. The company lost $8.2 million, 12 cents per share, in the same period last year. The company's flagship Columbia brand saw sales increase 2 %, the Sorel brand of footwear sales climbed 71% from the prior year. The company said most of the 2017 sales growth will come from its own direct-to-consumer sales. (Oregon Live)

Join us this weekend for Financial Focus Radio when we will talk about these record markets.

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




  • Click on the link for the latest conditions on the mountain passes.