Lots of economic data points this morning. Nonfarm productivity dropped by a 0.5% annual rate in the April-June period. It was the third consecutive quarterly decline. Strong employment gains have helped to raise output. Nonfarm payrolls increased by more than 500,000 jobs in June and July. Output per worker in the second quarter increased at a 1.2%. Hourly compensation per hour rose at a 1.5%. (Reuters)
The struggling retailer Gap reported July overall company same-store sales fell 4%. They were flat at Old Navy, down 3% at the Gap stores and declined 9% at Banana Republic. The company is struggling to attract shoppers going to stores like Zara, Forever 21 and H&M. Analysts are predicting another decline in same store sales for August. (CNN)
Wholesale inventories rose in June by 0.3%. Wholesale stocks of farm products increased 4.0%, inventories of drugs surged 4.9% and auto inventories dipped 0.1%. Sales at wholesalers was up 1.9%. It would take wholesalers 1.33 months to clear shelves, down from 1.35 months in May. (Commerce Department)
S&P 500 is up 3 and the NASDAQ is up 5. MSCI International Index is up 0.70%.
Oil is down 25 cents at $42.49 a barrel.
Gold is up $13 at $1359 a Troy ounce. Palladium is surging to a 14-month high.
With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, a Registered Investment Advisor I am Troy Reinhart.