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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.

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