Business News Archives for 2016-11

When it comes to Homes, Everything's Up!

President-elect Trump has picked investor Wilbur Ross for commerce secretary.  The new commerce secretary has ties to Oregon. His investment company WL Ross was one of the investors that bailed out Bank of the Cascades in 2010 and saved it from insolvency.  (CNBC)

Mortgage interest rates are at their highest level in over a year. Total mortgage application volume fell 9.4% week over week, but is only 0.5% lower than a year ago. Refinancing was down 16% for the week and is now down 3% from a year ago. A 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rate increased to 4.23% from 4.16% last week. (Mortgage Bankers Association)

Businesses are always evolving and changing – even the most traditional. Tobacco giant Philip Morris Internationals CEO Andre Calantzopoulos says they may eventually stop selling cigarettes.  He says alternative products like smokeless cigarettes, could eventually replace traditional cigarettes. (BBC)

Home prices were 5.5% higher year-over-year in September.  The home price index is now higher than its previous peak hit in July 2006. Portland prices were up 10.9%. (S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Index)

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

Holiday Shopping Season Hits High Gear

Just two days left in November and we are on pace for the best month for the Dow and S&P 500 since March. The Dow is on track for its fifth-ever monthly gain of 1,000 points or more. (CNBC)

Online sales rose 11.5% on Thanksgiving Day, to $1.93 billion. Wednesday's online sales shot up 19% year-over-year, to $1.57 billion. The National Retail Federation predicts holiday sales will increase 3.6%, to $655.8 billion. Online sales are expected to increase 11% to $91.6 billion. (Adobe Digital Insights)

This could be a game changer in the media world. AT&T is launching its DirecTV Now streaming television service on November 30th. “The price will be $35 per month for 60 channels and $70 for 120 channels. AT&T's mobile customers will be able to stream DirecTV Now service without using their data plans. (NY Times)

The US dollar is reaching generational highs. The dollar index, which tracks our currency relative to six other major countries, hit a nearly 14-year peak yesterday. (CNBC)

Allstate has inked a deal to buy privately held third-party warranty provider SquareTrade for $1.4 billion. The deal is anticipated to close in January 2017.

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

Consumers Feeling Good

A rush on home-purchase mortgages pushed application totals up 5.5% last week. Volume is 10% higher than a year ago. Applications to purchase a home jumped 19% on the week and is now 11% higher than a year ago. The interest rate for 30-year fixed mortgage increased to 4.16%, its highest level since January. Applications to refinance a home loan dropped 3% for the week, but is 9% higher than a year ago. (Mortgage Bankers Association)

New orders for U.S. manufactured capital goods
rose 0.4% in October.  However, business spending on equipment declined for a fourth straight quarter. There was a 12% surge in demand for transportation equipment.  Overall orders for durable goods, items ranging from toasters to aircraft that are meant to last three years or more jumped 4.8% last month. That was the biggest rise since October 2015. (Commerce Department)

The Index of Consumer Sentiment hit 93.8 in November.   Up from 87.2 in October. (University of Michigan)

You knew they were the 800-pound gorilla in the room, but this is big. Apple has a record 91% share of profits in the global smartphone market in Q3. (CNBC)

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

Markets Give Thanks at Record Levels

For a second straight day Tuesday, the Dow, S&P 500, Nasdaq, and the small cap Russell 2000 posted record closes. U.S. stock markets are closed tomorrow for Thanksgiving and will only have a morning trading on Friday. (CNBC)

Bank of the Cascades will cut about 150 jobs by next August as it is bought by First Interstate Bank. The sale is the result of duplicate positions. The deal will close in July 2017, pending approval by regulators. (KTVZ)

Home resales climbed 2% in October to their highest level in more than 9-1/2 years. That is an annual rate of 5.6 million units, the highest level since February 2007. Sales are up 5.9% from a year ago. (National Association of Realtors)

The big green machine, Deere, reported quarterly profits of $0.90 per share crushing what analysts expected, even in the face of a global farming recession. Net sales were down 5% year-over-year to $5.65 billion. “The company in 2016 had one of its ten-best years in both sales and earnings, a noteworthy achievement in light of the difficult business climate," said CEO Samuel Allen in a statement. Deere shares are up 11% in early trading. (Business Insider)

Join us this weekend for Financial Focus Radio as we feast on a holiday week of wealth building tips.

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

And the Rally continues!

The S&P 500, Dow Jones, the Nasdaq and the small cap Russell 2000 hit their all-time peaks simultaneously yesterday for the first time since December 31, 1999. This comes as companies ended a five-quarter profit growth decline.  (Bloomberg)

Since Trumps election, the average 30-year fixed rate home loan has risen roughly 0.5%.  That puts this November as one of the four worst months in more than a decade.  A 30-year fixed rate now stands at 4.125%. (Mortgage Daily News)

The fallout from their scandal of opening two million fraudulent accounts to increase sales continues.    Wells Fargo has been hit with new management restrictions by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency. The bank is now required to get approval before making some business decisions or giving out executive severance packages. (Zacks)

Jack In The Box reported a quarterly profit of $32 million.  The burger chain posted sales of $398.4 million. Jack In The Box shares are up 33% in 2016. (AP)   

Hormel, makers of Spam and Skippy peanut butter have sold its Farmer John and Saag's Specialty Meats brands to Smithfield Foods for $145 million in cash. (WSJ)

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

Another Oregon company delisted

Oregon is selling 82,00 acres of state common school fund land near Coos Bay for $220.8 million. The lone bidder is a partnership of Lone Rock Timber and the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians, Lone Rock will contribute 87% of the money and the Cow Creek Band the balance.  (OPB)

Oregons Erickson Inc. has been delisted from the Nasdaq exchange. The company said it received a notification letter from the exchange on November 10th. The stock will be suspended from trading on Nasdaq on November 21st. (PBJ)

The Leading Economic Index climbed 0.1% in October. That is a slower growth rate than September, but still suggests the economy will continue expanding into early next year. (Conference Board)

LifeLock is being purchased by cybersecurity firm Symantec for $2.3 billion. That is a 15% premium to Friday's closing price.  (Reuters)

Just 35 days till Christmas and Wal-Mart kicks off its Cyber Monday deals the day after Thanksgiving. Amazon already said they were doing the same. (CNBC)

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

Could We Be Seeing Inflation?

Dick's Sporting Goods released its third quarter earnings and said its fourth quarter will likely not be up to par. Dick's reported profits of 48 cents per share on revenue of $1.81 billion. Dick's same-store sales grew 5.2%. (CNBC)

Consumer prices recorded their biggest increase in six months in October suggesting a pickup in inflation.
The Consumer Price Index climbed 0.4% in October.  Year-over-year the CPI is up 1.6%. Gasoline prices jumped 7.0%, accounting for more than half of the increase in the CPI last month. Food prices were unchanged for a fourth straight month. Food consumed at home declined for a sixth straight month. (Labor Department)

Americans filing for unemployment benefits fell to a 43-year low last week. Initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 19,000 to 235,000 for the week the lowest level since November 1973. Claims have been below 300,000 for 89 straight weeks. That is the longest run since 1970. (CNBC)

Join us this weekend on Financial Focus Radio when we will help you know if you have bad bonds.

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

Food Deflation Becomes Evident

US industrial production was unchanged in October per the Federal Reserve. Manufacturing output increased 0.2% and mining posted a 2.1% gain, the biggest jump since March 2014. Capacity utilization edged down 0.1% to 75.3%.

Homebuilders have a positive outlook of the market. Homebuilder sentiment held steady in November at 63 per the National Association of Home Builders. A lack of skilled labor, has builders paying more and delivering homes slower. Of the index's three components, buyer traffic rose 2%, current sales conditions were unchanged, and six month sales expectations fell 4%.

Wal-Mart reported quarterly sales that were hurt by food deflation. Same store U.S. sales rose 1.2%. Profits declined fell 8% $3.03 billion. Sales revenue rose 0.5% percent to $117.2 billion. Online sales growth increased 20.6% quarter over quarter. (Reuters)

The average cost of this year's Thanksgiving dinner for 10 is $49.87, a 24-cent decrease from last year's average of $50.11.  A 16-pound turkey, the biggest single ticket item in the meal, averaged a total of $22.74. (Farm Bureau)

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

Some Good Economic Data

U.S. import prices climbed higher for a second straight month in October. Import prices increased 0.5%.  In the last 12 months import prices fell 0.2%, the smallest decrease since July 2014. Imported petroleum prices surged 7.5%, imported capital goods dropped 0.2%, and the cost of imported automobiles increased 0.3%.  Export prices rose 0.2% for October and are down 1.1% from a year ago. That was the smallest decline since October 2014. (Labor Department)

Retail sales rose 0.8% in October. Sales are up 4.3% from a year ago. Auto sales rose 1.1%, service station sales advanced 2.2%, sales of building materials increased 1.1% and online retailers surged 1.5%. (Commerce Department)

Target had a profit of $608 million in the third quarter, up almost 11% from last year.  Sales for the company declined almost 7% to $16.44 billion. Same store sales edged down 0.2%. (AP)

That big spike in bond interest rates since the election of Donald Trump have dampened the mortgage market. Total home loan application volume is off 9.2% and refis are down 11% per the Mortgage Bankers Association.

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

Golds' Big Slump

Bond yields continue to move higher, reaching December 2015 highs. Since Trumps election falling bond prices have wiped out more than $1 trillion in value worldwide, the worst rout in nearly 1 1/2 years. This may mark the end to a more than 30-year-old bull market in bonds. (Reuters)  

The dollar is getting stronger pushing an 11-month high against major currencies. (CNBC)

Home Depot, the biggest U.S. home improvement chain, reported third-quarter profit and sales numbers. Home Depot same store sales rose 5.5% in the quarter.  Sales increased 6.1% to $23.15 billion. Profits were up 14.1% to $1.97 billion. (Reuters)

Did not see this coming. Coca-Cola may become a takeover target of beer giant Anheuser-Busch InBev. (Sunday Telegraph)

Tobacco company Reynolds American is looking for a higher buyout price from British American Tobacco.  Reynolds American has rejected British American Tobaccos $47 billion takeover offer for the rest of the U.S. cigarette maker it does not already own. (Reuters)

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

Another Oregon Company Sold

After last week’s big rally stocks are at their highs of the year. The Dow is up 8.2% for 2016, the S&P 500 is up 5.9%, and Nasdaq is higher by 4.6%. (CNBC)

Foreclosures have been falling steadily for nine years, but spiked in October. The number of foreclosure filings jumped 27% in October compared with September, according to Attom Data Solutions. Foreclosure volume is down 8% from a year ago. It was the biggest monthly jump since August 2007.

Consumer Sentiment hit 91.6 in November, per University of Michigan. That is its highest level since June. Both near and long-term inflation expectations jumped to 2.7%(CNBC)

Siemens, a German industrial equipment maker, is buying Wilsonville, Oregon based Mentor Graphics for $4.5 billion in cash. Siemens will pay $37.25 a share, a 21% premium to Mentor's Friday closing price. Mentor specializes in software used to design computer chips. It has 5,700 employees in 32 countries. (AP)

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

Taking a Little Breather

It is Veterans Day! Stock markets are open and the bond markets are closed.  Thank you to all who have served our nation.

Portland-based Erickson Aircrane has filed for bankruptcy protection. Erickson is filing a plan of reorganization with support of its major creditors. The company will continue normal operations as it undergoes the relief process. Erickson employs 1,000 persons. (Reuters)

Macy's is selling off more of its valuable real estate holdings. The retailer has sold its downtown Portland store for $54 million, and will net Macy's about $36 million. The store will close next spring. The historic building has housed Meier & Frank and later Macy's since 1909. Macy's bought Meier & Frank in 2005. They will also close the Salem store in Lancaster Mall early next year.  They plan to redevelop 50 other stores. It is not clear if any other Oregon stores are included in this group. (Reuters)

Nordstrom reported a quarterly loss of $10 million, after reporting a profit last year. They had $3.54 billion in sales. (AP)

Join us this weekend for Financial Focus Radio at 9:00 a.m. when we will talk about what President Trump will mean to your wealth building efforts.

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

Trump Rally Day Two

Monthly job openings, a gauge of the U.S. economy, was 5.5 million in September per the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That's a slight increase from the 5.4 million reported in August. Hires edged down, especially in arts, entertainment, and recreation to 5.1 million. Total separations were little changed at 4.9 million. There were 1.5 million layoffs, a decrease of 218,000 from August.

Sears will open its doors at 6 p.m. Thanksgiving Day, and keep them running until 12 a.m. Black Friday. The locations will then close for a few hours before reopening at 5 a.m. Sears joins Macy's, Kohl's and Toys R Us, which have all said they will open on the holiday. Sears has 9 locations in Oregon, but only one is full service. (CNBC)

Oregon’s Erickson Aircrane failed to make its $14 million quarterly payment to bond holders on November 1st, according to Reorg Research. It is reported that bondholders have hired lawyers and are working with the company on a restructuring plan.

Wal-Mart is kicking online Black Friday sales three hours earlier than last year, at 12:01 a.m. on Thanksgiving Day. That's well before its in-store doorbuster deals begin at 6 p.m. (CNBC)

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


Good morning – it is the morning after and democracy has been in action and there was a surprise result, at least as far as the markets are concerned.  I know that many of you may have anxiety over the market’s reaction. But this may be our Brexit a moment.

What happened in Brexit? Markets initially sold off and then rallied. It was all over emotions and fear.

Markets were selling off much more significantly last night as the initial election results came in. Since then they have moderated.  

In the short-term elections means little to actual market returns. I believe this will be the case this time.

So, for those of you that are long-term investors, retired, adding to your 401(k) there is nothing to do but sit and wait for Mr. Market to come to his senses. Don't sell your good companies and don't make any knee jerk reactions. Now is the time to stay calm and let others do the worrying.

We live in a great country, and regardless of your political feelings, it will prosper in the near and long-term future. Betting against the US economy has been a bad bet for 240 years.

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

It's Election Day!

Monday's big rally, the biggest one day since last March, saw the S&P 500 and Nasdaq break nine-session losing streaks. (CNBC)

The National Federation of Independent Business small business optimism index for October rose 0.8 point to 94.9. The October reading remains well below the index’s 42-year average of 98. The job creation component remained flat, the job openings component rose four points, capital spending plans remained flat at 27% and inventory investment plans rose nine points. NFIB reports 25% of small business owners reported raising employees’ pay in the past three months and 28% of business owners have positions open that they are unable to fill. Business owners said their single most important problem is either taxes or government regulations and red tape.

Smith & Wesson is looking for a big change by asking shareholders to change in its corporate name to American Outdoor Brands, excising the names of its 19th-century founders. However, it plans to keep using the Smith & Wesson name for its handguns. (Seeking Alpha)

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

Big Rally on Wall Street

Stocks are soaring this morning after the S&P 500 closed down on Friday for a ninth straight session, the longest losing streak in 36 years. (CNBC)

Timber legend Harry Merlo, who headed Louisiana-Pacific Corp. for more than two decades passed away October 24th. He was 91. In 1973, Georgia-Pacific spun off Louisiana-Pacific, and Merlo became its first chief executive. He ran the company for 22 years. Merlo built Louisiana-Pacific into a $3-billion-a-year company. It employed 13,000 and operated 46 sawmills, three pulp mills and other facilities. It pioneered oriented strand board, a cheaper alternative to plywood. (Oregon Live)

The U.S. trade deficit fell to a more than 1-1/2 year low in September amid rising exports. The Commerce Department says the trade gap narrowed 9.9% to $36.4 billion, the smallest since February 2015. Exports to the European Union increased 6.0%, the United Kingdom up 12.4% and China rose 1.8%.

With just 48 days till Christmas and retail is kicking into high gear.  Toys R Us plans to open its doors on Thanksgiving Day at 5 p.m. local time for 30 hours of continuous shopping. The company has 9 stores in Oregon. (CNBC)

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

It's Jobs Friday

The Labor Department says the economy add 161,000 new net jobs in October.  The private sector accounted for 142,000 of those jobs. Average hourly wages are up 2.8% year-to-date. The unemployment rate fell to 4.9%.

Worker productivity rose at a 3.1% annual rate, its fastest pace in two years. Output per worker in the third quarter jumped at a 3.4%. Hourly pay increased at a 3.4% rate in the quarter after increasing at a 3.7% pace in the prior quarter. The strong quarterly increases suggest a pickup in wage growth. (Labor Department)

Small business owners can’t anticipate the direction of the economy, don’t know whether it’s a good time to invest, and aren’t sure whether to hire new workers, per the NFIB Uncertainty Index. The reading for October set an all-time high, smashing the record set in the previous month. All that uncertainty is a drag on the economy.

Scandal plagued Wells Fargo has increased its litigation loss reserves to $1.7 billion from $1 billion, per a SEC filing. The SEC has joined those considering the recent fraud disclosures and illegal sales practices. (CNBC)

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

Job Layoffs Hit Five Month Low

Stocks are mixed this morning and the S&P 500 logged its seventh down day in a row yesterday, its longest losing streak in five years. A decline today would be the index’s first eight-session slide since October 2008 during the heart of the financial crisis. (CNBC)

Whole Foods is eliminating its co-CEO structure with the outgoing CEO receiving $10 million in severance and a 30% lifetime discount card for purchases at the company’s stores. The Company posted a quarterly profit of $88 million on $3.50 billion in sales. Profits were up 57% and sales by 2% from last year. Same-store sales were down 2.6%. Grocers have been pressured by food deflation, which is putting pressure on their margins. Whole Foods said it expects sales growth in 2017 to be 2.5% to 4.5%. (AP)

Employers cut 30,740 jobs in October, a 31% drop from September. That is a five-month low. October’s total was the second-lowest of 2016. Most of the reductions were in the computer industry, which cut 4,792 jobs in October, bringing the sector’s yearly total to 64,511. The 2016 the leader in cutting jobs is the energy sector, which has cut a total of 103,147 jobs. To date, employers have announced 466,352 job cuts this year. (Challenger, Gray & Christmas)

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

Something We Have Not Seen in 5 Years

Stocks are on track for their seventh consecutive day of losses for the S&P 500.  That would be the indices longest losing streak in five years. Markets could be moved today as the Federal Reserve completes its two-day meeting with a policy statement at 11am our time. (CNBC)

Construction spending fell in September by 0.4%.  Spending on private construction projects dipped 0.2%.  Spending on private nonresidential structures, factories, hospitals and roads, fell 1% the largest drop since December 2015. Public construction spending declined 0.9%, falling to its lowest level since March 2014. (CNBC)

U.S. manufacturing continued to expand with the Institute for Supply Management Index coming in at 51.9 for the month of October. An increase of 0.4% from September. (AP)

Columbia Sportswear is moving its Sorel boot subsidiary and 45 jobs back to downtown Portland. The new site has enough space for an additional 40 jobs. Sorel revenue is projected to hit about $220 million this year, more than four times its sales from 2008. Columbia bought the Sorel brand out of bankruptcy for $8 million. (Oregon Live)

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

Oregon Companies Report Earnings

Stocks are beginning November in the green, after the Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq in October saw their biggest monthly losses since January 2016. (CNBC)

Oregon’s largest landline phone provider, CenturyLink will pay $24 billion to buy telecommunications company Level 3, in an effort to expand its services for businesses.  Level 3 provides data, video and other communication services to businesses and government agencies. (Associated Press)

Portland based Columbia Sportswear says third quarter sales dropped 3% hit by the bankruptcies of multiple key retailers. Quarterly sales were $746 million. Profits were down over 8% to $83.6 million.
Given the troubles among retailers, Columbia is emphasizing direct sales, through e-commerce and company stores. Direct-to-consumer sales account for 38% of their global revenue. By the end of the year Columbia expects direct-to-consumer sales to account for nearly 50% of its U.S. sales. (Oregon Live)

Sony saw an almost 86% decline in quarterly profits.  The bottom line was impacted by a stronger yen, costs from the sale of its battery business, and softness in key areas like games and semiconductors. (CNBC)

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


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