Friday, December 18, 2009

My repy from Sherrod Brown concerning Bernanke confirmation - Friday, December 18, 2009

I recently wrote Sherrod Brown and George Voinovich about confirming Ben Bernanke to another term as Chairman of the Federal Reserve Board. I was nice, but told them, if in fact they voted for him, they lose my vote. I did get a reply from Mr. Brown, nothing from Mr. Voinovich as of yet. In the past when I wrote Mr. Voinavich, I never recieved a reply, so I don't really expect one. I do thank Mr. Brown for at least replying. Below is his reply. Dear Mr. XXXXXXXXX: Thank you for sharing your thoughts about the nomination of Ben Bernanke to serve a second term as chairman of the Federal Reserve. I agree with you that a lack of oversight contributed to the financial and economic problems that have confronted the nation, and I have addressed those concerns to Chairman Bernanke in public and private. Regulators, including the Federal Reserve, did not do enough to promote the strong supervision of financial firms and protect the public from economic turmoil. As a member of the Senate Banking Committee, I am working to ensure that sufficient safeguards are in place to ensure that our financial system remains stable over time. I have emphasized to Chairman Bernanke that a culture change at the Federal Reserve, as well as an independent risk regulator and tough accountability measures, are necessary to prevent another economic crisis from gripping our country. You can be sure I will continue to work with the committee and with Chairman Bernanke to press for these changes. That being said, I believe the bold steps that Chairman Bernanke and Treasury Secretary Paulson took to prevent economic meltdown in the fall of 2008 forestalled an even worse financial crisis. He has demonstrated a willingness to put pragmatism before ideology and act decisively to protect the interests of the United States, and I recently voted in the Senate Banking Committee to approve the Chairman’s nomination to serve a second term. Please be assured that I will keep your thoughts in mind as Chairman Bernanke’s nomination moves to the full Senate for consideration. Thank you again for getting in touch with me. Sincerely, Sherrod Brown United States Senator ***** All I have to say Mr. Brown is quite simple. You have lost my vote, and Ben Bernanke is a damn liar, which he has proven on multiple occasions, so why should I believe him now. Did he have a come to Jesus moment? I think not, unless of course, Jesus is a Wall Street banker. Simple enough?

Market wrap - 4:20

Borrrinnnggg! Just not much going on today. End of year, index re-balancing. Nothing much too exciting. Dow 10,329 21 0.20% Nasdaq 2,212 32 1.45% S&P 500 1,102 6 0.58% GlobalDow 1,935 -8 -0.41% Gold 1,112 +5 +0.42% Oil 73.11 +0.46 +0.63

Pre-market, Friday, December 18, 2009

Futures up on the RIMM earnings last night. DJIA INDEX 10,309.00 37.00 S&P 500 1,099.50 5.30 NASDAQ 100 1,790.25 4.75 Today's economic calendar: Quadruple Witching Today's earnings reports. Before open: CCL Carnival Corp. Services General Entertainment KMX CarMax Inc. Services Auto Dealerships NEOG Neogen Corp. Healthcare Diagnostic Substances STEI Stewart Enterprises Inc. Services Personal Services After close: None

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Market wrap - 4:10

Opps! Dow 10,308 -133 -1.27% Nasdaq 2,180 -27 -1.22% S&P 500 1,096 -13 -1.18% GlobalDow 1,943 -36 -1.81% Gold 1,107 -29 -2.55% Oil 72.61 -0.05 -0.07%

Bernanke passes Committee 16-7

From MarketWatch Dec. 17, 2009, 11:50 a.m. EST Senate panel approves Bernanke on 16-7 vote Size of opposition signals rough waters ahead By Greg Robb, MarketWatch WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) -- The Senate Banking Committee on Thursday approved the nomination of Federal Reserve Board chairman Ben Bernanke to a second four-year term by an unusually close margin of 16-7. The debate prior to the vote was contentious. Several senators complained that the Fed had not provided information they requested prior to the vote. Many questioned Bernanke's actions prior to the financial crisis and during the tense days in the fall of 2008 when U.S. investment banking sector essentially disappeared overnight. On the Economy, Stability or Growth a Tough Choice Europe has long advocated for a stable economy; the U.S. has preferred a dynamic one. WSJ's David Wessel says those mindsets are clashing once again during the current crisis. Analysts expect a close vote on the Senate floor after the holiday recess. Bernanke failed to woo the support of Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala. and the ranking minority member of the Banking Committee. "I strongly disapprove of some of the past deeds of the Federal Reserve while Ben Bernanke was a member and a chairman, and I lack confidence in what little plans for the future he has articulated," Shelby said in a lengthy statement. Shelby's opposition means the Fed won't be able to count on Republican support to fend off sweeping changes to the Fed's regulatory powers put forward by Sen. Christopher Dodd, D.-Conn., and the chairman of the panel. Dodd has said that the Fed's oversight of the biggest banks prior to the financial crisis was an "abysmal failure." Dodd has proposed stripping the oversight power from the Fed and giving it to a new single banking regulator to oversee the financial sector. Supporters of Bernanke said that opponents were just engaging in typical Monday-morning-quarterbacking after a crisis abates. "He's the guy I would hire" to get the U.S. out of trouble, said Sen. Judd Gregg, R.-N.H.

Filly Fed Leading Indicators - 10:00

Full report here Released: Thursday, December 17, 2009 The Conference Board Leading Economic Index™ (LEI) for the U.S. increased 0.9 percent in November, following a 0.3 percent gain in October, and a 1.2 percent rise in September. Download a PDF of the technical notes for underlying detail, diffusion indexes, components, contributions and graphs. Download a PDF of the press release with graph and summary table. Says Ataman Ozyildirim, Economist at The Conference Board: "The Conference Board LEI has been on an uptrend for more than half a year and it is now slightly higher than its latest peak in July 2007. Improving financial conditions, labor market indicators, and housing permits have helped the LEI continue its gains in November. However, its six-month growth rate has slowed somewhat in recent months." Says Ken Goldstein, Economist at The Conference Board: "The indicators point to a bright new year. The U.S. LEI increased for the eighth consecutive month. Looking ahead, we can expect a slowly improving economy through 2010. The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index™ (CEI) for the U.S. also increased in November. Employment largely held steady, making this the first month since December 2007 that it did not make a negative contribution to the index." The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index™ (CEI) for the U.S.rose 0.2 percent in November, following no change in October, and a 0.1 percent decline in September. The Conference Board Lagging Economic Index™ (LAG) declined 0.4 percent in November, following a 0.2 percent decline in October, and a 0.5 percent decline in September. The next release is scheduled for January 21, 2010 at 10 A.M. ET. Professional Contacts at The Conference Board: Ken Goldstein: 212-339-0331 Indicators Program: 212-339-0330 Media Contacts: Frank Tortorici: +1 212 339 0231 Email:

Jobless claims - 8:30

Full report here UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE WEEKLY CLAIMS REPORT SEASONALLY ADJUSTED DATA In the week ending Dec. 12, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 480,000, an increase of 7,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 473,000. The 4-week moving average was 467,500, a decrease of 5,250 from the previous week's revised average of 472,750. The advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 3.9 percent for the week ending Dec. 5, unchanged from the prior week's unrevised rate of 3.9 percent. The advance number for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment during the week ending Dec. 5 was 5,186,000, an increase of 5,000 from the preceding week's revised level of 5,181,000. The 4-week moving average was 5,318,250, a decrease of 106,750 from the preceding week's revised average of 5,425,000. The fiscal year-to-date average for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment for all programs is 5.722 million. UNADJUSTED DATA The advance number of actual initial claims under state programs, unadjusted, totaled 555,344 in the week ending Dec. 12, a decrease of 107,393 from the previous week. There were 629,867 initial claims in the comparable week in 2008. The advance unadjusted insured unemployment rate was 3.9 percent during the week ending Dec. 5, a decrease of 0.2 percentage point from the prior week. The advance unadjusted number for persons claiming UI benefits in state programs totaled 5,176,122, a decrease of 222,989 from the preceding week. A year earlier, the rate was 3.3 percent and the volume was 4,378,273. Extended benefits were available in Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, and Wisconsin during the week ending Nov. 28. Initial claims for UI benefits by former Federal civilian employees totaled 2,081 in the week ending Dec. 5, an increase of 340 from the prior week. There were 2,390 initial claims by newly discharged veterans, an increase of 1,007 from the preceding week. There were 25,903 former Federal civilian employees claiming UI benefits for the week ending Nov. 28, an increase of 1,764 from the previous week. Newly discharged veterans claiming benefits totaled 36,441, an increase of 2,689 from the prior week. States reported 4,226,300 persons claiming EUC (Emergency Unemployment Compensation) benefits for the week ending Nov. 28, an increase of 45,922 from the prior week. There were 994,188 claimants in the comparable week in 2008. EUC weekly claims include first, second, and third tier activity. The highest insured unemployment rates in the week ending Nov. 28 were in Wisconsin (6.4 percent), Oregon (6.3), Alaska (6.2), Nevada (5.5), Puerto Rico (5.4), Michigan (5.3), Pennsylvania (5.3), Arkansas (5.2), Idaho (5.2), North Carolina (5.2), and Washington (5.2). The largest increases in initial claims for the week ending Dec. 5 were in California (+28,358), Georgia (+19,454), North Carolina (+18,500), Pennsylvania (+17,372), and New York (+16,344), while the largest decreases were in Kansas (-3,803), Kentucky (-2,048), Idaho (-979), Iowa (-917), and Puerto Rico (-892). More at link with formatted tables

Pre-market - Thursday - December 17, 2009

Futures down on a stronger dollar and waiting on jobless claims report. DJIA INDEX 10,347.00 -43.00 S&P 500 1,099.50 -6.20 NASDAQ 100 1,790.75 -9.25 Today's economic reports: Jobless Claims 8:30 AM ET Leading Indicators 10:00 AM ET Philadelphia Fed Survey 10:00 AM ET EIA Natural Gas Report 10:30 AM ET 3-Month Bill Announcement 11:00 AM ET 6-Month Bill Announcement 11:00 AM ET Money Supply 4:30 PM ET Today's economic reports: Before open: ATU Actuant Corporation Industrial Goods Diversified Machinery BRLI Bio-Reference Laboratories Inc. Healthcare Medical Laboratories & Research DFS Discover Financial Services Financial Credit Services FDX FedEx Corporation Services Air Delivery & Freight Services GIS General Mills Inc. Consumer Goods Processed & Packaged Goods MCS The Marcus Corporation Services Lodging MS Morgan Stanley Financial Diversified Investments PIR Pier 1 Imports Inc. Services Home Furnishing Stores RAD Rite Aid Corp. Services Drug Stores SCHL Scholastic Corporation Services Publishing - Books WGO Winnebago Industries Inc. Consumer Goods Recreational Vehicles After close: ACN Accenture plc Services Management Services APSG Applied Signal Technology, Inc. Technology Communication Equipment COMS 3Com Corporation Technology Networking & Communication Devices CRI Carter's, Inc. Consumer Goods Textile - Apparel Clothing DRI Darden Restaurants, Inc. Services Restaurants HEI HEICO Corp. Industrial Goods Aerospace/Defense Products & Services LUB Luby's Inc. Services Restaurants NKE Nike Inc. Consumer Goods Textile - Apparel Footwear & Accessories ORCL Oracle Corp. Technology Application Software PALM Palm, Inc. Technology Personal Computers RFMI RF Monolithics Inc. Technology Communication Equipment RIMM Research In Motion Ltd. Technology Diversified Communication Services SCS Steelcase Inc. Consumer Goods Business Equipment SMOD SMART Modular Technologies (WWH) Inc. Technology Semiconductor - Integrated Circuits ZQK Quiksilver Inc. Consumer Goods Textile - Apparel Clothing

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Market wrap - 4:10

Market gapped up this morning hitting 1116 early in the day. Didn't do much until the Fed statement at 2:15 and sold off a bit. Dow 10,441 -11 -0.10% Nasdaq 2,207 6 0.27% S&P 500 1,109 1 0.11% GlobalDow 1,977 +10 +0.52% Gold 1,136 +13 +1.16% Oil 72.67 +1.98 +2.80%

Fed Statement - 2:15

Full report here Release Date: December 16, 2009 For immediate release Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in November suggests that economic activity has continued to pick up and that the deterioration in the labor market is abating. The housing sector has shown some signs of improvement over recent months. Household spending appears to be expanding at a moderate rate, though it remains constrained by a weak labor market, modest income growth, lower housing wealth, and tight credit. Businesses are still cutting back on fixed investment, though at a slower pace, and remain reluctant to add to payrolls; they continue to make progress in bringing inventory stocks into better alignment with sales. Financial market conditions have become more supportive of economic growth. Although economic activity is likely to remain weak for a time, the Committee anticipates that policy actions to stabilize financial markets and institutions, fiscal and monetary stimulus, and market forces will contribute to a strengthening of economic growth and a gradual return to higher levels of resource utilization in a context of price stability. With substantial resource slack likely to continue to dampen cost pressures and with longer-term inflation expectations stable, the Committee expects that inflation will remain subdued for some time. The Committee will maintain the target range for the federal funds rate at 0 to 1/4 percent and continues to anticipate that economic conditions, including low rates of resource utilization, subdued inflation trends, and stable inflation expectations, are likely to warrant exceptionally low levels of the federal funds rate for an extended period. To provide support to mortgage lending and housing markets and to improve overall conditions in private credit markets, the Federal Reserve is in the process of purchasing $1.25 trillion of agency mortgage-backed securities and about $175 billion of agency debt. In order to promote a smooth transition in markets, the Committee is gradually slowing the pace of these purchases, and it anticipates that these transactions will be executed by the end of the first quarter of 2010. The Committee will continue to evaluate the timing and overall amounts of its purchases of securities in light of the evolving economic outlook and conditions in financial markets. In light of ongoing improvements in the functioning of financial markets, the Committee and the Board of Governors anticipate that most of the Federal Reserve’s special liquidity facilities will expire on February 1, 2010, consistent with the Federal Reserve’s announcement of June 25, 2009. These facilities include the Asset-Backed Commercial Paper Money Market Mutual Fund Liquidity Facility, the Commercial Paper Funding Facility, the Primary Dealer Credit Facility, and the Term Securities Lending Facility. The Federal Reserve will also be working with its central bank counterparties to close its temporary liquidity swap arrangements by February 1. The Federal Reserve expects that amounts provided under the Term Auction Facility will continue to be scaled back in early 2010. The anticipated expiration dates for the Term Asset-Backed Securities Loan Facility remain set at June 30, 2010, for loans backed by new-issue commercial mortgage-backed securities and March 31, 2010, for loans backed by all other types of collateral. The Federal Reserve is prepared to modify these plans if necessary to support financial stability and economic growth. Voting for the FOMC monetary policy action were: Ben S. Bernanke, Chairman; William C. Dudley, Vice Chairman; Elizabeth A. Duke; Charles L. Evans; Donald L. Kohn; Jeffrey M. Lacker; Dennis P. Lockhart; Daniel K. Tarullo; Kevin M. Warsh; and Janet L. Yellen.

Housing Starts - 8:30

Full report here NEW RESIDENTIAL CONSTRUCTION IN NOVEMBER 2009 The U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development jointly announced the following new residential construction statistics for November 2009: BUILDING PERMITS Privately-owned housing units authorized by building permits in November were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 584,000. This is 6.0 percent (±1.6%) above the revised October rate of 551,000, but is 7.3 percent (±1.8%) below the November 2008 estimate of 630,000. Single-family authorizations in November were at a rate of 473,000; this is 5.3 percent (±1.1%) above the revised October figure of 449,000. Authorizations of units in buildings with five units or more were at a rate of 86,000 in November. HOUSING STARTS Privately-owned housing starts in November were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 574,000. This is 8.9 percent (±10.2%)* above the revised October estimate of 527,000, but is 12.4 percent (±9.1%) below the November 2008 rate of 655,000. Single-family housing starts in November were at a rate of 482,000; this is 2.1 percent (±9.2%)* above the revised October figure of 472,000. The November rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 83,000. HOUSING COMPLETIONS Privately-owned housing completions in November were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 810,000. This is 8.7 percent (±13.7%)* above the revised October estimate of 745,000, but is 25.3 percent (±10.1%) below the November 2008 rate of 1,084,000. Single-family housing completions in November were at a rate of 524,000; this is unchanged (±11.7%)*compared with the revised October figure. The November rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 270,000.

CPI - 8:30

Full report here Consumer Price Index - November 2009 On a seasonally adjusted basis, the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) rose 0.4 percent in November, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Over the last 12 months the index increased 1.8 percent before seasonal adjustment, the first positive 12-month change since February 2009. The seasonally adjusted increase in the all items index was due to a 4.1 percent increase in the energy index. The index for gasoline rose sharply and the indexes for electricity, fuel oil, and natural gas also increased, creating the fourth consecutive rise in the energy index and the largest increase since August. In contrast, the index for all items less food and energy was unchanged in November, after ten consecutive monthly increases. Declines in shelter indexes offset increases in the indexes for new and used motor vehicles, medical care, airline fares, and tobacco. The food index rose slightly in November. As in October, the food away from home index rose modestly while the index for food at home was unchanged. Within the latter, three grocery store food groups posted increases while three declined. More at link with formatted tables

Pre-market - 8:15

Futures up a little on who knows what. DJIA INDEX 10,437.00 39.00 S&P 500 1,109.30 5.40 NASDAQ 100 1,805.50 10.50 Today's economic calendar: MBA Purchase Applications 7:00 AM ET Consumer Price Index 8:30 AM ET Housing Starts 8:30 AM ET Current Account 8:30 AM ET EIA Petroleum Status Report 10:30 AM ET FOMC Meeting Announcement 2:15 PM ET Today's earnings reports. Before open: JOYG Joy Global, Inc. Industrial Goods Farm & Construction Machinery After close: ABM ABM Industries Inc. Services Business Services APOG Apogee Enterprises Inc. Industrial Goods General Building Materials HOV Hovnanian Enterprises Inc. Industrial Goods Residential Construction MATK Martek Biosciences Corp. Healthcare Biotechnology MLHR Herman Miller Inc. Consumer Goods Business Equipment NDSN Nordson Corp. Industrial Goods Diversified Machinery OHB Orleans Homebuilders Inc. Industrial Goods Residential Construction PAYX Paychex Inc. Services Staffing & Outsourcing Services

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Market wrap - 4:15

Some bad data and a market that is probably too overbought gave back a little today. Dow 10,452 -49 -0.47% Nasdaq 2,201 -11 -0.49% S&P 500 1,108 -6 -0.56% GlobalDow 1,966 -12 -0.59% Gold 1,123 -1 -0.10% Oil 70.71 +1.20 +1.73%

Jim Chanos and Melissa Lee - CNBC - funny interview IMHO - 2:10

As hard as Melissa Lee tries to get Jim Chanos to give a buy, buy, buy on anything, he won't. I get a kick out of her pumping bank stocks, he disagrees, but she pumps them anyway. Get this woman off TV.

More from Dylan Ratigan on the banks and lending - 1:45

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Good cartoon - 1:30

Dylan Ratigan on the banks - 1:30

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Housing market index report - 1:00

Full report here Builder Confidence Edges Down in December December 15, 2009 - Builder confidence in the market for newly built, single-family homes receded one point to 16 in December as continued weakness in the economy and job markets weighed on consumers’ potential home buying plans, according to the latest NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI), released today. “From an affordability standpoint, rarely has there been a better time in history to purchase a home, thanks to record low interest rates, attractive prices, and of course the recent extension and expansion of the home buyer tax credit,” said Joe Robson, Chairman of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and a home builder from Tulsa, Okla. “However, builders are not seeing the full impact of these conditions on buyer demand, partly because awareness of the latest incentives is still building, and partly because of concerns about job security and other economic woes.” “As we anticipated, this is shaping up to be a bumpy recovery period for the housing market,” noted NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe. “While some families may be just starting to factor the expanded tax credit into their potential home buying plans, many are hesitating because of the poor economy. At the same time, tight lending conditions for both consumers and home builders continue to pose considerable obstacles on the road to a sustained housing and economic recovery.” Derived from a monthly survey that NAHB has been conducting for more than 20 years, the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index gauges builder perceptions of current single-family home sales and sales expectations for the next six months as “good,” “fair” or “poor.” The survey also asks builders to rate traffic of prospective buyers as “high to very high,” “average” or “low to very low.” Scores for each component are then used to calculate a seasonally adjusted index where any number over 50 indicates that more builders view sales conditions as good than poor. The December HMI fell one point to 16, its lowest point since June of this year. Two out of three component indexes also were down, with a one-point decline to 16 registered for current sales conditions and a two-point decline to 26 registered for sales expectations in the next six months. The component gauging traffic of prospective buyers remained unchanged for a third consecutive month, at 13. Regionally, December’s HMI results were somewhat mixed. The Northeast posted a three point gain to 23, while the West posted a one-point gain to 19, the South registered no change at 17, and the Midwest posted a two-point decline, to 12. Editor’s Note: The NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index is strictly the product of NAHB Economics, and is not seen or influenced by any outside party prior to being released to the public. HMI tables can be accessed online at: More information on housing statistics is also available at:

Ron Paul on CNBC

Part 1 Part 2 Part 3

Santelli vs. Liesman and the PPI - 9:25

Industrial Production - 9:15

Full report here INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION AND CAPACITY UTILIZATION Industrial production increased 0.8 percent in November after having been unchanged in October. Manufacturing production advanced 1.1 percent, with broad-based gains among both durables and nondurables. The output of mines climbed 2.1 percent, but the index for utilities fell 1.8 percent, primarily as a result of lower output of gas utilities--temperatures in November were unseasonably mild and reduced the need for heating. At 99.4 percent of its 2002 average, total industrial production was 5.1 percent below its level of a year earlier. Capacity utilization for total industry moved up 0.7 percentage point to 71.3 percent, a rate 9.6 percentage points below its average for the period from 1972 through 2008. See link for formatted tables

Empire State Manufacturing Survey - 8:30

Full report here The Empire State Manufacturing Survey indicates that conditions for New York manufacturers leveled off in December, following four months of improvement. The general business conditions index fell 21 points, to 2.6. The indexes for new orders and shipments posted somewhat more moderate declines but also moved close to zero. Input prices picked up a bit, as the prices paid index rebounded to roughly its November level; however, the prices received index moved further into negative territory, suggesting that price increases are not being passed along. Current employment indexes slipped back into negative territory. Future indexes remained well above zero but signaled somewhat less widespread optimism than in recent months. Indexes for expected prices paid and received declined moderately but remained well above zero. In a series of supplementary questions (see Supplemental Reports tab), manufacturers were asked about recent and expected changes in the prices paid for various categories of goods and services. Respondents predicted that prices paid for most budget categories would increase by 2 to 3 percentage points more in 2010 than in 2009. Prices paid overall were reported to have risen by 2.5 percent in 2009 and were expected to rise by 4.2 percent next year. The average respondent anticipated an increase of 2.1 percent in both wages and costs of outside services, 7.6 percent in employee benefit costs, and 3.5 percent in nonmedical insurance costs. In response to a separate question, the average respondent saw a roughly 7 percent chance that prices paid would decline by more than 2 percent; in last year’s survey, the probability of such a decline was pegged at 19 percent. Conditions Level Off The general business conditions index fell from 23.5 to just 2.6, suggesting a leveling off in conditions after four straight months of improvement. Roughly 24 percent of those surveyed in December said that conditions had improved, while 22 percent reported that conditions had deteriorated. Most of the other specific activity measures fell a bit less sharply: the new orders index slipped more than 14 points to 2.2, and the shipments measure declined by just under 7 points to 6.3. The unfilled orders index fell by more than 18 points to -21.1, its lowest level in nine months. In contrast, the index for delivery times held steady at -2.6, and the inventories index, at -18.4, was little changed for the third straight month. Manufacturers See Margins Squeezed Survey respondents faced somewhat higher input prices in December, while their selling prices declined. The prices paid index rose 9 points to 19.7, reversing a drop of similar magnitude in November and suggesting some renewed price pressures. At the same time, the prices received index slipped 6.6 points to -9.2, its lowest level since August. Employment indexes declined for the second straight month, falling below zero for the first time in a few months: the index for number of employees slipped 7 points to -5.3, and the average workweek index fell 11 points to -5.3. Manufacturers’ Optimism Ebbs Slightly; Prices Are Expected to Rise Manufacturers remained generally optimistic about the outlook for general business conditions and activity, although a bit less so than in recent months. After rising to its highest level in more than a year, the index for expected general business conditions retreated 14 points to 43.0—still a high level but the lowest since July. The forward-looking indexes for both new orders and shipments fell by almost as much but remained in the upper 30s, while the future unfilled orders index declined by a more moderate 5 points to 12.0. The index for expected delivery times edged up to zero, its highest level in more than a year, and the measure for future inventories was unchanged at 7.9. Forward-looking price indexes declined in December, after rising sharply in the preceding month: the index for future prices paid slipped nearly 8 points to 40.8, and the index for future prices received dropped about 5 points to 22.4. The index for expected number of employees reversed course in December, retreating 13 points to 17.8, while the future average workweek index was little changed at 19.7. The measure for planned capital expenditures jumped more than 9 points to 30.3, its highest level since May 2007; however, the measure for planned technology spending edged down to 13.2.

PPI - 8:30

Full report here PRODUCER PRICE INDEXES - NOVEMBER 2009 The Producer Price Index for Finished Goods rose 1.8 percent in November, seasonally adjusted, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. This increase followed a 0.3-percent advance in October and a 0.6-percent decrease in September. In November, at the earlier stages of processing, prices received by manufacturers of intermediate goods climbed 1.4 percent, and the crude goods index rose 5.7 percent. On an unadjusted basis, prices for finished goods moved up 2.4 percent for the 12 months ended November 2009, their first 12-month increase since November 2008. (See table A.) SEE TABLE A AT LINK Stage-of-Processing Analysis Finished goods About three-fourths of the November advance in the finished goods index can be traced to higher prices for energy goods, which jumped 6.9 percent. The indexes for finished goods less foods and energy and for finished consumer foods also contributed to the finished goods increase, both rising 0.5 percent. Finished energy: The index for finished energy goods climbed 6.9 percent in November after advancing 1.6 percent a month earlier. About sixty percent of the broad-based November rise can be attributed to a 14.2-percent surge in gasoline prices. Increases in the indexes for liquefied petroleum gas and home heating oil also were major factors in the finished energy goods advance. (See table 2.) Finished core: The index for finished goods less foods and energy moved up 0.5 percent in November, its largest increase since a 0.5-percent gain in October 2008. Leading the November advance, the index for light motor trucks jumped 4.2 percent. Higher cigarette prices also contributed to the rise in the finished core index. Finished foods: The index for finished consumer foods advanced 0.5 percent in November, its second consecutive monthly increase. Over sixty percent of the November rise can be traced to higher prices for fresh and dry vegetables, which climbed 8.7 percent. Intermediate goods The Producer Price Index for Intermediate Materials, Supplies, and Components rose 1.4 percent in November, its fourth straight monthly advance. Accounting for about three-fourths of the broad-based November increase, prices for intermediate energy goods climbed 5.4 percent. The indexes for both intermediate goods less foods and energy and for intermediate foods and feeds also contributed to this advance, rising 0.3 and 0.7 percent, respectively. On a 12-month basis, prices for intermediate goods fell 1.6 percent in November. This is the fourth consecutive month of slowing year-over-year declines following a record 15.2-percent drop for the 12 months ended July 2009. (See table B.) Intermediate energy: The index for intermediate energy goods rose 5.4 percent in November, its second consecutive monthly increase. A major factor in the November advance was an 18.8-percent surge in jet fuel prices. The indexes for gasoline and liquefied petroleum gas also contributed significantly to higher intermediate energy goods prices. (See table 2). Intermediate core: Prices for intermediate materials less foods and energy increased 0.3 percent in November, their fifth increase in the last six months. The index for basic organic chemicals led the November advance, rising 4.3 percent. Higher prices for medicinal and botanical chemicals also were a factor in the intermediate core increase. Intermediate foods: The index for intermediate foods and feeds moved up 0.7 percent in November following two consecutive monthly declines. About forty percent of this advance can be attributed to prices for pork, which climbed 6.4 percent. Crude goods The Producer Price Index for Crude Materials for Further Processing increased 5.7 percent in November. For the 3-month period ending in November, crude material prices rose 9.1 percent after advancing 4.4 percent in the 3 months ending in August. In November, monthly increases of 12.2 percent in the index for crude energy materials and 2.6 percent for prices of crude foodstuffs and feedstuffs outweighed a 0.8-percent decrease in the index for crude nonfood materials less energy. (See table B.) Crude energy: The index for crude energy materials increased 12.2 percent in November. From August to November, this index rose 15.0 percent compared with a 12.6-percent rise in the 3 months ending in August. Accounting for about two-thirds of the monthly November increase, the index for natural gas jumped 25.5 percent. Higher prices for both crude petroleum and coal also contributed to the advance in the crude energy materials index. (See table 2.) Crude foods: Prices for crude foodstuffs and feedstuffs rose 2.6 percent in November. This index moved up 5.8 percent in the most recent 3-month period compared with a 7.1-percent decline in the previous 3-month period. In November, over sixty percent of the monthly increase in the crude foods index can be attributed to a 25.6-percent surge in prices for slaughter hogs. An advance in the fluid milk index also was a significant factor in the rise for crude foodstuffs and feedstuffs. SEE TABLE B AT LINK Services Analysis Trade industries: The Producer Price Index for the Net Output of Total Trade Industries moved up 1.3 percent in November after no change in the previous month. (Trade indexes measure changes in margins received by wholesalers and retailers.) The November increase was led by a 36.5-percent rise in the margin index for gasoline stations. Higher margins received by merchant wholesalers of durable goods and general merchandise stores also contributed to the advance in the total trade industries index. Transportation and warehousing industries: The Producer Price Index for the Net Output of Total Transportation and Warehousing Industries rose 0.5 percent in November, its second consecutive monthly increase. About seventy percent of the November advance can be traced to a 1.8-percent rise in prices received by the air transportation industry group. The indexes for long-distance general freight trucking (by the truckload) and specialized freight trucking also moved up in November. Traditional service industries: The Producer Price Index for the Net Output of Total Traditional Service Industries declined 0.1 percent in November after advancing 0.5 percent in October. Two-thirds of this decline can be attributed to prices received by general and medical surgical hospitals, which fell 0.5 percent. The industry indexes for non-casino hotels and motels and for passenger car rental also decreased in November. See link for formatted tables

Pre-market - 7:50

Futures down slightly on a stronger dollar index. DJIA INDEX 10,410.00 -27.00 S&P 500 1,105.30 -3.30 NASDAQ 100 1,802.50 -5.25 Today's economic calendar: FOMC Meeting Begins ICSC-Goldman Store Sales 7:45 AM ET Producer Price Index 8:30 AM ET Empire State Mfg Survey 8:30 AM ET Redbook 8:55 AM ET Treasury International Capital 9:00 AM ET Industrial Production 9:15 AM ET 4-Week Bill Auction 11:30 AM ET 52-Week Bill Auction 11:30 AM ET Housing Market Index 1:00 PM ET Today's earnings reports Before open: AEY ADDvantage Technologies Group Inc. Services Electronics Wholesale BBY Best Buy Co. Inc. Services Electronics Stores FDS FactSet Research Systems Inc. Technology Information & Delivery Services GIGM GigaMedia Ltd. Technology Internet Software & Services GS Goldman Sachs Group Inc. Financial Diversified Investments After close: ADBE Adobe Systems Inc. Technology Application Software AIR AAR Corp. Industrial Goods Aerospace/Defense Products & Services CLC CLARCOR Inc. Consumer Goods Auto Parts HRAY Hurray! Holding Co. Ltd. Technology Business Software & Services SURG Synergetics USA, Inc. Healthcare Medical Appliances & Equipment WPCS WPCS International Incorporated Technology Diversified Communication Services

Monday, December 14, 2009

Market wrap - 4:15

Just another day of pumping junk stocks to make the indexes go up. Dow 10,501 30 0.28% Nasdaq 2,212 22 0.99% S&P 500 1,114 8 0.70% GlobalDow 1,978 +14 +0.74% Gold 1,124 +4 +0.35% Oil 69.68 -0.19 -0.27%

Pre-market - December 14, 2009

Futures up on the news Abu Dhabi will bail out Dubai. DJIA INDEX 10,461.00 38.00 S&P 500 1,107.50 4.30 NASDAQ 100 1,799.50 7.50 Today's economic calendar: 4-Week Bill Announcement 11:00 AM ET 3-Month Bill Auction 11:30 AM ET 6-Month Bill Auction 11:30 AM ET Today's earnings reports: Before open: NTSC National Technical Systems Inc. Services Research Services After close: ALCO Alico Inc. Consumer Goods Farm Products ANGN Angeion Corp. Healthcare Medical Instruments & Supplies BRT BRT Realty Trust Financial Mortgage Investment IAAC International Assets Holding Corporation Financial Asset Management IESC Integrated Electrical Services, Inc. Industrial Goods General Contractors PAY VeriFone Holdings, Inc. Consumer Goods Business Equipment SEH Spartech Corp. Consumer Goods Rubber & Plastics SNS Steak n Shake Co. Services Restaurants