Economy and Trends

If Unemployment is so Low, Why are so many Struggling?

The polarization between those who have wealth and those who don’t continues to widen across America. The dichotomy exists between a lower level of unemployment and those that are not sustaining themselves financially. A recent Federal Reserve survey of some 12,000 households found discouraging news. One out of every four families reached don’t believe that they are “doing okay” financially. ...

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High-End Retailers Faring Better Than Low-End Retailers

The latest round of earnings reports from the retail sector may be telling us more than we think. Over the last week we have gotten reports from numerous retailers and the results have been very mixed, but there is somewhat of a pattern. Macy’s (NYSE: M) reported last Wednesday and the high-end department store blew out earnings expectations and the ...

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Checking Account Balances As An Indicator Of Consumer Confidence

U.S. consumers are keeping more money in their checking accounts than at any time in the last 27 years, and one firm says that could be a bad sign for the economy. It also contradicts the current Consumer Confidence report from the Conference Board. Independent research firm Moebs Services has been analyzing checking account balances for over 25 years. According ...

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How Secure is Your Public Pension Fund

If you are an employee and have your retirement savings tied up in one of the public pension funds, you should stay active and be abreast of how your fund is performing. A percentage of your income is taken each payday and put into an investment fund that will purportedly provide you income when you can no longer work or ...

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Consumer Confidence Is High, But That Isn’t The Concern

Since the market started experiencing the major swings back in late January, the biggest question that seems to be on everyone’s mind is whether this is the start of the next bearish phase or not. After watching the market go straight up in 2017, all of the sudden investors are concerned. But I don’t think we need to be worried, ...

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American Consumers Gain Confidence in the Economy

Getting a boost from this year’s tax cut, the weekly consumer comfort index and bi-monthly consumer sentiment index have been hitting expansion highs as has the monthly consumer confidence index, according to today’s release by the Conference Board. If he hasn’t done so already, this is a Tweetable moment for President Trump. In what may be the most significant development, ...

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The Fed is Disconcerting to the Banking Industry Right Now

The Dodd-Frank Act is being scrutinized currently by banks, both large and small, as well as investors in the banking and finance sectors. Dodd-Frank Act stress testing (DFAST) is a forward-looking component conducted by the Federal Reserve and financial companies supervised by the Federal Reserve to help assess whether institutions have sufficient capital to absorb losses and support operations during ...

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Trump Tweets that OPEC is at it again

The latest topic of tweets coming from President Trump are in regard to oil prices.  West Texas crude closed at $68.40 Friday, continuing is strong run from the low $40’s in June. Gas prices in Washington and elsewhere in the country have topped $3.00 per gallon, a psychologically important point. With summer approaching, prices traditionally are likely to rise further. ...

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Manufacturing Jobs Hit 3 Year High

“The job market is rip-roaring,” says Mark Zandi, Moody’s Analytics’ chief economist. The economic report released by ADP and Moody’s Analytics on April 4, 2018, beat analyst expectations for manufacturing job growth for the month of March.  Private sector payrolls were anticipated to increase by 205,000, but rose a whopping 241,000, the largest single month increase in 3 years. In ...

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