Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Latest Global Indicators Are Mixed (excerpt)

The 24% free-fall in China’s exports during February to the lowest reading since February 2012 was so bad that it makes no sense. Although the data are seasonally adjusted, the Lunar New Year holiday most likely distorted the month’s data. Comparable, though less severe, declines occurred during February in both 2011 and 2012.

On the other hand, German production and orders data showed solid gains during January. Both Italy and Spain also continued to show a recovering trend in production during the first month of the year. However, France continues to weigh on the Eurozone’s recovery. February’s M-PMIs suggest more of the same for all four of the region’s biggest economies.

Today's Morning Briefing: The Bull’s Backers. (1) More tapering ahead. (2) S&P 500 highly correlated with QE and lots of other variables. (3) Buybacks driven by forward earnings and corporate bond yield spread. (4) Another big week of corporate bond issuance. (5) Last year was a record year too. (6) NZIRP, not QE, driving buybacks. (7) FOMC’s forward guidance will be updated at next meeting. (8) Gallup says married couples with kids spend more than childless singles. (9) As many singles as married people for the first time ever. (10) Plenty of positives for consumer spending for now. (11) Mixed global signals. (12) Focus on overweight-rated S&P 500 Transportation industries. (More for subscribers.)

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