Stocks finished modestly higher across the board Tuesday, with the Dow and S&P 500 logging fresh five-year highs, lifted by optimism for more M&A deals and after positive economic data from Europe.
This is the first decline in eleven months, as the National Association of Home Builders’ monthly confidence index now stands four points shy of the line between positive and negative. The index, which mirrors closely the volume of new housing starts, is 18 points higher than it was one year ago and near the highest level since May of 2006.
James Rickards: Currency War Has Started. I Expect The International Monetary System To Destabilize And Collapse. There Will Be So Much Money-Printing By So Many Central Banks That People’s Confidence In Paper Money Will Wane, And Inflation Will Rise Sharply.
With Japan, China and the U.S. all pursuing weak-currency policies, other major economies are retaliating. The WSJ’s Deborah Kan speaks to James Rickards of Tangent Capital Partners about whether the drive to devalue will set off a trade crisis.
And here is Rickards full Currency War Simulation:
The payroll tax dilemma.
Wal-Mart‘s leaked emails could be just the beginning of bad news for the retail industry.
But there’s a fundamental problem that seems to be spreading throughout the discount industry as a whole: customers are broke.
Thanks to the recent payroll tax hike, the poorest are running out of money entirely, reports Renee Dudley at Bloomberg.
“It’s not Wal-Mart specific,” David Strasser, an analyst for Janney Montgomery Scott LLC told Dudley. “Anyone with any low-end exposure is going to feel this. That customer runs out of money every day as it is. Now they’re really going to run out of money.”
$5.00 a gallon gas hits California…32 days of higher gas prices comes at tough time…
For the average American, all this couldn’t be happening at a worse time.
Most of the country’s 160 million workers are taking home less pay each week since the payroll tax cuts expired last month.
The government in 2011 had temporarily lowered the payroll tax rate for the first $113,700 of annual earnings in an effort to keep…
Retail Apocalypse: Why Are Major Retail Chains All Over America Collapsing? Sears, J.C. Penney, Best Buy and RadioShack Are All Going To Close Hundreds of Stores Before The End of 2013!
If the economy is improving, then why are many of the largest retail chains in America closing hundreds of stores? When I was growing up, Sears, J.C. Penney, Best Buy and RadioShack were all considered to be unstoppable retail powerhouses. But now it is being projected that all of them will close hundreds of stores before the end of 2013. Even Wal-Mart is running into problems. A recent internal Wal-Mart memo that was leaked to Bloombergdescribed February sales as a “total disaster”. So why is this happening? Why are major retail chains all over America collapsing? Is the “retail apocalypse” upon us? Well, the truth is that this is just another sign that the U.S. economy is falling apart right in front of our eyes. Incomes are declining, taxes are going up, government dependence is at an all-time high, and according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics the percentage of the U.S. labor force that is employed has been steadily falling since 2006. The top 10% of all income earners in the U.S. are still doing very well, but most U.S. consumers are either flat broke or are drowning in debt. The large disposable incomes that the big retail chains have depended upon in the past simply are not there anymore. So retail chains all over the United States are now closing up unprofitable stores. This is especially true in low income areas.
When you step back and take a look at the bigger picture, the rapid decline of some of our largest retail chains really is stunning.
Today’s top news and analysis for FAs.
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Advisors say in the fear-greed battle, investors are finally dropping their fear and they are becoming more active in the stock market. Mutual fund companies are putting money into stocks and bonds.
Darell Krasnoff, managing director at Bel Air Investment Advisors said “I think we’re seeing fear fatigue.” He says this is “very early” in the shift away from fear but there is tremendous room for money to return to stocks and drive up prices.