Weekly Economic Update for April 24, 2017
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April 24, 2017
EXISTING HOME SALES HIT A 10-YEAR PEAK
Rising 4.4% for March, resales surpassed expectations – analysts polled by Reuters projected a gain of 2.5%. The National Association of Realtors said that sales were 5.9% improved from a year before, and that put them at their best level since February 2007, even with existing home inventory 6.6% slimmer than in March 2016.1
CONSTRUCTION ACTIVITY WANES
Department of Commerce data showed a 6.8% reduction in housing starts in March. Even with that fall, starts were up 9.2% in 12 months. Building permits rose 3.6% last month, resulting in a 17.0% annualized increase.2
LIGHT SWEET CRUDE SLIDES 7% IN 5 TRADING DAYS
WTI crude settled at $49.62 Friday, 7.4% below where it had closed a week earlier. One influence was a Baker Hughes report showing that the number of active rigs had increased for a fourteenth consecutive week.3
STOCKS END CHOPPY WEEK HIGHER
Five days of rollercoastering ultimately sent the S&P 500 to a 0.85% weekly gain. The Dow Jones Industrial Average and Nasdaq Composite respectively advanced 0.46% and 1.82% in the same stretch. At Friday’s close, the Dow settled at 20,547.76; the S&P, at 2,348.69; and the Nasdaq, at 5,910.52.4
THIS WEEK: Monday, earnings arrive from Coach, Express Scripts, Halliburton, Hasbro, Kimberly-Clark, Newmont Mining, and T. Rowe Price. The Conference Board’s April consumer confidence index, the February S&P/Case-Shiller home price index, and March new home sales data appear Tuesday, along with earnings from 3M, AT&T, Baker Hughes, Biogen, Capital One, Caterpillar, Chubb, Coca-Cola, Eli Lilly, Fifth Third, Freeport-McMoRan, McDonald’s, Northern Trust, Novartis, and Xerox. On Wednesday, the earnings lineup includes Alaska Air, Amgen, Anthem, Boeing, Credit Suisse, Dr. Pepper Snapple Group, Equifax, GlaxoSmithKline, Hershey, Ingersoll-Rand, Norfolk Southern, O'Reilly Auto Parts, PepsiCo, Procter & Gamble, Rockwell Automation, State Street, and T-Mobile. Earnings from Alphabet, Amazon, American Airlines, Comcast, Dow Chemical, Expedia, Ford Motor Co., MGM Resorts, Microsoft, Parker-Hannifin, Southwest Airlines, Under Armour, and Western Digital all roll out Thursday, complementing reports on initial jobless claims and March durable goods orders and housing contract activity. Exxon Mobil, General Motors, Phillips 66, UBS Group AG, and Weyerhaeuser issue earnings news Friday, as investors also consider the federal government’s first estimate of Q1 growth and the University of Michigan’s final April consumer sentiment index.
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1 - reuters.com/article/us-usa-economy-housing-idUSKBN17N1QU [4/21/17]
2 - marketwatch.com/story/housing-starts-fall-7-but-permits-pick-up-the-slack-in-march-2017-04-18 [4/18/17]
3 - foxbusiness.com/markets/2017/04/21/oil-ends-under-50-as-signs-rising-us-output-cast-doubts-over-opec-cut-extension.html [4/21/17]
4 - markets.wsj.com/us [4/21/17]
5 - bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=4%2F21%2F16&x=0&y=0 [4/21/17]
5 - bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=4%2F21%2F16&x=0&y=0 [4/21/17]
5 - bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=4%2F21%2F16&x=0&y=0 [4/21/17]
5 - bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=4%2F20%2F12&x=0&y=0 [4/21/17]
5 - bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=4%2F20%2F12&x=0&y=0 [4/21/17]
5 - bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=4%2F20%2F12&x=0&y=0 [4/21/17]
5 - bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=4%2F20%2F07&x=0&y=0 [4/21/17]
5 - bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=4%2F20%2F07&x=0&y=0 [4/21/17]
5 - bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=4%2F20%2F07&x=0&y=0 [4/21/17]
6 - treasury.gov/resource-center/data-chart-center/interest-rates/Pages/TextView.aspx?data=realyield [4/21/17]
7 - treasury.gov/resource-center/data-chart-center/interest-rates/Pages/TextView.aspx?data=realyieldAll [4/21/17]