Saturday, February 23, 2008

Deluge of Economic Data (aka The Horror Show)

"The large batch of economic data due out next week reads like a lineup for the soundtrack of a horror show for financial markets.

Track One is falling home sales. Track Two is inflation. Track Three is a manufacturing slowdown. Track Four is flagging economic growth and job losses, and Track Five is the consumer spending drop. All these tunes will play over a drumbeat of retail earnings reports, where the outlook is not upbeat." -source

"The market will be greeted Monday with January existing home sales, which are expected to fall slightly. On Tuesday the February Producer Price Index, a key inflation measure, is due before the open, as is the Case-Shiller home price index for December and the entire fourth quarter.

Tuesday also gets February's consumer confidence reading, followed Wednesday by a report on durable orders from January, new home sales, and the weekly mortgage application figures.

Thursday features perhaps the most important piece of data for the week, a preliminary reading on fourth-quarter U.S. GDP. Economic growth is expected to tick higher after a 0.6% reading in the third quarter but remain slow. Various reports over the past few weeks have shown signs of sluggishness, especially in manufacturing. Soaring commodity prices have also fanned fears of inflation.

Last week was mixed, but mostly negative, for U.S. stocks. Even after a late rally pushed the market to a gain Friday, the Dow still fell 0.7% for the week, the S&P edged 0.4% lower, and the Nasdaq dropped 1.8%.

In corporate news, CNBC reported Thursday that a bailout plan for struggling bond insurer Ambac Financial Group could be announced as early as Monday or Tuesday." -source

Yeah, I'm just going to let other people do the writing and contribute nothing more than another Talking Heads video. We have no shame here at Stock Geometry. Next week should be fun.

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