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by Larry Levin I read an interesting op-ed that ran in the Wall Street Journal from Charles Schwab. I found it intriguing to read a Wall Street veteran that didn't sound like one of the high-priests of the Keynesian religion of economics. I hope you enjoy it too. For America’s 44 million senior citizens, plus tens of millions of others who are on the threshold of retirement, last month marked a watershed moment that is worth celebrating. At the end of October, the Federal Reserve announced the first step in returning to a more normal monetary policy. After nearly six years of near-zero interest rates and quantitative easing, the Fed is ending its bond-buying program and has signaled a plan to eventually begin raising the federal-funds rate, raising interest rates to more normal levels by 2017. U.S. households lost billions in interest income during the Fed’s near-zero interest rate experiment. Because they are often reliant on income from savings, seniors were hit the hardest. Households headed by seniors 65-74 years old lost on average $1,900 in annual income over the past six years, according to a November 2013 McKinsey Global Institute report. For households headed by seniors 75 and older, the loss was $2,700 annually. With a median income for senior households in the U.S. of roughly $25,000, these are significant losses. In total, according to my company’s calculations, approximately $58 billion in annual income has been lost by America’s seniors since 2008. Retirees depend on income from their savings for basic living expenses. Without that income, many seniors have taken on greater risk to increase the potential yield on their savings, or simply spent down their nest eggs. After decades of playing by the rules, putting off spending and socking away money, seniors have taken it on the chin. This strikes a blow at the core American principles of self-reliance, individual responsibility and … [Read More...]
The domestic equity markets are moving higher in late-morning action, with the Dow and S&P 500 notching more record highs. Global equities are getting a boost from surprising rate cuts in China, which were the first in more than two years. Moreover, European Central Bank President Mario Draghi suggested it may be nearing a full-fledged quantitative easing campaign to combat low inflation. Gold and crude oil prices are gaining ground, along with the U.S. dollar and Treasuries, with the domestic economic calendar light today as an upbeat read on regional manufacturing activity was the lone report on the docket. In equity news, Gap lowered its full-year earnings guidance, while GameStop missed analysts' 3Q expectations and offered disappointing guidance. Elsewhere, Foot Locker topped the Street's quarterly expectations and Yum Brands announced an additional $1 billion share repurchase plan. Overseas, Asian stocks finished mostly higher ahead of the unexpected rate cuts in China, while European equities are rallying, led by oil & gas and basic material stocks. At 10:53 a.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 Index are increasing 0.7%, while the Nasdaq Composite is advancing 0.6%. WTI crude oil is rising $0.65 to $76.50 per barrel, Brent crude oil is gaining $1.01 to $80.34 per barrel, and wholesale gasoline is up $0.02 to $2.03 per gallon. Elsewhere, the Bloomberg gold spot price is increasing $10.94 to $1,204.73 per ounce, and the Dollar Index—a comparison of the U.S. dollar to six major world currencies—is up 0.6% to 88.13. Foot Locker Inc. (FL $56) posted 3Q earnings-per-share (EPS) ex-items of $0.83, above the $0.79 consensus estimate of analysts surveyed by FactSet, as revenues grew 6.7% year-over-year (y/y) to $1.7 billion, roughly inline with analysts' forecasts. The footwear retailer said its quarterly same-store sales—sales at stores open at least a year—rose 6.9% y/y, topping the 5.7% increase that … [Read More...]
The domestic equity markets are moving higher in late-morning action, with the Dow and S&P 500 … [Read More...]
After the Dow and S&P 500 notched more record highs yesterday, the domestic equity markets are … [Read More...]
by Larry Levin Overnight we found out that things have gotten even worse … [Read More...]
The U.S equity markets are mixed in afternoon action, with some large corporate deal news offsetting … [Read More...]
The U.S. equity markets are trading slightly to the upside in early action, despite a … [Read More...]