Manufacturing is Not Looking Good

Stocks are sharply lower today as another key piece of economic data shows significant weakness. The latest reading of the ISM Manufacturing is not looking good. It showed a drop to 47.8% from a reading last month of 49.1%. This reading marks the lowest level since June 2009, when the Great Recession ended. Consensus estimates were looking for a reading of 50.2%. The decline in activity is significant. Readings above 50 show expansion while readings below 50 show contraction. Only three of 18 sectors tracked... Continue Reading

Another Warning Sign

There has been no shortage of talk about the ongoing global economic slowdown. It seems that there is a constant supply of fresh data suggesting that the slowdown is not only ongoing but could be accelerating. An ongoing slowdown, or even recession, should not come as a huge surprise at this point. The current expansion has gotten quite long in the tooth and began to falter as soon as the Fed tried to normalize monetary policy. In what may be considered another shot across the... Continue Reading

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Buy the Dips

The gold market has seen some solid buying in recent weeks and has recently been taking a bit of a breather. The market has pulled back from its recent highs, and in early action today is seeing a retest of the $1500 level on the chart. A significant price dip is not only necessary at this point, but healthy as well. Markets do not typically go straight up or straight down, and the gold market is no exception with the dips. The market has been... Continue Reading

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No Shortage of Bullish Catalysts

The gold market has shown some significant upside in recent months, and with good reason. There are a variety of issues currently working in gold’s favor, and a strong fundamental and technical backdrop could keep the metal on the offensive. Regardless of whether the Fed cuts rates further or how much, the current state of the global economy and geopolitical landscape could be supportive for the metal and other hard assets. Here are three issues that may make now the ideal time to build a... Continue Reading

A Divided Fed

The Federal Reserve elected to cut interest rates again by 25-basis points at the conclusion of its meeting this week. The committee voted in favor of the cut by a margin of 7-3. The split may have been more than markets anticipated, and the Fed’s commentary was deemed to be not so easy when it comes to monetary policy. 7 of 17 FOMC members expect just one more rate cut this year. The not so dovish meeting sent stocks lower initially before they recovered. The... Continue Reading

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Just Another Reason

The current economic and geopolitical landscape is filled with potential landmines, and the climate just got even more tedious. Over the weekend, an attack on Saudi oil facilities reportedly cut production by some 5.7 million barrels per day, or over half of the Kingdom’s production. This amount accounts for about five percent of total global oil supply and could send crude oil prices soaring. Brent crude jumped by about 20 percent after the news, while WTI also made a significant double-digit leap. Thus far, it... Continue Reading

Recession With or Without A Deal

The ongoing U.S./China trade war has had a significant impact on the economies of both countries. The war on trade has seen several stages of escalation in recent months, and thus far, the two aides still appear to be quite far apart when it comes to making some type of long-term agreement. Talks are set to resume next month, and that news has stock markets moving higher as risk aversion abates. Some key economic indicators have already begun showing some significant cracks. Recent manufacturing data,... Continue Reading

Is a Major Currency Debasement Ahead?

The U.S. Fed and other global central banks are in the process of easing monetary policies again. Although interest rates got nowhere near previous levels during the Fed’s recent tightening cycle, the central bank has decided that it is time to start cutting again. The Fed is not cutting from only 2.5% instead of 5.5%, however. The ECB tomorrow will present its latest plans to boost the region’s economy which will likely include a bazooka of rate cuts and fresh QE. Other central banks are... Continue Reading

Rapid Inflation Could Be Next

There has been no shortage of issues for global financial markets to contend with in recent months. An aging economic expansion and equity bull market, an accelerating global economic slowdown and the ongoing U.S./China trade war have been at the center of attention. At some point, the economic expansion and bull market in stocks will have run its course, as they always do. Likewise, the war on trade may not go on indefinitely, as it is in the best interest of both sides to come... Continue Reading

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