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07-JULY 07-2023

Crash Test July '23Good morning.
Even with an economy that looks like it’s slowing, people vote with their dollars… and their feet. And Americans are on the move.  Last Friday saw the TSA screen 2,883,595 individuals.  That’s a new one-day travel record.
It’s a sign that even as the economy slows, consumers will continue to spend.  And that they may be spending more on experiences in the post-pandemic era rather than just on buying the latest gadgets and trinkets.  But with travel demand strong, it’s hard to see more than the usual seasonal summer lull for stocks.
Investors and traders alike should use any short-term drop in markets to look ahead for a surge toward the end of the year, in line with the seasonal pattern of the market most years.

Now here’s the rest of the news:

The Truth Behind Consumer Spending (It’s Not Good)
Yet again, we see economic good news revised away.  The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA)’s latest personal income and spending report shows that stubbornly high core inflation is crushing the American household, especially those who… [Read Here]

Video: Powell Reveals What Will Happen Before 2024
A strong majority of Federal Reserve policy makers say, “it will be appropriate to raise interest rates two or more times by the end of the year,” Fed Chair Jerome Powell said during a speech at the Bank of Spain in Madrid… [Watch Here]

July 07, 2021

history of our companyGood morning.
At a rally over the weekend, former President Trump stated that if he were still in office, inflation wouldn’t be as bad as it is.  That’s likely incorrect.  Much of today’s inflation comes from the trillions in pandemic-era spending, which the then-president signed into law.  Ongoing supply chain issues, another factor keeping some prices high to this day, also occurred at the time.
Meanwhile, President Biden tweeted over the weekend that gas stations need to lower prices at the pump now.  That’s also incorrect.  Gas stations largely break even at best on the sales of gasoline, and the price of oil is far outside their control.
With policymakers past and present having a tough time understanding basic economics right now, at least traders can rely on the Federal Reserve to keep the market exciting.  The central bank’s latest minutes show they’re not ready to end their rate hiking policy yet.  So continue to expect more market downside at the worst, and more daily volatility in stocks as a best-case scenario.

Now here’s the rest of the news:

Global Banks Warn That People Should Prepare For An Economic Storm
The outlook for the global economy has “deteriorated materially” due to inflationary pressures largely stoked by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, putting extra strain on British household and business finances, the Bank of England (BoE) has warned… [Read Here]

Inflation Reaches 79% In Some Countries
Inflation in Turkey rose close to 79% last month, the highest the country has seen in a quarter of a century.  The annual inflation rate was 78.62% for June, surpassing all forecasts.  That’s the country’s highest annual inflation reading in 24 years… [Read Here]

July 07, 2021

Finding LoveGood morning.
For a few weeks, a number of traders have quietly been pushing the idea that oil could once again trade as high as $100 per barrel, a price last seen around 2014.  Late in that year, members of OPEC decided to maximize their production to push prices lower and drive US shale production out of business.  That resulted in a major drop in oil prices as low as $20 per barrel before rebounding.
Today, OPEC is looking more fragmented as members disagree on production going forward.  A failed meeting between the cartel on increasing production sounds like it could lead to higher prices.  But the higher oil prices get, the more tempting it is for individual members to cheat on their quotas.  For now, the uptrend is likely to continue, and higher oil prices can put a damper on economic activity.  This may be the one supply shortage that can definitively stall out the global economy and market rally.

Now here’s the rest of the news:

Wall Street Watchdog Assails Fed’s “Toothless” Mega-Bank Stress Tests –Pam Martens and Russ Martens, Wall Street on Parade
It’s starting to look like 2008 all over again.  Where are these trillions of dollars of bailouts to the Wall Street mega banks coming from?  You should probably sit down before we tell you… [Read Here]

July 07, 2020

Are You SureGood morning.
If you thought that the technology rally was over, you’ll have to think again.  The Nasdaq motored to another all-time high fueled by a 5.77% advance in Amazon shares.
Chinese companies were exploding higher on Chinese economic data and stimulus hopes.  There were some mildly bearish trades on QQQ, but ultimately the out-look appears to remain one that is accelerating its pace to the upside.

Here is the rest of the news:

Investors Face a Long, Hot Summer
…according to John Persinos

If you looked at the stock market on January 1 and then slept in a cave for six months and glanced again at the market on June 30, you‘d think: Hmmm.  Stocks are only down 4%.  Must have been an uneventful first half.
But as we know, the first six months of 2020 were among the most volatile and traumatic in market history.

A financial Rip Van Winkle would have missed a 35% decline from February’s record high and a 44% rally from March’s low.  The magnitude of the first quarter’s decline made it the fifth-worst quarter since 1950, while the gain in the second quarter was the third-strongest.  The first quarter witnessed the sharpest bear market drop on record.

The U.S economy contracted 5% in the first quarter.  Unemployment in Q1 went from a 50-year low of 3.5% in February to 14.7%, the highest level since the Great Depression.  All told, we’re witnessing the worst downturn since the 1930s.
In March and April, the U.S. lost an unprecedented 22 million jobs.  In May and June, the economy added back 7.5 million jobs.  U.S. payrolls grew by 4.8 million in June, the Labor Department said Thursday.  The unemployment rate fall to 11.1% in June, down from 13.3% in May.
Wall Street is optimistic that a robust economic recovery is around the corner.  On June 30, the three main U.S. stock indices closed the second-quarter with their best quarterly performance in decades.  The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended Q2 with a 17.8% gain, the S&P 500 rose nearly 20%, and the tech-intensive NASDAQ Composite soared 30.6%.

*  *  *

“I was worth over $1,000,000 when I was 23, and over $10,000,000 when I was 24, and over $100,000,000 when I was 25, and it wasn’t that important because I never did it for the money.”
—Steve Jobs

July 07, 2019

Do you hate questions?

What was your answer the last time someone asked you, “How have you been doing?”  If you said, “Busy,” you’re certainly not alone.  We hear it more often than not, and to be perfectly honest, we often feel the same way.

But here’s the deal: There’s a tremendous difference between being busy and being productive.  Even more, there’s a big difference between productivity and focused productivity.

As the quote above suggests, being busy and productive without clarity about your priorities and a focus on what’s most important is useless. Heck, you could argue that it’s worse than useless; it’s potentially harmful and damaging.

So, how can you avoid the “productivity trap”?  Here are a few ideas:

    • Make a “not-to-do” list.
    • Let go of the rest.
    • Plan ahead.
    • Clear the clutter.
    • Put one foot in front of the other.
    • Batch similar tasks together.
    • Set a timer.
    • Schedule mini-workouts.
    • Improve your communication.

When you combine productivity with focus, well that’s where the magic happens.

Get-rrrr Done,  😉

Come From Aways, Do You?

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