Financial News 9/30/12 – 10/6/12

Economy

-Factories expanded production in September for their first growth since May and new orders turned positive as well.  10/2

-Manufacturing activity in the Euro-zone sank for the 14th straight month in September.  10/2

-The unemployment rate hit a new high in August of 18.2 million people or 11.4%.  10/2

-The Australia central bank cut interest rates by 0.25% for the first time since June as the growth seen in the country driven commodities has started to ease.  10/3

-Global inflation ticked up 2.0% over the trailing twelve months ending in August according to the OECD. 10/3

-The unemployment rate in Spain jumped up 1.7% to 11.3% in September as the country struggles through a contracting economy.  10/3

-U.S. auto sales reached a 4 and a half year high in September rising 12.8% from a year earlier.  10/3

-A survey of the service sector in September showed that it is expanding and at a faster rate than in August.  10/4

-The average 30 year mortgage fell to another record low last week dropping to 3.36%.  10/5

-Retail sales measured by Thomson Reuters’ survey of 19 large retailers rose 0.8% in September; far short of the expected gain of 1.6%.  10/5

-Weekly initial jobless claims edged up to 367,000, but it was better than expected.  10/5

-Factory orders fell 5.2% in August, but outpaced expectations of the drop.  10/5

-The September unemployment report was better than expected as the employment rate dropped to 7.8% and hiring increased.  The unemployment rate reached its lowest level since January 2009 and 114,000 jobs were added in September.  There were also revisions from the August and July numbers showing an additional 86,000 in positions added.  However, a large portion of the hiring was from those taking part time work.  10/6

Corporate

-HP announced that it will likely be years before the technology company starts to see meaningful growth again.  10/4

-Facebook announced it has reached 1 billion active users, meaning one in seven people on earth uses the social network.  10/5

Regulatory

-A top prosecutor in New York is bringing a civil suit against JP Morgan for its Bear Sterns unit alleging wide spread fraud in selling mortgage backed securities.  10/2

Market

-According to the Greece budget for 2013, their economy will contract even more than projected in 2013 due to the austerity measures that are being undertaken.  10/1

-Stock market participation continues to fall as investors have pulled $138 billion from mutual funds and ETFs that invest in stocks since the market nadir in March of 2009.  Over the same time period investors have added $1 trillion to bond funds.  Stock ownership in households has fallen from 53% in 2001 to 46% in 2011 as investors have lost faith in the stock market.  10/5

-Markets soared after the surprise job news, but ended the day flat as there was renewed concern in Europe.  However, it was still a strong week as the S&P 500 ended up 1.4% and the Dow gained 1.3%.  Japan finished slightly down and Europe rose 2.1% for the week.  Oil fall back below $90 a barrel to $89.88.  10/6

There is no guarantee that any investment strategy, including those described here, will be successful. Any investment or investment strategy can lose money. Past performance does not guarantee or predict future results. You should not assume that any discussion or information contained in this newsletter serves as the receipt of, or as a substitute for, personalized investment advice from Raffa Wealth Management, LLC. This information was gathered from reliable sources but we cannot guarantee accuracy. Indexes do not reflect the fees associated with actual investments and such fees would reduce the performance illustrated.
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