economic activity

Why isn’t the Rest of the World Growing like US?

August 19, 2014

Investors continue to be faced with a great deal of geopolitical uncertainty. While the cease-fire between Israel and Hamas continues, the geopolitical news regarding the conflict between Ukraine and Russia as well as ISIS and Iraq have escalated. In fact, last Friday, markets experienced a roller-coaster of a day on news of Russian armored vehicles entering into Ukraine. Russia denied the incident, but the markets’ reactions tells us the investors are nervous about the future of this conflict.

Investors are also nervous about what impact these conflicts are having on economic growth. Trade sanctions and fear brought on by the uncertainty of war added to the already challenged growth in Europe. Last week we saw that the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth rate in the Euro-zone slowed to 0.2% for the second quarter according to Eurostat. (more…)

Earnings Update

February 25, 2014

Between the Winter Olympics and the constant cold weather that most of the country has been subjected to for about two months now, one pretty important topic has flown under the radar, earnings. With the closing ceremonies on our doorstep, it seems like a good time for an update on this very important topic.

About 90% of S&P 500 constituents have reported results, so barring any big surprises from major companies, we can pretty much put Q4 2014 in the history books. Standard & Poor’s shows that about 65% of the companies that have reported results have beaten Wall Street’s estimates. (more…)