Monday, July 30, 2007

Updates resume August 5

Quick Overview

  • Treasury’s Henry Paulson said the U.S. government will hit its $8.965-trillion debt limit in early October and asked Congress to raise it.

  • U.S. Capital markets are losing market share to overseas competitors, but it is the bond market rather than equities that is losing ground to foreign competition, a study by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York showed.

  • The Chinese government increased bank reserve requirements - again.

  • Japan's industrial production increased 1.2% in June.

  • The USDA said that:
    58% of the corn crop rated good to excellent, down from 62%.
    58% of the soybean crop rated good to excellent, down from 61%.
    68% of the spring wheat crop rated good to excellent, down from 75%.
    54% of the cotton crop rated good to excellent, down from 56%.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Quick Overview

  • U.S. GDP rose 3.4%.

  • The University of Michigan's index of consumer sentiment rose from 85.3 to 90.4 in July.

  • YoY consumer prices in Japan fell 0.2% in June.

  • Goldman Sachs thinks crude oil prices have the potential to spike to a $100 a barrel by the end of summer unless Middle East production increases.

Coke named global brand king
Coca-Cola, McDonald's, Marlboro and Microsoft have been named among the top 20 most valuable brands in the world, according to consultancy Interbrand's annual best global brands report.

Hidden U.S. subprime losses may mirror Japan bank crisis
"The Japanese experience of holding large losses as opposed to taking a hit and moving on was a direct cause of the Japanese malaise," ..

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Quick Overview

  • Wall Street suffered one of its worst losses of 2007, as investors succumbed to worry about the derivatives market.

  • U.S. Durable goods orders rose 1.4% in June. Excluding transport, orders fell 0.5% MoM.

  • U.S. New home sales were down 6.6% MoM. For the first half of 2007, new home sales were down 22%.

  • The poor performance of many mortgage loans will worsen substantially through the rest of the year, according to Moody's.

  • Home prices in the U.K. increased 0.1% MoM.

  • The U.S. DoE said that underground supplies of natural gas were up 71 billion cubic feet last week to 2.763 trillion cubic feet.

  • USDA is reporting the discovery of Asian soybean rust in three fields in Oklahoma, the first findings of rust in that state.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Quick Overview

  • Existing homes sales fell in June for a fourth straight month, declining 3.8%, the National Association of Realtors said.

  • The Federal Reserve's Beige Book said that economic activity continued to expand in all twelve districts.

  • The U.S. economy is "performing well" and defaults on commercial and industrial loans by banks remain "low," New York Federal Reserve Bank President Timothy Geithner said.

  • Consumer prices in Australia rose 1.2% QoQ, and 2.1% YoY.

  • New Zealand's central bank raised its benchmark interest rate to 8.25 percent.

  • The Department of Energy said that:
    Supplies of crude oil fell 1.1 million barrels last week at 351.0 million barrels.
    Supplies of gasoline rose 800,000 barrels
    Supplies of heating oil rose 2.9 million barrels.
    Gasoline demand was up 1.2% YoY
    Distillate demand was up 2.8% YoY

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

$100-a-barrel oil may be only a few months away
The $100-a-barrel oil that Goldman Sachs Group said would prevail by 2009 may be only a few months away.

Quick Overview

  • The U.S. economy is not at risk of a credit crunch despite continuing troubles in high-risk subprime mortgages, Philadelphia Federal Reserve President Charles Plosser said.

  • The Feds Richmond's index of manufacturing unchanged at 4.0 in July,

  • Retail sales in Canada rose 2.8% in May.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Ultra-Flexible Fiber Optics on the Way
In standard fiber, the light signal leaks out at bends or turns and "with two 90-degree turns, the signal is lost," Corning spokesman Dan Collins said. "This design relies on nanostructures that serve as a mirror or a guardrail, and as the fiber is turned or bent, the light doesn't leak out. We have wrapped the fiber around a ball point pen and it retains its effectiveness."

Quick Overview

  • U.S. Treasury Secretary Paulson said that problems in the subprime mortgage loan sector could be contained and would not hurt the overall economy. He also repeated that a strong dollar was in the U.S. interest and currency values should be set in free and open markets.

  • The USDA said there were 10.737 million head of cattle on feed on July 1st, down 1% YoY.

  • The USDA said frozen pork inventories were up 14% YoY.

  • The USDA said that:
    62% of the corn crop was good to excellent, down from 64% last week.
    61% of the soybean crop was good to excellent, down from 62% last week.
    75% of the spring wheat crop was good to excellent, down from 76% last week.
    56% of the cotton crop was good to excellent, up from 55% last week.

  • F.O. Licht, increased its estimate of the world 2006-2007 sugar crop by 5.5 million tons to 167.3 million tons.

  • The Agriculture Department sent $1.1 billion in farm payments to more than 170,000 dead people over a seven-year period, congressional investigators say.

  • Starbucks Corp will raise U.S. prices on coffee, lattes and other drinks by an average of 9 cents a cup :((

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Dollar's Bear Market Slide More Boon Than Bane for George Bush
The currency has lost 13.2 percent since January 2001, when George W. Bush took office, the most under any president since at least Gerald Ford, who left the White House in 1977. That's based on a Federal Reserve index that tracks the dollar against the currencies of 38 U.S. trading partners, including Germany, Japan and Canada.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Researchers develop inexpensive, easy process to produce solar panels
Researchers at New Jersey Institute of Technology have developed an inexpensive solar cell that can be painted or printed on flexible plastic sheets.
"The process is simple," said lead researcher and author Somenath Mitra, PhD, professor and acting chair of NJIT's Department of Chemistry and Environmental Sciences. "Someday homeowners will even be able to print sheets of these solar cells with inexpensive home-based inkjet printers. Consumers can then slap the finished product on a wall, roof or billboard to create their own power stations."

Quick Overview

  • U.S. Index of leading indicators fell 0.3% in June. The index has been down in four of the past six months.

  • The Philadelphia Federal Reserve's regional index of factory activity fell from 18.0 to 9.2.

  • U.K.'s Retail sales were up 0.2% in June.

  • The International Copper Study Group said that in the first four months of 2007, world copper demand exceeded production by 157,000 tons.

  • Losses in the fast-unraveling subprime lending market could top $100 billion, but the Federal Reserve is taking measures to protect borrowers, according to Fed Chairman Bernanke.

  • Japans earthquake disclosed safety problems that could arise at nuclear-power plants during a powerful earthquake. The fault along which Monday's magnitude-6.8 earthquake occurred appears to extend right beneath Kashiwazaki-Kariwa nuclear plant -- the world's largest atomic power complex.

  • Malaysia's leader called for a massive economic overhaul of the Islamic world to boost its competitiveness so Muslims can reap the benefits of globalization.

  • China is canceling its aluminum import taxes, impose export taxes instead .

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

U.S. Housing Slowdown Will Lead Fed to Cut Rates, McCulley Says
``This whole subprime crisis has been more of a Wall Street event than it has been a Main Street event, but that's going to change,'' he said. ``You've got overpriced homes and inventory that's half the distance to the moon. Nationwide deflation in home prices'' will follow.

Gulf dead zone to be biggest ever The UN believes the algal blooms are having a significant impact on commercially valuable fish stocks.

Quick Overview

  • U.S. housing starts rose 2.3% from May's pace. YoY housing starts are down 26%.

  • China's gross domestic product expanded 11.9 % YoY -- the fastest pace in 12 years.

  • The U.S. Department of Energy said that:
    Supplies of crude oil fell 500,000 barrels last week to 352.1 million barrels.
    Supplies of gasoline fell 2.3 million barrels
    Supplies of heating oil fell 700,000 barrels.
    Gasoline demand rose 1.3% YoY
    Distillate demand rose 4.4% YoY.

  • MoM Consumer prices in Canada fell 0.2%. YoY prices rose 2.2%

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Quick Overview

  • YoY Swiss Retail Sales rose a stronger then exp. 7.2% vs 4.5% from May.

  • YoY UK CPI rose 2.4%.

  • Japan's tertiary index of services dropped 0.1% in May – more than expected.

  • Diesel fuel’s U.S. average price rose 4 cents in the past week to $2.889 a gallon, the highest since September.

  • Rains in the Midwest are improving prospects for the U.S. crop.
The Ron Paul Presidential Campaign, A Self-Organizing Complex System
The scientific community that has been studying complex systems intensely for the last twenty-five years is familiar with this sort of phenomenon, but this is perhaps the first time that it has been made apparent on such a large scale.

Why They Won’t Impeach
If one takes the trouble to examine the matter from the perspective of the machinations that dominate all political behavior, the answer becomes apparent. Though Republicans and Democrats have their personal and minor policy differences, they are in agreement on one basic point: their “bipartisan” support for the preservation and aggrandizement of the power of the state. They understand – as do members of the mainstream media – that their principal obligation is to serve the well-being of the political power structure that long ago laid uncontested claim to the ownership of modern society.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Quick Overview

  • The New York Federal Reserve's Empire index, rode from 25.8 to 26.5 in July,

  • YoY Consumer prices in the Euro zone rose 1.9%.

  • China suspended imports of some chicken and pork from Tyson Foods because of alleged food contamination problems.

  • The USDA said that:
    64% of the corn crop was rated good to excellent, down from 70% a week ago.
    62% of the soybean crop was rated good to excellent, down from 65% a week ago.
    76% of the spring wheat crop was rated good to excellent, down from 78% a week ago.
    55% of the cotton crop was rated good to excellent, the same as a week ago.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Quick Overview

  • U.S. retail sales were down 0.9% in June

  • U.S. business sales were up 1.3% in May

  • New Zealand retail sales rose 1.2% in May

  • University of Michigan's index of consumer sentiment increased from 85.3 to 92.4 in July, more than expected.

  • The International Energy Agency anticipates world oil demand to increase 2.2 million barrels to 88.2 million barrels per day in 2008.

  • Iran has asked Japanese oil wholesalers to make payments for their oil purchases in the yen instead of the U.S. dollar.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Corn Rises on Speculation Hot, Dry Weather to Reduce U.S. Crop
Crops west of the Mississippi River might face increased stress as the hottest, driest weather since at least 1995 starts July 18 and extends into August, said Fred Gesser, senior global meteorologist for Planalytics Inc. in Wayne, Pennsylvania. Temperatures may reach 102 degrees Fahrenheit (39 Celsius) beginning July 22, Gesser said.

Quick Overview

  • Bank of Japan kept rates at 0.5%.

  • YoY Japan's current account surplus widened 31.1 percent in May.

  • Japan’s Consumer sentiment at 30-month low.

  • YoY Japan’s Corporate bankruptcies rose 32.4 percent in June.

  • Japans Wholesale inflation rose 2.8% in June the BOJ said.

  • The unemployment rate in Australia rose from 4.2% to 4.3%

  • GDP in the Euro area rose 3.1% QoQ.

  • YoY Industrial production in India rose 11.1%

  • The USDA's 2007-2008 U.S. ending stocks estimate of:
  • Corn was raised from .997 to 1.502 billion bushels.
  • Soybeans were lowered from 320 to 245 million bushels.
  • Wheat was lowered from 443 to 418 million bushels.
  • Sugar was lowered from 1.417 to 1.377 million tons.
  • Cotton was lowered from 6.70 to 5.90 million bales.

  • The USDA's 2007-2008 world ending stocks estimate of:
  • Corn was raised from 92 to 108 million tons.S
  • Soybeans were lowered from 54 to 52 million tons.
  • Wheat was lowered from 117 to 112 million tons.
  • Cotton was lowered from 51.2 to 50.8 million tons.

  • The latest 6 to 10-day forecast from the National Weather Service shows a hotter and drier outlook for most of the Midwest.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Quick Overview

  • Japan's consumer confidence index fell from 47.3 to 45.0 in June

  • The U.S. Department of Energy said that:
    Supplies of crude oil fell 1.4 million barrels to 352.6 million barrels.
    Supplies of gasoline rose 1.2 million barrels
    Supplies of heating oil rose 1.1 million barrels.
    Gasoline demand rose 1.4% YoY
    Distillate demand rose 3.6% YoY.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Report: Wars Cost US $12 Billion a Month

U.S. Navy Deploys Third Aircraft Carrier To Persian Gulf
MANAMA (Reuters) - The U.S. Navy said on Tuesday it had sent a third aircraft carrier to its Fifth Fleet area of operations, which includes waters close to Iran, whose row with the West over its nuclear plans has stoked regional tensions.

Quick Overview

  • Standard and Poor's said that $12 billion of securities are on negative watch because of the poor performance of subprime loans.

  • The Federal Reserve Board should lose some if its consumer protection powers if it does not craft tougher rules on mortgage lending, a senior House Democrat said.

  • U.S. wholesale sales rose 1.3% MoM
    U.S. inventories rose 0.3% MoM

  • Canada housing starts in were at an annual rate of 225,500 units in June, down 4% MoM.
    The Bank of Canada raised interest rates from 4.25% to 4.50%.

  • The Vietnam Coffee and Cocoa Association expects Robusta coffee crop to total 15 million (60-kg) bags in 2007-2008, down 3% YoY.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Saturday, July 07, 2007

In London’s Financial World, Carbon Trading Is the New Big Thing
“Carbon will be the world’s biggest commodity market, and it could become the world’s biggest market over all,” said Mr. Redshaw, the head of environmental markets at Barclays Capital.

Quick Overview

  • U.S. Unemployment rate was unchanged in June at 4.5%.

  • Canada’s unemployment rate remained at 6.1% in June

  • Industrial production in the U.K. was up 0.6% in May.

  • July 6 (Bloomberg) -- Sugar, corn, wheat and cotton may be among
    the best commodity investments in the next one to three years driven by biofuel demand and rising incomes in China and India, according to UBS AG, the world's largest money manager.

  • Newmont Mining rose by more than 5% after that company announced it was eliminating its hedging program.

  • A private forecaster pegs the 2007/08 winter wheat crop at 1.583 billion bushels, versus the June 11th USDA forecast of 1.61 billion bushels. The hard red wheat production is forecast at 989 million versus the USDA figure of 1.03 billion.

Friday, July 06, 2007

Plague of bioweapons accidents afflicts the US There are now 20,000 people at 400 sites around the US working with putative bioweapons germs, says Hammond, 10 times more than before the terrorist attacks of 9/11. Some scientists have warned for years that more people handling dangerous germs are a recipe for accidents.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Quick Overview

  • The Institute of Supply Management's index of U.S. services rose from 59.7 to 60.7

  • The Bank of England increased its interest rate from 5.50% to 5.75%,

  • Retail sales volume was up 0.4% in the Euro zone.

  • The U.S. Department of Energy said that:
  • Supplies of crude oil rose 3.1 million barrels to 354.0 million barrels.
    Supplies of gasoline rose 1.8 million barrels
    Supplies of heating oil rose 300,000 barrels.
    Gasoline demand was up 1.2% YoY
    Distillated demand was up 3.4% YoY.