Tag Archives: oil

Russian Troops in Crimea Trigger “Flight To Safety”

A global “flight to safety” is taking place in financial markets since Russia took de facto military control over the Ukrainian southern peninsula of Crimea over the weekend. Equities were hit in Asia, Europe and emerging markets overnight, while Treasury bonds rallied. Financial markets in Russia were hit even harder. Oil prices have also risen, [...]

Trade Gap Widens Slightly

The trade gap widened to $39.1 billion in July after being revised up only marginally in June. Exports dropped slightly from the highs of June, while imports rebounded a bit. The bulk of the drop in exports showed up in the capital and consumer goods sectors. The drop in capital goods was largest in aircraft [...]

Consumers Show Resilience in February

Consumer Shows Resilience in February Retail sales rose 1.1% in February, after being revised up in January. This gives credence to some of the recent strength in the broader stock indices and the importance to most households of rising housing prices. The increases in home prices have boosted household wealth and allowed consumers to spend [...]

Trade Data Will Push Q4 into the Black

The U.S. trade deficit narrowed dramatically to $38.5 billion in December from $48.6 billion in November. The improvement was on both sides of the ledger, with exports picking up and imports slowing rapidly. Most of the increase in exports was in industrial supplies and materials including petroleum. Capital equipment and vehicles were still weak. This [...]

Trade Deficit Widens on Vehicle & Parts Imports

The U.S. trade deficit widened to a much-larger-than-expected $48.7 billion in November, as Superstorm Sandy victims replaced their damaged vehicles at a record pace. We are also seeing some high-end German vehicle producers stock their lots with more test-drive vehicles to unload inventories building in Europe. Exports also increased, but at a much slower pace. [...]

Production Gains Still Tepid

Industrial production rose 0.4% in September, providing some offset to the 1.4% loss we saw in August. Hurricane Isaac and the idling of production along the Gulf of Mexico shaved 0.3% from production in August. Gains were uneven with mining, utilities and (thankfully) construction leading; consumer goods (mostly vehicles) flatlined after declining sharply in August. [...]

PPI Jumps on Energy Costs: Other Prices Tepid

The Producer Price Index (PPI) jumped 1.1% in October almost entirely because of an increase in energy prices. Gasoline prices jumped 9.8%; that is bad news for the holiday season, which opens with Halloween in just a few weeks. It is important to note that increases in gasoline prices were extremely uneven across the country. [...]

Retail Sales and CPI Rise on Energy Prices

Retail sales increased 0.9% on a sharp increase in gasoline and vehicle sales (up 5.5% and 1.3%, respectively). Retail sales excluding vehicle and gasoline station sales rose a much more tepid 0.1% pace for the month. The weakest sector was electronics, which shouldn’t be a surprise; we have seen few gains in this category, with [...]

Trade Deficit Treads Water as Global Growth Slows

The trade deficit widened ever so slightly to $42 billion in July, up from $41.9 billion in June. Both exports and imports slowed in response to weakening demand. The drop in exports was broad-based and included losses in industrial supplies and materials, motor vehicles and consumer goods. There was an increase in exports of foods, [...]