Last week was a short week of trading filled with many economic releases. Most of the headlines were focused on the economy and the Fed reaction to jobs. As a result of the lackluster jobs report it seems to have removed the suspense surrounding the Fed policy (at least for now).
With all of the economic reports out last week, I thought it may be useful to give you a quick Good/Bad list. As you can see there was quite a bit of news.
The Good News:
• Factory Orders – record gain in July
• Auto Sales – 17.45 million vs. an expected 16.6 million
• ADP Private Employment – solid gains of 204k
• The Beige Book – continued array of economic improvement
• ISM Manufacturing – hit a three year high and surpassed analysts’ expectations
Of course it’s not all good news…
The Bad News:
• Gasoline Prices Moved Higher – prices up 12.5 cents for 2014, and 0.4 cents for the week
• The Employment Report – lower than analysts’ expectations
• Ebola – the crisis continues to spread
• Political and Military Unrest – conditions in both the Ukraine and Middle East are unstable and a small spark could cause a raging fire at any time
From these lists you can see that good news out numbered bad news for the week. This is especially true when you consider that the Ebola crisis and unrest in both the Ukraine and Middle East is not new news.
With this said, our research continues to support a bullish outlook. At this point we are bullish, but not wildly bullish. Historically speaking, this is not the time of year (yet) to be overly aggressive. Rather, we are investing cautiously. The Summer and Fall months have been some of the seasonally weakest months of the year. Add on the coming mid-term elections and it could lead to a choppy market. If a pullback occurs, we will view it as an opportunity to increase our capital allocated to the markets.