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Pragmatic Capitalism

Practical Views on Money & Finance

‘Market Indicators’

Fading Magazine Covers….

“In our latest survey, 74% of money managers identify themselves as bullish or very bullish about the prospects for U.S. stocks — an all-time high for Big Money, going back more than 20 years.”

Bullish Sentiment Declines

Bullish sentiment, expectations that stock prices will rise over the next six months, fell 2.9 percentage points to 35.5%. This is the third consecutive weekly decline. It also puts optimism at its lowest level in a month. The historical average is 39.0%.

Rail Traffic Continues 2013 at a Positive Pace

Rail traffic is continuing to show positive signs here as we head deeper into 2013.  Intermodal traffic was up 5.3% year over year which brings the 12 week moving average to a very healthy 4.84%.  That’s up from 1.3% earlier this year. Here’s the AAR with more details: “AAR also reported mixed rail traffic for… Read More

China PMI Expands at Fastest Pace in 19 Months

More signs of stabilization in one of the world’s largest economies.   Today’s Chinese PMI rose to a 19 month high and solidly in expansionary territory (via Markit): After adjusting for seasonal factors, the HSBC Purchasing Managers’ Index™ (PMI™) – a composite indicator designed to give a single-figure snapshot of operating conditions in the manufacturing… Read More

What is FedEx Telling us About the Global Economy?

Everyone always thinks that Alcoa kicks off the earnings season, but I don’t see it that way.  The real earnings season kicks off with FedEx who usually reports well in advance of Alcoa and gives us a much more meaningful look into the state of the economy.  So what’s the global bellwether telling us?  Here… Read More

Rail Traffic: Economy Continues to Soften

More weakness in this week’s rail traffic report.  The AAR reported a -0.3% reading in intermodal.  This is the second consecutive negative weekly reading.  This brings the 12 week moving average down to 1.3%.  That’s about in-line with the consensus Q4 GDP predictions and indicative of an economy that is growing, but just slightly. Here’s… Read More

Rail Traffic is Slowing With the Economy

Rail traffic is taking a turn for the worse in recent weeks as the economy appears to be slowing even further into Q4.  The latest reading on intermodal traffic came in at -1.1%.   That brings the trailing 12 week average to 1.65%.  The US economy appears to be just barely treading water at this… Read More