Stocks slipped a bit as the market rally runs out of momentum. The S&P 500 fell just 0.3%. All in all, not a bad day considering the size of the 10 day rally. Daily Futures wraps up the action across all markets:
The U.S. Census Bureau said that housing starts were at an annual rate of 598,000 in August, up 1.5% from July’s pace and the most in nine months. November lumber closed up $6.90 at $182.00.
The U.S. Labor Department said that jobless claims were down 12,000 last week to 545,000, less than expected. The December 2010 eurodollars were up .04 at 98.225.
The Philadelphia Federal Reserve’s regional index of manufacturing increased from 4.2 to 14.1 in September, much stronger than expected.
Grains and Cotton
The USDA said that, as of last week, 2009-2010 exports of:
Corn were up 60% from a year ago.
Soybeans were up 80% from a year ago.
Wheat improved from down 46% to down 43% from a year ago.
Cotton fell from down 31% to down 37% from a year ago.
The USDA said that China bought 121,000 tons of U.S. soybeans. November soybeans ended up 2.5 cents at $9.53.
December corn closed down 7.25 cents at $3.39 while traders backed off their enthusiasm for the possibility of a yield-reducing frost next week.
Rain continues to fall in the southeastern U.S. to the dismay of cotton producers. December cotton closed up .66 at 64.18.
According to Iowa State University, there have only been two months since October of 2007 when hog producers made money, said the USDA in today’s Livestock Outlook. They added, “one of the few bright spots in an otherwise dreary July pork export number (-13 percent year-over-year) were shipments to Mexico, which were 19 percent above a year ago.” October hogs were down .30 at 52.15.
The USDA also said in today’s Livestock Outlook, “looking ahead, fed cattle prices, currently in the low- to mid-$80 range, are likely to barely cover costs for feeder cattle placed on feed this month (September).” October cattle fell 1.17 cents to 85.80, the lowest close in three months.
The USDA also said that net sales of beef totaled 15,100 tons last week, up from 11,100 tons the previous week.
November orange juice closed up 3.85 cents at $1.0265, the highest close in four weeks while traders await the USDA’s first 2009-2010 Florida crop estimate, due out on October 9th.
The U.S. Department of Energy said that underground supplies of natural gas were up 66 billion cubic feet last week to 3.458 trillion cubic feet. Supplies are now up 17% from a year ago and up 16% from the five-year average. November natural gas dropped 26 cents to $4.455.
Statistics Canada said that consumer prices were down .8% in August from a year ago, a bigger decline than expected. Also, the composite index of leading indicators was up 1.1% in August, the biggest monthly increase since April of 2002. The December Canadian dollar was up .15 at 93.94.
The U.K.’s Office for National Statistics said that retail sales were unchanged in August and up 2.1% from a year ago.
Eurostat said that construction output in the EU-27 was down 1.1% in July and down 11.1% from a year ago.
Source: Daily Futures
Mr. Roche is the Founder and Chief Investment Officer of Discipline Funds.Discipline Funds is a low fee financial advisory firm with a focus on helping people be more disciplined with their finances.
He is also the author of Pragmatic Capitalism: What Every Investor Needs to Understand About Money and Finance, Understanding the Modern Monetary System and Understanding Modern Portfolio Construction.