Investors seem to be taking a breather this morning, as stocks are relatively flat amid a report on employment that surprised analysts – and home buying information that I will outline in a minute.
We have seen employment numbers improve in recent weeks and most felt this would continue as people tiptoe back into the workplace. But that was not the case in this morning’s report as claims were quite a bit above what we expected. The managing director of investment strategy at E-Trade, Mike Loewengart, described this to CNBC as a “dent to momentum” … although how big dent remains to be seen.
What I think brought about this surprise is the expectation that people would be returning to their old ways – having missed the collaboration of others – but Civic Science ran a survey on July 11th that concluded a majority of Americans are still “very concerned” (14%) or “somewhat concerned” (47%) about being in a public space right now.
This comes as a variety of media reports claim the White House is exploring asking us to wear masks again in the face of an increase in the number of coronavirus cases … but keep in mind this increased recent concern might be driven by a lot of shock headlines of late on the “variant.” Even so, Dr. Gottlieb … former FDA Commissioner … gives the view that the number of cases will “peak” in late August.
Sales of existing homes improved as owners have increasingly been putting places on the market (as the common view has been prices were up due to low inventory). Hopefully this will cool prices down a little as the run-up seen certainly appeared to be unsustainable.
An interesting thing happened to me this morning, as I misplaced my phone. Looking for help in finding it, I turned to a dear friend … Alexa … and asked if she/it/whatever could ring my phone. Thanks to Alexa buzzing my phone, I found it in seconds.
Meanwhile, on a final note for today I included an article on cannabis as many claim its use produces no side effects.
As the article points out, one study shows cannabis use could very well lead to an increase in paranoia.
I am not sure this is correct but it got me wondering.
Why is everyone looking at me?
Have a great day,
Joseph G. Witthohn, CFA
Emerald Asset Management PA, LLC
610 Freedom Business Center Drive
King of Prussia, PA 19406
Direct: (610) 285-9905
cell: (856) 625-7915
… As of 11:05 AM today …
Quick Look at the News
Weekly jobless claims rose last week … which shocked those who felt the employment situation would be improving with every report (CNBC)https://www.cnbc.com/2021/07/22/us-weekly-jobless-claims.html
… but another report was a bit more positive this morning, as sales of existing homes rose as more listings … finally … appeared. Keep in mind there have been lingering inventory concerns (CNBC)https://www.cnbc.com/2021/07/22/sales-of-existing-homes-rise-slightly-as-more-listings-finally-hit-the-market.html
… still, one famed Wall Street strategist feels inflation and the virus remain problematic … and sees a correction in cryptocurrencies and stocks ahead (BusinessInsider)https://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/jeremy-grantham-stocks-crypto-bubbles-bust-virus-inflation-2021-7
Of course we know how much is being spent by the U.S. on climate change … but one official says it is not enough and needs to be 5 times as large (Reuters)https://www.reuters.com/business/energy/existing-spending-climate-change-falls-short-us-energy-official-2021-07-22/
… as some think we are running out of time to do something … and (globally) we only have a few years before reaching the point of no return (Unilad)https://www.unilad.co.uk/news/earth-temperature-could-reach-tipping-point-within-five-years-study-warns/
If the weather seems a bit hot and you want to cool things off … what can you do? Make it rain! Dubai is “cloud seeding” and having a bit of success (IndependentUK)https://www.independent.co.uk/climate-change/opinion/dubai-fake-rain-climate-crisis-b1888450.html
So … there are no side effects of cannabis? The jury is certainly still out, but one thing being studied is a mental effect (CNN)https://www.cnn.com/2021/07/22/health/marijuana-schizophrenia-study-wellness/index.html