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GARP is short for Growth at a Reasonable Price. It is an investment strategy that combines the best of two worlds, growth and value, by finding growth companies which also sport reasonable valuations. GARP was popularized by Peter Lynch, the famous Fidelity Magellan Fund Investment Manager, who used GARP as the cornerstone of his investment strategy during his highly successful years as a Fidelity fund manager.
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The Labor Department’s Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey, or JOLTS showed job openings were little changed in December, increasing slightly to 6.65 million, over 6.57 million in November. Hiring dropped to 5.54 million from 5.94 million, in addition, the pace of hiring declined to 3.9% from 4.2%. Much of the decline was attributed to accommodation and food services (-221,000); transportation, warehousing, and utilities (-133,000); and arts, entertainment, and recreation (-82,000). The survey also showed that total separations changed marginally to 5.5 million, while the number of layoffs and discharges decreased to 1.8 million (-243,000). For the 2020 calendar year, hires totaled 70.2 million and separations totaled 75.7 million, yielding a net loss of 5.5 million jobs.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports the January CPI MoM increased to a seasonally adjusted 0.3% in January. Most of the increase was attributed to the gas index which rose 7.4%. While the energy index rose 3.5%, the food index increased slightly by 0.1%. The January CPI YoY came in at 1.40%, an increase from 1.36% in December. The Core CPI MoM (ex-food and energy) was unchanged in January. The Core CPI YoY, (ex-food and energy) came in at 1.41%, a decrease from 1.62% in December. Among the indexes that increased were used cars and trucks +10.0% and medical care +1.9%. Among the indexes that declined were airfares -23.1% and motor vehicle insurance -3.7%.
Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said the U.S. job market remains a long way from a full recovery, indicating the real unemployment rate is closer to 10%. Powell called for help from both lawmakers and the private sector to restore employment. Powell underlined the need for a strong labor market where the benefits are shared broadly. The Fed chair emphasized that monetary policy would remain very supportive of the economy, stressing the importance of low-interest rates. Powell said, “We will not tighten monetary policy solely in response to a strong labor market”. He also played down the risk of inflation saying he doesn’t expect “a large nor sustained” increase in inflation.
Wednesday February 17 – Retail Sales (Mom) (Jan)
Friday February 19 – Existing Home Sales (Jan)
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