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This week we are pleased to bring you a guest blog post from Barry D. Moore of Liberated Stock Trader, one of our valued Stock Rover partners. The blog post is titled The Liberated Stock Trader Beat the Market Screener 2021 Update.
The Commerce Department reported that new factory orders fell in February and for the first time in nine months. New orders decreased $2.7B or 0.5% to $542.0B. January was revised up showing orders rising 1.5% instead of 1.4%. New orders for durable goods decreased 2.1% to $271.7B. Leading the decline in new factory orders was a 5.3% drop in transportation equipment. Orders for motor vehicles and parts declined 0.6%. In addition, both machinery (-2.9%) and computers and electronic products (-1.1%) saw significant declines in new orders. Offsetting the declines were increases in furniture and related products (+ 2.7%) and electrical equipment, appliances and components (+0.6%). New orders for manufactured nondurable goods increased 1.2% to $270.3B. Orders for nondefense capital goods, excluding aircraft, fell a revised 0.2% in February, up from the prior reading of (- 0.3%). Shipments of manufactured goods climbed 0.6% to $541.0B after advancing 1.4% in January. Inventories at factories increased 0.6% to $785.2B after a 0.8% increase the previous month. Unfilled orders gained 0.4% to $1,288.5B following a 0.9% January increase.
Minutes of the Federal Open Market Committee, March 15-16, 2022 meeting reported that members agreed that the Federal Reserve will have to take a more aggressive approach in shrinking its balance sheet than was taken in 2017-2019. Specific to balance sheet reduction, the minutes showed that “Participants generally agreed that monthly caps of about $60 billion for Treasury securities and about $35 billion for agency MBS would likely be appropriate. Participants also generally agreed that the caps could be phased in over a period of three months or modestly longer if market conditions warrant.” Addressing interest rates – “Many participants noted that—with inflation well above the Committee’s objective, inflationary risks to the upside, and the federal funds rate well below participants’ estimates of its longer-run level—they would have preferred a 50 basis point increase in the target range for the federal funds rate at this meeting” and “…that one or more 50 basis point increases in the target range could be appropriate at future meetings particularly if inflation pressures remained elevated or intensified.” On the economy and inflation – ”… participants agreed that uncertainty regarding the path of inflation was elevated and that risks to inflation were weighted to the upside. Participants cited several such risks, including ongoing supply bottlenecks and rising energy and commodity prices.”
The Labor Department reported a decrease in initial jobless claims for the week ending April 2nd. The department noted that the benchmarks from 2017 to 2021 have been recalculated to adjust for new seasonal factors. The seasonally adjusted initial claims reported in at 166,000, a decrease of 5,000 from the previous week’s downwardly revised level. The previous week’s initial claims value was significantly revised from 202,000 to 171,000. Initial jobless claims are now at their lowest level in 53 years. The four-week moving average, which smooths out volatility was 170,000 a decrease of 8,000 from the previous week’s revised average. Texas (-2,569) and Michigan (-2,599) led the drop in initial claims, while California (+1,780) and Pennsylvania (+1,464) saw increases. For the week ending March 26th, the number of people continuing to claim unemployment also known as insured unemployment remained at 1.1%. Continuing claims reported in at 1.523M up 17,000 from the previous week’s upwardly revised level. The continuing claims 4-week moving average was 1,541,250, a decrease of 35,250 from the previous week’s upwardly revised level. For the week ending March 19th, 1.723M people were receiving jobless benefits through state or federal programs, a decrease of 52,806 from the previous week’s level. There were some 18.387M weekly claims filed for the comparable week in 2021.
Tuesday April 12 – Core CPI (MoM) (March)
Thursday April 14 – Retail Sales (MoM) (March)
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