WEEKLY ECONOMIC UPDATE – January 3, 2012

John J. Barrios, CFP® Presents:

WEEKLY ECONOMIC UPDATE
WEEKLY QUOTE

“You must do the thing you think you cannot do.”

– Eleanor Roosevelt

WEEKLY TIP

It may be a good idea to make your 2012 IRA contribution at the start of the year, rather than waiting until the tax filing deadline of the following year. That way the contributed assets will have more time to compound.

WEEKLY RIDDLE

They can run side by side for thousands of miles; they are made of steel. While they constantly touch the ground, they seldom meet or touch each other. What are they?

Last week’s riddle:
They are sometimes stomped on, yet they can also be very tasty and sweet. What are they?

Last week’s answer:

Grapes.

 

January 2, 2012

STOCKS IN 2011: DJIA +5.5%, S&P 500 ENDS FLAT
The Dow Jones Industrial Average bucked a global trend and advanced in 2011. The index rose 11.95% in the fourth quarter, a move that separated it from a pack of overseas benchmarks that finished the year with double-digit percentage losses. In terms of price return, the S&P 500 recorded its smallest annual change since 1947 (see below). The S&P’s total return for 2011 was +2.11%. With all the fears about Europe and the Federal Reserve keeping interest rates incredibly low, long-term Treasuries had their best year since 2008 with a total return of 33%.1,2,3

 

CONSUMER CONFIDENCE BAROMETER RISES

The Conference Board’s index of consumer confidence saw a big jump north in December, soaring 9.3 points to 64.5. Economists surveyed by Reuters had expected it to come in at 58.3.4

 

HOME SALE PRICES DOWN, HOME SALE CONTRACTS UP
The good news? The National Association of Realtors said its pending home sales index reached a 19-month peak in November, moving to 100.1 for a 5.9% annual gain. The bad news? The October edition of the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index slipped 1.2% from its September level.4,5

 

HIGHS & LOWS IN KEY COMMODITIES FOR 2011
Gold lost 10.48% for the month but went +10.23% for the year, in contrast to copper (-22.73%) and silver (-9.77%). Crude oil advanced 8.15% in 2011, while retail gas prices rose 6.41%. Notable yearly dives were made by natural gas (-32.15%) and cotton (-36.69%). The U.S. Dollar Index gained 1.56% on the year.2

A MINOR RETREAT TO END THE YEAR

All three major U.S. stock indices lost ground in the last trading week of 2011. The four-day performances across December 27-30: DJIA, -0.62% to 12,217.56; NASDAQ, -0.52% to 2,605.15; S&P 500, -0.61% to 1,257.60.1,6

 

THIS WEEK: The NYSE is closed Monday in celebration of the New Year’s Day holiday. Tuesday, the ISM manufacturing index for December is released, plus the most recent FOMC minutes. No major economic releases are scheduled on Wednesday. On Thursday, Monsanto, Amgen and Family Dollar announce earnings, ISM issues its December service sector PMI and new initial claims figures arrive. Friday brings the December jobs report from the Labor Department.

 

% CHANGE 2011 1-YR CHG 5-YR AVG 10-YR AVG
DJIA +5.53 +5.53 -0.39 +2.19
NASDAQ -1.80 -1.80 +1.57 +3.36
S&P 500 -0.003 -0.003 -2.27 +0.95
REAL YIELD 12/30 RATE 1 YR AGO 5 YRS AGO 10 YRS AGO
10 YR TIPS -0.07% 1.08% 2.41% 3.50%

 
Sources: online.wsj.com, bigcharts.com, treasury.gov, treasurydirect.gov – 12/30/111,7,8,9

Indices are unmanaged, do not incur fees or expenses, and cannot be invested into directly.

These returns do not include dividends.

 

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John Barrios is registered to offer securities through First Heartland Capital, Inc. Member FINRA & SIPC, and offer advisory services through First Heartland Consultants, Inc.   Barrios Financial Services is not affiliated with First Heartland Capital, Inc.

 

This material was prepared by MarketingLibrary.Net Inc., and does not necessarily represent the views of the presenting party, nor their affiliates. Marketing Library.Net Inc. is not affiliated with any broker or brokerage firm that may be providing this information to you. This information should not be construed as investment, tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any Federal tax penalty. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is a price-weighted index of 30 actively traded blue-chip stocks. The NASDAQ Composite Index is an unmanaged, market-weighted index of all over-the-counter common stocks traded on the National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotation System. The Standard & Poor’s 500 (S&P 500) is an unmanaged group of securities considered to be representative of the stock market in general. It is not possible to invest directly in an index. NYSE Group, Inc. (NYSE:NYX) operates two securities exchanges: the New York Stock Exchange (the “NYSE”) and NYSE Arca (formerly known as the Archipelago Exchange, or ArcaEx®, and the Pacific Exchange). NYSE Group is a leading provider of securities listing, trading and market data products and services. The New York Mercantile Exchange, Inc. (NYMEX) is the world’s largest physical commodity futures exchange and the preeminent trading forum for energy and precious metals, with trading conducted through two divisions – the NYMEX Division, home to the energy, platinum, and palladium markets, and the COMEX Division, on which all other metals trade. Additional risks are associated with international investing, such as currency fluctuations, political and economic instability and differences in accounting standards. All information is believed to be from reliable sources; however we make no representation as to its completeness or accuracy. All economic and performance data is historical and not indicative of future results. Market indices discussed are unmanaged. Investors cannot invest in unmanaged indices. The publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting or other professional services. If assistance is needed, the reader is advised to engage the services of a competent professional.

 

Citations.

1 – blogs.wsj.com/marketbeat/2011/12/30/data-points-u-s-markets-71/ [12/30/11]

2 – money.msn.com/market-news/post.aspx?post=7a929e98-4d99-44cb-98c9-a0ef1c3151c4 [12/30/11]

3 – blogs.wsj.com/marketbeat/2011/12/30/for-the-sp-500-2011-bascially-never-happened/ [12/30/11]

4 – www.reuters.com/article/2011/12/27/us-economy-idUSTRE7BE12S20111227 [12/27/11]

5 – www.realtor.org/press_room/news_releases/2011/12/phs_nov [12/29/11]

6 – montoyaregistry.com/Financial-Market.aspx?financial-market=retirement-investment-funds&category=3 [12/30/11]

7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=12%2F29%2F06&x=0&y=0 [12/30/11]

7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=12%2F29%2F06&x=0&y=0 [12/30/11]

7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=12%2F29%2F06&x=0&y=0 [12/30/11]

7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=12%2F31%2F01&x=0&y=0 [12/30/11]

7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=12%2F31%2F01&x=0&y=0 [12/30/11]

7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=12%2F31%2F01&x=0&y=0 [12/30/11]

8 – treasury.gov/resource-center/data-chart-center/interest-rates/Pages/TextView.aspx?data=realyield [12/30/11]

8 – treasury.gov/resource-center/data-chart-center/interest-rates/Pages/TextView.aspx?data=realyieldAll [12/30/11]

9 – treasurydirect.gov/instit/annceresult/press/preanre/2001/ofm71101.pdf [7/11/01]

 

 

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