The economic calendar is light, and the market week will be shortened. There is no holiday this week, but expect many participants to take off early for a long weekend. If interest remain above 3% on the ten-year note, that will be the focus.
This morning's release of the publicly available data from ECRI puts its Weekly Leading Index (WLI) at 148.7, down 0.6 from the previous week. Year-over-year the four-week moving average of the indicator is now at 3.80%, down from 3.87% last week. The WLI Growth indicator is now at 4.3, down from the previous week.
The latest Conference Board Leading Economic Index (LEI) for April increased to 109.4 from a revised 109.0 in March. The Coincident Economic Index (CEI) came in at 103.5, up from the previous month.
This morning's seasonally adjusted 222K new claims, up 11K from the previous week's figure, was worse the Investing.com forecast of 215K. From the release: "The claims taking procedures in Puerto Rico and in the Virgin Islands have still not returned to normal."
Today's report on Industrial Production for April shows a 0.7% increase month-over-month, which was better than the Investing.com consensus of 0.5%. The year-over-year change is 3.46%, down slightly from last month's YoY increase. Annual revisions were made to the entire series incorporating new benchmark data and monthly and seasonal factor revisions. The indicator is currently at an all-time high.
The economic calendar is normal, but there will be a lot of competing news – Korean talks, China negotiations, and the Trump legal team’s announcement about whether the President will meet with Special Counsel Mueller. And those are just the items we know about!
Note: With the release of April Retail Sales and Consumer Price Index, we've updated this commentary to include the latest Real Retail Sales. Month-over-month nominal sales in April increased by 0.3% (0.30% to two decimals). Real Retail Sales, calculated with the seasonally adjusted Consumer Price Index, increased by 0.08%.
This morning we got the latest Empire State Manufacturing Survey. The diffusion index for General Business Conditions at 20.1 was an increase of 4.3 from the previous month's 15.8. The Investing.com forecast was for a reading of 15.1.
First Eagle’s Global Fund (SGENX) is its flagship fund, with over $55 billion in assets. As of April 30, 2018, since inception (1/1/79), the Fund has returned 13.15% annually, versus 9.67% for the MSCI World Index. Over the last 15 years, it has been in the top 2% of its peer group. I spoke with its managers, Matthew B. McLennan and Kimball Brooker, Jr., on May 1.
Let me begin by saying our equity market trend model signals remain moderately bullish and our bond market trend model signals remain bearish. With that caveat, I do see us speeding down the road with limited visibility to the problem that exists just around the next turn.