Markets: They were mixed most of the week, awaiting what Fed Chair Powell would say in Jackson Hole. Afterwards, many felt the Fed Chair mirrored his hawkish tone from last year’s Symposium.
S&P roller coaster last week: Up, down, up, down a lot, and up.
Durable goods: Coming off a +4.7% increase in June, July orders were expected to decline -4.0%. The actual number came in at -5.2%. Orders are up +3.8% YOY.
Fed Balance Sheet: $8.139 trillion (down -$7 billion). Reminder: their balance sheet was closer to $4 trillion before the Pandemic.
Fed - Jackson Hole: The 46th annual Jackson Hole Symposium took place Thursday-Saturday last week. And the keynote was delivered by Fed Chair Jerome Powell. In summary, here are the salient takeaways: First, while it’s gotten better, the Fed feels Inflation is still too high. And second, while the Fed will be careful, they are still willing to raise rates higher. Markets were hoping for a less hawkish tone, but they didn’t get that.
Housing: Existing home sales were down -2.2% in July and are down -16.6% YOY. New home sales were up +4.4% in July and are up +31.5% YOY.
Jobless claims: The weekly number came in at 230,000. The four-week average came in at 237,000.
Radio: I was off last Friday. You can hear Bill and I talk about Markets and the Economy most Friday mornings at 6:40am, 7:40am, and 8:40am on WTAM 1100 AM.
Focus #1 of the week: It will come on Thursday when we get the latest update on the PCE. This is the Inflation metric the Federal Reserve focuses on. Expectations are for it climb from 3.0% up to 3.3%. Core Inflation is expected to move up a tick from 4.1% up to 4.2%.
Focus #2 of the week: That comes on Friday morning when we get the latest jobs and unemployment numbers. The jobs number is expected to come in at 170,000. And the U3 unemployment rate is expected to stay at 3.5%.
Economic calendar: The first read on Q2 GDP (Wed); the latest read on the PCE, jobless claims (Thu); the ISM manufacturing index, and the latest jobs and unemployment numbers (Fri).