Today was a true day of economic data, and none of it was good.
Dow: -614 points (-1.81%) S&P: -1.56% Nasdaq: -1.24% 10-Year Treasury Yield: 3.37% (-16 basis points) Top-performing sector: Communication Services (-0.93%) Bottom-performing sector: Consumer Staples (-2.65%) WTI Crude Oil: $79.25/barrel (-1.16%) Key Economic Points of the Day:
The Producer Price Index (PPI) saw outright (and rather significant) DEFLATION in December, with prices dropping on the month -0.5%, well more than the -0.1% expected. November’s number was adjusted downwards by -0.2% as well. The 7.4% year-over-year number came down to 6.2%. The CORE number is down to 5.5%. Wholesale gas prices dropping -13.4% helped the cause, as did the food index’s -1.2% decline. Energy/gas prices have helped downward pressure in recent months, and that could/likely will reverse in months ahead even as other inflationary data see more downward pressure. I expect the core vs. headline reads to potentially diverge significantly in the months ahead. Industrial Production fell -0.7% in December and was actually down -1% when you factor in downward revisions from past months. Manufacturing led the way down. This was the largest monthly decline in more than a year. On an annualized basis, Industrial Production is down -5.2% in the last three months. Microsoft joined the fray of huge tech companies performing massive layoffs as they announced plans to lay off 10,000 employees (5% of their workforce) Retail sales fell -1.1% in December, mostly in line with the level of disinflation of gasoline prices we saw last month.
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