On Demand

Europe Is A Drag, But …

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Data, data everywhere, nor any drop to please. My "retake" on the famous line from the Rhyme
of the Ancient Mariner
points to my attitude about the market these
days. At the moment, whatever good
economic data comes out can't really move the market to the upside. Partly, the good data is streaming beneath
surface and partly, Europe still dominates the headlines, and rightfully so for the
moment.

However, knowing me as you do by now, you know I will point
out the good data flowing underneath the current of news. Remember, the market
will ultimately turn on the global economy and the global economy will follow
the natural cycle and turn up. In the
meantime, economic signs are pointing to a release of at least two inhibitors
on the US economy.

The US housing market collapse exacerbated the recession that began
in 2007, and many economists and pundits argued that a full economic recovery
could not happen until the housing market healed. Over the last two years, signs of healing have
popped up, but the market has remained stagnant. One reason is that the news
has hammered the idea that a rising tide of foreclosures were coming both last
year and this year. Once again, the oracles missed the mark, or at least they
have through the first five months of 2012.

Foreclosure
filings in the U.S. fell to a five-year low last month as lenders sought to
avoid seizing property and a housing recovery showed signs of taking hold.

Another part of
the coming real estate market solution is that as the fear generated from the
housing and market collapses in 2008 fades, Americans will see the generational
opportunity in front of them.

Affordability
for homebuyers increased to the highest on record in the first quarter, based
on the combination of low mortgage rates, low prices and improved incomes
measured in a Realtors index.

The second
inhibitor on the US
economy has been the high price of gasoline.
The albatross hanging on the neck of the US
consumer is going away. As I have said
recently, lower gas prices will be a huge boost, stimulation if you will, to
the US economy.

Oil traded
near the lowest price in more than six months after
U.S.
stockpiles rose to the highest level since 1990.

Consumer sentiment
is up. Not only do the surveys point this out, but the rash of retail data that
has come out recently supports it as well.
For example, one retail bellwether is Walmart, the store of the masses.

WalmartU.S.
same-store sales have risen for three straight quarters following nine
consecutive quarterly declines.

Europe,
yes, it is a drag, but don't lose sight of the economic cycle, which slowly but
surely is churning to the upside. Yes,
things are getting better, slowly and surely.

Trade in
the day; Invest in your life

Trader
Ed

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About the Author

Hello, I am Trader Ed.  No, not Mister Ed, although at times I feel a bit like a talking horse.  You see, my job is to educate folks about the market, which means talking about (or writing in this case) anything and everything that affects the market.  This means the world is my oyster.  Every day, I read for about an hour or so about the happenings in the world.  Every day, I look for leading indicators that will help me “see the future.”  No, I am not an oracle, nor do I pretend to be, but I do look for macro trends that point in a direction, and I am more than happy to share my “vision” with you.  Keep in mind, though, my vision derives from analyzing the fundamentals of the global economy, as well as looking at current movement in the market.  I shun the doomsayers and I embrace the realists.  I look to the positive without denying the negative.  In short, I paint as realistic a picture of the market as I can.  So, if you have a question in this realm, feel free to ask me.  I will answer you in this column and I will do that to the best of my ability.

Hoping to hear from you.

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