The major averages enter the final hour mixed on disappointing but not overly significant economic data. Bitcoin revisits the sub $7,000 level after Goldman Sachs backs out of plans for a trading desk. Theranos does its final implosion, announcing the company will shut down with its founder and CEO facing criminal charges.
Auto Data reports that vehicle sales data slipped to 16.7 million units annualized in August, putting 2018 on track for lower sales than the previous year. This data, like business capital spending plans indicate that the economy isn’t humming along as the headlines suggest.
The Mortgage Bankers Association reports that its activity index slipped .1% last week as refi’s fell 1.4% and purchase apps gained .6%. The 30-year contract rate for a jumbo loan dipped fractionally to 4.76%. This series continues its downward trend as one would expect given higher interest rates.
The trade deficit increased 8.2% in July to 50.1 billion dollars. Exports fell again, down 1.3%, while imports advanced .4%. This marks the highest deficit in 5-months and also the last data set before the trade tariffs hit the tape with next month’s report. Additionally trade is starting to become a negative contributor to Gross Domestic Product or GDP, with the trade war heating up this effect will become increasingly negative.
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