September 14, 2018
Friday's heavy run of economic data has a soft feel. Retail sales inched only 0.1 percent higher in August though July's strong gain was revised higher. Manufacturing in the industrial production report, up only 0.2 percent, continues to limp along in contrast, however, to mining where growth is very strong. Consumer sentiment also proved strong though inflation expectations are slipping noticeably this month.
Up and down news on U.S. trade talks between both China and Canada made for a bumpy Friday session as stocks ended flat. On the week, however, stocks posted sizable gains with the Dow up 0.9 percent to 26,154 and the Nasdaq 1.4 percent higher to 8,010. Rates also moved higher in the week especially on the short end as the month-end FOMC approaches, a meeting that is expected to produce another rate hike. The 10-year yield rose 5 basis points in the week to 2.99 percent while the 2-year rose 9 basis points to 2.79 percent.