Morning Report: Small Business Optimism rises 3/14/17

Vital Statistics:

Last Change
S&P Futures 2372.0 1.0
Eurostoxx Index 374.3 1.1
Oil (WTI) 48.3 -0.2
US dollar index 91.7
10 Year Govt Bond Yield 2.60%
Current Coupon Fannie Mae TBA 101.03
Current Coupon Ginnie Mae TBA 102.5
30 Year Fixed Rate Mortgage 4.21

Stocks are flat this morning on no real news. Bonds and MBS are flat as well.

Should be a quiet day in the markets as the FOMC meeting begins and most of the Northeast gets buried with snow.

Inflation remains tame at the wholesale level, as the producer price index rose at 0.3% MOM and 2.2% YOY. Ex food and energy, the index rose 0.3% and 1.5%. The core index was up 0.3% and 1.8% MOM / YOY respectively.

Small Business optimism slipped in February, but remains close to 43 year highs, according to the NFIB. Optimism on the regulatory front, along with the potential for tax reform drove the increase. The job openings component of the index hit levels not seen since 2000, and a tight labor market is squeezing margins for business owners who don’t yet have to confidence to pass on those increased costs to customers. Small businesses continue to report higher sales, and we are beginning to see businesses invest in plant and equipment, something that has been dormant since 2007.

CoreLogic takes a look at the foreclosure crisis 10 years on. A total of 7.8 million homes were lost to foreclosure, and at the peak of the crisis, there was 1.5 million foreclosed homes in inventory.

The Congressional Budget Office scored the GOP’s healthcare plan yesterday. It basically is as expected: cheaper and covers less people. A few GOP defections in the Senate will kill it.

19 Responses

  1. Like

  2. Interesting piece:

    “Kellyanne’s Alternative Universe

    Will the truth ever catch up with Trump’s most skilled spin artist?

    Molly Ball
    April 2017 Issue

    Newt Gingrich, the former House speaker (and a former Conway client), told me her effectiveness at “taking on the media” makes her essential to the new administration. “You either decide you’re going to defend Trump and Trumpism, or you let the left browbeat you into doing stupid things,” he said. When I asked whether the administration and the media might be able to find some kind of common ground, Gingrich practically snarled. “Not these people,” he said. “You are all so far to the left, so contemptuous to Trump. Trying to conciliate you is silly. It’s like trying to pet lions.””


    • ““You are all so far to the left, so contemptuous to Trump. Trying to conciliate you is silly. It’s like trying to pet lions.””

      Glad to see the right finally gets it.


  3. Great observation to keep in mind vis-a-vis the upcoming European elections:

    “When liberals insist that only fascists will defend borders, then voters will hire fascists to do the job liberals won’t do.”


    • jnc:

      Frum makes a lot of great points. But I totally reject his rhetorical assumption that “liberal” is the opposite of “fascist”. Indeed, today’s liberals are far closer to being fascists than are any conservatives.

      This also bugged me:

      The costs include intense social strains, which have now expressed themselves by the election of an irresponsible authoritarian demagogue to the presidency of the United States.

      I don’t dispute the characterization of Trump, but it was equally applicable to the previous occupant of the White House.


  4. nice revisionist history about obamacare from Pravda.

    obamacare was not a compromise between left and right. it was a compromise between the far left and the center left.


  5. Like

  6. Color me shocked

    and kudos to Vox for publishing something that doesn’t support the narrative.


    • “kudos to Vox”

      Whoah there cowboy. It’s not like the information actually changed their opinion.

      “Still, the laws have very clearly racist intents

      None of this research should let the people passing voting restrictions off the hook.”


  7. Vox admits it:

    “The Obama administration knew from the start that it wanted to make health insurance more accessible to those who had traditionally struggled to get covered: people who are sicker, older, and poorer — and did not have access to employer-sponsored coverage. Democrats didn’t just want to get millions covered. They had specific demographics in mind they wanted to benefit.”


    • It is easy to overstate the symmetry between the Affordable Care Act and the reforms Mitt Romney signed in Massachusetts. The ACA raised more taxes, and imposed more regulations, than Romney’s plan. But it’s also true that Obama and the Democrats would have happily traded away many of those taxes and rules for even a couple of Republican votes.

      news to me


  8. The NY Times Editorial Page accidentally making the case for opponents of immigration:

    “On Monday, the Dutch far-right candidate Geert Wilders called for Turkey’s ambassador to be expelled from the Netherlands, and he accused people waving Turkish flags at a rally on Saturday of “showing they are not Dutch, but Turkish.” That view is antithetical to the open society Europe has long stood for.”


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