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Our take on recent noteworthy items

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May 2015 ISM

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Signal or noise? That’s always a question to ask when reviewing economic data points. It is becoming more widely recognized that the government’s first quarter GDP estimates are providing lots of noise and less meaningful signals about the pace of the economic expansion...

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April 2015 ISM

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The May 1st release by the Institute of Supply Management (ISM) on April manufacturing conditions “fits” with the following big-picture investing backdrop: the economic expansion continues to grind forward at its slow trend (2-3% real, 3-4% nominal), accumulated excesses in the form of debt, inventory gluts or rapid inflation are largely absent...

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November 2014 ISM

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With the turn of the calendar to a new month comes the routine cycle of economic readings from the month just completed. One our favorite data points - the Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) - is of particular interest to us for it is both highly correlated with the economy at large and...

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Getting Help From E

August 2014

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On August 27th, the S&P 500 closed slightly above the 2,000 level. So on a year-to-date basis, the S&P 500 increased about 150 points - or 8% in price only. Most of the return this year has been from the contribution of solid fundamentals in the form of earnings growth versus...

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August 2014 ISM

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The most recent report from the Institute of Supply Management (ISM) on the state of manufacturing for the month of August showed that growth in the U.S. manufacturing sector continues to outpace growth in the economy at large. Not long ago such a situation would have been...

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