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October 18, 2013

The headline report for today is Canadian CPI for September.  It came in with a 0.2% increase over August for an annual rate of 1.1%.  Core inflation clocked-in with an annual rate of 1.3%.  Both numbers were generally in line with expectations but are well below Bank of Canada forecasts.  

Good growth in China appears to be giving the markets a boost.  The Chinese economy grew by 7.8% in the third quarter.  In North America equities started the day higher across the board.

Bond yields are down 5 - 6 bps.


by First National Financial LP 18. October 2013 11:26

October 17, 2013

With the end of the government shutdown in Washington economic data should be flowing out of the U.S. again.

Initial claims for jobless benefits in the U.S. fell again, but less than expected.  A backlog of claims in California is getting the blame.  Claims were down by 15,000 to a seasonally adjusted 358,000.  The four-week rolling average rose by nearly 12,000.

The latest release on building permits and housing starts in the U.S. has been delayed.

In Canada, non-resident investment slowed to $2.1 billion in August and was focused on corporate debt instruments.  Canadian investment in foreign securities rose to $5.7 billion. 

North American markets were higher at the outset.

Bond yields are down 6 - 7 bps.


by First National Financial LP 17. October 2013 06:04

October 16, 2013

Most investors will be keeping a close eye on today's throne speech in Ottawa and the on-going budget stand-off in the U.S., but there are a couple of reports of note today as well.

Canadian manufacturing shipment dipped an unexpected 0.2% in August, the first decline in four months. Consensus had been for a 0.2% increase. Shipments of food and vehicles fell while the miscellaneous category was dragged down by declines in jewelry and and silverware. New orders were up 0.1%.

In the U.S. The Fed's latest Beige Book is out today. Again, tapering will be what analysts are looking for.

The Consumer price index for September has been delayed because of the government shutdown in Washington.

North American markets were mixed in the early going. Wall Street was up, reversing yesterday's declines. Toronto was lower by just 0.2%.


by First National Financial LP 16. October 2013 06:05

October 15, 2013

Canadian real estate dominates on the first day of a shortened trading week here.

The Teranet home price index for September shows prices for existing homes were flat compared to August.  Prices were up 2.7% compared to a year ago.

The MLS home price index shows a year-over-year increase of 3.1% for September while the Canadian Real Estate Association claims an 8.8% rise over the year.  CREA also reports sales of existing homes climbed 18.2% compared to a year ago, with a 0.8% increase over August.

New home prices are out on Thursday.  The federal government’s speech from the throne is tomorrow and September employment numbers arrive on Friday.

North American markets were all lower in the early going today. 


by First National Financial LP 15. October 2013 10:57

October 15, 2013

Canadian real estate dominates on the first day of a shortened trading week here.

The Teranet home price index for September shows prices for existing homes were flat compared to August.  Prices were up 2.7% compared to a year ago.

The MLS home price index shows a year-over-year increase of 3.1% for September while the Canadian Real Estate Association claims an 8.8% rise over the year.  CREA also reports sales of existing homes climbed 18.2% compared to a year ago, with a 0.8% increase over August.

New home prices are out on Thursday.  The federal government’s speech from the throne is tomorrow and September employment numbers arrive on Friday.

 

North American markets were all lower in the early going today.


by First National Financial LP 15. October 2013 06:06

October 11, 2013

The Canadian economy created 11,900 jobs in September, beating expectations.  All of the jobs were full time in the private sector.  The unemployment rate dropped to 6.9%, but that appears to be the result of people -- mainly youth -- giving up the search for work.

U.S. retail sales crept up slightly in September according to some independent sources.  The official government figures remain under wraps because of the shutdown in Washington.

North American markets were up in the early going, continuing yesterday's rally.  Investors appear encouraged by the on going budget talks in the U.S.

Bond yields are down 1 - 2 bps. 


by First National Financial LP 13. October 2013 10:58

October 10, 2013

Canadian new home prices rose 0.1% in August compared to July.  Year-over-year the StatsCan index was up a modest 1.8%.  

The weekly read on first time jobless claims in the U.S. jumped a surprising 66,000.  However the bulk of the increase occurred in California where officials are working through a backlog of claims.  The four-week rolling average also jumped up by about 20,000.

The Bank of England kept its monetary policy unchanged, as expected.  It is sticking to its commitment to keep interest rates steady while unemployment remains high.

North American markets were mainly higher at the start.  Just the Nasdaq was lower.  Investors seem to be taking heart in word of some discussions to end the budget stand-off in Washington.

Bond yields are up 3 bps.


by First National Financial LP 10. October 2013 10:58

October 9, 2013

Just two U.S. reports of note today, unfortunately one of them -  the wholesale trade numbers for September - didn't get released because of the  federal government shutdown.  The other - the minutes of the Federal Reserve's September FOMC meeting - will come out this afternoon.  The note will be closely scrutinized in light of the Fed's surprise decision not to taper its $85 billion a month bond buying program.

The Fed's #2, Janet Yellen, is being nominated to replace Ben Bernanke as chair of the central bank when his second term expires in January. Despite signs the markets were pleased with the news North American equities started the day lower, continuing yesterday's significant, across the board, slide. Bond yields are down 2 bps.


by First National Financial LP 9. October 2013 05:01

October 8, 2013

September housing starts in Canada were up more than expected, hitting a seasonally adjusted, annualized rate of 193,600.  That beat forecasts by more than 8,000 units.  The August number was revised upward by about 4,000 units.

Canada's trade balance for August tipped further into deficit with a 2.1% increase in imports.  Exports rose by 1.8%.  It's the 20th deficit in a row and was bigger than expected.  Shipments to the U.S. accounted for nearly 76% of all Canadian exports in August and grew by 1.9% while imports rose by 0.1%.

In the U.S. the August trade numbers didn't get released because of the on-going government shutdown.  Forecasts had called for a modest increase in the trade deficit.

North American markets started off mixed today.  Toronto continued yesterday's gains while Wall Street continued to slide.

Bond yields are up 4 - 5 bps.


by First National Financial LP 8. October 2013 05:02

October 7, 2013

Investors can look forward to another slow to middling week as the U.S. government shutdown drags on.  It is a light week for data out of the U.S.  The key report comes Wednesday with the release of the latest Fed minutes.

A busier week for numbers here in Canada with housing being the main focus.  Housing starts for September come out tomorrow and new home prices hit on Thursday.

Today the report on August building permits showed a sharp decrease.  The value of permits issued dropped a seasonally adjusted 21.2%.  That pretty much erased the 21.4% increase in July.  Permits declined in all sectors but commercial and industrial took a bigger hit than housing.  Permits for multi-family dwellings fell 8.3% while single-family permits slipped 3%.  The value of non-residential building permits tumbled by 37.9%.

Canadian employment numbers come out Friday.

North American markets opened higher, but quickly dropped into negative territory.


by First National Financial LP 7. October 2013 04:05