Monday, August 16, 2004


Monday answers Friday's questions.

The big news last week - oil, resolved itself a bit over the weekend with the completion of Venezuela's recall election. Incumbent President Hugo Chavez maintained his position. Since Venezuela is an OPEC nation, domestic turmoil in that country could lower oil production which would in turn raise prices even further. Oil prices instead backed off from previous record highs, closing at $45.69 per barrel.

The stock market rebounded from last weeks losses, posting a 129.20 gain for the day. Profit taking in the bond markets caused yields in the 10 year bond market to edge up 3 bps. Earlier in the day, a regional manufacturing report came in much lower than economists expectations.
The consumer price index report for July will be tomorrow's big economic news.

My informal employment survey of newspaper classifieds across the country shows some improvement.

Salt Lake City is up from last week at 1528 new jobs listed.
Richmond, VA is also up with 92.
Davenport, IA is up to 152.
Winston-Salem is down slightly with 467.
Sacramento is also down with 1703.
Oklahoma City edged up with 1410 new jobs listed.

We'll see on Thursday if unemployment figures have any correlation to this informal collection of new job listings.

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