January Durable Goods fell a greater than expected 5.2% (consensus was -2.5%) but ex transports, the drop of 2.5% wasn’t that much worse than estimates.
However, the December data was revised down sharply. Non Defense Capital Goods ex Aircraft fell a sharp 5.4% after a 5.8% drop in Dec. The declines were widespread and further evidence of companies continuing to batten down the hatchets. Shipments, which gets directly plugged into GDP, fell 3.7% and is down for 4 straight months.
The inventory to shipments ratio rose to the highest level since 1992. Initial claims totaled 667k, much higher than the consensus of 625k and Continuing Claims were 87k more than expected and at a new all time high (but not adjusted for population growth) and does not bode well for next week’s employment data.
Bottom line, there is absolutely nothing within today’s data to hang one’s hat on as the deterioration continues and the dark tunnel sees no end.
— Peter Boockvaar