Succinct Summation Of Week’s Events (05/18/2012)

Succinct summation of week’s events:

Positives:

1) Cheers to Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook for building an incredible business and whose reward today is hugely deserved and exciting to watch.

2) April Housing Starts back above 700k for 4th month in the past 6 at 717k, above est of 685k and March revised up by 45k to 699k.

3) After rising from 19 to 28 thru the winter months and falling to 24 in April, the May NAHB home builder survey rises to 29, the best in 5 yrs.

4) Refi apps up by 13% with new low in mortgage rates.

5) NY mfr’g in May rises to 17.1 from 6.6 in April but still down from 20.2 in March and 6 month outlook falls to 29.3 from 43.1.

6) Old news but Q1 GDP in Germany surprises to upside and region sees flat Q1 growth instead of expected contraction. That will certainly change in Q2.

7) China cuts RRR again, market though yawns.

8) UK jobless claims unexpectedly falls.

Negatives:

1) Europe again the main concern as Greek stocks fall another 10% and new PSI bonds sell to lows as bank run fears spread and we have to wait another month for new elections. Spanish IBEX down 6% as Bankia falls 15%. MIB lower by 7% and both Spanish and Italian bond yields jump and Spanish CDS goes to new high.

2) Philly mfr’g falls to -5.8 from +8.5 and well below expectations of +10 as weakness is broad based and the outlook falls sharply.

3) Initial Jobless Claims 5k more than expected at 370k and prior week revised up by 3k.

4) April Retail Sales reflect give back as they rise just .2% m/o/m ex gasoline.

5) CPI moderates to 2.3% from 2.7% y/o/y but tell that to people whose wages are flat. Core rate up 2.3% y/o/y matching most since Sept ’08.

6) Shanghai index closes week at 1 month low. FDI falls for 6th straight month and home prices fall in more Chinese cities than the previous month.

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