Welcome and thank you for visiting!

The charts, graphs and comments in my Trading Blog represent my technical analysis and observations of a variety of world markets...
* Major World Market Indices * Futures Markets * U.S. Sectors and ETFs * Commodities * U.S. Bonds * Forex

* The content in my articles is time-sensitive. Each one shows the date and time (New York ET) that I publish them. By the time you read them, market conditions may be quite different than that which is described in my posts, and upon which my analyses are based at that time.
* My posts are also re-published by several other websites and I have no control as to when their editors do so, or for the accuracy in their editing and reproduction of my content.
* In answer to this often-asked question, please be advised that I do not post articles from other writers on my site.
* From time to time, I will add updated market information and charts to some of my articles, so it's worth checking back here occasionally for the latest analyses.

DISCLAIMER: All the information contained within my posts are my opinions only and none of it may be construed as financial or trading advice...please read my full Disclaimer at this link.


* If the dots don't connect, gather more dots until they do...or, just follow the $$$...





* Wed. Feb. 21 @ 2:00 pm ET - FOMC Meeting Minutes
* Wed. March 6 @ 2:00 pm ET - Beige Book Report
* Fri. March 8 @ 8:30 am ET - Employment Data
* Wed. March 20 @ 2:00 pm ET - FOMC Rate Announcement + Forecasts and @ 2:30 pm ET - Fed Chair Press Conference

*** CLICK HERE for link to Economic Calendars for all upcoming events.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Will the American Consumer Save the Day?

Global economic data released Wednesday night and Thursday morning showed multiple contractions in manufacturing in China, in manufacturing and services in Germany, France and Europe, and in European industrial new orders. Additionally, core retail sales contracted in Canada, the price of homes continued to fall in the U.S., while the U.S. Conference Board's Leading Index rose, and unemployment claims dropped in the U.S.

That leaves saving the American economy up to Americans this year. With heavy debt loads already being carried by the average family, as shown below, one can see that will be a very monumental task (click this link for a bigger graphics picture). As noted in my post of March 7th, the levels of consumer debt accumulated during the past three months are higher than they were in 2007/08 just prior to the financials crisis, and are at their highest levels seen since January 2000...an interesting scenario considering that personal income has declined, as mentioned in my post of March 1st.

With brokers/banks peddling their stocks with the cry that "Now is the time to buy equities!" (which are at their peak in price from the 2011 lows), the question of the day becomes, "Does the average investor actually have the means to pile in at these pricey high risk levels, especially when U.S. investment by foreign counterparts may be shaky/unsustainable?" Banks may be forced to continue buying their own reserve of stocks, supplemented by low interest loans from the Fed, while continuing to raise bank rates. Under this scenario, when the Fed will actually begin to pay attention to rising inflation is anybody's guess.