In Between Days

by CC August 18, 2011 12:00 am • Commentary



  • 8:30 a.m. ET: In the really important indicator of the day, we get weekly jobless claims. Economists expect to see 400,000, up from 395,000 the week before. They’re just guessing 400,000 every week now.
  • 8:30 a.m.: We also get the CPI report for July. Higher-than-expected PPI got everybody worried about inflation today. CPI will either calm those fears or add to them. Either way, inflation is not our biggest worry right now.
  • 10:00 a.m.: Our nation’s realtors tell us how existing home sales did in July. Economists think they did a little better than in June, which isn’t saying much.
  • 10:00 a.m.: Holy cow, the Philly Fed index comes out at the same time. Economists expect a slight improvement in this measure of mid-Atlantic factory activity, but then they expected the same thing for the Empire State measure, too.
  • 10:00 a.m.: The Conference Board gives us its measure of leading economic indicators. They’re expected to rise, for some reason.
  • 1:00 p.m.: Treasury has some 5-year TIPS it wants you to buy. And you probably will.


  • J.M. Smucker
  • Sears Holdings
  • Ross Stores
  • Hewlett-Packard
  • Gap
  • Intuit
  • GameStop
  • Autodesk


Speculative demand from investors has pushed the gold market into a “bubble that is poised to burst” after prices surged to a record this year, Wells Fargo & Co. said.

“We have seen the economic damage” of past bubbles and “feel compelled to ring the warning bells,” Wells Fargo analysts led by Dean Junkans said in a report dated yesterday and e-mailed today.

Gold futures have advanced 26 percent this year, following 10 straight annual gains. The price reached a record $1,817.60 an ounce on Aug. 11 on demand for an investment haven as European and U.S. sovereign-debt woes escalated.

“There could be substantial risk to gold once the fear that the world is coming to an end subsides,” Junkans said in a telephone interview from Minneapolis. “We are worried about the downward risk.”


The S&P 500 finished the day flat and money continues to flow into Treasuries, driving yields lower. The yield on the 10-year note closed the day at 2.17, down another six basis points to match the post-QE2 low set last Wednesday. We’re only nine basis points above the all-time closing low on the 10-year, which was set in December 2008.