Monday, March 25, 2013

Weekly Newsletter March 24th - March 30th

Current Events:  After a down week, U.S. financial markets are seeking a jolt of positive news to keep near historic levels. Such a boost will likely come early in the week out of Europe as Cyprus has tentatively reached an agreement to receive key financial aid in an effort to avoid a meltdown. Early indications show the euro and U.S. stock-index futures rallying, following a sharp rise in Asian stocks as a result of the bailout.

What to Look for This Week

A ton of housing data is scheduled to be released this week, which will allow investors to gauge the temperature of the housing market. Not much excitement is expected this week from earnings though, as just a few big names are scheduled to announce, including Dollar General, Red Hat, Paychex, and GameStop.

News Affecting the Markets

The European Central Bank, the European Commission and the International Monetary Fund (collectively known as the Troika) came to the rescue Sunday bailing out the tiny island nation of Cyprus by securing 10 billion euros of aid. The proposed deal, which was leaked by European Union officials to Reuters, would include the closure of the country’s second-largest lender, Popular Bank of Cyprus or “Laiki Bank,” with deposits under 100,000 euros to be shifted to the larger Bank of Cyprus, while deposits over that amount would be frozen and used to pay off debts. Additionally, a 40% haircut on Bank of Cyprus depositors holding more than 100,000 euros in their accounts is reportedly also included in the structured deal designed to alleviate the country from its likely financial doom.

Smart Investing

Budget Analysis:  Investing and/or trading should involve the use of disposal income. But getting a hold of disposable income isn't easy for most. Thus, it may be prudent to create and maintain a budget. Start by reviewing your income and expenses. This will be easier if you get in the habit of tracking the money you spend using a paper ledger or with your computer. Remember to account for any debt expenses you may have, such as credit card and loan payments and include changes you anticipate such as a pay raise or a new car payment. Think about ways to maximize your income and minimize expenses. If you need more income, you may decide to work a few extra hours at a part-time job in addition to your current job. Look for ways both large and small to spend less throughout the year. Each income and added savings will quickly contribute to a larger pocket, which will give you a greater opportunity to participate in investments.

Earnings for the Week

Monday: Dollar General Corp (DG)

Tuesday:  No major announcements scheduled.

Wednesday: Paychex Inc (PAYX) {After the Close}, PVH Corp (PVH) {After the Close}, Red Hat Inc (RHT)

Thursday:  Accenture PLC (ACN) {After the Close}, Commercial Metals Co (CMC), GameStop Corp (GME), Mosaic Co (MOS)

Friday:  Excel Maritime Carriers Ltd (EXM)

* Earnings dates and times are subject to change


Economic Data this Week
No scheduled announcements.

Durable Orders @ 8:30 AM for February (Est. = 3.8% to 5.0%, Prior = -4.9%)
Case-Shiller 20-city Index @ 9:00 AM for January (Est. = 7.5%, Prior = 6.8%)
Consumer Confidence @ 10:00 AM for March (Est. = 65.0 to 66.9, Prior = 69.0)
New Home Sales @ 10:00 AM for February (Est. = 400K to 426K, Prior = 437K)

MBA Mortgage Index @ 7:00 AM for 03/23 (Est. = n/a, Prior = n/a)
Pending Home Sales @ 10:00 AM for February (Est. = 2.0%, Prior = 4.5%)
Crude Inventories @ 10:30 AM for 03/23 (Est. = n/a, Prior = -1.314M)

Initial Claims @ 8:30 AM for 03/23 (Est. = 335K to 338K, Prior = 336K)
Continuing Claims @ 8:30 AM for 03/23 (Est. = 3040K to 3050K, Prior = 3053K)
Chicago PMI @ 9:45 AM for March (Est. = 55.0 to 56.5, Prior = 56.8)
Natural Gas Inventories @ 10:30 AM for 03/23 (Est. = n/a, Prior = -62)

Personal Income @ 8:30 AM for February (Est. = 0.8% to 0.9%, Prior = -3.6%)
Personal Spending @ 8:30 AM for February (Est. = 0.6%, Prior = 0.2%)
Michigan Sentiment @ 9:55 AM for March (Est. = 72.0 to 72.4, Prior = 71.8)




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