No Psychic Powers Needed: Reports on Consumer Confidence & Housing are Grim

 
 
6:45 AM, WEDNESDAY — I don’t think anyone would have needed to hone any psychic powers to predict what was confirmed by official reports yesterday — consumer confidence continues to plunge, now reaching its lowest level in nearly 16 years — and with all the reports of foreclosures, was anyone really surprised that home prices fell again? For a good take on these topics check out the Chicago Tribune’s story here.
 
I almost need to hold my nose to report this one, as my guesstimate tells me oil’s going to have no trouble creeping back up — however, CNBC is reporting that oil fell almost $2 due to demands in Asia.
 
The good news is we saw the S&P creep up a little as oil took a slight hit.
 
According to The NYT, it appears talks have broken down between United Airlines and U.S. Airways… not that I, personally, would touch any airline’s stock in this market.
 
And it appears fingers are being pointed at hedge funds again for causing a problem — this time it’s the candyman saying hedge funds have caused a spike in the cost of cocoa to make all our precious chocolate treats. The WSJ has a good take on this story here… Sheesh, I’ve already seen the price of a large box of Junior Mints spike over the past year from $1.19 to $1.49 — and that’s outside the halls of the movie theatre, where the same box fetches around $3.50.
 
News to keep your ear open for today — Exxon is meeting with shareholders today. It should be interesting to see if the struggle for power at the helm between father and son is influenced by this meeting.

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