Federal Reserve Chairperson-Designate Janet Yellen

11-14-2013 4-41-25 PMThis morning at 10:00 a.m EST in Washington DC, Janet Yellen, Federal Reserve Chairperson-Designate, testified on monetary policy before the Senate Banking Committee. Unexpectedly, text of the testimony was released 17 hours earlier than the scheduled speaking time. Today’s testimony had a positive effect on currency. The testimony is normally given in two parts. First, the prepared statement is read and a text version is made available on the Fed’s website. The second part is a Q&A session, where the questions are not known beforehand. The questions, being unscripted, can lead to some moments of heavy market volatility, as traders try to predict the effect on the bank’s monetary policy.

Treasury Budget Report

11-13-2013 4-40-34 PMThe E-mini S&P opened today at (1756.50). The day’s low price was hit within the first five minutes of opening at (1755.25). At 4:40 p.m. US/Eastern time the day’s high was reached at (1781.50). Each month, the U.S. Treasury releases a monthly report of the surplus or deficit of the federal government. Investors pay attention to changes in the budget balance of the annual fiscal year, as an indicator of budgetary trends. The deficit reduction continues into the first month of the government’s new fiscal year, with a $91.6 billion vs a deficit of $120.0 billion in October last year. That is a a 24 percent improvement. About $8 billion of the improvement is tied to calendar timing, meaning the actual year-on-year improvement is 17 percent. A gain in corporate income taxes are led by an 8 percent increase in receipts. The temporary government shutdown is perhaps to blame for outlays being down five percent. The year-on-year spending on defence is down 8 percent, with net interest expense down 18 percent.

Gallup U.S. Job Creation Index

11-6-2013 4-45-49 PMToday, the opening price on the E-mini S&P market was (1765.50). At 10:00 a.m. US/Eastern, the day’s high was (1770). The market’s low price point, (1760) was hit today at 11:10 a.m. US/Eastern. For the first time since April, the Gallup’s Job Creation Index has registered below +21, at +19. The index for October 2013 is similar to the October 2012 average, but is still higher than the low levels seen from the second half of 2008 through 2011. Gallup began tracking job creation in 2008. The index score from last month is tied for the most positive for any October since Gallup began tracking job creation. Federal worker reports of net hiring fell six points to minus 10 in the last month, most likely a result of the government shutdown. Net hiring reports among local government workers were just as bad, loosing six points for a score of +9 in October. State government workers net hiring score also dipped from +17 to +14. Overall, net hiring fell slightly in October mostly due to less hiring at all levels of government. Hiring still remains stronger than in recent years, with only federal workers reporting more layoffs than hiring.

Important Speeches on the Econony

11-1-2013 5-07-03 PMThe opening price on the E-mini S&P today was (1755). At 10:10 a.m. US/Eastern, the day’s high was (1761.25). The markets low price point, (1747) was hit today at 12:20 p.m. US/Eastern. There were three important speakers today reported on the Bloomberg Economic Calendar. James Bullard, the St Louis Federal Reserve Bank President gave a speech on the economy and monetary policy in St Louis. Narayana Kocherlakota, the Minneapolis Federal Reserve Bank President gave opening remarks at healt conference in St. Paul. Jeffrey Lacker, the Richmond Federal Reserve Bank President gave a speech on interdependence in central banking in Philadelphia. There was no indication that the speakers had any significant impact on the market.

Jobless Claims

10-31-2013 5-11-38 PMToday’s E-mini S&P opening price was (1756.50). The market price dipped to (1750.25) for the day’s low at 10:40 a.m. US/Eastern time. The market day’s high of (1764) was hit at 2:35 p.m. US/Eastern time. In the week of October 26 jobless claims at 340,000, which is 10,000 below the previous week. Government contractors who were filing claims during the government shutdown in the first half of the month and California, with counting problems that were tied to a computer changeover, are no longer inflating these factors. The 4-week average has risen to 356,250 in the latest week, which is the highest reading since April. In the latest data which is for the October 19 week continuing claims are up 31,000 to 2.881 million. The 4-week average is down 10,000 in the latest week to 2.879 million which, is a bit above the month-ago trend. For insured workers, the unemployment rate is unchanged at 2.2 percent which is just up from the recovery low.