Free Market News for the Week of May 3, 2010

Presented by Mark Lund, The Investor Coach.

Quote of the week. “The basic difference between being assertive and being aggressive is how our words and behavior affect the rights and well-being of others.”– Sharon Anthony Bower

Good solid growth. On Friday, the Commerce Department estimated 1Q GDP at +3.2%, marking the third positive quarter in a row. What drove the gain? Consumer spending was up 3.6% in the quarter, and business spending on equipment and software increased by 13.4%.1

Year-over-year gain in home prices. That’s what the February S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index revealed. Across 20 cities, prices rose 0.6% from February 2009 levels. This is the first yearly advance recorded by the index since December 2006, though prices were down 0.9% from January.2

The latest consumer barometers. One went north, another south: the final Reuters/University of Michigan consumer sentiment index for April dipped to 72.2, down from 73.6 in March but above the 71.0 forecast by analysts polled by Bloomberg News. The Conference Board’s April survey rose to 57.9 from March’s 52.3 – this is the best mark since September 2008.3,4

Gold’s major gain. Across last week, gold prices climbed $27.00 to settle at $1,180.10 per ounce Friday. April was gold’s best month since November. Oil futures advanced $1.03 last week, ending Friday at $86.15 a barrel on the NYMEX.5

A trying week for stocks. Last week, Standard & Poor’s downgraded the debt ratings of Spain, Portugal and Greece; federal prosecutors also moved to investigate Goldman Sachs. The Dow lost 1.8% on the week to end at 11,008.61 Friday. The NASDAQ and S&P 500 also had down weeks. However, the monthly numbers for April were as follows: DJIA, +1.40%; NASDAQ, +2.64%; S&P 500, +1.48%.6,7

% Change


1-Yr Chg

5-Yr Avg

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S&P 500





Real Yield


1 Yr Ago

5 Yrs Ago

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(Source:,,,, 4/30/10)7,8,9,10
Indices are unmanaged, do not incur fees or expenses, and cannot be
invested into directly. These returns do not include dividends.

Riddle of the week. I have keys that will open no locks. I have a space and a lock that’s a key. You can enter but you can’t leave, and yet – you can escape. What am I?

Contact my office or see next week’s Update for the answer.

Last week’s riddle: You heard me before, yet you hear me once more. Then I die ‘til you call me again. What am I?

Last week’s riddle answer: An echo.

1 – [4/30/10]
2 – [4/27/10]
3 – [4/30/10]
4 – [4/27/10]
5 – [4/30/10]
6 –]
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9 – [4/30/10]
10 – [1/12/00]

This material was prepared by Peter Montoya Inc, and does not necessarily represent the views of the presenting Representative’s Broker/Dealer. This information should not be construed as investment advice. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is a price-weighted index of 30 actively traded blue-chip stocks. The NASDAQ Composite Index is an unmanaged, market-weighted index of all over-the-counter common stocks traded on the National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotation System. The Standard & Poor’s 500 (S&P 500) is an unmanaged group of securities considered to be representative of the stock market in general. It is not possible to invest directly in an index. NYSE Group, Inc. (NYSE:NYX) operates two securities exchanges: the New York Stock Exchange (the “NYSE”) and NYSE Arca (formerly known as the Archipelago Exchange, or ArcaEx®, and the Pacific Exchange). NYSE Group is a leading provider of securities listing, trading and market data products and services. The New York Mercantile Exchange, Inc. (NYMEX) is the world’s largest physical commodity futures exchange and the preeminent trading forum for energy and precious metals, with trading conducted through two divisions – the NYMEX Division, home to the energy, platinum, and palladium markets, and the COMEX Division, on which all other metals trade. All information is believed to be from reliable sources; however we make no representation as to its completeness or accuracy. All economic and performance data is historical and not indicative of future results. Market indices discussed are unmanaged. Investors cannot invest in unmanaged indices. The publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting or other professional services. If other expert assistance is needed, the reader is advised to engage the services of a competent professional. Please consult your Financial Advisor for further information. Additional risks are associated with international investing, such as currency fluctuations, political and economic instability and differences in accounting standards.