Weekly Economic Update for December 5, 2011

Presented by Mark Lund, Investor Coach.

“A lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes.”
– Charles Spurgeon

In November, U.S. unemployment hit its lowest level since March 2009. November’s net job gain was 120,000. While the Bureau of Labor Statistics report showed that the majority of the new hires were made by retailers and temp agencies, this is still a sign of recovery. The underemployment rate fell to 15.6% from the prior 16.2%.1

Pending home sales soared 10.4% in October, the National Association of Realtors reported. New home sales also were up 1.3% in that month according to the Census Bureau. The September edition of the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index showed price gains in 14 of 20 metro markets; the index gained 0.1% in the third quarter, but was down 3.9% from a year ago.2

The Institute for Supply Management’s manufacturing index showed sector growth in November. It came in at 52.7; economists polled by Briefing.com had forecast it would read 51.0.3

S&P 500 GAINS 7.4% IN 5 DAYS
The index had its best week since March 2009, going +7.39% to settle at 1,244.28 Friday. A coordinated central bank move to make cheaper dollar loans available to EU lenders set off a massive Dow rally Wednesday, a big factor behind great weeks for the DJIA (+7.01 to 12,019.42) and NASDAQ (+7.59% to 2,626.93).5,6

THIS WEEK: All eyes will be on Europe late next week, as there will be an EU summit and we could see notable developments regarding EU member fiscal policies and the future of the euro. Stateside, Monday brings the latest ISM report on the service sector, a look at October factory orders and earnings from Dollar General. Tuesday, Toll Brothers comes out with 3Q results. No major economic releases are slated for Wednesday. Thursday, the Bank of England and European Central Bank conclude policy meetings and Costco announces 3Q results. Friday, we have the conclusion of the EU summit meeting and the initial December consumer sentiment survey from the University of Michigan.

DJIA +3.82 +5.78 -0.29 +2.31
NASDAQ -0.98 +1.84 +1.77 +3.79
S&P 500 -1.06 +1.86 -2.18 +1.01
10 YR TIPS 0.00% 0.84% 2.10% 3.50%

Sources: cnbc.com, bigcharts.com, treasury.gov, treasurydirect.gov – 12/2/115,7,8,9 Indices are unmanaged, do not incur fees or expenses, and cannot be invested into directly. These returns do not include dividends.

Dropping a landline and just using your cell phone might save you as much as $300 annually. Using a broadband phone system might give you even greater savings.

Alexandra’s mom had four children. The first one was named May, the second was named June, and the third was named August. What was the fourth child’s name?

Last week’s riddle:
We all have one, and even though it often demands an answer, it offers no question. What is this device?

Last week’s answer:
A phone.

1 – www.businessweek.com/news/2011-12-02/payroll-gains-speed-up-as-u-s-jobless-rate-drops-economy.html [12/2/11]
2 – www.thestreet.com/story/11325945/1/pending-home-sales-surge-in-october.html [11/30/11]
3 – www.briefing.com/Investor/Calendars/Economic/Releases/napm.htm [12/1/11]
4 – blogs.wsj.com/marketbeat/2011/12/02/data-points-energy-metals-533/ [12/2/11]
5 – www.cnbc.com/id/45523080 [12/2/11]
6 – montoyaregistry.com/Financial-Market.aspx?financial-market=retirement-investment-funds&category=3 [12/2/11]
7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=12%2F02%2F10&x=0&y=0 [12/2/11]
7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=12%2F2F2%2F10&x=10&y=18 [12/2/11]
7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=12%2F2%2F10&x=0&y=0 [12/2/11]
7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=12%2F1%2F06&x=0&y=0 [12/2/11]
7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=12%2F1%2F06&x=0&y=0 [12/2/11]
7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=12%2F1%2F06&x=0&y=0 [12/2/11]
7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=12%2F3%2F01&x=0&y=0 [12/2/11]
7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=12%2F3%2F01&x=0&y=0 [12/2/11]
7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=12%2F3%2F01&x=0&y=0 [12/2/11]
8 – treasury.gov/resource-center/data-chart-center/interest-rates/Pages/TextView.aspx?data=realyield [12/2/11]
8 – treasury.gov/resource-center/data-chart-center/interest-rates/Pages/TextView.aspx?data=realyieldAll [12/2/11]
9 – treasurydirect.gov/instit/annceresult/press/preanre/2001/ofm71101.pdf [7/11/01]

This information should not be construed as investment, tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any Federal tax penalty. 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. Additional risks are associated with international investing, such as currency fluctuations, political and economic instability and differences in accounting standards. 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 assistance is needed, the reader is advised to engage the services of a competent professional. This material was prepared by MarketingLibrary.Net Inc., and does not necessarily represent the views of the presenting party, nor their affiliates. Marketing Library.Net Inc. is not affiliated with any broker or brokerage firm that may be providing this information to you. Stonecreek Wealth Advisors, Inc. a fee only registered investment advisor firm in Salt Lake City, Utah.  Mark Lund is the author of The Effective Investor.