ECONOMIC CALENDAR:Wednesday: Existing Home Sales, EIA Petroleum Status Report Thursday: Jobless Claims, PMI Manufacturing Index Flash, New Home Sales Friday: Durable Goods Orders
Quote of the week:
“Without ambition one starts nothing. Without work one finishes nothing. The prize will not be sent to you. You have to win it.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
- Rising gas prices nudge inflation up. The consumer price index, an indicator of inflation, increased 0.2% in March, thanks to higher oil and gas prices, although it’s still down 0.1% for the past 12 months. The slight rise suggests inflation may start heading toward the Federal Reserve’s 2.0% target, if the strong U.S. dollar doesn’t stand in its way.
Consumer sentiment rises. An early measure of consumer confidence was higher in April than in March, surpassing economists’ expectations and indicating that Americans may be more optimistic about their prospects this quarter.
Homebuilders feel more confident. An index that tracks expectations of future home sales reached its highest level of the year in April, slightly beating expectations. Job growth and low interest rates are likely contributing to homebuilder optimism about the housing market.
Retail sales rebound in March. After a slow start to the year, retail sales rose 0.9% in March as Americans went shopping. Higher motor vehicle, furniture, and clothing sales show that the consumer sector is still strong, potentially raising first quarter economic growth numbers.