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April 25, 2007

Dow Blows Through 13,000 Easily On Strong Earnings Reports

And we're living here in Allentown... Note all the "slow" and "cooling" economy talk.

The Dow Jones industrial average shot past 13,000 for the first time Wednesday as stronger-than-expected earnings reports streamed in, suggesting to investors that corporate America is successfully weathering the cooling economy. The stock market's best-known indicator surged past its latest milestone shortly after trading began, and rose as high as 13,047.31. [It's now higher -- Ace.]

The Dow climbed to a record as many of the country's biggest companies surpassed analysts' first-quarter earnings projections. Among those beating forecasts Wednesday: soft-drink maker PepsiCo Inc., materials manufacturer Corning Inc. and Dow component Boeing Co.

Wall Street got an additional lift from the Commerce Department's report on durable goods last month, which showed a gain in orders of business capital goods and reassured investors that demand for U.S. products remains strong. The department also reported that sales of new homes rebounded slightly in March.

...

The broader Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 10.75, or 0.73 percent, to 1,491.16, after reaching 1,492.31, a six-and-a-half-year high. The technology-dominated Nasdaq composite index advanced 20.22, or 0.80 percent, to 2,544.76, after hitting a six-year high of 2,547.56.

...

Investors have been encouraged by stable earnings growth, which shows that U.S. companies are faring well despite a slow economy.

The economy is cooler than it was -- because it was recently scorching hot, not that the MSM bothered to report on that -- but actually slow? Note the facts recited, grudgingly, in the article -- strong demand for durable goods, rebounding home sales -- belie the article's Big Takeaway that the economy is "slow" and, by implication, only "corporate fat cats and profiteers on misery are making any money."

Which is absurd. One worry about the economy is inflation driven largely by growth in workers' incomes. I guess AP kinda forgot to mention that.

And the absolute moral authority on economic reportage -- the Fed -- calls growth "moderate."

Most parts of the country logged moderate economic growth in the early spring, despite sluggish manufacturing largely due to the housing slump.

The fresh snapshot of the national economy, released Wednesday by the Federal Reserve, found that "manufacturing activity was slow" in many areas and that "residential real estate activity continued to weaken, with sales declining in many districts and flat in a number of others."

Overall, most regions reported "only modest or moderate expansions," the Fed said. There were some exceptions, though. The Minneapolis region reported "firm growth" and the Dallas region characterized economic activity as "moderately strong."

...

On the inflation front, the Fed survey found that "consumer prices remained generally stable, with some districts experiencing only modest price increases."

...

So far, the slowing economy hasn't derailed the jobs market.

The Fed survey found that businesses in most regions reported strong demand for workers, especially for those with certain skills. However, workers for the most part saw modest wage gains, the report said.

...

Economists believe the economy in the January-to-March quarter probably grew at a mediocre pace of around 1.8 percent.

"Modest" and "mediocre" growth is not slow growth.

But I suppose this does represent an improvement in the MSM's coverage of the economy -- after all, when the economy was posting huge 6%+ GDP gains, they claimed we were still in an actual recession for all intents and purposes.

So representing "moderate growth" as a "slow economy" at least is less of distortion.

Of course, partly because the Dems, now being in control of Congress, have a partial investment in the economy, so the media is slightly less aggressive in poor-mouthing it.

Thanks, Nancy!



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posted by Ace at 03:38 PM

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