In The News:

IMF hand slap:

The US received a hand-slap from the IMF (International Monetary Fund) on Friday.   In the US’s annual assessment the IMF told the Fed that it’s lack of communication regarding the exit from QE3 (Quantitative Easing) could cause damage to the US recovery as well as send destructive shockwaves across the global economy.

Inflation = Celebration?

Japan’s July CPI (Consumer Product Index) jumped to 0.4%, the largest jump since 2008.   This is a win for PM Shinzo Abe and Finance Minister Taro Aso as it shows that Abenomics is getting the desired result, higher inflation.  Normally one would not be excited about inflation but when country has struggled with deflation for 2 decades a change like this hint at economic recovery.

Higher Sentiment:

The University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index July reading came in at 85.1; it’s highest reading since July 2007.  This index helps gauge how real people feel about the economy and their individual economic situation.   Higher numbers = consumer confidence = consumer spending = recovery

Dethroned

There’s a new King of the smart phone industry!  Samsung has officially dethroned Apple by selling more phones and posting a greater profit.   Samsung reported a record profit for the 6th straight quarter and had estimated operating profits of $5.2 billion while Apple’s estimated operating profits were $4.6 Billion. Samsung now leads the market share in the highly competitive smart phone industry with Apple in second and LG in third.

JPM Retreat

JPMorgan Chase announced Friday it will be exiting the power plant and warehouse business. The retreat comes as regulators are turning up the heat on banks who own power market operations. In March, the Federal Energy Regulatory commission accused JPMorgan of manipulating the energy markets in California and the Midwest. The bank later negotiates a $410 million settlement.

In The Markets:

Asia:

Lackluster earnings, weak China industrial data, and the prospects of potential surprises lurking in this week’s economic data packed week had investors hangin out on the sidelines.

Europe:

European markets closed lower Friday; investors are waiting for US economic data to be released next week.

US:

It was another wild ride for the US Markets on Friday. The markets opened flat on higher consumer confidence, tumbled after investors saw the IMF hand-slap news, and corrected itself to close flat at market close.  DJIA: +1.99 15557.60, S&P 500 +1.40 1691.65, Nasdaq +7.98 3613.16

Dinner or Drink:

King’s Gold

2 oz Crown Royal® Canadian whisky
2 oz Goldschlager® cinnamon schnapps
Pour the Goldschlager into a whiskey sour glass, followed by the Crown Royal. Serve.
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