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Pence Wealth Management Financial Markets Reports

US FINANCIAL MARKET

  • Stocks edged up at the open on Friday, putting the S&P 500 on track for its biggest weekly climb in two months, after U.S. growth data boosted investor confidence that the economy can support a wind-down of Federal Reserve stimulus.
  • Boeing won an order from Cathay Pacific Airways for 21 Boeing 777X jets, valued at more than $7 billion at current list prices. Boeing’s 777X, due for launch in 2020, will be a derivative of its top-selling wide-body plane with new wings and engines.
  • Boeing is close to hitting its production target of building 10 of its high-tech 787 Dreamliner jets a month, a top Boeing executive said on Thursday. Hitting the target would put Boeing on track to deliver at least 60 planes this year. It has delivered 54 through November. Hitting the target also puts Boeing closer to its next goals of building 12 787s a month by mid-2016 and 14 a month by approximately 2019.
  • Oracle, the world’s No. 2 business software maker, said it would buy cloud-based marketing software maker Responsys in a deal valued at $1.5 billion.
  • Nike’s quarterly profit rose as higher margin products made up a bigger share of its sales. Total revenue rose 8% to $6.43 billion. Nike earned $537 million up 40% from the year-ago quarter. Gross margin rose 1.4 percentage points to 43.9% as Nike sold more goods at higher average prices.
  • Deutsche Bank will pay $1.9 billion to settle a law suit with the U.S. Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) over mortgage-backed securities. The FHFA had sued 17 banks in the case and has already achieved settlements with JP Morgan (for $5.1 billion) and UBS ($885 million).
  • American Express has agreed to let merchants charge extra for transactions paid with the company’s credit and charge cards, in a legal settlement that its proponents said could change consumer spending habits. The agreement comes after a federal district court judge in Brooklyn last week approved an estimated $5.7 billion class action settlement brought by merchants against Visa and MasterCard challenging their rules.
  • The tilt-rotor aircraft that Textron’s Bell Helicopter is designing for a U.S. Army competition would help troops travel longer distances as the military shifts focus to the Asia-Pacific region. Bell is trying to capitalize on its experience building the V-22 Osprey tilt-rotor plane together with Boeing as it designs a lighter, cheaper and less complex aircraft, the V-280 Valor, that could eventually translate into billions of dollars of orders for the winner of the Army competition.

US ECONOMY & POLITICS

  • The U.S. economy grew at its fastest pace in almost two years in the third quarter. GDP grew at a 4.1% annual rate instead of the 3.6% pace reported earlier this month. Economists had expected third-quarter GDP growth would be unrevised at a 3.6% rate.
    • Inventories accounted for a third of the gain in GDP in the third quarter, showing companies were confident about the prospects for demand. Businesses accumulated $115.7 billion worth of inventories. That compared to prior estimates of $116.5 billion. Stockpiles added 1.67 percentage points to GDP last quarter.
      • Domestic final sales, which exclude inventories, increased 2.5% in the third quarter compared with a previously reported 1.9% increase.
      • Consumer spending, which accounts for almost 70% of the economy, increased 2%, more than the previously reported 1.4%, the revised data showed. Consumer spending grew at a 1.8% rate in the second quarter. Spending on services contributed 0.32 percentage point to third-quarter growth.
      • Business spending increased at a 4.8% rate instead of the 3.5% pace reported early this month.
      • Domestic demand rose at a 2.3% rate, instead of the 1.8% pace the government reported earlier this month.
      • Export growth was also raised up by two tenths of a percentage point to a 3.9% pace.
      • Spending on residential construction was lowered by 2.7 percentage points to a 10.3% rate in the third quarter.
  • The number of United States jobs is forecast to increase by 10.8% in the next decade, with fastest growth in the healthcare sector as it serves an aging population. The United States will see nearly 16 million jobs added in that decade between 2012 and 2022. A large number of baby boomers are expected to retire from the workforce in the next 10 years, as they will be between 58 and 76 years old in 2022.

 EUROPE & WORLD

  • Credit agency Standard & Poor’s cut its triple-A rating of the European Union by one notch on Friday, saying it had concerns about how the bloc’s budget was financed. S&P’s announcement came the day after the EU reached a deal to overhaul the region’s banking sector, an agreement many commentators said fell short of expectations.
  • Workers at Amazon’s German operations plan to continue their strikes next year in a dispute over pay that has already been raging for several months.
  • U.Kconsumer confidence fell for a third month in December.

TODAY in HISTORY

  • Samuel Slater built the nation’s first cotton mill in Pawtucket, R.I. (1790)
  • The United States purchased the Louisiana territory from France for $15 million (1803)
  • South Carolina became the first state to secede from the Union (1860)

Sources: Reuters, Yahoo Finance, Google Finance, Bloomberg, CNN Money.

This information has been prepared from sources believed to be reliable, but no representation is being made as to its accuracy or completeness. The information provided should be used only as general information and is not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. The economic forecasts set forth in the material may not develop as predicted. All indices, such as the S & P 500, are unmanaged and may not be invested into directly.

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