Search results for: consumers

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Apparel retail doldrums

Since 2011, consumer spending has been below average overall, and spending on retail apparel has been especially poor. A host of factors, from shifting consumer priorities to poor inventory control have forced apparel retailers to compete on price, and sales and profitability have suffered dramatically.

Tagged with: U.S. Economy

Half-time report on the U.S. consumer

U.S. consumers have taken a more cautious attitude toward debt and been more selective about using it for discretionary purchases. With consumers using credit cards less and using debit cards much more, the supports for higher discretionary spending are keyed off income and wages and also employment.

Tagged with: Economy, U.S. Economy

Data breaches — What they mean for retailers, consumers and investors

More than 1,000 retailers have been affected by the same malware that caused Target and Home Depot data breaches. The number of data breaches will continue to increase and cost retailers millions in IT spending and damage control.

Tagged with: Equities, Investing

Retail sector outlook — It’s a share game

We believe that many of the macro and micro headwinds experienced through 2013 will continue into 2014. Low correlations across apparel retailers and manufacturers provide opportunities to generate alpha through stock picking.

Tagged with: Equities, Investing

Oil price decline mostly positive for municipals…at least for now

Most states and local governments should benefit from higher tax receipts as more consumer discretionary income leads to a pick-up in spending. Negative effects will be localized around energy producing areas, especially if oil prices stay low for an extended period.

Tagged with: Fixed Income, Muni Perspectives Blog

Release the doves

The Fed (and all central banks) is highly sensitive to shifts in inflation expectations by either consumers or the markets. The one-year TIP breakeven appears to be pricing in some deflationary pulse and is also pulling down longer term inflation expectations across the curve.

Tagged with: Economy, Global Economy, Investing

The case for active muni management

Muni bonds represent an attractive investment opportunity
Active management is a value add in these volatile markets
Professional money managers can help investors navigate an ever-changing environment

Where does one invest in a world of uncertainty? Rising taxes, volatile markets, low yields, economic stagnation, geopolitical unrest.

Tagged with: Fixed Income, Muni Perspectives Blog

Special report — Commodity markets outlook

In the following Q&A, David Donora, Head of Commodities for Threadneedle Investments, addresses some of the key concerns currently facing investors in commodity markets, and explains his view of the outlook for the market. What is your outlook for commodities for the remainder of 2014?

Tagged with: Global Economy, Investing, Markets

Slack and Inflation

Low unemployment rate indicates modest slack in labor market. Decline in labor force participation now looks mostly structural.

Tagged with: Economy, Fixed Income, U.S. Economy

Ukraine Crisis — Can the U.S. make Europe less dependent on Russian gas?

As Europe looks to diversify away from its dependence on Russian gas, the U.S. is on track to start exporting liquefied natural gas by as early as next year. Russia remains the largest exporter of natural gas in the world and accounts for approximately 30% of Europe’s gas demand, half of which is transported through Ukraine.

Tagged with: Economy, Global Economy
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