U.S. and World News
- U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May made it clear that she would attempt to secure a very close economic relationship with Germany post-Brexit, but German Chancellor Angela Merkel refuses to negotiate until the U.K. invokes Article 50. If negotiations were to start early, it would give the British incentives to delay notification (the official start of the 2 year negotiation process), which would give them an advantage and could lead to the negotiations being dragged out indefinitely.
- A three-month state of emergency has been declared by Turkey’s President Erdogan Wednesday night in order to “protect democratic values” by stopping parliament from passing new laws against supporters of last Friday’s coup. President Erdogan has also suspended or detained roughly 50,000 police officers, judges, civil servants, and teachers this week which has provided some stability, but some uncertainty still remains. The Turkish equity index regained some of its losses and Turkey’s central bank cut its overnight lending rate 0.25% to 8.75%.
- This week the S&P 500 was up 0.64% and closed at 2,175. The Dow Jones gained 0.35% and closed at 18,571. So far in 2016, the S&P is up 7.61% and the Dow is up 8.05%.
- The 5 year and 10 year U.S. Treasury Notes are now yielding 1.12% and 1.57%, respectively.
- The spot price of WTI Crude Oil fell 5.21% this week to close at $44.22 per barrel. WTI Crude is up 4.29% in 2016.
- The spot price of Gold lost 1.11% this week, closing at $1,322.64 per ounce. Year to date, gold prices are up 24.65%.
- Initial jobless claims came in at 253,000 which is slightly lower than last week’s reading. The Labor Department noted no special factors in the data. The four week moving average for claims moved down to 259,000.
- Existing home sales were up 1.1% in June reaching a post-crisis high versus expectations of a slight decline. This was led by multi-family home sales and homes in the Midwest region.
Fact of the Week
- The medium square footage of new single family homes built in the United States in 2015 was 2,467 square feet, an increase of 547 square feet over the last 20 years. That’s equivalent to a 23’ x 23’ addition to new homes today when compared to 1995 home construction. Source: Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University.
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*Image of Theresa May, Photo credit:UK Home Office, via Wikimedia Commons. License: Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.. (See, https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Theresa_May_2015_(cropped).jpg).
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