Friday, January 13, 2017 - Article by: Mark Hemingway - Security Financial Services, LLC -
December wholesale inflation, the Producer Price Index (PPI), rose by 0.3%, which was in line with estimates led higher by more expensive prices for gas, food and cars. Core PPI, which strips out food and energy, was slightly hotter, up 0.2% versus the 0.1% estimated. However, year-over-year PPI grew by 1.6%, the biggest 12-month gain since 2014. The Producer Price Index is a family of indexes that measures the average change over time in the selling prices received by domestic producers of goods and services.
The Commerce Department reported on Friday that December Retail Sales rose 0.6% from November due in part to strong sales for autos, signaling the year ended with some momentum and could be set for stronger growth in 2017. From December 2015, sales were up 4.1% and were up 3.3% for 2016 after a 2.3% gain in 2015. The Retail Sales report is a measure of the total receipts of retail stores from samples representing all sizes and kinds of business in retail trade throughout the nation.
In earnings news, three major U.S. banks reported their numbers on Friday with mixed results. Wells Fargo profits fell in the latest quarter, while revenue missed estimates. JPMorgan Chase reported better-than-expected earnings, while the Bank of America beat on earnings per share, but missed on revenues. Earnings season is the period of time during which a large number of publicly traded companies release their quarterly earnings reports. In general, each earnings season begins one or two weeks after the last month of each quarter.
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