March 2012 Pending Home Sales Rise While April 21, 2012 Jobless Claims Marginal – Fed Seen As Dovish:
Pending Home Sales Rise 4.1 Percent In March 2012
The economic data is turning from mixed-positive to mixed. Pending home sales rose 4.1 percent for March 2012 the National Association of Realtors said today. This is the highest level since April 2012 but many economists believe this number is front-loaded due to the exceptionally warm winter weather in the U.S. and these gains could take away from future growth. Jobs growth occurred last year that may have helped spur this rebound but the employment situation in the U.S. may be breaking the trend upward.
Initial Jobless Claims Fall By Only 1,000
Initial jobless claims news negated the positive housing data today. Jobless claims fell by a meager 1,000 from 389,000 to 388,000 for the week ended April 21, 2012 and this data is more evidence overall April 2012 monthly unemployment numbers could be modest similar to last month.
Poor Economic Data Makes Fed Look Dovish
Short term trading sentiment may have been largely impacted by Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke’s informative press conference yesterday when he acknowledged some slowness in the economy and signaled a willingness to use all monetary policy tools available. U.S. jobs growth is declining while after much discussion about P.I.I.G.S in Europe – the U.K. formally double dipped into recession this week. China’s GDP fell to 8.1 percent in the last quarter and only U.S. earnings are keeping some optimists content. At yesterday’s press conference, Ben Bernanke explained the differences between Japan’s economic recession in 1986 and the current U.S. economy. It’s possible the U.S. could contract or grow rangebound if a proactive stance isn’t taken before more negative economic data comes out. Especially, if Europe and China fail to expand in the medium-run.
The Dow crossed new four year highs closing at 13,204 on possible speculation the Bernanke put will be firm if necessary.