Stocks traded mostly flat on light volume and the Dow closed with a 31-point gain at a new high of 28,036. Monetary easing around the globe and general positive signs regarding a US China trade agreement helped lift stocks. Shares of Disney continue to rise thanks to Disney Plus and Ford was up a bit as the company is rolling out an electric Mustang.
US industrial production took it on the chin in October with an 0.8% decline. The drop was worse than expectations and largely due to the GM strike which just ended but had gone on for a couple months. Auto production was off 7.1% while production ex-autos was down 0.2%. Mining activity fell 0.7%, utility production fell 2.6% and high-tech equipment production gained 0.1%. Overall manufacturing makes up 11% of the US economy and is much more affected by global conditions than the consumer segment which makes up about 2/3rds of the economy. It is hoped that passing the USMCA and phase one of a China trade agreement, along with GM workers returning to the job will support industrial production going forward.
The Troop 100 annual Christmas Tree sale is getting geared up. The trees have been purchased and the lunkheads have all signed up for jobs and shifts over the 3-week period that we will be open. Hats off to St AL’s church for letting us use their parking lot. It’s an amazing location. With more people moving to Ballard the troop sells out of trees early and with a continuing Christmas Tree shortage getting trees has been a bit of a challenge. Grand firs are nonexistent this year but there is a new tree called a Korean Fir that we will sell in place of the grands. The sale starts the day after Thanksgiving.