Stocks took a pause near record highs after a report came out that Presidents Trump and Xi might not sign a trade deal until December. In light of this news the Dow finished unchanged at 27,492. Trading volume was low.
The phase 1 trade deal between China and the US might not get any signatures in November thanks to protests in Chile’s capitol Santiago. Chile has had to cancel two big meetings because of the street protests which began when the gubment proposed a 4% increase in subway fares. One meeting was a climate summit and the other was the economic summit. The US and China are currently looking to find a spot to meet. President Trump apparently suggested Iowa but President Xi said no thanks. Other location options include Switzerland or Sweden but either way the meeting will now be sometime in December.
Earnings reports continue to come out. Uber reported a 30% revenue increase, but lost money and shares cratered to an all-time low. In the energy patch, Occidental Petroleum reported a 93% decline in net income and shares fell. Chesapeake Energy and Diamondback also fell after reporting worse than expected results. Oil prices have been stuck in a trading range and currently sit at $56.48 a barrel for WTI crude. Natural gas hit a low recently but have rallied as we head into the winter and currently trade near $2.83 per MMBtu’s up about 30% in the past month. The biggest news in the energy space however is that for the first time on record, the dollar value of US petroleum exports exceeded the dollar value of US petroleum imports.
Timber prices are on the rise. The Random Lengths Framing lumber index hit a low in June and have gained over 13% since then and current trade near $362 per mbf up from $313 about 4 months ago. CME lumber futures continue to rise and crested the $400 price level.