Stocks continue to bounce around in part due to ongoing trade negotiations that are taking place in China as we speak. The big issue from the US side seems to be about intellectual property rights. Housing stocks like Lennar and DR Horton moved higher as lower mortgage rates and falling raw material costs could boost home affordability and demand. At the close the Dow was down 32 points at 25,625. Trading volume was up.
BTS put out an update on the bond market and their latest indicators show that high yield bonds are the place to be for the time being. Some gurus are saying that falling yields on US Treasuries and the inversion of the yield curve are indicators of a possible recession, and while they might be right BTS pointed out that since the European Central Bank is pushing rates into negative territory bond buyers in Europe have flooded the US bond market which pushes up prices and pulls down yields. After all, why buy a AAA German gubment bond with a negative yield when you can pick up a AAA US Treasury paying 2.5%? The big question out there is this: Are falling US Treasury yields indicative of a pending recession or are they the result of European buyers flooding US markets in search of yield? Only Jerome Powell’s hairdresser knows for sure. Hopefully, we will get more clarity about this in the days ahead.
Last night Troop 100 and Troop 100G (G stands for “girls”) held its spring court of honor. There were over 40 lunkheads in attendance, and we had 21 scouts get rank advancement while about 50 merit badges were awarded. This was the first time our troop had a joint court of honor with our new parallel girls’ troop which now has seven girls. Most of the girls are sisters of current scouts who have watched all the cool stuff their brothers get to do. They too want to experience the joys of being cold, tired, hungry and wet. The two scouts doing the MC duties (which helps them earn their communications merit badge) told a string of banana jokes. Why was the banana hanging out with the prune? Because he couldn’t get a date! Or: What do you call two bananas? A pair of slippers! Ha ha.