Stocks today traded mostly higher but finished a bit weak as the Dow closed off 42 points to 17,888 on light volume. For the week the Dow traded off 1.4% in the week before the presidential election.
The jobs report for October was issued today and as in prior months it was mixed like a salad with both good and bad points. The economy created 161,000 new jobs which is below estimates calling for 173,000 new jobs. U-3 unemployment fell to 4.9% and wages grew by 2.8% to a 7 year high which is good. The labor force participation rate ticked up a bit but 103,000 full time jobs were lost while 90,000 part-time jobs were created.
Starbucks reported slightly better than expected numbers as revenue was up 16% and net profits were higher by 16%. The company did ok with same store sales growth at 4% and shares were up as strength in North America and China offset weakness in Europe. Coffee futures have been creeping higher and some are worried this will cut into forward estimates. Starbucks also warned that weakness in Europe could continue although they like what is developing in China.
WTI crude oil prices continued to trade under pressure falling 1.3% to $44 a barrel thanks to evidence that Saudi Arabia has been not cutting back production as promised.
The Boy Scouts this weekend will be in Goldendale at the observatory on a star gazing trip. There might be about 20 kids on the trip and hopefully we will bring back the same number we take over. On a side note, November 14th will be the brightest “supermoon” since 1948 according to NASA.