The Dow closed out the first half of 2017 with a 97 point uptick to 21,384. Trading volume however was lower than a snakes belly in a wagon rut. This might be due to the pending long weekend of the 4th of July. For the first 6 months of the year the markets are doing well. The Dow is up about 8.7% while the S&P 500 Index is up 9% and the NASDAQ is higher by 16% give or take a couple basis points.
As the 2nd quarter of 2017 comes to a close the US GDP final figure for the 1st quarter came in at 1.4%, up substantially from the initial estimate of 0.7%. The upward revision was mostly due to increased consumer spending on services. Corporate earnings in the S&P 500 index grew 14% while overall economy wide corporate profits were revised lower to a 3.3% yoy increase. The downward revision was mostly due to inventory adjustments. Going forward the data suggests the Fed will raise interest rates again in September barring any unforeseen event.
Shares of Nike shot higher after reporting better than expected Q4 results. The company had sales up 5% while net income grew 22%. The big news however was an announcement of a pilot program between Nike and Amazon involving direct delivery of certain items to customers via the Amazon warehouse system. This might be indicative of major brands using the Amazon distribution and logistics system to get product direct to customers. It will be interesting to see how this works out.
Next week will see limited action. Markets will close early on Monday, remain closed on Tuesday and reopen on Wednesday. Have a great 4th of July Holiday as we celebrate the signing of the Declaration of Independence and the birth of our great nation! Try not to violate too many “well intentioned” regulations in the process of having a good time.