The Dow Industrials surged 421 points on Thursday

… its biggest gain since December 2011, bolstered by reassurances from the Federal Reserve that it remains in no rush to raise interest rates.

The Empire State Manufacturing Survey for December

… indicates that business activity for New York manufacturers declined in December. The headline general business conditions declined 14 points, its first negative reading in two nearly two years. Indexes for the six month outlook remain optimistic but to a somewhat lesser degree than in recent months.

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve statistical release on industrial production and capacity utilization:

  • Production increased 1.3 percent in November after edging up in October. Output is now reported to have risen at a faster pace over the period from June through October than previously published.
  • The rise in factory output was well above its average pace over the previous five months and was its largest gain since February.
  • In November the indexes for all the major market groups advanced. Manufacturing output rose 1.1 percent in November and the rates of change for prior months are stronger than previously reported.

US raw steel output rose 0.2 percent last week

… as mills operated at an average capability utilization rate (ACUR) of 78.2 percent. In the corresponding week last year mills operated at an ACUR of 74.6 percent. Thus far this year, mills have operated at an ACUR of 77.1 percent compared to the same period l sat year when the ACUR was 76.8 percent.

The Conference Board Leading Economic Index (LEI) rose 0.6 percent in November following increases in September and October.

The increase in the LEI signals continued moderate growth through the winter season . The biggest challenge has been, and remains, more income growth. However, with labor market conditions tightening, we are seeing the first signs of wage growth starting to pick up.”

Ken Goldstein, Economist at the Conference Board

Widespread and persistent gains in the LEI point to strong underlying conditions in the US economic expansion.

Altaman Ozyildirim, Economist at the Conference Board

The Philadelphia Fed Manufacturing Outlook Survey

… reported the pace of regional manufacturing activity remained positive though it decreased in December. The survey’s current indicators for general activity, new orders, shipments and employment suggest growth, however their values for the month were significantly lower than last months. The survey’s indicators of future activity show optimism about continued growth over the next six months but declined slightly from last months readings.

More good news:

The Wall Street Journal reports that U.S. air strikes have killed several very senior military leaders of Islamic state forces in Iraq, according to General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Nearly 140 people, mostly children, were murdered for no apparent reason, at a school in Pakistan this week. The Taliban is responsible. Hillary Clinton would have us empathize with them….I suggest we find the perpetrators and kill them on the spot. I am so tired of these radical muslims, their penchant for murdering innocents and their general desire to destroy freedom. Screw those bastards.


Time to close this one out. I have enjoyed a relaxing three weeks in Cabo San Lucas, catching nineteen Dorado, three yellow fin tuna and seven striped Marlin. What a gas! The people here suffered through hurricane Odile in September and we were able to feed many families with the Dorado and Yellow Fin tuna we brought in, hopefully lending a helping hand to some of those in need.

Have a great weekend….hug your babies, tell them you love them.

Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah

God bless America