To better serve our members, the TFGA is implementing a streamlined membership management system. Once complete, it will allow access to Members Only potions of the website, allow self updating of your information, and securely renew memberships.
This morning all users were created an account with a temporary password. You will be prompted to change your password on next login.
Your temporary username and password are both the first letter of your first name and your last name, all lowercase.
Your account can be accessed at http://www.tnfeedandgrain.org/wp-admin/
The budget deal passed by Congress and signed into law by the president on Nov. 2, contained major provisions to raise spending caps and the debt limit as well as delay major budget battles until after the presidential election. The package also contained an essentially unnoticed provision that allows the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to increase fines starting Aug. 1, 2016, for workplace safety violations, an important factor to the animal food industry.
OSHA Process for Increased Fines
The provision, which caught both business and labor
Macro markets are mixed this morning as the U.S. Senate passes a two-year year budget deal and raises the debt ceiling until March of 2017. From what I understand, President Obama is expected to soon sign the bill into law. Also overnight, the Bank of Japan elected to leave monetary policy “unchanged”, but lowered their growth and inflation targets. Keep in mind yesterday’s data showed U.S. GDP growth falling by more than expected, from +3.9% the previous quarter, to just +1.5% in yesterdays reading. Even though the odds inside the trade have risen as of late in regard to the U.S. Federal Reserve making it’s first rate hike in December, now slightly over 50/50. Personally I don’t think they will make a move, especially with growth in the U.S. economy pulling back. Even Starbucks announced yesterday that they were dialing back their earnings expectations in the quarter ahead. The bulls continue to argue: the U.S. employment landscape might be weakening a bit, but there’s still many sectors that are hiring aggressively; the U.S. housing market is definitely on more stable footing; U.S. Businesses appear to have more cash on hand than in years past; U.S. Consumers have been able to improve their balance sheet with less debt, low interest rates and much lower fuel prices. Hence the bulls see no sign of a recession or reason for major economic fear. Bears on the other hand like to reiterate, “the view always seems the best while near the top.” The strength of the U.S. dollar and the negative repercussions that may continue for the emerging markets is reason enough for me to believe the underlying landscape is NOT nearly as promising as it looked 6-12 months ago. There’s also the fear associated with what could be much larger fallout from the energy sector. Once again, the energy sector is a portion of the investment landscape that looked much more positive and stable 12 months ago. It’s not that things are economically horrible here in the U.S., because they absolutely are not. It’s just that the overall landscape has shifted and changed enough to warrant greater cause for concern, especially as the stock market is about to post its largest monthly gain in four-years. Keep in mind, the S&P 500 has only posted monthly gains of +8% or greater twelve times in its entire history. I’m just not sure this one of those rah rah moments. Think about it like this… 12-months ago we were able to take a majority of our investment shots form inside the paint, everything seemed easy. Today’s market has become much more difficult, forcing investors to take more shots from beyond the three-point line. For me, at this point in my life and my career, that’s just not my game. I prefer to walk the ball down the court and feed it inside for the higher-percentage type shots. For that reason I continue to like the thought of being highly selective and extremely liquid in this environment.
As for today Personal Income and Outlays and the Employment Cost Index could both lend a bit more insight into the state of the U.S. consumer and labor market today. The trade will be looking for increases in spending and wages to indicate continued strength in the one U.S. economic sector that remains very strong – consumer spending. They’ll also be looking closely at the rate of wage inflation, as a strong spike there can be an early indicator of overall inflation. Today’s earnings highlight will again come from the oil sector with results from Exxon, the world’s largest public oil company, and Chevron, the second-largest oil producer in the U.S.. Phillips 66 is also on the schedule along with AbbVie, Colgate-Palmolive, CVS, Macquarie Group, Moody’s, Rubbermaid and Anheuser-Busch. Next week brings the first round of economic reports for the fourth quarter, including October Motor Vehicle Sales and the ISM Manufacturing and Non-Manufacturing Indexes. It will also close out some important third quarter data, chief among those being the September Employment Report. Also on the calendar is September Construction Spending, Factory Orders, Imports & Exports, and third quarter Productivity and Costs. It’s also a heavy Fed-speak week, with eight officials delivering ten separate speeches. Over the weekend, China reports October manufacturing results.