THE BASIS POINT

Fundamentals End Week Weakly

Trade Deficit (December 2011)
-$48.8 Billion. Previous was $47.7 billion.
-The increased Trade Deficit decreases GDP.
-Non-petroleum trade deficit rose to $36.5 billion from $34.1 billion in November.

University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment
-Sentiment Index – 72.5. Previous was 75.0.
-It hasn’t been well-reported that Consumer Spending was disappointing in December and that the new year started poorly. The consumer is finally admitting that he is not planning on increasing spending.

Greece
Today the news is bad in as much as Greek politicians do not seem to be willing to go along with the extent of the EU demand for less deficit spending.

The markets are reacting to this with their typical “I don’t remember what happened yesterday and I don’t care what will happen tomorrow” attitude.