Morning Notes Jan. 3, 2018


The U.S. Senate reconvenes today and will be considering a spending bill to avoid a government shutdown later this month.

The Institute for Supply Management’s (ISM) report for December may garner the most attention this morning, but the more important news will come from this afternoon’s reports.

  • ISM’s manufacturing index rose 1.5 points to 59.7 in December. This included a 14-year high for new orders.

FOMC minutes from December’s rate-hike meeting:

  • The minutes will include economic analysis compiled by Fed officials and any dissenting opinions of FOMC members.

Vehicle sales

  • With about three-quarters of the results in, December unit vehicle sales are running slightly above November in what is a positive indication for the December retail sales report.
  • Ford Motor Co. reported a U.S. sales year-over-year decrease of 1.1% for 2017 despite increased sport utility vehicle sales (up 2.9%) and truck sales (up 4.3 %).

November construction spending

  • Construction spending rose a strong 0.8 percent and showed broad strength in November.
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Dr. Don Pratl is Director of Trader Development and Education for TradeStation. He joined TradeStation in 2016 after holding similar roles with other online brokerages. Don’s long career in the financial services industry reflects expertise in administering trading and investment strategy programs for retail investors as well as financial services professionals. Since the 1980s, he has held various positions in areas including CBOE trading floor order execution, marketing, sales, personnel management, training and customer service. Don holds series 3, 4, 7 and 63 FINRA licenses, earned his Ph.D. in Organization and Management, and his M.A. and B.A. in Political Science. He has been an occasional adjunct college instructor since 2004 at a range of institutions, teaching undergraduate, graduate and doctoral students using in-class and online formats.