Don’s Notebook July 18, 2018


After positive comments on the economy yesterday, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell will have a second day of testimony in Washington starting at 10am ET as he sits with the House Financial Services Committee.

In an unexpected downturn, housing starts as well as permits both fell sharply to their lowest rates since September last year.

  • Housing starts dropped 12.3 percent to a 1.173 million annualized rate in June with permits down 2.2 percent to 1.273 million, surprising most analysts.

At 10:30 a.m., the Crude Inventory Report is published, which under-pressure oil investors will watch closely and later today the Fed releases the Beige Book.

Overnight Market Notes:

  • The MSCI Asia Pacific Index was mostly unchanged
  • Japan’s Topix index closed 0.4 percent higher after Chairman Powell’s remarks on the U.S. economy calmed concerns on the global growth outlook.
  • In Europe, the Stoxx 600 Index was 0.5 percent higher at 5:40 a.m. with most industry sectors gaining.
  • S&P 500 futures pointed to a slightly higher open,

Notable earnings today include Morgan Stanley, American Express Co., International Business Machines Corp., and eBay Inc. are all due to report.

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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.