A quick update this week as we had shortened trading sessions with the markets due to the Thanksgiving holiday. Not much happened this week but we will get reports on how retail did with black Friday which looked positive from what I read over the weekend.
There is one more Fed meeting before the year is done (12/13) so that may be a critical data point for the 2018 outlook for interest rates.
Economic & Central Banking Snippets
- Britain’s Office for Budget Responsibility cut the projected growth rate for 2017 from 2% to 1.5% and said that its projections for future years were also significantly worse than it had forecast at the time of the March Budget. (FT)
- Orders for long-lasting durable goods in the US unexpectedly fell in October, with transportation equipment leading the declines after two months of gains. Durable goods orders fell by 1.2%, the US Commerce Department. That confounded expectations for a 0.3% and followed September’s rise, which was revised higher to 2.2% on Wednesday. Nondefense capital goods orders excluding aircraft fell 0.5%, compared to expectations for a 0.5% increase. (FT)
- US arms exports to Saudi Arabia are on the rise.
- Uber revealed it paid hackers $100,000 in an effort to conceal a data breach affecting 57 million accounts last year. The company fired its chief security officer, Joe Sullivan, and his deputy for their handling of the breach. In addition to the names, emails and phone numbers of millions of riders, about 600,000 drivers’ license numbers were accessed, Uber said.
- With settlers arriving to Mars as soon as 2024, Budweiser has moved forward toward its goal of brewing beer on the Red Planet, announcing plans to study barley – a key ingredient – on the International Space Station. Budweiser will initiate two experiments via SpaceX’s upcoming cargo supply mission, which will depart from the Cape Canaveral on Dec. 4.
- Volvo Cars said it has agreed to supply Uber Technologies with a fleet of 24,000 self-driving taxis beginning in 2019 — one of the first and biggest commercial orders for such vehicles.
- One of the City of London’s oldest institutions has been forced to launch an investigation following accusations cobalt potentially mined by child labour is trading on its exchange, tainting a key link in the supply chain for mobile phones and electric vehicles. Members of the 140-year-old London Metal Exchange say it has allowed one Chinese company to sell untraceable cobalt through the course since this summer, raising concern the rechargeable battery material may have come from mines in the Democratic Republic of Congo accused of employing children.