economic indicators

Stocks Trading Flat on the Stock Market Today, ECB Buys Italian and Spanish Debt

Stocks are trading flat today with the major indexes moving only slightly. The Dow is up 28 points right now, the Nasdaq is down 11 and the S&P is unchanged. Friday’s are notorious for being slow days as investors take a break for the weekend. Not a lot going on news wise today as Europe continues to be on investors’ minds. The ECB purchased Italian and Spanish debt today which gave the markets some comfort.

People in Spain are heading to the polls this weekend as they vote for their government leaders. Spain is becoming the new focal point for the European debt crisis and if they don’t get their debt under control they may need a bailout as well. The center-right opposition party is favored to win Sunday’s election, but will have little time to bask in their victory as they will need to begin implementing austerity measures immediately.

News closer to home is good today as data is suggesting the risk of recession is low. An index of leading economic indicators grew by 0.9% in October the largest such growth since February. Across the 10 indicators that make up leading economic indicators, 9 of them were positive. These include building permits, the interest-rate spread, average weekly manufacturing hours, stock prices, the real money supply, average weekly claims for unemployment-insurance benefits, consumer expectations, manufacturers’ new orders for consumer goods and materials, and manufacturers’ new orders for nondefense capital goods.

Overall, expect the rest of the day to be slow unless there is breaking news. Next week should also be slow with Thanksgiving holidays later in the week.

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