5 'Must-See' Charts for the Week of April 11-15

Includes: DIA, QQQ, SPY
by: Lou Basenese

If you’re tired of living in a chronic state of “information overload,” we feel for you! It seems the investment news and commentary never ceases.

But the good news is we’re jumping into the mix to help out.

Following from the adage that “A picture is worth a thousand words,” we’re going to select a handful of graphics to put each week’s investment news into perspective for you.

Say goodbye to long-winded commentary and hello to easy to understand pictures.

1. Bring On the Budget Battles

For any business to survive, the “innies” must exceed the “outies.” Our government, however, has failed to learn this simple economic truth. Although politicians averted a government shutdown last Friday, the problem is hardly fixed. Click to enlarge:

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2. Pain at the Pump, Part II

Oil might not be trading near the 2008 record high of $145.29 per barrel. But the same can’t be said about gasoline prices, based on this analysis from Bespoke Investment Group. The pain at the pump heading into this summer driving season could be prove to be déjà vu all over again. Click to enlarge:

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3. Buy Low, Sell High

Forget about arguing whether or not this bull market will charge higher. If you’re putting new money to work, you want to buy cheap assets. According to the numbers from Bespoke Investment Group, that means buying stocks in the technology and consumer discretionary sectors. They’re benefiting from nice price momentum, but still are cheap based on price-to-earnings ratios. Click to enlarge:

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4. Inflation Rears Its Ugly Head

The latest data from the Labor Department confirmed inflation is alive and well. Consumer prices are up 2.7% over the 12 months. Of course, that’s just the average. Here’s a closer look at the items you can expect to pay more (or less) for in the coming months.

5. Go Global or Go Broke

The latest presentation from Niall Ferguson, Professor of Economic History at Harvard University, pretty much sums up why diversification is a must. Future growth (population and economic) is clearly headed east. Click to enlarge:

Click to enlarge