Obama's budget is out and it looks like more stimulus is coming as the administration continues to try to sweep the recession under the rug (though I hear it is a delightful afgahn this time as Mrs. Obama has uncomparable taste). The budget is roughly $3.8T which is equivalent to 190MM lap dances or as it is known in the NFL, "Wednesday." Who knows, spending our way out of this recession may work, as I have found that spending my way out of depressions by dropping $20 bills like they're unpinned hand grenades (which is fast, furious, and with immaculate precision) at my local Rick's cabaret, is a suitable remedy. Basically, the new budget is attempting to buy more time for the economy to recover on its own while channeling its inner Keynes and hoping the multiplier on GDP is somewhere near 1 billion. Given the exponential pace of technological innovation and Keynes' logically thought out and unprovable equations (like all of economics with its oh so idealisitic goals which never work in the complexity of the real world, like a contractor with no competition or anything made in China) it is possible it could work. The only problem is it gives investors more mixed signals than an indecisive three year old with tourettes. Q4 GDP seemed decent, but it was driven largely by stimulus spend so it is hard to gauge if the economy really did improve (Money McBags maintains that inventories were just being built back up and may have even overshot their targets since consumer spend was stimulus driven). Of course, to pay for the new stimulus, taxes will go up on the evil banks who we bailed out who continue to get money for free, big businesses, oil, gas and coal producers, people who make more than $250k, and Gabe Kaplan. But fear not because the budget does contain a plan to trim future deficits to give or take $1T (that is unless things remain bad) so Keynesians can still rejoice that in either case the US will still owe a fuckload of money.
In macro news, the market is up today as the ISM reported that manufacturing in the US expanded at its fastest rate since August of 2004, back when everyone was buying new flat screen tvs for the 8 houses they were about to flip. The index rose to 58.4, besting analysts forecasts and the 54.9 reading of December. Anything over 50 signals expansion which means my pants are constantly over 50 whenever Jessica Simpson comes over for dinner. Also, personal income was up .4% slightly ahead of estimates while consumer spending was also up .2% but below estimates.
In stock news, Exxon Mobil's proft fell 23% but they still beat estimates thanks to their exploration and production businesses as well as higher oil prices (OPEC this, bitches). They did have some weakness in refining to the tune of a $287MM loss which may signal a shift from those gas guzzling SUVs and will likely require CEO Lee Raymond to stop double dipping his balls in gold (only one dip now Mr. Raymond).
In small stock news ARTG and ISYS both beat estimates and yet are trading very differently today with ARTG, to use a technical term, taking it in the yingus. ARTG provides services to help power and optimitize e-commerce and we all know that even in this poor economy....read more....
Disclosure: no positions