Dow Keeps Climbing on Jobs Data (Bloomberg)
Today the Dow Jones Industrial Average again extended its record high, due in part to data showing that the number of applications for unemployment benefits was the lowest it’s been in six weeks. “There’s an underlying element of support for the labor market and it’s really driven by housing and potentially construction finally coming back,” Robert Lutts, chief investment officer of Cabot Money Management in Boston, said. “We’re starting to see some health in some of those dormant areas of the economy, so quantitative easing and lower interest rates are finally having an impact and the stock market is of course telling us that.”
Consumer Borrowing has Never been Higher (CNBC)
According to the Federal Reserve, American consumer borrowing rose $16.15 billion in the month of January, beating expectations of a $14.5 billion increase and contributing to a total borrowing level of $2.8 trillion, the highest sum on record. A large percentage of loans went towards education and cars, while credit card debt increased very little.
Euro Rises on Draghi Comments (Reuters)
At today’s meeting of the European Central Bank, Bank President Mario Draghi made no mention of any intention to cut euro zone interest rates, soothing worried investors and prompting a rebound in the euro. “Draghi played cheerleader, transmitting a bit of hope to the euro FX rate but leaving no room for an added ECB boost to the business cycle,” said Dan Dorrow, head of research, at FX broker Faros Trading in Stamford, Connecticut.