- The total export of services for the month of February dropped by 0.8% and amounted to 3.2 billion dollars, when the sharpest drops were recorded by the export of other transportation services and from the export of business services, which is two thirds of the exported services.
- The labor market continues to show strength, when the unemployment rate for the month of March had not changed, and it remained at 4.2%. In addition, the unemployment rate for the first quarter of the year is 4.2% compared to 4.4% in the previous quarter. This may support the possibility that a strong private consumption will also occur in this year.
- The business sector in the market continues to show a rapid growth, when the combined index as to the situation of the market rose in the month of March by 0.4%. This rise derives from an increase in the import of consumer goods and from an increase in the export of commodities.
- According to the weekly summation, the Tel-Aviv 125 Index rose by 0.33%
The United States
- The Personal Consumption Expenditure Index, which examines the change in the total value of the expenditures of consumers regarding goods and services, didn’t change compared to the previous month. This index is very important because the consumption is the main impulse that moves the economy, and it embodies in it an explanation to two thirds of the national product.
- The Purchasing Managers Index in the manufacturing sector, which determines, the level of the orders of the purchasing managers in the manufacturing sector, has shrunk when it dropped to a level of 54.8 compared to 57.2 in the previous month. However, this index has stayed at a high level of above 50 points, which points to an expectation for an economic expansion. The purchasing managers have an advantage due to their early access to the data of the company in which they are employed. Therefore you can learn from this index on the entire economic situation in the country.
- The Commercial Balance, which measures the difference between the values of the import and the values of the export of commodities and services, rose to a level of -43.7 compared to -43.8 in the previous month. This shows that the country imports much more than what it exports.
- The American labor market continues to show strength, which is attested by the addition of about 211 thousand new jobs compared to 79 thousand jobs in the previous month. In addition, the unemployment rate continues to come near to a full employment when it dropped to a rate of 4.4% compared to 4.5% in the previous month. These good figures increase the probability that the Federal Reserve will raise the interest in its upcoming meeting that will take place in the month of June.
- According to the weekly summation the S&P 500 rose by 0.63%.
- The data in Europe continues to surprise for the better, when the unemployment in the Eurozone remained without any changes, and it is at its lowest level since the year 2009.
- The data regarding the quarterly GDP for the first quarter of the year show that in this quarter, the economy of the Eurzone grew by 0.5%.
- The Purchasing Managers Index in the manufacturing sector in Germany continues to point to an expectation for an economic expansion, when it remained without a change in the level of 58.2. In contrast, the Purchasing Managers Index in the service sector rose to a level of 55.4 compared to 54.7 in the previous month.
- The scope of the retail sales in Germany rose by a rate of 0.3% compared to 0.5% in the previous month.
- The elections in France will end today, and it seems that the candidate of the center-wing, Macron, will win. We estimate that the results of the election will continue to positively influence the markets in general, and particularly in Europe.
- According to the weekly summation, the EuroStoxx 50 Index rose by 3.36%.
Asia and the Emerging Markets
- In the recent weeks, the Chinese stock market presented its weakest performances. This may later on also affect the economic activity in other countries.
- The Purchasing Managers Index in the manufacturing sector in China that is published by Caixin, and provides an update on the manufacturing sector by following variables such as sales, employment, inventory and prices, recorded a sharp drop to the level of 50.3 compared to 51.2 in the previous month. Despite this drop, the current level continues to be high and above 50. This points to an expectation for an economic expansion.
- Caixin’s Purchasing Managers Index in the service sector in China also dropped to a level of 51.5 compared to 52.2 in the previous month.
- At the end of the month the representatives of the OPEC countries will meet in Vienna in order examine the influence of the reduction in the supply of the world’s oil, and in order to decide on another freezing in the production.
- The Baker report, which reviews the number of rigs that are active, and is used as an important indicator in the American supply market, continues to show an improvement, when the number of active rigs rose to 703 compared to 697 in the previous week. As you know, the USA didn’t take part in the agreement of the countries of OPEC to reduce the production of oil, and therefore there is the concern that it will flood the world with cheap oil.
- The inventory of crude oil that checks the change in the number of crude oil barrels that are in the inventory of the commercial American companies, rose to a seasonally adjusted level of -0.93M compared to -3.64M in the previous week.
- According to the weekly summation, the price of the Brent oil dropped by 4.64% and locked at a level of 49.48$ per barrel.
- Allocate 45%-50% of your money to a course of investment that is linked to the Consumer Price Index, and 50%-55% to a course of investment that bears interest but is not linked to the Consumer Price Index. If you invest in bonds that are linked to the Consumer Price Index, then it is preferable to invest in those bonds with a shorter average duration due to the low expectations of inflation that are embodied in these bonds.
- An exposure to shares at a level of 90%-95% of the policy.
- The average duration in the bond portfolio needs to be 3.5-4 years.
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