Friday, January 1, 2010

Weekly Economic Update for the Week of December 28, 2009

C.W. Copeland & Associates presents

Weekly Economic Update for the Week of December 28, 2009


Quote of the week."Wise men make more opportunities than they find."- Sir Francis Bacon

Another strong consumer spending gain.The Commerce Department announced consumer spending rose 0.5% in November, following a 0.6% increase in October. Personal incomes rose in November by the most in six months.1

Hashing out the home sales data. New home sales fell 11.3% last month, undoubtedly affected by the perception that the first-time buyer credit would expire. Existing home sales soared by 7.4% as buyers scrambled to meet the possible deadline. The median price for an existing home was $172,600 last month compared to $217,400 for a new one - that certainly also helped residential resales.2,3

Health care reform clears Senate.On Christmas Eve, Senate Democrats got the 60 votes needed to pass that chamber's version of a historic health care reform bill. The House and Senate will work to reconcile their respective bills next month.4

Mortgage rates edge above 5%.Freddie Mac has average rates on 30-year FRMs at 5.05% in its latest survey. Over the weekend, its deputy chief economist Amy Crews Cutts told the Washington Post that "anything we get at or below 5% is a gift at this point." She thinks rates will hit 6% by the end of 2010.5

Catching up with gold & oil.Last Thursday, gold posted a gain of $10.80 to reach $1,104.80 per ounce. With the dollar strengthening, gold prices fell about $123 during December 3-24. Oil prices ended the week at $78.05, rising about 5% in 3.5 market days.6

Lower volumes, higher stocks.Santa Claus dropped by Wall Street - the Dow ascended almost 2% to end a relatively quiet week at 10,520.10. The NASDAQ closed at 2,285.69 Thursday; the S&P 500 closed at 1,126.48.7

% Change


1-Yr Chg

5-Yr Avg

10-Yr Avg











S&P 500





Real Yield


1 Yr Ago

5 Yrs Ago

10 Yrs Ago






(Source:,,, 12/24/09)8,9,10

Indices are unmanaged, do not incur fees or expenses, and cannot be

invested into directly. These returns do not include dividends.

Riddle of the week. What number should be next in this series: 9, 16, 25, 36?

Contact my office or see next week's Update for the answer.

Last week's riddle: Nancywas born in summer, yet she was born in January. How is this possible?

Last week's riddle answer:She was born in the southern hemisphere, which experiences summer during our winter.


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C.W. Copeland
"Your Personal CFO"
404.567.3275 (cell)

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