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Monday, April 14, 2008

More News You Can Use


Retail Sales in U.S. Unexpectedly Rose in March on Jump in Gasoline Sales Retail sales in the U.S. rose in March, reflecting increases in receipts at service stations as gasoline prices jumped.

XX A few points here …

Spending on gasoline essentially accounted for the whole increase of 0.2%. In fact, excluding autos and gas, sales were up just 0.1%.

Receipts at gasoline stations rose 1.1% in March following a 0.5% decline the prior month. Over the past year, gasoline sales are up 18.9%. In short, in both the short-term and the long-term, gasoline sales are following prices.

I think this shows that people will cut back on many other things before they cut back on driving -- America's suburban lifestyle isn't set up to accommodate anything else.

And that means American consumers can endure $5 and $6 a gallon gasoline … and higher … without crying uncle (cutting back on purchases). However, they will cut back on other purchases just to be able to keep driving around.

And I’d like to point out that gasoline is STILL cheap. A cup’s worth of gasoline (one-sixteenth of a gallon) will get me and my Honda CR-V to the store and back with a load of groceries. It sure beats pushing a wheelbarrow.

Goldman Strategist Says U.S. Earnings Are `Awful,' Will Pull Down S&P 500 The U.S. corporate earnings season got off to an ``awful'' start and stocks will continue to fall, according to Goldman Sachs Group Inc.


U.K. Producer Prices Surge to Fastest Pace Since 1991 on Raw-Material Cost U.K. producer prices rose in March at the highest annual rate since 1991 because of record increases in raw material costs, adding to the danger that faster inflation will become entrenched in the economy.


Philippines Presses China, Japan to Convene Asian Summit on Food Crisis The Philippines, the world's largest rice importer, is urging China, Japan and other Asian nations to attend an emergency meeting on the region's food crisis to try and reverse export curbs that have driven prices to a record.

Soybean Futures Climb in Chicago on China Demand Prospect; Wheat Advances Soybean futures in Chicago rose on speculation demand from China, the world's largest importer of the oilseed, will increase. Corn gained for the first time in three days and wheat also advanced.

Uranium Drops to 16-Month Low on Supply Exceeding Demand, TradeTech Says Uranium fell to a 16-month low, or half the record price reached in June, after new supplies became available and exceeded demand.


Shell Crews Work to Restore Oil Flow Through Pipeline Royal Dutch Shell Plc crews in Tennessee are working to repair a pipeline crack that cut the flow of more than a million barrels of oil a day from the Gulf of Mexico to the Midwest at a time of near-record prices.

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