This blog post originally appeared on RealMoney Silver on July 28 at 7:49 a.m. EDT.In the main, second-quarter earnings (a rearview-mirror indicator) are beating consensus estimates, as the manufacturing profit recovery has outpaced the economic recovery. More forward-looking economic measures, however, are pointing to an extension of the current soft patch and a moderating domestic economic expansion -- but no double-dip.
- The Dallas Fed Manufacturing activity was reported at -21 in July vs. -4 in the prior month and compared to consensus estimates of -2.5. The trend in new orders was undisputedly poor at -9.6 vs. -8.3 in prior month and +15.8 in May.
- The Richmond Fed Manufacturing Index also came in weak at 16 vs. 23 in the prior month and compared to consensus estimates of 12. Again, the trend in new orders continued to deteriorate at 24 vs. 38 in the prior month and 50 in May, as did wage growth.
- The Chicago Fed National Activity dropped dramatically to -0.63.
- Last week's same-store sales, reported by the International Council of Shopping Centers, increased by 0.6%, down from the prior week's 1.4% gain.
- New-home sales came in at 330,000, about 20,000 better than expectations, but the previous month was revised downward by 32,000. Moreover, this series fails to account for home contract cancelations, which now account for approximately 20% of all contracts at the major, publicly held homebuilders.
- Consumer confidence eroded and was reported at 50.4 vs. a prior reading of 52.9 and compared to consensus of 51. The current assessment was unchanged, but future expectations for the economy tumbled. The employment component weakened after four consecutive months of improvement.