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A lot of attention has been focused on Europe this week, given a ceasefire agreement in Ukraine that turned out to be premature. Today we have the big European Central Bank meeting, which some investors and pundits are hoping will result in an announcement that Europe will be commencing a quantitative-easing program of its own. Other economic indicators from the eurozone are hardly encouraging, and they are in focus before today's ECB meeting.
The attention to Europe right now is unfortunate, as domestic economic indicators are hinting at an improving economy in the U.S. That should potentially allow the Federal Reserve to finally end over five years of various quantitative-easing programs, hopefully without too much of an impact to domestic equities this time around.
The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) manufacturing index came in stronger than expected this week, as did construction spending. Auto sales looked like they zoomed past the 17 million annual mark in August for the first time since the summer of 2006. Job growth has also recently posted its best six-month stretch in over a decade. This trend should continue this week and show up in the ADP jobs report today and the Labor Department employment report tomorrow.
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