Quote of the Day
Wednesday, March 21, 2012
March 21, 2012 -- Man Against the Machine.
I'm reading an article entitled "Is Nike's Flyknit The Swoosh Of The Future? Its new running shoe is spun, not sewn, reducing materials, time and labor. The most labor-intensive part of the footwear manufacturing process is now gone."
The article shows how Nike's new "flyknit" allows one to feel as though he is going barefoot. But what I noted was that the new fiber and the new process do away with a large portion of the labor that is connected with manufacturing shoes.
Thus while unemployment remains high and jobs are hard to find, technology is going full speed at developing processes and machines that will eliminate labor, reducing the need for working men or women.
When a company wants to be more efficient, the first thing it does is cut down expenses by eliminating workers. This is where technology becomes a menace to the average working man or woman. I expect new techniques and new inventions to play havoc with employment over coming years. It will literally be "man against the machine."
TODAY'S MARKET ACTION:
My PTI was down 1 at 6397. The moving average at 6359, so my PTI is bullish by 38.
The Dow was down 45.57 to 13124.62.
Transports were up 43.33 to 5331.81.
Utilities were down 0.73 to 452.63.
NASDAQ was up 1.17 to 3075.32.
S&P 500 was down 2.63 to 1402.89.
There were 1493 advances and 1519 declines on the NYSE.
There were 74 new highs and 13 new lows.
May light crude was up 1.20 to 107.27.
Total Volume on the NYSE and associated exchanges was 3.5 bn.
Bonds: Yield on the 10 year T-note was 2.29. Yield on the long T-bond was 3.38. Yield of the 91 day T-bill was 0.091%.
Dollar Index was up 0.03 at 79.62. Euro was down 0.26 at 132.10. Yen was up 0.32 at 119.90. Currency Prices as of 1 PM Pacific Time.
April gold was up 3.30 to 1650.30. May silver was up 0.39 to 32.27.
My Most Active Stocks Index was unchanged at 328.
The Big Money Breadth Index was down 5 at 1040.
GDX was down 0.10 at 49.76.
HUI was down 1.58 to 474.75.
CRB Commodity Index was up 0.45 at 315.98.
The VIX down 0.45 to 15.13.
Permanent Portfolio Fund (PRPFX) was down 0.34 at 48.64 (previous day closing). YTD Return: 5.53%.
Late Notes -- Stock market closed on the weak side Tuesday. Today the market opened on the downside with the Dow off 33 points. We're seeing a lot of distribution days with the market declining on rising volume. Against this, the Lowry's figures are looking better. My PTI was down 4 yesterday, and in this puzzling market I'll be relying more than usual on my PTI. So far, it's bullish, but also probably overbought.
At present five states are weighing heavily on the US economy. They are Ariz., Calif., Fla., Mich., and Nev. In each case, foreclosures are a problem.
For some reason video games are sweeping the nation. They are the new pulp fiction and in some cases they are outdoing Hollywood. In 2011, video games recorded $25 billion in sales. A half billion people, 183 million of them Americans, reportedly play video games for an hour a day.
Final thoughts --- Dow closed down again, but not heavily. Each day it looks as though the Dow wants to go higher, but then it's those "heavy" closes.
Meanwhile, gold hangs around or just above 1600. Gold and the Dow -- they act as though they are drugged.