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The Missile – August 15

China Growth Slows Across All Fronts in July, Prompting Unexpected Rate Cut
On Monday, the People’s Bank of China cut by 0.1 percentage point two key interest rates and pumped the equivalent of $59.3 billion into the financial system to rev up lending and wider economic growth. The unexpected move marked a small step toward more support for China’s economy and may foreshadow further cuts to borrowing costs in the months ahead, some economists said.

China’s consumer and factory data miss expectations in July
Retail sales grew by 2.7% in July from a year ago, the National Bureau of Statistics said Monday. That’s well below the 5% growth forecast by a Reuters poll, and down from growth of 3.1% in June. Within retail sales, catering, furniture, and construction-related categories saw declines.
Industrial production rose by 3.8%, also missing expectations for 4.6% growth and a drop from the prior month’s 3.9% increase.

 Russia’s Goal in Attack on Nuclear Plant: Take the Electricity, Ukraine Says
The first sign of danger came when the dwindling crew of Ukrainian technicians running the Zaporizhzhia nuclear-power station noticed that officers from Russia’s state atomic energy company had left the premises without explanation. It was Aug. 5, and Russian soldiers were patrolling the facility.

What a Chinese Blockade of Taiwan Would Mean for Global Business
Taiwan accounts for roughly 70% of the world’s microchip supply. It serves as an important part of the production chain for goods including smartphones, computers, and cars. And it sits next to Pacific shipping lanes that channel trillions of dollars’ worth of trade flowing in and out of East Asia.

German Refinery Reliant on Russia Is Now Using Oil From the US
US crude brought in from Rostock on Germany’s Baltic coast currently accounts for about 20% of what the refinery is processing, the person said. The port recently took delivery of its first cargo of US oil in at least half a decade. Operator PCK couldn’t immediately be reached by phone for comment.

JPMorgan Says the Stock Rally Has Legs. Morgan Stanley Disagrees
Morgan Stanley strategists said in a note Monday that the sharp rally since June is just a pause in the bear market, predicting that share prices will slide in the second half of the year as profits weaken, interest rates keep rising and the economy slows. But rivals at JPMorgan Chase & Co. said the rally — which has pushed up the tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 index by over 20% — could run through the end of the year.

Ukraine Latest: First UN Wheat Cargo Sets Sail for Ethiopia
Brave Commander, the first vessel chartered by the UN’s World Food Program since the reopening of Ukraine’s Black Sea ports under a safe-transit agreement, has departed with a 23,000-ton cargo of wheat for famine-struck Ethiopia. 

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