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[Platinum Insights] (7.18.23)

[Platinum Insights] (7.18.23)
August 22, 2023

Good morning. 

U.S. stock index futures were subdued on Tuesday as investors stayed on the sidelines ahead of U.S. retail sales data and quarterly earnings reports from more big banks and industry heavyweights. 

Bank of America edged up 0.4% in premarket trading, while Morgan Stanley rose 1.1% ahead of their second-quarter results due later in the day. 

AT&T shares dived 6.7%, while VZ stock plunged 7.5%, as the sell-off in telecom stocks continued Monday. Last week, The Wall Street Journal reported telecom companies installed potentially dangerous lead-covered cables overhead on poles, in soil and underwater. 

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen warned on Monday there is a risk of contagion from the growing slowdown in the Chinese economy but maintained that a recession in the U.S. is unlikely this year. 

Credit card debt reaching record highs comes as the Federal Reserve’s campaign of interest rate hikes aimed at tamping down inflation has pushed borrowing costs upward. According to LendingTree, the average credit card interest rate (or annual percentage rate) for U.S. credit cards is 24.06% as of July 10. 

Retail sales in the US rose 0.2% month-over-month in June of 2023, following an upwardly revised 0.5% increase in May, but below forecasts of a 0.5% rise. Increases were seen in sales at miscellaneous store retailers (2%); nonstore retailers (1.9%); furniture (1.4%); electronic and appliances (1.1%); clothing (0.6%); motor vehicle and part dealers (0.3%); and food services and drinking places (0.1%). On the other hand, falls were seen in sales at gasoline stations (-1.4%); building materials and garden equipment (-1.2%); sporting goods, hobby, musical and books (-1%); food and beverages stores (-0.7%); health and personal care stores (-0.1%); and general merchandise stores (-0.1%). Retail sales data continued to signal consumer spending remains resilient, with inflation falling to two-year lows in June. Retail sales are not adjusted for inflation.

WTI crude futures steadied above $74 per barrel. Gold rose toward $1,960 an ounce while the US 10-year Treasury note yield retreated to 3.76%, a level not seen since late June. 

On the Platinum Channel, we have been focusing on support and resistance levels. Support and resistance are levels on a chart where the price of an asset has historically had difficulty breaking through. Support is typically seen as a floor, below which the price is less likely to fall, while resistance is seen as a ceiling, above which the price is less likely to rise. Once a support or resistance level has been identified, it can be used to help traders make decisions about when to buy or sell an asset. Check out today’s video on Best of US Investors. 

Have a great day!

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