The personal savings rate increased for the first time since March which is a bad indicator for GDP as the consumer has been the only metric preventing the U.S. from being in a recession. The GDP is negative if you take out the great consumer growth last quarter.
The market runs, not on what the economy is actually doing, but instead based on what the Fed thinks it’s doing as Fed policy is what drives it higher. This is why the non-farm payrolls matter so much to the market. On its face, the indicator is unreliable and not predictive, but because the Fed looks at it, it matters. Considering we are in the dog days of summer, the only thing that will matter this week is the report on Friday. Therefore, I expect little movement in the market until then. The market has rallied in the past 6 reports even when some were disappointing. This gives you a guide on where the market may go on Friday after it comes out.
Fitbit Inc (NYSE:FIT) released an updated version to two of its products. The Charge 2 which is priced at $149.95 was refreshed after 2 years. The Flex 2 which costs $99.95 was refreshed after 3 years. The Charge 2 brings a new guided breathing feature. The Flex 2 is now able to be used during swimming and is 30% thinner than the previous version.
The controversy with Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF) is surrounding whether Carl Icahn is trying to sell his position. Bill Ackman, who is short the stock, said Jefferies asked if he would buy some of Icahn’s stake to get him out of the stock. Icahn said he never went to Jefferies and instead bought 2.3 million shares. It looks as though Icahn is purposely buying shares just to squeeze Ackman. Ackman is in a bad position as all of his research on Herbalife has gone out the window as the stock’s price has become dependent on what Icahn does.
Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc (NASDAQ:WBA) and Prime Therapeutics are combining their specialty pharmacy and mail service business in a strategic alliance. It aims to align pharmacy, PBM, and health plans to coordinate patient care, have better health outcomes, and reduce cost. The companies will use their combined medical and pharmacy data to personalize pharmacy services. Prime’s 22 million members can get this personalization, by filling a prescription at Walgreens.
Raytheon Company (NYSE:RTN) landed a $37 million contract for the procurement of MK 54 lightweight torpedo parts kits in a deal with the U.S. Navy. If the options in the contract are exercised, the value of the contract could reach $448 million. The sales are 98% from the Navy and 2% from Thailand.