Bad News Is Good As GDP, Claims Miss Pushes Futures Higher; Five States' Data "Estimated"
Update: so much for the kneejerk reaction sending futs higher on the bad data: USDJPY dragging everything down now.
Just when there was some concern that the US economy was no longer imploding at the usual pace, we get confirmation that nothing is actually better, following the one-two punch of weaker than expected Q1 revised GDP data, printing at 2.4% on expectations of an unchanged 2.5% print driven by a revision in Private Inventories (from 1.03% to 0.63% of total GDP, offset by a plunge in imports sliding from -0.9% to -0.32%). Personal Consumption posted a tiny increase from 2.24% to 2.40% which can only mean the consumer overextended themselves in Q1 - perhaps it is about time to ask the question of how consumption in the "sequester" and tax-hike quarter was the highest since Q4 2010. Additionally, initial claims increased from the as usual upward-revised 344K to 354K, on expectations of a 340K print. But fear not: what both these data points showed is that any fears that the monthly Fed flow may slow down from the $85 billion monthly to a ghastly $75 billion or, heaven forbid, a tiny $65 billion monthly increase in the Fed's balance sheet, may be deferred. End result: futures jump higher. Because it is a Bizarro Ben, or Benzarro for short, market after all.
GDP broken down by components:
As for claims, the holiday-shortened week prompted the Labor department to 'estimate' claims from 5 states (Virginia, Wyoming, Hawaii, Minnesota, and Oregon). The 354k print is a miss from expectations of 340k for the worst combined 3 weeks in over 2 months. The gentle downtrend of claims appears (though noisy) to be finding a limit here as the 4-week-average ticked up yet again. The total number coollecting benefits rose by 63,000 to 2.99 million. California topped the initial claims list.