Things are not looking good for the U.S. farm economy. On Thursday, Feb. 14, the farm belt's malaise deepened after the U.S. Department of Agriculture predicted soybean exports would stay below their pre-trade war levels until the 2026-2027 season. That followed a report that sales of the oilseed in early January had the worst week ever. And things didn't end there: The Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City warned that farm incomes were likely to have a weak start in 2019 and that credit was tightening at lenders.
Senior Republican lawmakers said the compromise spending bill that would avert another government shutdown will easily pass the House and Senate and they expect President Donald Trump will sign it into law. Trump has signaled he'll probably accept the plan, though he hasn't committed to it. The legislation would provide only part of the money he was seeking to build a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border, a central promise of his 2016 campaign. Trump said Wednesday, Feb. 13, the White House is combing through the plan looking for "landmines" before he decides what to do.
Traffic fatalities on U.S. roads reached an estimated 40,000 in 2018, the third year in a row in which at least that many people died in vehicle crashes, according to new figures from the National Safety Council. The 2018 total represents a decline of just 231 deaths -- roughly 1 percent -- from road deaths in 2017 but a 14 percent increase from just four years ago, according to the safety advocacy group.
President Donald Trump hasn't decided if he'll support the bipartisan congressional agreement on border security that's contingent on him accepting less wall construction money than he's been demanding as a way to avert another government shutdown, an administration official said. The White House is waiting to review the full language of the deal, the official said Tuesday, Feb. 12.
Wine lovers will have something to toast about this year: Prices from several origins are set to become cheaper. Prices of generic wines from Spain and Italy are easing because of a large harvest in 2018, while bottles from Argentina have become less costly due to the devaluation of its currency, Rabobank International said.
Apple Inc. investors are likely looking for the company to use its massive cash pile to make acquisitions, and names like Netflix Inc., Activision Blizzard Inc. and Sonos Inc. are among the companies that JPMorgan sees as strong strategic fits.
America's cannabis companies are racing to build national brands and market their wares to mainstream consumers. There's just one problem: It's hard to advertise your product when the federal government considers you a drug dealer.
A lot of fancy things can be built with Lego sets nowadays. Such as a diversifying portfolio that loads on the Fama-French size factor. Collecting Lego -- yes, the plastic toys made of interlocking bricks that become cars and castles and robots -- returned more than large stocks, bonds and gold in the three decades ending in 2015, says a study by Victoria Dobrynskaya, an assistant professor at Russia's Higher School of Economics. Aspects of the performance even align with returns sought by owners of smart-beta ETFs.
Kim Jong Un told the world this month that North Korea took steps to stop making nuclear weapons in 2018, a shift from his earlier public statements. The evidence shows production has continued, and possibly expanded.
Farmers are used to playing the long game. Bad weather comes and goes, prices rise and fall, but they are a patient lot. So it is with their support for Donald Trump.