Thanks, Old Man Winter. Consumers have already been in a sour mood, and you're not helping matters. Icy roads and bitter winds have left many people to stay at home -- and keep their cash in their pocket.
For companies that have been looking for signs that retail spending is finally ready to grow, this roadblock has been unwelcome. The bleak winter likely explains why retail spending on goods and services like cars, restaurants and gas stations slipped 0.4% in January on a seasonally adjusted basis, according to the National Retail Federation.
Yet before you conclude that the era of robust consumer spending will never return, consider an interesting stat offered up by J.P. Morgan: In just the past two years, consumers' net worth has expanded by $13 trillion. Continue reading "Are We On The Brink Of A Retail Spending Boom?"
By: Joseph Hogue of Street Authority
Everybody loves a lottery ticket. People will weekly put down their hard-earned money for a 1-in-175 million chance of being rich.
And that is the kind of fervor that has driven shares of Tesla Motors (Nasdaq: TSLA) up more than 450% over the past year. Sure, the automaker is increasing production and profits are increasing, but there is nothing that can explain the surge in the stock price like good old-fashioned irrational exuberance. Continue reading "The 'Secret' Reason To Sell Your Tesla Shares Now"
Driving in America has stalled, leading researchers to ask: Is the national love affair with the automobile over?
After rising for decades, total vehicle use in the U.S. the collective miles people drive peaked in August 2007. It then dropped sharply during the Great Recession and has largely plateaued since, even though the economy is recovering and the population growing. Just this week, the Federal Highway Administration reported vehicle miles traveled during the first half of 2013 were down slightly, continuing the trend. Continue reading "Is the national love affair with the automobile over?"