Retail Sales Skyrocketed in May

Markets are in a flurry this morning after the release of a much better-than-expected Retail Sales report for May. That measure grew by 17.7% last month against an expectation of only 8.4%. In April, that activity plunged by an upwardly revised 14.7%. Without autos, the growth rate was 12.4% while analysts only expected 5.1%. Last month’s drop of 17.2% was revised to 15.2%. For the control group, or core Retail Sales, that activity grew by 11% versus a forecast of just 5.2%. April’s decline was an upwardly revised 12.4% plunge. Good news all around!

More good news has greeted investors this morning with a report out of England of a possible treatment drug for those infected with the COVID-19 virus.

Along with yesterday’s news from the Fed of its intention to buy individual corporate debt issues and hints of a possible infrastructure spending plan, this morning’s data has equity markets poised to open in very green territory while Treasury bonds are experiencing a sell-off. The Treasury’s Ten-Year is now yielding around 76 basis points in early trading while the Long Bond’s yield has moved up to 1.53%. Gold is down not quite $2 to $1,723 while crude oil is off about a buck to $38.

Investors will be listening closely to the testimony of Fed Chairman Jerome Powell when he begins his Congressional testimony today with the Senate Banking Committee. That should be starting around 9:00 CDT.