Yesterday’s big gains are but a memory this morning as stocks and exchange traded funds (ETFs) give back after less-than-thrilling reports on consumer spending and sentiment. 

U.S. consumer sentiment declined this month while Americans continued to worry about their finances and paying down their debts. Despite the drop, sentiment is higher than it was a year ago at this time, reports Steven C. Johnson for Reuters. Most consumers felt that their financial situations  had worsened in October for the 13th consecutive month. It’s the longest and deepest decline in the survey’s history. (Can bargains be found in luxury ETF?)

Consumer spending in September also dropped by the largest amount in nine months. This comes despite a government report showing that the economy grew 3.5% in the third quarter and shows how shaky the economy still is. (The GDP report). Economists fear the consumers are going to continue cutting back, making for a rocky road to recovery, reports Martin Crutsinger for the Associated Press.

  • Vanguard Consumer Discretionary (NYSE: VCR) is down about 0.5% this morning

President Barack Obama said today that the stimulus plan created or saved about 650,000 jobs. The numbers are the first solid look at how the program has impacted the economy, CNN Money says. Administration officials say that 3.5 million jobs will have been created or saved by the time the program comes to a close.

Chevron (NYSE: CVX) reported that its profits slipped 51%. The oil giant was able to boost revenues by increasing its oil production by 11% in the third quarter, the Associated Press reports. (Five factors benefiting oil ETFs).

  • PowerShares Dynamic Energy Exploration & Production (NYSEArca: PXE) is down nearly 2% this morning; Chevron is 5.5%

For more stories on energy, visit or energy sector page.

The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of Tom Lydon, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.