Finally, Greece may have a bailout deal in hand and AIG (NYSE: AIG) agreed to sell off one of its divisions in order to raise some much-needed cash. The net effect is a slew of exchange traded funds (ETFs) in positive territory in early trading.
The European Union and Greece are working hard to make some big budget cuts while other European nations are rumored to be pulling together a package that will save the debt-riddled nation. The ultimate goal is to reduce Greece’s budget deficit by 4% this year. [6 ETFs to Ride Euro’s Changing Fortunes.]
A British company has signed on to buy AIG’s Asia life insurance business for $35.5 billion. The deal would mean the largest repayment yet of the whopping $180 billion the government fronted AIG as part of a series of bailouts. The Federal Reserve of New York would grab the first $16 billion from the sale. iShares Dow Jones U.S. Broker-Dealers (NYSEArca: IAI) is up about 0.7% in early trading. [ETFs to Play the Financial Recovery.]
Looks like the spending picture continues to improve. Despite unwaveringly bad news about the job market and consumer confidence, we’re at least still spending. Consumer spending rose in January for the fourth consecutive month. Consumer spending is two-thirds of the American economy, so this is a key area that will determine the pace and strength of the recovery. SPDR S&P Retail (NYSEArca: XRT) is up 1.2% so far today. [ETFs for the New Retail Climate.]
Manufacturing also rose last month for the seventh straight time. While the actual figure declined to 56.5, any number above 50 signals expansion. Factories are slowly coming back on line as they work to build up depleted inventories and build new equipment. The improvements are such that many believe the sector will lead the way to recovery by propelling consumer spending and creating new jobs. PowerShares Dynamic Industrials (NYSEArca: PRN) is up nearly 2% today.
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.