Monday, 18 Jan 2021

U.S. Construction Spending Jumps More Than Expected In October

Conservative Magazine Slams Donald Trump’s ‘Most Reprehensible’ Post-Election Tactic

The editors of the conservative National Review rebuked Donald Trump’s “disgraceful conduct” following the 2020 election, slamming the president’s “petulant refusal” to accept defeat to President-elect Joe Biden.

The magazine noted in the column published Monday how “almost nothing that the Trump team has alleged” to overturn the election result “has withstood the slightest scrutiny.” It warned that “flawed and dishonest assertions like this pollute the public discourse and mislead good people who make the mistake of believing things said by the president of the United States.”

The editorial also poured cold water on Trump’s reported belief the Supreme Court will “issued a game-changing ruling” on the vote in his favor as “fantastical.”

“Trump’s most reprehensible tactic,” noted the magazine, which last week described Trump’s refusal to concede as a “bid for infamy,” was “to attempt, somewhat shamefacedly, to get local Republican officials to block the certification of votes and state legislatures to appoint Trump electors in clear violation of the public will.”

“This has gone nowhere, thanks to the honesty and sense of duty of most of the Republicans involved, but it’s a profoundly undemocratic move that we hope no losing presidential candidate ever even thinks of again,” read the editorial. 

Read the full editorial here.

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Dell Technologies Q3 Results Beat Wall Street View

Dell Technologies (DELL) Tuesday reported an increase in profit for its third quarter as revenues grew 3% driven largely by higher demand for desktops and notebooks as several people worked remotely during the COVID-19 pandemic. Both earnings and revenues for the quarter trumped Wall Street analysts’ estimates.

Round Rock, Texas-based Dell’s third-quarter profit rose to $832 million or $1.08 per share, up from $499 million or $0.66 per share last year.

Adjusted earnings were $1.71 billion or $2.03 per share for the period. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters estimated earnings of $1.40 per share. Analysts’ estimates typically exclude special items.

Revenue for the quarter rose 2.8% to $23.48 billion from $22.84 billion last year. Analysts had a consensus revenue estimate of $21.85 billion.

“Technology has never been more important, and as the world evolves, so does our business,” said Jeff Clarke, vice chairman and chief operating officer. “We met unprecedented demand for remote work and learn solutions this quarter while increasing revenue to $23.5 billion. At the same time, we accelerated our as-a-Service strategy and hybrid cloud capabilities at the edge – positioning us to win in these growing markets and making it easy for customers to manage data and workloads across all their operations.”

Client Solutions Group revenues grew to 8% to a record $12.3 billion, with consumer revenue up 14% and commercial client revenue up 5%.

DELL closed Tuesday’s trading at $70.33, up $0.95 or 1.37%, on the Nasdaq. The stock further gained $0.27 or 0.38% in the after-hours trade.

Swiss Economy Recovers At Faster Than Expected Pace

The Swiss economy expanded at a faster than expected pace in the third quarter following the gradual easing of the Covid-19 containment measures, the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs, or SECO, reported Tuesday.

Gross domestic product grew 7.2 percent sequentially, offsetting the 7 percent decrease logged in the second quarter. This was also faster than the 5.9 percent expansion expected by economists.

Nonetheless, GDP was around 2 percent below the pre-crisis level.

Year-on-year, GDP was down 1.6 percent but much slower than the 7.8 percent fall seen in the previous quarter and economists’ forecast of -3.3 percent.

Domestic demand and parts of the service sector recovered significantly, while international developments had an adverse impact on exports.

On the expenditure-side, data showed that private consumption climbed 11.9 percent. Investment in equipment advanced 8.8 percent and investment in construction grew 5.1 percent.

As expected, final domestic demand registered record growth of 8.9 percent, still falling short of its pre-crisis level at the end of 2019 by around 2 percent, the SECO said.

Imports of goods were up 11.2 percent and that of services climbed 9.9 percent. As some restrictions remained in place over summer, exports of services gained only 1.4 percent. At the same time, exports of goods grew 6.9 percent.

The central bank expects the Swiss economy to shrink by around 5 percent this year. The positive development in the third quarter is forecast to continue in 2021.

U.S. Construction Spending Jumps More Than Expected In October

A report released by the Commerce Department on Tuesday showed construction spending in the U.S. increased by more than expected in the month of October.

The Commerce Department said construction spending jumped by 1.3 percent to an annual rate of $1.439 trillion in October after falling by 0.5 percent to a revised rate of $1.420 trillion in September.

Economists had expected construction spending to climb by 0.8 percent compared to the 0.3 percent uptick originally reported for the previous month.

The bigger than expected increase in construction spending came as spending on private construction surged up by 1.4 percent to an annual rate of $1.094 trillion.

Spending on residential construction spiked by 2.9 percent to a rate of $637.1 billion, more than offsetting a 0.7 percent drop in spending on non-residential construction to a rate of $456.6 billion.

The report also said spending on private construction climbed by 1.0 percent to an annual rate of $344.8 billion. Spending on educational and highway construction both increased.

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