Economic Update

Stock prices are trending lower and economic activity appears to be slowing as we move into 4Q2014.  US retail sales for September were 0.3% lower than August, but 4.3% higher than September 2013.  The US Producer Price Index showed a decline of 0.1% in September, while industrial production in Europe has fallen 1.9% over the past year.  The New York Fed’s Empire State Manufacturing Report showed a decline in its index from 27.5 in September to 6.2 in October.  The S&P 500 closed yesterday at 1,862.49, up 0.8% YTD, but 7.4% lower than its high for 2014 of 2,011.36 on September 18.