Yesterday there was an important bit of news released that was eclipsed by a couple of other stories. Masses of people, who had been lined up for days, were finally welcomed into Apple stores yesterday morning by cheering employees ready to sell the new iPhone 6. Hoards of interviews with everyday-people plastered media outlets as in-depth coverage gathered reactions about the new product. The store in Manhattan on 5th Avenue was still mobbed at 9:30 last night when I walked past after dinner:
Alibaba, the Chinese online marketplace, initiated trading mid-morning on the New York Stock Exchange, marking the largest global initial public offering in history. Jack Ma traversed the media circuit, working to instill trust and explain away his last-minute rug-jerk from under Yahoo! and other owners when he pulled AliPay from the offering, creating a juicy story for all channels.
In the meantime, a quiet but important news release came yesterday morning from the non-profit Conference Board. The Leading Economic Index (LEI) in the U.S. rose in August by 0.2%, continuing its 5 year upward march. The LEI is designed as a forward-looking indicator that signals changes in the economy. This bodes well for our economy and markets going forward. Sometimes it is good to combine the energy of high-profile stories with more level-headed, quiet data to confirm that the enthusiasm is well-founded.
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