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From last week's Strategic Investor

Fa
ctory fabulous

Toronto, September 8, 2014
By John Stephenson

Last week’s blockbuster Institute for Supply Management (ISM) manufacturing reading hit a ten-year high, helping the market to shrug off disappointing US employment data.  Last Friday’s non-farm payrolls showed an increase of 142,000 positions in August, a mediocre result by historical standards, but a surprise nonetheless because virtually everyone on Wall Street was expecting a much bigger number.  Employers in the United States managed to create more than 200,000 jobs for six consecutive months through July, the first time that has happened since the 1990s.

The jobs miss and negative headlines around the world, including wars in Eastern Europe and the Middle East failed to put a damper on the mood amongst equity investors.   Investor optimism was aided by a bullish new forecast from Morgan Stanley that predicts that the S&P 500 could reach 3,000 within five years.  While the current market rally has already lasted a little longer than the average postwar expansion, Morgan Stanley points out that consumer confidence is only now recovering with households having just paid down their debt. 

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