Marketbites: Florida Orange Output Suffers
Portfolio Manager Commentary:
Stocks fell Thursday as investors grew increasingly concerned the Federal Reserve will keep raising rates despite signs of slowing inflation. All of the major averages are on pace for their first negative week of the year. Stocks extended their slide on Thursday after initial filings for unemployment insurance fell to their lowest level since late June, the Labor Department reported, signaling to investors that the labor market is resilient amid a slowing economy.
Investors have been parsing other recent economic data and Fed remarks for clues on how high rates will go. But, while recent numbers point to easing inflation, JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon thinks rates will top 5%. “I think there’s a lot of underlying inflation, which won’t go away so quick,” Dimon told CNBC’s “Squawk Box” from the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
Chart of the Day:
Florida orange growers are harvesting their smallest crop in nearly 90 years. This is the result of a poorly-timed freeze, two hurricanes, and citrus disease that is laying waste to its groves. The Sunshine State is expected to produce just 18 million 90-pound boxes of oranges, the Agriculture Department said last week. That would be less than half the size of last year’s poor crop and a 93% decline from Florida’s peak output in 1998. Further, Florida will produce fewer oranges than California for the first time since World War II.
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