Top-of-mind economic news as we start the week:
— US factory orders in Feb. were down 0.5%, 1st monthly drop since April 2021, on supply shortages, higher prices and post-Covid focus on services vs. goods.
— US unemployment rate fell to 3.6% as nearly all jobs lost during the pandemic have been regained; wages, however, are not rising fast enough to offset inflation.
— US corporate profit margins likely hit a record high of 13% in 1st quarter 2022, driven by price increases on top of strong consumer demand.
— To offset higher oil prices due to the invasion of Ukraine, the US will release 1 million barrels of oil per day (a record) from the strategic reserve during the next six months.
— Canada issued $5 billion in “green bonds” to finance major new investments in environmentally sound infrastructure.
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