Roger Arnold is the chief economist for ALM Advisors, a Pasadena, Calif.-based money management firm specializing in income-generating portfolios. Concurrent with his other business responsibilities, Arnold was a radio talk show host for 15 years. He focuses on behavioral economics and chaos theory, better known as the "butterfly effect." He explains the relationships between political, economic and social systems, and how they are all reflected in the financial markets -- stocks, bonds, commodities, currencies and real estate.

Discretionary spending shifts toward saving for a house.
Investors may finally be catching up to it.
Tracking the sector is an excellent way of gauging consumer discretionary spending habits.
It has to be presented as a consumption item, not necessarily an investment.
These furniture and appliance names could rise, but some may already be pricey.
Amid the water crisis, especially on the West Coast, invest in water infrastructure.
Next year's homebuying season may be the strongest in a decade.
Affordable housing can help shift spending habits.
Treasury market participants are increasingly aware that jobs data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics is essentially useless as an economic activity indicator.
Two recent views I've expressed are not inconsistent, but rather will occur at different times in the economic continuum.

Columnist Conversations

Market continues to be mixed.  Oil having a rare up day of late, but still up less than 1% on day.  ...
My colleague Suz Smith (RM contributor) often talk about different trade scenarios and structures, importantly...
Thursday's Philadelphia Inquirer reported that the average requested increase for individual health insurance ...
Markets set to open slightly lower as second quarter GDP comes in at a much lower than expected 1.2% and first...

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