The month of December got off to a merry start for investors, with an assist from one of those Monday/Tuesday reversal that have become rather commonplace throughout 2015. The major equity averages, with a boost from positive tidings from overseas, jumped at the start of the trading day, and even with some brief mid-morning selling following a weaker-than-expected report on manufacturing activity for the month of November, was able to eventually recoup all of its early advance by the close.
The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) a trade group reported this morning that manufacturing activity contracted in November. Manufacturing activity has been pressing higher for months, albeit grudgingly at times. Expectations had been for the narrowest of increases. This was clearly a disappointing issuance.
Investors should not ignore the quiet yet important role that the agriculture industry plays within the modern economy. Although some parts of the world are still battling food scarcity and starvation, overall food availability has expanded remarkably in recent decades. As humankind looks to alleviate world hunger against the backdrop of skyrocketing population levels and global climate change, farmers will need to find ways to increase their productivity by embracing next-generation precision farming techniques.