- Be sure to check the Journal’s live blog of the Goldman Sachs (GS) hearings.
- “I just thought — especially after hearing that the Goldman executives agreed to testify without being subpoenaed — that we might learn something useful in these hearings,” Barbara Kiviat writes. “That we might actually gain some insight instead of just another reason to want to bring these people down a peg. I was wrong.”
- Goldman Sachs (GS) hearings aren’t exactly painting a rosy picture of the firm, Felix Salmon says.
- Fear returns to the market as the VIX jumps 22%.
- But Eddy Elfenbein posts a chart that puts the Dow’s 213-point decline in perspective.
- S&P downgrades Greek debt three notches to junk and Portugal debt by two notches. With even more trouble looming, things aren’t looking so hot in Southern Europe right now, the Economist’s Free Exchange blog notes.
- Consumer confidence isn’t far from returning to pre-Lehman levels. Unfortunately, it still has a long ways to go before returning to levels before the recession.
- California police seized computers and storage devices from a Gizmodo blogger who had written about the new iPhone, intensifying the controversy over how he obtained the phone.
- Apple (AAPL) buys a chip maker behind the iPad brain.
- Gadget blog “Boy Genius Report” finds a buyer. BGR founder Jonathan Geller describes how the site has grown from “just a small passion project into a profitable, dominant online business.” He adds “with just a few great writers, and practically no infrastructure, we built something pretty mind blowing.”
US stocks plunge, with declines accelerating in the final half hour of trading, as S&P downgrading Greece’s credit rating to junk weighs on stocks. S&P also downgrades Portugal, sending shutters through the market amid contagion fears in Europe.
Goldman Sachs (GS) rises 0.6%, but the hearings aren’t doing much to boost its battered reputation.
Major indexes close near session lows. DJIA’s six-day winning streak comes to an end, closes off 214, or 1.9%, to 10991, its worst one-day point and percentage loss since Feb. 4. S&P 500 ends down 28 to 1184, falling well below the key 1200 level. Nasdaq Comp closes down 51 to 2471.
In after-hours trading, Buffalo Wild Wings (BWLD) falls 16% after expressing wariness that its 20% earnings growth target for 2010 is achievable. BWLD, in 1Q report, also notes “softness” in April same-store sales. The share drop shows very little room for error in the nascent recovery.
On a brighter note, add Broadcom (BRCM) to the list of chip makers posting record 1Q results. BRCM shares up 1.1% in late trading as 1Q sales jump 71% from last year’s dismal quarter. EPS and revenue top Wall Street views, as does 2Q outlook.
(Paul Ziobro and Jerry DiColo contributed to this post.)
US stocks taking it on the chin this morning, after S&P downgrades its credit ratings on Greece and Portugal, sending contagion fears throughout markets. Given today and yesterday’s flat session, it appears the bulls are hitting a wall this week.
The Dow was recently off 162 points and S&P 500 was down 21, back under 1200. It’s a little surprising to see stocks so far in the red, especially considering they’ve gone virtually straight up since February. Dow industrials are currently riding a five-game winning streak and have risen in 12 of the last 13 sessions.
The run-up goes well beyond the last few weeks as major indexes are up about 80% since the stock market bottomed in March 2009.
Of course, it shouldn’t be all that surprising. Markets don’t rise in a straight line forever.
The current bull market has now gone more than 400 days without a 10% correction, which is only the 14th time that has happened since 1928, notes Chad Brand, founder and president of Peridot Capital. And of those instances, there have been only three stronger bull-market streaks — 1953-1955, 1990-1996, and 2003-2007, which ranged from +97% to +131% — which can either be interpreted as “alarming or unimportant,” he says.
The bears believe the magnitude of the rally suggests it should run its course sooner than later. But not everyone agrees.
Posted by Paul Vignaon April 27, 2010 Technology /
Newswires’ Roger Cheng reports:
Research in Motion’s largest strength is its ability to release a steady stream of new Blackberrys. It’s also, however, the company’s biggest liability.
With RIM on the wrong end of a widening technology gap between itself and Apple’s iPhone and Google’s Android software, the company doesn’t need incremental improvements to its phones; it needs a quantum leap to catch up. It’s becoming more necessary with each passing day, as both the iPhone and Android make ground in taking RIM’s U.S. smartphone crown.
RIM’s unveiling of two new devices — both updates to existing Blackberry lines — illustrates its strategy of churning out phones with minor updates. In this case, the Bold 9650, which replaces the Tour, and a new version of the consumer-focused Pearl, were announced as part of the company’s Capital Markets Day and RIM’s WES Conference. Both add new features like a touchpad, but neither break significantly new ground. One analyst called the new phones “underwhelming.”
The strategy, however, has been a key to its success. Carriers like it because they consistently have a new product to market. The “Crackberry” faithful appreciate it because RIM has had a solid track record of identifying and eliminating problems with subsequent models of a phone line.
But with phones coming out with more bells and whistles, RIM can’t rely on its much-loved messaging platform alone.
Never let it be said that we don’t work our tails off here at Market Talk to get you the news. We have in our hands an advanced, embargoed, exclusive copy of Goldman Sachs chieftain Lloyd Blankfein’s testimony to the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, which he will deliver later today.
It took the work of secret couriers, an indigenous Vietnamese agent named Co Bao (“You weren’t expecting a woman, were you?”), one Groucho Marx disguise, and a punk staffer in the Senate who’s shorting the testimony, but here — finally — we got it:
“The issue here is not whether we broke a few rules, or took a few liberties with our in-the-dark counterparties; we did.
“But you can’t hold a whole bank responsible for the behavior of a few sick, perverted individuals. For if you do, then shouldn’t we blame the whole banking system? And if the whole banking system is guilty, then isn’t this an indictment of our financial institutions in general?
“I put it to you, Carl Levin! Isn’t this an indictment of our entire American society? Well, you can do what you want to us, but we’re not going to sit here and listen to you bad-mouth the United States of America! Gentlemen!”
Oh, wait, that’s Eric Stratton’s testimony. I guess we don’t have Lloyd’s after all.
It’s coming from all directions this morning, citizens, with the ongoing Greek saga (poll says 57% of Germans think giving aid is bad decision), slew of US corporate earnings, economic data and, of course, the Goldman show in DC this morning.
February Case-Shiller home price index due at 9:00 a.m.; Conference Board’s April consumer confidence reading, and Richmond Fed’s April manufacturing survey both set for 10:00 a.m. Two-day FOMC meeting gets underway; GS CEO Blankfein and “Fabulous Fab” to chat with a Senate subcommittee. Ford 1Q looks pretty good, considering where it was a year ago, but shares down 1.5% premarket.
UAL, US Airways, 3M and US Steel all scheduled to report before the open.
Dollar index higher at 81.69. S&P futures down 4.90; 10-yr higher, yield at 3.77%.
J.P. Morgan reported some strong earnings today. But what this bloggers eye were some of the sub-numbers in the earnings report. The bank booked $1.8 billion in investment banking fees. But don’t be fooled – that wasn’t from big M&A advising. But $429 million was in advisory fees. Instead, that $1.3 billion + remaining fees […]
President Reagan’s former budget director David Stockman says Edward Snowden performed a heroic act, the Patriot Act should be repealed, and this whole spying-on-U.S.-citizens thing is a symptom of an out-of-control military-industrial complex. Click here to watch him go on YahooFinance. The author of “The Great Deformation: The Corruption of Capitalism in A […]