Lot of ground to cover in today’s show: big stock rally, earnings, the falling dollar and the rising (very, very slowly) yuan. Today’s special guest is Mike Ryan, chief investment strategist at UBS Wealth Management.
Markets / Comments Off
US stocks on the launch pad as Asian and European markets engage in a spirited rally. Intel earnings credited for sparking gains, but earnings are almost a side note as US dollar index slumps to lowest levels in more than 16 months, and euro explodes higher.
EUR/USD surges above $1.45, and US stocks have a propensity to chase a bolting euro. No surprise either to see oil and gold soar. Seems sovereign debt problems — both in Europe and US — are too slow-moving, deferred and, at times, abstract for today’s capricious markets to get hung up on.
March existing home sales due at 10:00 a.m. ET. AT&T reports before the open; Apple, AmEx after the close.
S&P futures up 17.40, DJ futures up 137. Ten-year lower, yield at 3.41%.
Speaking of Intel, Kevin Kingbury posted the following:
Some mea culpas are going around on Wall Street as Intel (INTC) blew past 1Q expectations and gave a surprising strong 2Q revenue view in the face of what had been conventional wisdom about supposedly weak desktop and laptop demand. Auriga notes, “Consensus was clearly too pessimistic on PC sales (the primary source of upside).” While admitting that growth is under pressure from tablets and the economy, “data center will likely bolster both revenue and profitability.” RW Baird boosts its price target to $29 from $27 as it says INTC’s new Sandy Bridge product “is strong so far, debunking the myth about lack of demand for high-performance CPUs in PCs.” INTC up 6.2% premarket at $21.10.
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Okay, so yesterday the world was about to spin off its axis, the end-times were nigh, disaster seemed afoot. Even Charlie Sheen was putting on a credible stage show.
Today, not so much.
US stocks recover after yesterday’s sell-off, with Johnson & Johnson leading the Dow higher after a well-received earnings report. Given how quickly stocks shook off that S&P warning, which yesterday seemed a globe-rattling event, you wonder if yesterday’s sell-off in the stock market had as much to do with S&P’s report as it did with an overbought market.
DJIA gains 65 (0.5%) to 12267, S&P 500 rises 7 (0.6%) to 1313, Nasdaq Comp adds 10 (0.4%) to 2745. NYSE volume’s low. J&J, Caterpillar comprise about half of the Dow’s gains. J&J, Goldman both see earnings slide from a year ago, although the Street rewards the former and punishes the latter.
Gold touches $1,500, closes a hair beneath there. Crude’s above $108/barrel again. Yen remains pegged above 82 to the dollar, but watch if it breaks below there (moves down in the yen represent strengthening.) We’d be getting back to the range that sparked the yen’s wild March 16 rise and subsequent G7 intervention.
Slate of post-market earnings includes IBM, Yahoo and Intel.
Despite the recovery today, the technical damage yesterday was material, as our colleague Tomi Kilgore points out:
The S&P 500′s bounce was encouraging for bulls, but it didn’t quite erase the negative overhang created by Monday’s tumble. The S&P 500 up 7 at 1313, but below resistance at the 50-day moving average (currently at 1315). While the index stays below the 50-day MA on a closing basis, the preferred stance will be sell on rallies, as Monday’s slide stirred up technical chatter about a possible longer-term “double-top” reversal pattern (February top of 1344, April top of 1339). That won’t be confirmed unless the index falls below the March low (1249), but the longer the index closes below the 50-day MA, the more likely it becomes.
Now, for sheer lunacy, absolutely nothing tops this story from the Orlando Sentinel about a central Florida unemployment bureau and its latest plan to, well, fight unemployment: they’re giving out “superhero” capes.
It sounds like a bad Saturday Night Live sketch, but we’re not kidding. Here’s the website of the Workforce Central Florida, which launched a marketing campaign to “help us fight Dr. Evil Unemployment.” It’d be hysterical if it wasn’t so sad. Nothing quite says “we’ve hit the wall” than this effort.
Big show today, markets trying to rebound after yesterday’s sell-off, earnings from Goldman and J&J as well as a look at this afternoon’s earnings, and author, economist and sometimes actor Ben Stein comes on to talk about the U.S. debt issues, the future of the economy and the importance of diversification.
Asian markets overnight felt the reverberations of S&P’s outlook cut on US government debt, with stocks marking substantial declines.
European markets currently engaged in a moderate bounce from sharp selling yesterday, and euro’s recovering. Stage set for modest rebound for US stocks after yesterday’s sell-off
Oil continues to slide, recently at $106.43/barrel, and gold’s up a little after another fresh Comex settlement high yesterday at $1492.30.
Goldman Sachs, J&J earnings headlines hitting the tape now. Both stocks rising in premarket trading. Intel, IBM after the close. March housing starts due at 8:30 a.m. ET.
S&P futures up 1.80, DJ futures up 27. Ten-year note lower, yield at 3.39%.
Meanwhile, last night Texas Instruments reported a weak first quarter and warned the Japanese disaster would cut into its second quarter. Kevin Kingsbury adds some perspective:
Citigroup calls the impact on Texas Instruments (TXN) in the wake of Japan’s disaster largely as expected. It lowers guidance amid TXN’s cut and moves price target to $40 from $42. But the investment bank does call TXN’s underlying business “good” and “order strength is contributing to an optimistic” 2H view. Susquehanna concurs, adding, “Outside of baseband/Japan, demand commentary sounds good.” FBR says, “We remain constructive on TXN as the firm has meaningful barriers, growing scale and a low 12x P/E multiple,” which should send shares higher. “That said, many TXN comparables are also inexpensive.” Auriga keeps its sell rating, contending it is “somewhat pessimistic” about a 2H rebound. TXN down 2.3% premarket at $34.
Banks, Earnings, Economy, IPO, Markets, Stocks / Comments Off
Or, at least, Google was weighing on the market. Stocks certainly have taken off since our report at 10:30 in the a.m. Guess the markets put those disappointing earnings reports behind them, and are buying the Fed’s argument that there isn’t any inflation, at least any that’s going to last.
Good luck with that one.
Big show today. We covered Bank of America’s earnings, the SEC’s likely settlement with the banks over the issue of mortgage-backed securities, and the potential Groupon IPO.
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Lackluster earnings results from Google last night and BofA this morning don’t bother investors much, as US stocks look to open generally flat to a shade lower, based on indications from equity futures.
Markets currently modestly higher in Europe, while stocks were mostly lower in Asia overnight. We’ll get some sense of how much higher producer prices are feeding through to consumers with release of March CPI at 8:30 a.m. ET.
New York Fed’s April Empire State manufacturing survey also set for 8:30 a.m.; March industrial production & capacity utilization due at 9:15 a.m.; and Thomson Reuters/Univ of Michigan prelim April consumer sentiment at 9:55 a.m.
S&P futures down 3.60, DJ futures down 34. Ten-year note higher, yield at 3.47%. Crude floating around the $108/barrel mark.
Meanwhile, our colleague Dave Benoit sums up all the news surrounding Bank of America this morning:
Bank of America (BAC) announces a whole lot of news all at once this morning. A quick summation: $2 billion in earnings, at 17c a share misses expectations of 27c a share. But revenue beats. Deposit-group and investment-bank earnings are both down from year ago, the latter sharply from strong 2010. And CFO Chuck Noski is out, moving to a vice chairman role in a company with a separate chairman and CEO already. He’ll be replaced by chief risk officer Bruce Thompson. Chief counsel is also changed. The 2010 year of rebuilding appears to be continuing into 2011. BAC is paring bigger premarket losses minutes earlier, with shares now up 0.8% at $13.23.
Dow Jones Industrials, Geopolitical, Gold, Markets, Stocks / Comments Off
Stocks end lower, but reclaim most of the ground lost after mid-morning word of a strong aftershock quake in Japan.
Quake headlines and tsunami warning send a chill through a market that’s grown rather blase lately toward various pockets of global upheaval (Mideast/North Africa; Japan disaster; Eurozone debt problems). Despite the bump in volatility, trading volume remains anemic.
Industrials, financials and utilities among the weakest sectors; energy stocks finish higher as Nymex crude tops $110.00/barrel, to its highest settle since Sept 2008. Gold settles at fresh Comex high of $1,458.50/oz; silver hits fresh 31-yr high.
DJIA slips 17.26 to 12409.49, and Nasdaq Comp edges 3.68 lower to 2796.14. S&P 500 falls 2.03 to 1333.51.
Latest aftershock doesn’t appear to have done too much additional damage, but rapid, sharp plummet on initial quake/tsunami warning headlines may’ve put some fear back into a market that’s had an impressive ability to shake off troubling news.
Abundant liquidity has nurtured the risk trade, building complacency amid a hazardous backdrop as everyone thinks they can get out before the stampede begins. After glimpsing that hair trigger this morning, looks as if some risk-takers may have seen enough.
There’s a certain symmetry in global markets this morning – best described as flat.
Little movement in Asian stocks overnight, European markets are just a shade lower, oil nearly unchanged, hovering near $109/barrel and US stock futures point toward a muted open.
ECB as expected hikes rates to 1.25% from 1%, though focus will be on Trichet’s comments during Q&A after 8:30 a.m. ET. Portugal bailout discussions/headlines may color the mood as well.
Weekly jobless claims due at 8:30 a.m.; Fed releases February consumer credit numbers at 3:00 p.m. Retailers report March chain-store sales throughout the morning.
S&P futures up 3.10, DJ futures up 24. Ten-year note yield up a bit at 3.57%.
US stocks rise, even after Portugal comes out and says it’ll be the third European nation to seek an international bailout.
DJIA rises 33 (0.3%) to 12427; yes, it’s another fresh multi-year high, S&P 500 gains 3 (0.2%) to 1336, Nasdaq Comp adds 9 (0.3%) to 2799.82. Volume’s a bit weak.
There wasn’t much in the way of hard news most of the day, but that serves bulls just fine. They’re buying just about everything. Gold hits a fresh record. Crude hits a fresh multi-year high. Even cotton’s rebounded.
Market shows little initial reaction to Portugal’s admission that it will follow Greece and Ireland in seeking a bailout. It can’t be a good thing that a third European nation is seeking international help because it can’t handle its problems on its own. But the even bigger issue is that everybody, and we mean ev-ree-bo-dee, is already looking past Portugal to its neighbor on the Iberian Peninsula — Spain.
Meanwhile, the Nasdaq Comp continues to flirt with the 2800 level. Our colleague, Tomi Kilgore, penned the following missive:
The fifth time wasn’t the charm for the Nasdaq Composite. Including today, the index has traded above 2800 intraday for the third time in four sessions, and the fifth time since Feb. 22, without closing above it. The Nasdaq ended up 8.63 at 2799.82, off an intraday high of 2815.55. Even if 2800 is cleared, bulls have to contend with nearby resistance within the gap in the charts between the Feb. 18 low and the Feb. 22 high (2808-2824), followed by the Feb. 18 high of 2840.41. Meanwhile, support starts at 2750-2765, which includes the gap between the March 29 high and March 30 low and the 50-day moving average.