July 23, 2017

Pressure on Apple Leaves Markets Mixed

Stocks had a mixed close on Wednesday as a drop in shares of Apple weighed heavily on the Nasdaq and after President Obama pledged to explore Russia’s diplomatic plan to remove chemical weapons from Syria.

By the end of trading the Standard Poor’s 500-share index was up 0.3 percent, the Dow Jones industrial average gained 0.9 percent and the Nasdaq composite was down 0.1 percent.

Apple shares slumped 5.4 percent, and were the biggest drag on both the S. P. 500 and Nasdaq indexes. Credit Suisse, UBS and Bank of America Merrill Lynch each lowered their rating on the stock to neutral after the company unveiled new iPhone models Tuesday.

Part of the problem for Apple, said Ken Polcari, director of the N.Y.S.E. floor division at O’Neil Securities in New York, is that analysts and consumers “keep comparing everyone who speaks, every product that comes out to what Steve Jobs would have done.”

“Apple is a great company, they’ve done the right thing in coming up with two price products to meet the marketplace — it’s Apple and everybody likes to take a shot at it,” he said.

In a speech Tuesday evening Mr. Obama said a Russian offer to pressure President Bashar al-Assad of Syria to place his government’s chemical weapons under international control increased the odds of putting off a limited military strike that he is considering, but voiced skepticism about the plan.

Mr. Obama also asked leaders in Congress to put off a vote on his request to authorize the use of military force in order to allow diplomacy to play out.

“I don’t see any compelling reason the market should sell-off here and certainly with the potential international diplomacy bomb being defused, we will move sideways here for the next few days until we get the Fed next week,” said Keith Bliss, senior vice president at Cuttone Company in New York.

The Federal Reserve is scheduled to begin a two-day policy meeting on Sept. 17, at the conclusion of which many market participants expect the central bank to announce it will begin to scale back its bond-buying program, which has helped shore up the economy and boost the stock market this year.

United States benchmark crude rose, gaining 31 cents a barrel to $107.70.

The S. P. 500 has gained 3.1 percent over the past six sessions, its longest winning streak in two months, as concerns ebbed about a Western military strike against Syria and as data showed improving growth in China, the world’s second-biggest economy.

Texas Instruments, the No. 3 chip maker in the United States, dipped 0.7 percent after it lowered its third-quarter forecast.

Harvest Natural Resources, an oil and gas producer, surged 26.8 percent after the company said it was in exclusive talks to sell itself to Argentina’s Pluspetrol in a deal valued at about $373 million including debt.

Article source: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/12/business/daily-stock-market-activity.html?partner=rss&emc=rss

Markets Flat as Traders Prepare for Fed Moves

Stocks on Wall Street opened little changed on Monday, following the Dow Jones industrial average’s largest weekly drop in more than a year, as traders positioned for an expected move from the Federal Reserve to scale back its economic stimulus.

In early trading the Standard Poor’s 500-share index and the Dow Jones industrial average were flat, and the Nasdaq composite gained 0.2 percent.

Bets that the Fed would begin to wind down its $85 billion-a-month asset purchases were seen in bond markets. The United States benchmark 10-year yield rose to a fresh two-year high of 2.875 percent, and German 10-year government bond yields rose 1.3 basis points to 1.89 percent, briefly hitting a 17-month high of 1.92 percent.

The higher yields could further hurt dividend-paying, low-growth equity sectors like utilities and health care. Last Friday, the S. P. 500 health care sector recorded its largest weekly drop since November 2011.

Capital-intensive industries like large industrials and some mining companies, alongside utilities, could see their stocks fall out of favor if yields and interest rates continue to rise, according to Kim Forrest, senior equity research analyst at Fort Pitt Capital Group in Pittsburgh.

“Anybody with a large amount of short-term debt,” she said, speaking of sectors to watch for a possible sell-off because of higher rates. “And if they pay a dividend, it can be at risk.”

European shares have outperformed over the last two months as the euro zone has pulled out of a recession, but on Monday they were struggling. In early afternoon trading London’s FTSE was down 0.5 percent, the DAX in Frankfurt fell 0.3 percent, and CAC 40 in Paris was 0.8 percent lower.

Rising debt yields in major economies make it harder for developing nations to finance growing current account deficits, and so emerging markets have taken a spill.

The Indian rupee slid as far as 62.73 per dollar Monday, emphatically breaching the previous low of 62.03. The country’s share market lost 1.4 percent, on top of a 4 percent drubbing on Friday.

The country’s central bank has tried to restrict how much Indian residents and companies can send offshore, but that only raised fears of outright capital controls that would further undermine the confidence of foreign investors.

Other Asian markets were mixed. The Nikkei in Japan ended the day up 0.8 percent, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was 0. percent lower.

With little expected this week in the way of economic indicators, market participants are focused on the minutes of the latest Fed meeting, expected on Wednesday.

A federal bribery investigation into whether JPMorgan Chase hired the children of key Chinese officials to help it win business is the latest in a series of legal and regulatory headaches for Jamie Dimon, the chief executive.

Article source: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/08/20/business/daily-stock-market-activity.html?partner=rss&emc=rss

Stocks Slip Lower, Continuing a Trend

Stocks slipped lower on Friday, a day after the largest drop on Wall Street in nearly two months set major indexes on course for their second consecutive weekly decline.

In early trading the Standard Poor’s 500-share index was down 0.2 percent, the Dow Jones industrial average fell 0.1 percent and the Nasdaq composite was unchanged.

Investors are concerned the economic recovery is slower than they had hoped as corporate revenue growth has disappointed even as companies’ bottom-lines have hit the mark.

“We haven’t seen the revenue growth the market was anticipating,” said Rick Meckler, president of investment firm LibertyView Capital Management in Jersey City.

“We are unlikely to see a large-scale correction in the market right now, but it certainly is losing the momentum that took it to strong highs earlier this year,” he said.

From Wal-Mart and Gap to Macy’s and McDonald’s, chains that cater to middle- and lower-income Americans are feeling the pinch of an uneven economic recovery.

Nordstrom, the luxury department store chain, reported lower-than-expected revenue in its second quarter Thursday, prompting the company to trim its full-year sales and profit forecasts. Its shares fell 2.9 percent.

Across the Atlantic, surprisingly strong growth in France and Germany dragged the euro zone out of an 18-month recession and data showed Britain’s recovery gathering momentum.

Growth in China’s giant economy also appears to be stabilizing, and Japanese exports for July due on Monday are forecast to show the fastest growth in over three years.

“The global economy is improving and even if the Fed does taper in September they are unlikely to move in a significant fashion, so the caution is perhaps overdone,” said Chris Beauchamp, market analyst at IG.

In Europe, stock markets were generally lower, with the FTSEurofirst 300 index of blue chips 0.2 percent lower. Asian markets ended the session down, with Japan’s Nikkei off 0.8 percent, and China’s Shanghai composite 0.6 percent lower.

Expectations that the Federal Reserve would scale back its bond buying next month drove the yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note up to 2.78 percent in Europe, sent the dollar down 0.1 percent against a basket of currencies and the euro up to $1.3372.

“Given that the 10-year U.S. yields are headed towards 3 percent, we think the general direction is for a stronger dollar,” said Tom Levinson, FX strategist at ING.

Data on Friday showed housing starts and permits for future home construction in the United States rose less than expected in July, suggesting that higher mortgage rates could be slowing the housing market’s momentum.

United States nonfarm productivity rose in the second quarter after a surprise decline in the first one, separate data showed.

Pandora Media shares jumped 6.7 percent following a bullish call on the stock from Goldman Sachs.

Article source: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/08/17/business/daily-stock-market-activity.html?partner=rss&emc=rss

Markets Slip Despite Positive Data

Stocks pulled back from record highs Wednesday afternoon.

By the end of trading, the Standard Poor’s 500-share index was 0.4 percent lower and the Dow Jones industrial average fell 0.2 percent. The Nasdaq composite, after dipping, ended less than a point higher.

The big mover was Apple, which said sales of iPhones helped quarterly profits rise by more than expected. Its shares were 5.2 percent higher.

“Last night’s numbers from Apple were also a welcome respite for the tech sector which has struggled in the current earnings season,” said Andy McLevey, head of dealing at Interactive Investor.

Markit, a financial information company, said its monthly purchasing managers’ index for the 17 European Union countries that use the euro rose for the fourth consecutive month in July, to 50.4 points, from 48.7 the previous month.

The increase, larger than anticipated, suggests the euro zone economy is growing again; anything above 50 points indicates an expansion. Hopes have grown of late that official figures next month may show that the euro zone’s recession, which started in late 2011, may have come to an end in the second quarter.

In Europe Germany’s DAX rose 0.8 percent to close at 8,379.11 while the CAC 40 in France rose 1 percent to 3,962.75. The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares ended 0.4 percent higher at 6,620.43. Markit’s P.M.I. survey did little for the euro, which was trading flat, but near recent highs, at $1.3211.

Earlier during the Asian session, Chinese shares were in focus after a survey showed the country’s manufacturing fell to its lowest point in nearly a year. HSBC said its preliminary estimate for its purchasing managers’ index for July declined more than expected, to an 11-month low, another sign of a deepening economic slowdown.

The widely watched report is one of the earliest indicators on the health of China’s economy, the world’s second-biggest after that of the United States. Analysts say the findings pave the way for more disappointment.

The Shanghai Composite Index in mainland China closed 0.5 percent lower, at 2,033.33 points, after falling as much as 1.3 percent.

Elsewhere in Asia, Japan’s Nikkei 225 dropped 0.3 percent, to 14,731.28 points. Other indexes reversed earlier losses to finish in positive territory. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gained 0.2 percent, to 21,968.93 points, and South Korea’s Kospi rose 0.4 percent, to 1,912.

In the oil markets, the benchmark crude contract for September delivery was down $1.98 at $105.25 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Article source: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/25/business/daily-stock-market-activity.html?partner=rss&emc=rss

Wall St. Steady, Thanks to Economic Data

Stocks on Wall Street opened slightly lower on Thursday before recovering, as new data on jobless claims and retail sales helped steady a sell-off in global markets that began overnight in Japan.

In early trading the Standard Poor’s 500-share index was up 0.2 percent, the Dow Jones industrial average also rose 0.2 percent, and the Nasdaq composite increased 0.07 percent.

Investors are trying to gauge when central banks around the world — and particularly the Federal Reserve — will pull back on their accommodative monetary policy. In Japan, the Nikkei tumbled 6.4 percent, and European markets followed it downward.

But United States economic data provided support and helped stocks trim declines. Retail sales rose more than expected in May, while a drop in jobless claims last week pointed to a labor market that was healing.

Merger and acquisition activity buoyed investor optimism as Gannett jumped after saying it would buy the Belo Corporation for $1.5 billion. Shares in both companies were up 27 percent in early trading.

Comments last month from the Fed chairman, Ben S. Bernanke, have stoked worries that the central bank could slow its $85-billion-a-month bond purchase program sooner than expected. Investors will be looking to the Fed’s policy-setting committee meeting next week for clarity on how soon the Fed will end its stimulus measures.

Nervousness over the withdrawal of economic support was exacerbated earlier this week when the Bank of Japan held its monetary policy steady; investors have been unwinding some of the trades built around central bank support. The benchmark S.P. 500 has advanced 13 percent this year.

“The easy money helped us on the way up. The concern is mounting it’s going to end,” said Andre Bakhos, director of market analytics at Lek Securities in New York.

“The action has been choppy and erratic,” said Mr. Bakhos. “It’s a case of investors looking to limit exposure ahead of next week’s Fed meeting.”

Still, the World Bank cut its outlook for global growth amid a deeper-than-expected recession in Europe and slowdown in some emerging markets. The bank forecast the world’s gross domestic product would grow 2.2 percent this year, down from its previous forecast of 2.4 percent growth and slightly below last year’s growth of 2.3 percent.

Safeway shares surged 16 percent after Empire said it would buy Safeway’s assets in Canada for $5.7 billion.

Clearwire’s board urged shareholders to accept a tender offer from Dish Network over an earlier deal with Clearwire’s majority owner, Sprint Nextel, to buy out the minority shareholders of the wireless service provider.

Apple is reportedly exploring selling iPhones with bigger screens, as well as less-expensive models in a range of colors, over the next year.

Article source: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/14/business/daily-stock-market-activity.html?partner=rss&emc=rss

DealBook: Executive Pay Rises 49% at British Companies

LONDON — Executives at Britain’s biggest companies received an average pay increase of 49 percent this year, with compensation rising faster than companies’ shares.

The annual average pay of executives, including chief executives and finance chiefs, at Britain’s 100 largest publicly listed companies rose to £2.7 million, or $4.3 million, according to research by Incomes Data Services published Friday. Chief executives received an average 43.5 percent pay increase, to £3.9 million, the report said. The FTSE 100 share index rose 15.8 percent in the period from February last year to April 2011.

“Britain’s economy may be struggling to return to pre-recession levels of output, but the same cannot be said of FTSE 100 directors’ remuneration,” Steve Tatton, editor of the report, said in a statement. The pay includes salary, benefits, bonuses and long-term incentive plans.

Deborah Hargreaves, chairwoman of the High Pay Commission, an independent group that examines private sector pay, told BBC radio that it was “very hard to justify these sorts of pay increases” and that it was in the interest of the executives to keep the market rate for their positions high.

Article source: http://feeds.nytimes.com/click.phdo?i=643277b00ae630e7203e29f9395a7047