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Asian Markets at Close Report

European Markets at Close Report

May 4, 2009

Forbes.com Alerts:"Final Glance: Finance companies"


Shares of some top finance companies were up at the close of trading:

To read full story click HERE

Dow finishes up more than 200 points; S&P 500 erases year-to-date losses

Market Watch:

Australia's benchmark S&P/ASX 200 continues its upward march to fresh six-month highs, while New Zealand shares bank even sharper gains. The reason for the gains? A good day on Wall Street and further evidence the global economy is slowly picking up.• China manufacturing back up and running

Howard Miller Reports From Global Bullion Trading Group

Good afternoon everyone, The metals complex surged across the board in today's New York trading....The metals rallied despite stronger than expected U.S. economic data with traders focusing instead on this week's release of the Banking Stress Tests...According to Bloomberg News reporter Halia Pavliva; " Gold futures climbed in New York for the first time in three sessions on surging demand for the precious metal as an alternative investment before the release later this week of U.S. banks’ stress-test results. Silver rose. The tests are expected to signal whether 19 top financial firms need more capital to withstand any deterioration in the economy. The Federal Reserve plans to make public the stress- test results on May 7, the same day as a possible interest-rate move by the European Central Bank. Some investors buy precious metals as a safe harbor in times of economic turmoil. “This week’s ECB interest-rate decision and U.S. bank stress-test results will dominate the action in the gold price,” said Bayram Dincer, a Dresdner Bank commodity analyst in Zurich. “Gold will retest $910 an ounce resistance and surpass it. Gold fundamentals are still well intact and are expected to become more price-supportive in the near term.” .....Silver finished the day at $13.10 up 54 cents......Gold rallied $13.00 to $901.00.....Palladium gained $7.00 to finish the session at $224.00.....Platinum closed at $1120.00 up $22.00.....Volume was moderately heavy despite minimal activity from Europe.....The Euro surged 1.21 U.S cents to $1.3386......Crude remained firm on the positive U.S. economic data...Last on Oil $53.79 up 59 cents per barrel.....Over in the stock market traders ignored the impending Bank Stress Tests and instead expressed enthusiasm over today's data.....The Dow is presently up 170 points.....As for the data; Construction Spending rose by .3% compared to expectations of a decline of 1.6%.......Even more impressive was the release of Pending Home Sales which clocked in with a surprising gain of 3.2% compared with Street estimates of a 0% gain......Wow......As for tomorrow the calendar rolls on with the latest ISM Services Index for traders to chew on....I'll be back in the morning with that estimate along with any overnight global developments......That's it... Howar

BBC NEWS BUSINESS:"European economy 'will shrink 4%"

EU economies will contract by 4% in 2009, the European Commission has forecast - more than twice what as it had predicted at the start of the year.

To read full coverage of report, click HERE

Gata Dispatches: "China has Canceled U.S. credit cards, Congresman says"

China has 'canceled U.S. credit card,' congressman says
Submitted by cpowell on 06:53PM ET Sunday, May 3, 2009. Section: Daily Dispatches From Agence France-Pressevia Google NewsThursday, April 30, 2009

Google hosted news

WASHINGTON -- China, wary of the troubled US economy, has already "canceled America's credit card" by cutting down purchases of debt, a US congressman said Thursday.China has the world's largest foreign reserves, believed to be mostly in dollars, along with around $800 billion in U.S. Treasury bonds, more than any other country.But Treasury Department data shows that investors in China have sharply curtailed their purchases of bonds in January and February.U.s. Rep. Mark Kirk, a member of the House Appropriations Committee and co-chair of a group of lawmakers promoting relations with Beijing, said China had "very legitimate" concerns about its investments."It would appear, quietly and with deference and politeness, that China has canceled America's credit card," Kirk told the Committee of 100, a Chinese-American group."I'm not sure too many people on Capitol Hill realize that this is now happening," he said.The lawmaker, a Republican, said China was justified in concerns about returns from finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which were bailed out by the US government due to the financial crisis.Kirk said he was the first member of Congress to tour the Bureau of Public Debt, which trades bonds, and was alarmed at how much debt was being bought by the U.S. Federal Reserve due to absence of foreign investors."There will come a time where the lack of Chinese participation may have a significant impact," Kirk said."We should track that, because up until last month they were the No. 1 provider of currency to the United States and now they're gone."With China's economy also hit by the global economic crisis, Premier Wen Jiabao has openly voiced concern about the status of his country's investments in the United States.China has also floated replacing the dollar as the key international currency with a basket of units bringing in the euro, sterling and yen.
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