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Jul 24, 2012

GATA | THE GATA DISPATCH: GATA files new gold records requests with State, Treasury, Fed, and FOMC

GATA files new gold records requests with State, Treasury, Fed, and FOMC

10p ET Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Through its lawyer, William J. Olson P.C. of Vienna, Virginia (http://www.lawandfreedom.com/), GATA today filed federal Freedom of Information Act requests with the U.S. State Department, Treasury Department, Federal Reserve Board, and Federal Open Market Committee, greatly expanding upon GATA's 2009 FOIA request to the Fed, which sought access to records involving gold swaps.

The 2009 FOIA action elicited a revealing admission from the Fed that it has secret and highly sensitive gold swap agreements with foreign banks -- an admission that the Fed, despite its many previous denials, is indeed surreptitiously active in the gold market. That FOIA action led to GATA's lawsuit against the Fed in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, which last year produced both a judicial finding that the Fed has many gold-related secrets and a verdict enough in GATA's favor that the Fed was required to pay court costs to GATA:

http://www.gata.org/node/9917
 
GATA's new FOIA requests seek access not just to records involving gold swaps but essentially to all records held by the targeted agencies that involve gold -- for example, in the case of the State Department, records of all international agreements involving the United States and gold.
We're hopeful that these FOIA requests will liberate material as telling as the confession the Fed was forced to make about secret gold swap agreements in GATA's first FOIA case. But of course contending with the likely resistance of the targeted agencies and then taking them to federal court will involve much effort and expense. If you're inclined to help, information about donating to GATA is here:

http://www.gata.org/node/16
GATA's new FOIA request to the State Department is here:
http://www.gata.org/files/GATA-FOI-Letter-StateDept-07-24-2012.pdf
GATA's new FOIA request to the Treasury Department is here:
http://www.gata.org/files/GATA-FOI-Letter-Treasury-07-24-2012.pdf
GATA's new FOIA request to the Federal Reserve Board is here:
http://www.gata.org/files/GATA-FOI-Letter-Fed-07-24-2012.pdf
And GATA's new FOIA request to the Federal Open Market Committee is here:
http://www.gata.org/files/GATA-FOI-Letter-FOMC-07-24-2012.pdf
GATA this week received inquiries from two more reporters for major news agencies seeking information about the rigging of the gold market, inquiries that seem to have been prompted by the secretary/treasurer's appearance on CNBC Asia last month (http://www.gata.org/node/11490) and the LIBOR interest rate rigging scandal. We gave the reporters the basic background about gold market rigging (http://www.gata.org/node/11507) and suggested specific questions they might put to major central banks, questions that are almost certain to prompt refusals to answer and thus to confirm that the central banks are surreptitiously active in the gold market.

We're increasingly hopeful that something will come of this terribly tentative if laughably obvious journalism over the next few years.

CHRIS POWELL, Secretary/Treasurer
Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee Inc.

CBS NEWS | Political Hotsheet Top Stories: Dem senator: I regret remarks about leaks

The CBS News Political Hotsheet newsletter

CBS POLITICAL HOTSHEET TOP STORIES    



   
Dianne Feinstein says she shouldn't have speculated on source of leaks, is "disappointed" Romney used them to attack President Obama
Read full story
Dem senator: I

Romney steps up criticism of Obama on leaks GOP candidate also blasts defense cuts in VFW speech, but offers few new policy details

CBO: Health care repeal would cost $109 billion Congressional Budget Office reports that Republican plan to repeal health care law would increase budget by $109 billion

Democrats: Democrats complain about the influence of the gun lobbying group as they push for limited legislation following the Aurora shooting

Unpacking the President Obama says Mitt Romney is twisting his words to cast him as hostile to small business, but Romney isn't backing off

Stocks and Markets in the News | After Hours: Apple, Netflix shares slump after hours

By Carla Mozee, MarketWatch 

LOS ANGELES (MarketWatch) — Apple Inc. shares dropped Tuesday evening, with the tech company’s quarterly earnings and iPhone sales missing Wall Street’s targets, and Netflix Inc. shares sank as the company warned of a quarterly loss. 

Shares of Riverbed Technology Inc., Buffalo Wild Wings Inc. and TripAdvisor Inc. were also standout movers in trading after hours.   

Apple
Apple’s fiscal third-quarter earnings jumped to $8.8 billion, or $9.32 a share, from $7.3 billion, or $7.79 a share, in the year-ago quarter. But earnings for the most recent period fell short of the $10.35 a share analysts polled by FactSet had anticipated. Shares of Apple AAPL -5.26%  fell 5.1% to $570.38. 

Revenue at Apple climbed by nearly 23% to $35 billion, and Wall Street had pegged sales at $37.2 billion. Apple said it shipped 26 million iPhones during the quarter, and analysts were expecting a little more than 28 million units to be shipped. Read more about Apple's results. 
 
Netflix shares NFLX +0.56%  slid 14% to $69.88 as the company said its per-share results in the third quarter may range between a loss of 10 cents a share to a profit of 14 cents a share. It sees revenue between $890 million to $911 million. Analysts had expected earnings of 11 cents a share on $910.5 million in sales. 

The company’s fiscal second-quarter profit was 11 cents a share on revenue of $889 million, above Wall Street’s call for earnings of 4 cents a share on $889.6 million in revenue. Netflix also suggested it might not reach its targets for new subscribers to its Internet-based video streaming service. See more about Netflix's results. 

 
Dow posts third triple-digit loss The Dow industrials tumble for the third session in row, hurt by weak manufacturing data and festering worries that Greece won't be able to pay its debts. 

Trading 25% higher were shares of Riverbed Tech RVBD +23.44%  , at $18.09. The networking-equipment provider’s second-quarter adjusted earnings of 23 cents a share were 2 cents higher than analysts’ projections. Sales of $198.5 million surpassed Wall Street’s target of $194.5 million. Riverbed also said it’s teaming up with Juniper Networks Inc. on wide area network optimization technology. More on Riverbed's results. 
 
Juniper shares JNPR -2.66% , meanwhile, were up 3.3% at $15.30. The company’s second-quarter earnings excluding charges were 19 cents a share, higher than the 16 cents a share Wall Street had projected. 

Shares of Buffalo Wild Wings BWLD -13.82%  skidded 14% lower to $68.10 on missed expectations. The restaurant chain operator’s per-share earnings for the second quarter were 62 cents a share, below the consensus estimate of 68 cents a share. Same-store sales of 5.3% at company-owned restaurants were shy of the consensus forecast for growth of 6.1%. More on Buffalo Wild Wings. 
 
At TripAdvisor Inc. TRIP -15.69% , second-quarter revenue rose to $197.1 million from $169.2 million in the year-ago period, but analysts were looking for $203 million for the most recent period. The travel website’s shares slid 18% to $35.55. See more about TripAdvisor's results. 
 
Ahead of the after-hours trading session, U.S. stocks tumbled on renewed worries about Greece. Read more in Market Snapshot. 
 
The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA -0.82%  dropped 104 points, or 0.8%, to 12,617.32. The S&P 500 Index SPX -0.90%  sank 0.9% to 1,338.31 and the Nasdaq Composite Index COMP -0.94%  lost 0.9% to close at 2,862.99. 

Carla Mozee is a reporter for MarketWatch, based in Los Angeles.

NYT Global Update: Two Ex-Editors for Murdoch Charged in Hacking Scandal

Global Update


TOP NEWS

Two Ex-Editors for Murdoch Charged in Hacking Scandal

By JOHN F. BURNS and RAVI SOMAIYA
Charges were brought against eight of the most prominent figures in the scandal, including Andy Coulson, the former communications director for Prime Minister David Cameron of Britain.
Euro Watch

Germany Brushes Off Warning Over Rating

By JACK EWING and PAUL GEITNER
Even as Berlin tried to minimize risks to its stellar credit rating, market pressure was making it more likely that Spain could be the next euro nation to need a bailout.

Nations at Impasse Over South China Sea, Group Warns

By JANE PERLEZ
The intensifying disputes between China and four of its Southeast Asian neighbors over claims in the South China Sea have begun to raise warnings over the prospect of open conflict.
Sports

Interactive Feature: The Fastest Baton To the Finish Line

For a relay team to win gold in London, both talent and technique will need to be flawless.
Opinion

Latitude

Dollar Fever

By DANIEL POLITI
Argentina's Central Bank officially banned the purchase of U.S. dollars for savings, but legal mandates won't suddenly end the Argentinian love affair with the dollar.
WORLD

President of Ghana Dies at 68

By ADAM NOSSITER
The president, John Atta Mills, died unexpectedly Tuesday, five months short of completing his first term in office. The government gave no details of the cause, but Mr. Mills had recently undergone medical treatment in the United States.

Rebel-Held Land Could Be Safe Haven in Syria, Clinton Says

By RICK GLADSTONE and NEIL MacFARQUHAR
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said Tuesday that the Syrian insurgents were making territorial gains that would eventually become safe havens for "further actions by the opposition."

Russian Craft Has Glitch in Docking With Space Station

By ANDREW E. KRAMER
The malfunctioning of a new type of autopilot was the latest problem for the Russian space program, which the United States relies on to send astronauts into orbit.
BUSINESS

Bond Trading Loses Some Swagger Amid Upheaval

By NATHANIEL POPPER and PETER EAVIS
Tighter regulations and new technology are threatening to constrain a bastion of bonuses and risk-taking.

Wall Street Slides Again on Spain

By REUTERS
Traders remained focused on high bond yields in Spain and cautious outlooks from major American companies.

Rosneft Opens Talks on Buying BP's Stake in Oil Joint Venture

By ANDREW E. KRAMER
A sale of BP's share of TNK-BP to Rosneft, a Russian state-owned company, could escalate a trend toward greater state control of energy ventures in Russia.
TECHNOLOGY

Silicon Valley Says Step Away From the Device

By MATT RICHTEL
Computers, smartphones and other gadgets have made life easier, but now tech firms are worried that they may be harming people.

E.U. Nears Settlement of Google Antitrust Investigation

By PAUL GEITNER
An agreement would avoid the process of filing charges and making a case, at the end of which the remedies won are often irrelevant in the fast-moving technology industry.

AT&T Posts Higher Profits and Holds On to Subscribers

By BRIAN X. CHEN
As much as people seem to complain about their phone company, they're willing to keep giving it more money anyway. That was the lesson of AT&T's earnings report.
SPORTS

Quirks of Sports Should Be Celebrated, Not Hated

By ROB HUGHES
Carlos Tévez caddying the final round of the British Open was something fun to watch, not something to grind one's teeth over.

Only a Tuneup, but One the U.S. Takes Seriously

By GREG BISHOP
The men's basketball exhibition game Tuesday against Spain and its imposing frontcourt should say a lot about the strength of the United States team heading into the London Olympics.

Els Shows the Poise Essential in a Major

By BILL PENNINGTON
The victory by Ernie Els in the British Open was a validation of experience and a reminder that major championship golf requires a sophisticated balance of physical and mental skills.
U.S. NEWS

Philadelphia Church Official Sentenced to at Least 3 Years in Prison

By JON HURDLE and ERIK ECKHOLM
Msgr. William J. Lynn, the first Roman Catholic official in the United States to be convicted of covering up sexual abuses by priests under his supervision, was sentenced to three to six years in prison Tuesday.

New Orleans Police Agree to Plan for Sweeping Overhaul

By JOHN SCHWARTZ
The agreement with the Justice Department is a top-to-bottom plan to reform the city's scandal-ridden police department.

3 Million Fewer May Be Insured Due to Ruling, Study Predicts

By ROBERT PEAR
The Congressional Budget Office said the Supreme Court decision on President Obama's health care overhaul would probably lead to an increase in the number of uninsured and a modest reduction in the cost to the government.
OPINION
Op-Ed Contributor

Britain's Half-Hearted Bid to Reform Libel Law

By RACHEL EHRENFELD
Efforts to quell libel tourism fall short of protecting the country's own writers from unreasonable lawsuits.
Op-Ed Columnist

More Treatment Programs

By DAVID BROOKS
After a tragedy like the killings in Aurora, Colo., people use the event to indict whatever they don't like about society. But dealing with it is about psychology, not sociology.
Editorial

6,000 Bullets

There is no constitutional right to build a secret ammunition dump. Politicians need to make the tools of terror harder to obtain.

DealBook | DealB%K Afternoon Edition: The Return of Merger Monday, July Edition


Tuesday, July 24, 2012
TOP STORY
The Return of Merger Monday, July Edition Deals normally evaporate in the middle of the summer as the temperature rises and bankers decamp for the beach. But the start of this week proved to be an exception to the rule and again revived the concept of a "Merger Monday."
  • DEALBOOK »
  •  
  • DEALBOOK HIGHLIGHTS
    Deutsche Bank Blames Weak Euro for Drop in Second-Quarter Profit The preliminary earnings report demonstrates the challenges facing Anshu Jain and Jürgen Fitschen, who took over in May as co-chief executives of the bank.
    In Debt: Soccer Case Highlights Differences Between U.S. and English Bankruptcy Law Stephen J. Lubben says that a British judge found that a rule favoring the claims of a soccer team's players and its league did not violate English bankruptcy law.
    Clayton Dubilier Sells Off Last of Its Sally Beauty Shares Clayton Dubilier & Rice said on Tuesday that it was selling its final holdings in Sally Beauty Holdings, garnering some $1.9 billion in proceeds from its investment.
    TPG Waits Patiently for Billabong In its second approach this year, TPG Capital has bid less for Billabong International, a strategy that proved successful for Sycamore Partners in its takeover of Talbots.
    Man Group Announces More Cost Cuts as Assets Decline Man Group, the world's largest publicly traded hedge fund manager, is planning an additional $100 million in cost cuts by the end of next year in a bid to stem the continuing decline in its assets under management.
    BUZZ TRACKER
    Rosneft Opens Talks on Buying BP's Stake in Oil Joint Venture The Russian state oil company said that it had opened negotiations with BP to buy out the British oil company's share of the TNK-BP joint venture, a deal that could escalate the trend toward greater state control of energy ventures in Russia, Andrew E. Kramer reported for The New York Times.
    On Wall Street, Gender Bias Runs Deep Women make up more than half of the work force in the financial industry but are chief executives at fewer than 3 percent of American financial companies, Luisita Lopez Torregrosa reports for The International Herald Tribune.
    Carlyle Hires Liguori as Media Adviser The Carlyle Group said on Tuesday that it had hired Peter Liguori, a former Discovery Communications chief operating officer, as an adviser to the private equity firm's telecommunications and media group.
    LOOKING AHEAD
    Economic Reports Data released on Wednesday will include new home sales for June.
    Corporate Earnings Companies scheduled to report results on Wednesday include AOL, Boeing, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Caterpillar, Delta Air Lines, Eli Lilly, Ford Motor, GlaxoSmithKline, IAC/InterActiveCorp, JetBlue Airways, Nasdaq OMX, PepsiCo, US Airways, WellPoint, Visa and Zynga.
    In the United States On Wednesday, a House Judiciary subcommittee will conduct a hearing on cloud computing; the House Small Business Committee will hold a hearing about small business survival during the recession; and the Senate Commerce Committee will conduct a hearing on short-supply prescription drugs.
    Overseas On Wednesday, Britain will announce its first estimate of second-quarter gross domestic product. Also on Wednesday, the European Commission will propose changes to a draft law on financial market abuse to introduce punishments for the rigging of interbank lending rates, like Libor.

    DealBook Video
    Business Day Live: China's $15 Billion Oil Deal
    Business Day Live: China's $15 Billion Oil Deal Why China is investing in North American energy companies. | The former special inspector general of TARP critiques bailout policies. | The economic fallout from declining school enrollment.

     

NYT afetrnoon Business News



BUSINESS

Bond Trading Loses Some Swagger Amid Upheaval

By NATHANIEL POPPER and PETER EAVIS
Tighter regulations and electronic technology are revolutionizing the once-stodgy bond market, threatening profits and jobs.
Euro Watch

Germany Brushes Off Warning Over Rating

By JACK EWING and PAUL GEITNER
Even as Berlin tried to minimize risks to its stellar credit rating, market pressure was making it more likely that Spain could be the next euro nation to need a bailout.

Wall Street Slides Again on Spain

By REUTERS
Traders remained focused on high bond yields in Spain and cautious outlooks from major American companies.

Rosneft Opens Talks on Buying BP's Stake in Oil Joint Venture

By ANDREW E. KRAMER
A sale of BP's share of TNK-BP to Rosneft, a Russian state-owned company, could escalate a trend toward greater state control of energy ventures in Russia.

E.U. Nears Settlement of Google Antitrust Investigation

By PAUL GEITNER
An agreement would avoid the process of filing charges and making a case, at the end of which the remedies won are often irrelevant in the fast-moving technology industry.

Stocks and Markets in the News | Wall Street at Close:

U.S. Markets Headlines

United Parcel Service aircraft are loaded with air containers full of packages bound for their final destination at the UPS Worldport All Points International Hub during the peak delivery day in Louisville, Kentucky, December 21, 2009. The company expects to deliver more than 22 million air and ground packages globally on Monday, of which more than 2.5 million will be moving through the Louisville hub. This year, UPS expects to deliver more than 400 million packages globally during the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas. REUTERS/John Sommers II (UNITED STATES - Tags: SOCIETY BUSINESS TRANSPORT) - Reuters Stocks fall; Dow suffers third triple-digit loss U.S. stocks sink, resulting in the third straight session of triple-digit losses for the Dow average, following a report that Greece is still unable to pay off what it owes and will need to go through further debt restructuring.

MarketWatch | Personal Finance Daily: Home prices reach a bottom: Zillow




By MarketWatch
Don’t miss these top stories:
Have home values finally reached bottom? Zillow, the real-estate website, says yes. Nationwide, home values rose 0.2% in the second quarter compared with a year earlier—the first annual increase since 2007.
Still, with more foreclosures ahead, and the overall economy on rocky terrain, we may not be there yet. Read Amy Hoak’s story today for more on the housing market.
Plus, check out our story on how some economists expect consumers to start ramping up debt again. That might be good for the economy, but it isn’t a good plan for consumers’ pocketbooks.
Andrea Coombes , Personal Finance editor

Home prices reach a bottom: Zillow

National home values have hit bottom and are on the rise, the real-estate website Zillow reported in a news release on Tuesday.
Home prices reach a bottom: Zillow.

Consumer debt seen rising—again

The financial crisis prompted consumers to start paying down their debt, but even with the economy far from recovery, that decline in consumer debt is expected to reverse.
Consumer debt seen rising—again.

Canadians’ higher net worth isn’t the whole story

Maybe Reagan was wrong. Maybe wealth doesn’t trickle down after all. Maybe it trickles up — to Canada.
Canadians’ higher net worth isn’t the whole story. 
 
Page 1 Page 2

Money Show Investors Daily Alert: Will Earnings Take a Bite Out of Apple?

Investors Daily Alert

The Daily Guru

Jim Jubak on MoneyShow.com

Today's Top Pros' Top Picks
Old Grid vs Big Storms, Roger Conrad

Today's Gurus' Views & Strategies

Today's Charts in Play

MoneyShow.com Exclusive Interviews
Outlook for Crude Oil, Elliott Gue

Ideas from Around the World

Today's Featured Videos & Exclusive Interviews
Europe's Turmoil Not Unusual, David Callaway
M&A Can Hurt Bondholders, Marilyn Cohen

ADVFN III World Daily Markets Bulletin


ADVFN III World Daily Markets Bulletin
Daily world financial news

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

US Market Reports
Stocks Moving Mostly Lower In Late Morning Trading
After moving modestly lower in early trading on Tuesday, stocks have seen some further downside over the course of the morning. The major averages have slid more firmly into negative territory, adding to the steep losses posted in the previous session.
Concerns about the financial situation in Europe are once again contributing to the weakness on Wall Street, with traders reacting to news that credit ratings agency Moody's revised the outlooks on the Aaa sovereign ratings of Germany, the Netherlands and Luxembourg to negative from stable.
Networking stocks have shown a notable move to the downside on the day, dragging the NYSE Arca Networking Index down by 2 percent. Cisco is helping to lead the way lower after announcing plans to cut about 1,300 jobs or about 2 percent of its global workforce.
Significant weakness has also emerged among transportation stocks, as reflected by the 1.2 percent loss being posted by the Dow Jones Transportation Average. With the loss, the average has fallen to its lowest intraday level in a month.
Energy stocks are also under pressure despite a rebound by the price of Crude oil, while steel, defense, computer hardware, and healthcare stocks are also posting notable losses.
The major averages have moved roughly sideways in recent trading, stuck well below the unchanged line. The Dow is down 81.70 points or 0.6 percent at 12,639.76, the Nasdaq is down 12.23 points or 0.4 percent at 2,877.92 and the S&P 500 is down 8.69 points or 0.6 percent at 1,341.83.



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TSX Edges Up As Commodities Recover - Canadian Commentary
Canadian stocks were hovering just above the unchanged line Tuesday morning supported by manufacturing data out of China and the recent batch of deal making.
However, gains were capped amid escalating concerns over the euro zone financial situation as investors fret over the possibility of a Spanish sovereign bailout. Adding to the worries, Moody's Investors Service downgraded its rating outlook on Germany, the Netherlands and Luxembourg to 'negative' from 'stable' due to intensified uncertainty regarding the outcome of the debt crisis.
The S&P/TSX Composite Index edged up 12.20 points or 0.11 percent to 11,557.74, after shedding 120 points or 1 percent in the past two sessions.
Coal miner CIC Energy Corp. (ELC.TO) surged nearly 15 percent after announcing that it would be acquired by India-based Jindal Steel & Power Ltd in exchange of C$2.00 per share, representing just over 25 percent premium to its latest closing price.
Nexen Inc. was holding on to its previous session's gains, adding 1 percent. Yesterday, the stock skyrocketed over 50 percent after Chinese oil major CNOOC Ltd. (CEO) said it would acquire Nexen Inc. for $27.50 per share in cash.
Rogers Communications Inc. (RCI_A.TO, RCI_B.TO) gained over 5 percent after reporting second quarter earnings above street estimates. The communications and media company reported a marginally lower second-quarter net income of C$400 million or C$0.75 per share compared to C$410 million or C$0.74 per share in the same quarter last year. However excluding items, adjusted net income from continuing operations grew to C$478 million or C$0.91 per share from C$469 million or C$0.85 per share in the year-ago quarter. Analysts were expecting the company to report earnings of C$0.86 per share for the quarter.
The price of gold was flat as the euro was struggling after data out of the euro zone revealed contraction in private sector activity. gold for August edged up $0.20 to $1,577.60 an ounce.
Among gold stocks, international gold miner Eldorado gold Corp. rose over 4 percent after announcing that Greece lawmakers revoked the "Provisional Order" issued on June 29, 2012, which temporarily suspended the surface clearing activities of Hellas gold S.A., a 95 percent owned unit of Eldorado, in Halkidiki, Greece.
Agnico-Eagle Mines moved up 2 percent, while Royal gold was adding nearly 1 percent.
Healthcare services provider Centric Health Corp. (CHH.TO) moved up 1.50 percent after announcing d that it has appointed David Cutler as its President and Chief Executive Officer. Cutler will assume his responsibilities during September 2012.
The price of Crude oil was ticking higher Tuesday morning after data out of China that revealed minor recovery in the nation's manufacturing sector. Preliminary results of HSBC's monthly survey of manufacturers revealed the contraction in Chinese manufacturing eased in July, with the .Purchasing Managers' Index rising to 49.5 from 48.2. Crude for September was up $0.45 to $88.59 a barrel.
In the oil patch, Pacific Rubiales Energy and Encana Corp. were down around 2 percent each.
In economic news, Statistics Canada said retail sales rose 0.3 percent to $38.9 billion in May, missing economists estimates for a 0.5 percent growth. Gains were reported in 6 of 11 sub-sectors, representing 53 percent of retail trade. Overall, retail sales have been relatively flat since November 2011. In volume terms, retail sales rose 0.7 percent.
Elsewhere, the euro zone private sector economy contracted for the tenth time in the last eleven months, with the rate of decline unchanged on June, Markit Economics said. The flash composite Purchasing Managers' Index remained unchanged at 46.4 and matched the consensus forecast. A reading below 50 suggests contraction in the sector.
Further, Germany's private sector continued to shrink in July, marking the weakest performance since June 2009, Markit Economics said. The flash composite output index fell for the sixth month running in July, to 47.3 from 48.1 in June. The index has posted reading below 50 in each month since May.


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European Markets Finished Mixed With Focus On Bernanke
The European markets struggled to find a direction on Tuesday. The markets ended the session mixed, as attention focused on the testimony of U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke began his testimony before the Senate.
The Federal Reserve is prepared to take further action to jump start the sluggish U.S. recovery, the nation's top central banker told lawmakers Tuesday morning. However, Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke offered no hints that the central bank is specifically planning another round of quantitative easing.
"Reflecting its concerns about the slow pace of progress in reducing unemployment and the downside risks to the economic outlook, the FOMC made clear at its June meeting that it is prepared to take further actions as appropriate to promote a stronger economic recovery and sustained improvement in labor market conditions in a context of price stability," Bernanke said in delivering his twice-a-year testimony to the Senate Banking Committee.
The International Monetary Fund Monday said it approved a fresh loan to Portugal after the country passed a monetary review in connection with its bailout program. The IMF approved the disbursement of EUR1.48 billion after completing its fourth review of the Portuguese economy under an extended fund facility (EFF) arrangement with the government. With the release of fresh funds the total disbursements under the EFF arrangement will reach around EUR21.13 billion.
Just three days after it downgraded the country's sovereign credit rating by two notches, rating agency Moody's Investors Service on Monday lowered the long-term debt and deposit ratings of ten Italian banks and the issuer ratings for three Italian financial institutions by one to two notches. All of the banks and financial institutions affected by the ratings cut have a 'negative' outlook, which may increase the likelihood of future downgrades.
Spanish borrowing costs declined on Tuesday in its first debt auction since the government announced the latest round of austerity measures last week in a bid to attain deficit targets amid a severe recession.
The Spanish Treasury sold a total EUR 3.56 billion of 12- and 18-month bills, slightly exceeding the target of EUR 2.5 billion - EUR 3.5 billion set for the sale. The country placed EUR 2.6 billion worth of 12-month T-bills to yield 3.918 percent, which was much less than the 5.074 percent paid at the previous auction on June 19.
The euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone bluechip stocks declined by 0.21 percent, while the Stoxx Europe 50 index, which includes some major U.K. companies, lost 0.34 percent.
The DAX of Germany climbed by 0.18 percent and the SMI of Switzerland increased by 0.11 percent. The CAC 40 of France decreased by 0.09 percent and the FTSE 100 of the U.K. dropped by 0.72 percent,
In Paris, Alcatel-Lucent sank by 20.19 percent after the telecom equipment maker forecast an operating loss excluding certain items in its second quarter.
Technip climbed by 1.57 percent, after it was awarded a contract by Marathon Oil Norge.
In London, Royal Dutch Shell Plc finished down by 0.50 percent. The company said it would not revise its 220 pence per share offer to acquire Cove Energy and not take part in the auction process to complete the potential acquisition.
British lender HSBC Holdings fell by 1.88 percent after the British lender and top U.S. bank regulator, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, drew stinging criticism in a Senate report on money-laundering.
Shares of CSR Plc surged by 33.72 percent. Samsung Electronics agreed to acquire its handset connectivity and location development operations and technology for $310 million in cash.
Rio Tinto declined by 2.68 percent after the mining giant reported second quarter iron ore production that was almost flat with last year.
G4S dropped by 5.66 percent, after it was downgraded to "Neutral" from "Buy" by Bank of America.
Wolseley decreased by 2.15 percent. The company announced that it will explore strategic options for its businesses in France.
National Grid fell by 3.08 percent, after Societe Generale lowered its price target on the stock.
German investor sentiment declined for the third month in a row to its lowest level in six months, adding to signs that the euro area debt crisis is hurting the outlook for the region's biggest economy. The ZEW Indicator of Economic Sentiment dropped to minus 19.6 points from minus 16.9 in June. That was slightly better than economists' forecast for a score of minus 20.
U.K.'s annual consumer price inflation eased for a third straight month in June to the lowest level since November 2009, helped by falling fuel prices and heavy discounting to boost sales, the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics showed Tuesday. Consumer price inflation fell to 2.4 percent in June from 2.8 percent in May. Economists expected the rate to remain unchanged at the May level.
With a steep drop in energy prices offset by higher prices for food, medical care, and apparel, the Labor Department released a report on Tuesday showing that overall U.S. consumer prices were unchanged in the month of June. The Labor Department said its consumer price index came in flat in June following a 0.3 percent drop in May. The flat reading on consumer prices came in line with economist estimates.
Industrial production in the U.S. increased by slightly more than anticipated in the month of June, according to a report released by the Federal Reserve on Tuesday, with the increase partly due to a rebound by output in the manufacturing sector.
The Fed said industrial production rose by 0.4 percent in June following a revised 0.2 percent decrease in May. Economists had expected production to increase by 0.3 percent compared to the 0.1 percent drop originally reported for the previous month.
Homebuilder confidence has seen a substantial improvement in the month of July, according to a report released by the National Association of Home Builders on Tuesday, with the index of homebuilder confidence rising to a new five-year high.
The report showed that the NAHB /Wells Fargo Housing Market Index jumped to 35 in July from 29 in June, marking the biggest monthly increase in nearly a decade. Economists had expected the index to edge up to a reading of 30.

Asia Market Reports
Asian Stocks End Mixed After Chinese Data
Asian stocks pared early losses to end on a mixed note on Tuesday, helped by improved Chinese manufacturing data. With earlier easing measures starting to work, China's manufacturing contracted at a slower pace in July, flash estimates released by Markit Economics revealed. The PMI reading came in at 49.5 in July, up from 48.2 in the previous month, suggesting the slowest contraction in manufacturing activity in five months.
Besides Chinese data, investors continued to monitor news from Europe for directional cues. Adding to growing worries about Spain and Greece, Moody's Investors Service has lowered its rating outlooks on Germany, the Netherlands and Luxembourg to 'negative' from 'stable' entailing a higher risk of an actual downgrade within the next two years.
Commodities were mixed, while the euro extended its losses against the dollar and yen ahead of crisis talks between Spanish and German finance ministers in Berlin later in the day
Tokyo stocks fell slightly due to rising risk aversion after Moody's lowered its outlook on Germany. The benchmark Nikkei average eased 0.2 percent to end at a six-week low, while the broader Topix index shed 0.4 percent. Concerns over Spain's rising borrowing costs weighed on exporters, dragging Canon down 1.5 percent and Honda Motor down a percent. China-related Komatsu rose a percent, while Hitatchi Construction Machinery added 1.2 percent.
Sharp fell 1.7 percent on a Nikkei report that it may post a group net loss of roughly Y100 billion for the April-June quarter. Toshiba tumbled 5.4 percent after unveiling plans to cut production of flash memory chips by 30 percent.
China's Shanghai Composite index rose 0.24 percent, buoyed by manufacturing data. Property developers rallied after recent losses, while losses in the financial sector capped further upside. Hong Kong's Hang Seng index ended down 0.8 percent to 18,903, its lowest closing level since June 25.
Australian shares fluctuated between gains and losses before ending modestly higher, as signs of improvement in China's manufacturing output offset concerns about the economic outlook for Spain and Greece. The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 rose 0.01 percent, while the broader All Ordinaries index edged up 0.05 percent.
Retailers were in focus, with shares of Billabong climbing nearly 20 percent after U.S. private equity firm TPG launched a fresh 695.6 million Australian dollars takeover bid for the company. Woolworths rose 0.9 percent and Wesfarmer added 0.4 percent, but David Jones fell 2.6 percent and Harvey Norman declined 1.5 percent.
Resources stocks ended on a firm note, with BHP Billiton gaining 1.2 percent after the miner said it is conducting a review of contractors and staff across its mining mega-projects. Rival Rio Tinto rose half a percent, while Fortescue ended subdued near a two-year low.
In the energy sector, Oil Search gained 0.3 percent after it maintained its full-year production guidance. Woodside Petroleum rose 1.9 percent and Santos ended up 0.8 percent. Lender ANZ gave up early gains to end down 0.3 percent and NAB edged down 0.1 percent, while Commonwealth rose marginally and Westpac added 0.3 percent.
South Korea's Kospi average finished 0.3 percent higher, led by gains in large-cap shares on positive earnings outlooks. Among the prominent gainers, mobile service provider SK Telecom soared 6 percent, while chip maker SK Hynix rallied 2.2 percent.
New Zealand shares recouped early losses to end modestly lower on concerns over Greece and Spain. The benchmark NZX-50 index ended up about 5 points or 0.1 percent at 3,461. Cloud-based accounting firm Xero tumbled 5.5 percent from a record high ahead of Thursday's annual shareholder meeting.
Fishing firm Sanford lost 2 percent on reports the U.S. could list orange roughy an endangered species. Food ingredients manufacturer Goodman Fielder rose 3.3 percent after tumbling 6.1 percent yesterday when it warned of more write-offs in the 2012 financial year.
Elsewhere, India's benchmark Sensex was last trading up 0.4 percent and Singapore's Straits Times index was gaining half a percent, while Indonesia's Jakarta Composite index slid 0.4 percent, Malaysia's KLSE Composite eased 0.2 percent and the Taiwan's Weighted average shed 0.3 percent.
On Wall Street, stocks ended notably lower overnight, as signs that Spain could require a full bailout and the rising probability of a Greek exit from the euro zone spooked investors. The Dow slid 0.8 percent, the tech-heavy Nasdaq fell 1.2 percent and the S&P 500 dropped 0.9 percent.

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Dollar Strengthens As European Economic Concerns Persist
The dollar has gained ground against its major competitors on Monday. Spain announced a ban on short sales of stocks for three months, while Italy banned short sales of stocks in the financial sector for one week. The situation in Greece has once again raised concerns that the country may exit the Eurozone. The Spanish economy sunk deeper into recession in the second quarter, the Bank of Spain said, while bailout concerns pushed the country's borrowing costs to euro-era highs. In its quarterly estimates released on Monday, the Bank of Spain said the economy would have contracted 0.4 percent sequentially in the second quarter. This was sharper than the 0.3 percent contraction reported in the first quarter of 2012 as well as in the final three months of 2011.
Spain's Valencia and Murcia Regions have asked for financial aid, leading to speculation that a sovereign bailout may be necessary. The yield on 10-year Spanish government bonds climbed to 7.46 percent, touching a new euro-era record.
The International Monetary Fund has signaled that it may not participate in further economic assistance for Greece, heightening the risk that the country may run out of cash by September, Germany's Der Spiegel reported Sunday citing unidentified EU officials.
The newspaper said that it is already clear to the troika, comprising the European Union, IMF and the European Central Bank, that the country will not reach the 120 percent deficit target. The troika will return to Athens for inspection on Tuesday.
In an interview to broadcaster ARD on Sunday, German Vice Chancellor Philipp Roesler said if Greece does not meet the obligations, then there can be no more payments. A Greek exit from the Eurozone has long ago lost its horror, he added.
The euro is not in danger and "is irrevocable," European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said in an interview to French newspaper Le Monde over the weekend.
Some analysts are imagining scenarios in which there is an explosion of the euro area. "That underestimates the political capital that our leaders have invested in this union, as well as the support of European citizens," he said.
The greenback climbed to a new 2-year high of $1.2066 versus the euro on Monday, but has since eased back to around $1.2125.
The British manufacturing sector is likely to contract this year as the economic turbulence in the Eurozone continues affect trade and exports, a report published by manufacturers' organization Engineering Employers' Federation showed Monday. EEF expects manufacturing output to decline 0.3 percent in 2012, faster than the 0.1 percent fall forecast earlier. It will mark the first contraction in three years.