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Apr 24, 2013

The New York Times Video: A Chinese Threat to Afghan Buddhas -April 24, 2013-.

 "We need a moral change, a shift from the foundations and definitions in the production of goods and services that the person vindicate all their needs as the main objective to achieve, otherwise God for believers confessed find us, or our ego persistent anti-ethical values​​, which are far from the religious, destroy us, no doubt."
 Fernando Guzman Cavero


In Afghanistan, a Chinese mining company threatens to destroy the remains of an ancient Buddhist city, which archaeologists are now racing to excavate.


U.S. stocks end with Dow drop, flat S&P 500. Wall Street at Close Report -April 24, 2013



By Polya Lesova and Kate Gibson, MarketWatch 

NEW YORK (MarketWatch) The blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average fell for the first session in four on Wednesday, dragged lower by steep declines for Procter & Gamble Co. and AT&T Inc. 

The S&P 500 index SPX +0.0006% —a broad measure of the stock market—erased its gains during the last minutes of the trading session, ending at 1,578.79 compared to Tuesday’s close of 1,578.78. 


Stocks to watch: Apple, Boeing and Ford
Apple, Boeing and Ford are the three stocks to keep on your radar on Wednesday, Polya Lesova reports. 

Telecommunications, consumer staples and health care were the three declining sectors among the S&P 500’s 10 major industry groups. 

“Investors seem to be having a hard time judging this earnings season, alternating between bouts of optimism and hand-wringing,” noted Sheraz Mian, research director at Zacks Investment Research.
However, “first-quarter results aren't that different from what we have been seeing in the last few quarters,” Mian added. 

The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA -0.29% fell 43.16 points, or 0.3%, to end at 14,676.30, with 15 of its 30 components in the red. 

Procter & Gamble PG -5.88% sank 5.9%, leading the Dow lower after the consumer-products company’s full-year earnings outlook fell short. 

AT&T Inc. T -5.03% dropped 5% after the telephone company reported a larger-than-expected sales decline in the first quarter. 

Microsoft Corp. MSFT +3.79%  was the biggest gainer in the Dow, rising 3.8% after the software maker said it would unveil its next-generation Xbox on May 21. Aluminum producer Alcoa Inc. AA +3.57%  rose 3.6%. 

Boeing Co. BA +3.01% was another blue-chip gainer after the plane manufacturer reported first-quarter profit above Wall Street’s estimates. 


Reuters
Boeing’s quarterly profit exceeds analysts’ estimates.
The technology-laden Nasdaq Composite COMP +0.0098% added 0.32 point to 3,269.65. 

After dipping under $400, shares of Apple Inc. AAPL -0.16% ended down 0.2% at $405.46, a day after the iPhone maker projected sales below analysts’ estimates but hiked its quarterly dividend and set aside more cash for stock repurchases. 


“Companies are making money in a tough climate by keeping costs under control for the most part,” said David Kelly, chief global strategist for J.P. Morgan Funds. 

“We’ve got over 45% of the S&P 500’s market cap in the door, and what we’re seeing overall looks pretty good,” said Kelly of quarterly earnings. 

On Wednesday, 706 million shares traded on the New York Stock Exchange. Composite volume topped 3.5 billion. 

Ahead of the open, U.S. stock-index futures erased gains to turn nearly neutral after the government reported orders for longer-lasting goods slid 5.7% last month, below expectations. 

“The durable goods report was fairly weak, but that is a volatile category,” said J.P. Morgan’s Kelly of Department of Commerce figures, which had bookings for commercial aircraft down more than 48% in March after leaping over 86% the month before. Boeing said it had orders for 39 planes last month versus 179 booked in February. 

The U.S. dollar DXY -0.10% edged lower against other global currencies, including the yen USDJPY +0.09% ; Treasury prices rose with the yield on the 10-year 10_YEAR -0.58% note at 1.7%. 

Commodities grew more costly, with crude-oil futures CLM3 +2.67% rising $2.25 to $91.43 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange Gold futures GCM3 +1.52% advanced $14.90 to $1,423.70 an ounce on the Comex division of the Nymex. 

U.S. equities on Wednesday rose for a third session, after a phony tweet of blasts at the White House momentarily cleared gains. Read about how Twitter’s trading influence was laid bare by a fake tweet.
“It’s a much easier market to invest in than trade in, as shown by the swoon yesterday on a rumor. It’s easier to see where you’re going longer term than making short-term bets. Longer term, stocks are going higher as well as interest rates,” said J.P. Morgan’s Kelly. 

Polya Lesova is MarketWatch's New York deputy bureau chief. Follow her on Twitter @PolyaLesova. Kate Gibson is a reporter for MarketWatch, based in New York.


DealBook Afternoon Edition: Down Payment Rules Are at Heart of Mortgage Debate -April 24, 2013-.


NYTimes.com Home |Business Day| Video The New York Times


Wednesday, April 24, 2013
TOP STORY
Homes under construction in Casper, Wyo. The outcome of the down payment debate has major implications for the mortgage market.
Down Payment Rules Are at Heart of Mortgage Debate Many lawmakers, lenders and consumer advocates are now cautioning against rules that would require many borrowers to make large down payments.
For the latest updates, go to dealbook.nytimes.com »
ADVERTISEMENT

DEALBOOK HIGHLIGHTS
The Return of Jon Winkelried, Sort of Last month, Thrive hired Jon Winkelried, a former Goldman Sachs executive, as a strategic adviser to provide guidance as the three-year-old venture capital firm continues to expand.
Comparing the Valuations Behind Amazon and Apple Shares Investors seem to be starry-eyed about Amazon's valuation, particularly when compared with Apple's.
Guggenheim Hires Lehman Veteran in Continued Hiring Spree The arrival of Glenn Schiffman, a former senior banker at Lehman Brothers and Nomura, signals the continuing growth of Guggenheim Partners, which has sought to bolster its investment banking arm.
Deal Professor & White Collar Watch: Strategic Posturing Behind the Suit Against Corzine Steven M. Davidoff and Peter J. Henning say that unlike in many other cases, Louis J. Freeh has not named MF Global's directors as defendants in his lawsuit against Jon S. Corzine and two other former executives. That is a critical part of his legal strategy.
Lloyds Bank Plans I.P.O. After Branch Sale Collapses The Lloyds Banking Group says it is planning an initial public offering of part of its branch network after a deal fell through to sell the division to a rival British lender, Co-operative Bank.
Barclays Earnings Decline Sharply on Restructuring Costs The British bank Barclays said on Wednesday that first-quarter pretax profit dropped 25 percent as it set aside money to pay for a major overhaul of its operations.
Credit Suisse Posts Higher Profit The bank reported first-quarter earnings of $1.4 billion, a large increase from the period a year earlier when it booked large charges on its own debt.
Another View: In Defense of Regulatory Capital Trades Glen Blasius says that the transactions that have come under a spotlight are valid and effective tools for banks to reduce risk while enabling them to continue to run their core businesses, which are at the heart of the economic recovery.
Breakingviews: Caesars Blinds Market With Science Jeffrey Goldfarb says that the private equity owners behind Caesars Entertainment have been working overtime in their financial laboratory.
Buzz Tracker
MetroPCS Shareholders Approve Revised T-Mobile Deal MetroPCS can breathe easy. Shareholders of the cellphone service provider overwhelmingly approved a sweetened takeover bid by Deutsche Telekom's T-Mobile USA unit on Wednesday, after a months-long battle with hedge funds dissatisfied with the original deal.
Georgia-Pacific to Buy Buckeye for $1.5 Billion The deal's price of $37.50 a share is 25 percent higher than the closing price on Tuesday for the maker of specialty fibers. Georgia-Pacific was advised by UBS and the Blackstone Group, while Buckeye retained Barclays and the law firm Dechert
LOOKING AHEAD
Economic Reports Data to be released on Thursday include weekly jobless claims.
Corporate Earnings Companies scheduled to release quarterly results on Thursday include 3M, Altria, Biogen Idec, Boston Scientific, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Colgate-Palmolive, Conoco Phillips, Dow Chemical, Exxon Mobil, JetBlue Airways, KKR, The New York Times, Raytheon, Safeway, Southwest Airlines, United Continental, United Parcel Service, Amazon.com, Eastman Chemical and Starbucks.
In the United States On Thursday, a House Judiciary subcommittee will conduct a hearing on the Electronic Communications Privacy Act and geographic location privacy and surveillance; and a Senate Health, Education Labor and Pensions subcommittee will hold a hearing about whistle-blowers and job safety.
For the latest updates, go to dealbook.nytimes.com »

Quotation of the Day
"The problem with this conversation is that it's like discussing the future of shipbuilding from the deck of the Titanic."
Roberto G. Quercia, director of the Center for Community Capital at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, on rules that would require many borrowers to come up with significant down payments.


Europe stocks rise on earnings, rate cut hopes: MarketWatch I European Markets at Close Report -April 24, 2013-.

By Sara Sjolin, MarketWatch 
 
LONDON (MarketWatch)European stock markets showed solid moves on Wednesday, after a slide in German business confidence added to speculation the European Central Bank could cut rates at its meeting next week. 

Additionally, earnings from corporate heavyweights helped lift sentiment.
The Stoxx Europe 600 index XX:SXXP +0.68% rose 0.7% to 294.63, after putting in its best daily performance since last summer on Tuesday. 



India losing the outsourcing crown
A draft of the U.S.’s immigration bill could hobble Indian outsourcing firms' businesses in the U.S. The WSJ’s Abheek Bhattacharya talks about the competition from the Philippines and Mexico in the outsourcing sector. 


“Corporate news from some of the bellwethers have an impact on the market, U.S. gains overnight helped, as well as further rate-cut speculations in Europe,” said Neil Wilkinson, senior fund manager at Royal London Asset Management. 

Peugeot SA shares FR:UG +10.43%  rallied 10%, after the car maker said it may cut costs if the European automobile market is worse than expected in 2014. 

On a more downbeat note, Heineken NV NL:HEIA -5.09%  lost 5.1%, after the brewer said it sees volume pressure in all regions as it posted a group beer volume decline of 2.7% in the first quarter.
Other brewers tracked lower, with Carlsberg AS DK:CARLB -3.05%  down 3.1% and SABMiller PLC UK:SAB -0.99%  off 1%. 

For the broader European stock markets, investors digested a downbeat reading on German business confidence, which sparked expectations the ECB could cut rates by 25 basis points at its policy-setting meeting next Thursday. The Ifo business-climate index fell to 104.4 points in April from 106.7 in March for a second month of declines, missing expectations of a 106.2 reading. 

The downbeat data came after a day after purchasing manager’s indexes for the euro zone signaled a weak start to the second quarter, with the downturn spreading to powerhouse Germany. 

“It all tells the same story — things are pretty tough out there and the weakness is spreading to the core. Not in a drastic way, but it’s adding to the grinding weakness. It makes the case for a rate cut, but the benefits are questionable,” said Wilkinson, from Royal London Asset Management. 

“The last three to four years low rates have had a limited impact on the broader economy because the transmission is not working properly. It doesn’t filter through to the real economy,” he said. 


MarketWatch/Tim Rostan
Heineken shares drop on Wednesday after the brewer reports a decline in beer volume.
In Asia, most markets closed higher, with Japanese stocks climbing amid expectations of improved earnings growth. 

U.S. stocks traded mostly lower, after weaker-than-expected durable-goods orders for March beat the air out a three-day winning streak. 

Italian president named

Back in Europe, political instability in Italy seemed to get closer to an end. President Giorgio Napolitano named Enrico Letta, deputy secretary of the Democratic Party, to be the country’s new prime minister, two months after inconclusive elections left the country in political deadlock. 


Letta was tasked with the job of forming a government, with expectations that he will turn to former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi to form a broad coalition, media reports said.
The FTSE MIB index XX:FTSEMIB +0.44%  gained 0.4% to 16,563.43, recovering from earlier losses. 

Earlier in the day, the Italian Treasury sold its maximum targeted 2.5 billion euros ($3.26 billion) in two-year notes, at the lowest funding costs since the country joined the euro zone. 

In the secondary market, the yield on 10-year Italian government bonds IT:10YR_ITA 0.00%  4 basis points to 4%, after dropping below 4% for the first time since November 2010 on Tuesday, according to electronic trading platform Tradeweb. 

Among country-specific indexes in Europe, France’s CAC 40 index FR:PX1 +1.58%  rose 1.6% to 3,842.94. Shares of AXA SA FR:CS +3.30%  climbed 3.3%, after Citigroup added the insurance firm to its Europe focus list. 

Accor SA FR:AC -1.91%  dropped 1.9%, after Exane BNP Paribas cut the hotel group to neutral from outperform. 

In Germany, Deutsche Post AG DE:DPW +3.99%  climbed 4.5%, after J.P. Morgan Cazenove lifted the firm to overweight from neutral and added it to its European analyst focus list, citing year-to-date underperformance. 

Volkswagen AG DE:VOW3 +2.23%  rose 2.6%, after the car maker affirmed its 2013 earnings outlook

The DAX 30 index DX:DAX +1.32%  rose 1.3% to 7,759.03. 

The U.K.’s FTSE 100 index UK:UKX +0.40%  gained 0.4% to 6,431.76. Standard Life UK:SL +8.00%  jumped 8%, after posting a better-than-expected 24% rise in sales for the first quarter, boosted by strong performances in the U.K. and Canada. 

Barclays PLC shares UK:BARC -1.26%   BCS -1.20%  slipped 1.3%. The bank posted a first-quarter net profit of 839 million pounds ($1.28 billion) compared with a loss of £598 million in the same quarter last year, but said earnings were hit by £514 million in restructuring charges. 

Outside the major indexes, shares of Storebrand ASA NO:STB +6.51% climbed 6.5%, after the insurance firm said it strengthened its buffer capital. 

Sara Sjolin is a MarketWatch reporter based in London. Follow her on Twitter @sarasjolin.

Momentum Stock Entry Signals - Part 2, Ken Calhoun : MoneyShow Traders Daily Alert April 24, 2013-.

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ADVFN World daily Markets Bulletin -April 24, 2013-.


ADVFN III World Daily Markets Bulletin
Daily world financial news Wednesday, 24 April 2013


US Market
Stocks Showing A Lack Of Direction In Early Trading

After moving mostly higher over the three previous sessions, stocks are turning in a lackluster performance in early trading on Wednesday. The major averages have been bouncing back and forth across the unchanged line.

The major averages are currently turning in a mixed performance, with the Dow posting a slim loss. While the Dow is down 7.41 points or 0.1 percent at 14,712.05, the Nasdaq is up 1.48 points or 0.1 percent at 3,270.81 and the S&P 500 is up 1.17 points or 0.1 percent at 1,579.95.

The choppy trading on Wall Street comes as traders weigh upbeat earnings news from some big-name companies against a disappointing report on durable goods orders.

Before the start of trading, the Commerce Department released a report showing a much steeper than expected drop in durable goods orders in the month of March.

The report showed that durable goods orders tumbled by 5.7 percent in March following a revised 4.3 percent increase in February. Economists had expected orders to drop by 2.8 percent.

Excluding a sharp drop in orders for transportation equipment, durable goods orders still fell by 1.4 percent in March compared to a 1.7 percent drop in February.

The data partly offset positive sentiment that was generated by better than expected earnings news from companies such as Ford (F) and Boeing (BA).

Traders are also digesting quarterly results from tech giant Apple (AAPL), which reported second quarter results that exceeded expectations but forecast third quarter revenues below the consensus estimate.

While many of the major sectors are showing modest moves in early trading, considerable strength is visible among gold stocks. After bucking the uptrend seen on Tuesday, gold stocks are moving notably higher along with the price of the precious metal.

Steel, oil service, and computer hardware stocks are also seeing early strength, while telecom, biotechnology, and airline stocks have come under pressure.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region saw significant strength on Wednesday, benefiting from the overnight rally on Wall Street. Japan's Nikkei 225 Index surged up by 2.3 percent, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index jumped by 1.7 percent.

The major European markets have also moved to the upside on the day. While the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index has risen by 0.4 percent, the German DAX Index and the French CAC 40 Index have jumped 1 percent and 1.1 percent, respectively.

In the bond market, treasuries are seeing modest weakness despite the disappointing durable goods orders report. Subsequently, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, is up by less than a basis point at 1.705 percent.




Canadian Market
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TSX Up At Open Wednesday

Bay Street stocks moved up at open Wednesday amid buying in commodities, with the S&P/TSX Composite Index adding 51.79 points or 0.43 percent to 12,142.73.

The Diversified Materials Index gained close to 2 percent, with First Quantum Minerals and Teck Resources adding over 2 percent each.

The Global Gold Index was up about 3 percent. Barrick Gold Corp. jumped 6 percent despite reporting lower first-quarter net earnings.

Allied Nevada Gold gathered over 6 percent. Royal Gold, Goldcorp. and Agnico-Eagle Mines were up around 2 percent each.

In the financial space, Scotiabank eased 0.30 percent after it said it has acquired 50 percent of BBVA's pension fund management business, AFP Horizonte, in Peru for approximately C$260 million.

TD Bank and Royal Bank slipped around 0.50 percent each, while National Bank was adding about 1 percent.

The price of crude oil was moving higher Wednesday morning as traders await cues on inventories position from the official data, due out later during the session. Analysts expect crude oil inventories to gain 2 million barrels and gasoline stocks to shed 600,000 barrels last week. Yesterday, Goldman Sachs cut its three-month outlook for Brent to $100 a barrel from $110 and lowered its 2013 forecast to $105 from $110, citing slower oil demand in China, the world's second- largest crude consumer.

Crude for June delivery added $0.16 to $89.34 a barrel.

The price of gold was moving higher Wednesday morning despite a steady US dollar and continued drop in ETF holdings. Holdings of SPDR Gold Trust, the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, moved down to 1,097.19 tons from 1,104.71 tons. Gold for June gained $22.30 to $1,431.10 an ounce.

In corporate news from Canada, Barrick Gold Corp. reported lower first-quarter net earnings of $847 million or $0.85 per share versus last year's $1.04 billion or $1.04 per share, largely driven by lower realized gold and copper prices. On an adjusted basis, net earnings amounted to $923 million or $0.92 per basic share in the recent period. Analysts expected earnings per share of $0.91 for the quarter

Scotiabank said it has acquired 50 percent of BBVA's pension fund management business, AFP Horizonte, in Peru for approximately C$260 million.

Transportation services provider Canadian Pacific Railway reported that its first-quarter of 2013 net income increased to C$217 million, or C$1.24 per share from C$142 million, or C$0.82 per share in the first quarter of 2012. Analysts expected the company to report earnings of C$1.21 per share for the quarter.




European Market
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European Stocks Higher For Fourth Day

European stocks rose for a fourth consecutive session on Wednesday amid speculation global central banks will keep interest rates low and step up economic stimulus to boost growth. With the euro area adding to evidence that global growth is faltering, speculation is rife that the European Central Bank will cut its key lending rate when it meets on May 2.

Earnings prove to be a mixed bag, with drug maker Novartis and Swiss financial giant Credit Suisse reporting solid results, while Daimler, France Telecom, Ericsson and Barclays reported disappointed results.

The Euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone bluechip stocks is rising half a percent, while the Stoxx Europe 50 index, which includes some major U.K. companies, is up 0.2 percent. Across Europe, the U.K.'s FTSE 100 is edging up marginally, Switzerland's SMI is up 0.3 percent, France's CAC 40 is moving up 0.4 percent and the German DAX is gaining half a percent.

The euro rose from a two-week high against the dollar as hopes for an end to political deadlock in Italy outweighed weak German data. Germany's business confidence deteriorated more than economists expected in April, the latest survey from the Ifo Institute showed. The headline business confidence index dropped to 104.4 in the month from 106.7 in March. Economists had forecast the index to decline to 106.2.

Separately, retail sales in Italy continued to decline in February, the latest figures from the statistical office Istat showed. Sales fell 0.2 percent month-over-month in February compared with 0.4 percent drop in January.

In stock-specific action, Deutsche Post AG is rallying 3.9 percent in Frankfurt on brokerage upgrades, while Daimler shares are declining 1.6 percent after the automaker reported a sharp decline in its first quarter profit and lamented about weak demand conditions, especially in Europe. Volkswagen is gaining 2.4 percent after the German auto giant retained its earnings forecast.

Shares of PSA Peugeot Citroen are climbing 9 percent in Paris after the French automaker said it would launch talks with workers to help meet turnaround targets. Rio Tinto shares are moving up 3.7 percent in London as metal prices rebounded on hopes for more monetary stimulus from global central banks.

Barclays' shares are down 1.6 percent as the British bank reported a decline in its first quarter pre-tax profits. On an adjusted basis, pre-tax profits rose 6 percent.

Novartis is declining 0.4 percent in Zurich after the company reiterated its guidance for mid-single-digit percentage drop in profits and flat sales for 2012. Credit Suisse is losing 0.6 percent despite the Swiss lender reporting a strong increase in its first quarter profit due to the absence of charge that hit its year-ago results.




Asia Market
Asian Stocks Rally On US Data, Earnings

Asian stocks followed global markets higher on Wednesday on the back of solid U.S. earnings and relatively upbeat new home sales data. Weaker-than-expected economic data out of China and Europe boosted speculation that global central banks will keep interest rates low and step up economic stimulus to boost growth.

With the euro-area remaining mired in recession, investors bet that the ECB will cut its key lending rate when it meets on May 2. A successful Spanish debt auction drove bond yields lower in Spain and Italy yesterday amid speculation the ECB will lower interest rates at its monthly meeting next month to support a fading economy.

Japan's Nikkei average climbed 2.3 percent to hit its highest closing level in nearly five years, as the yen's weakness improved the outlook for corporate earnings among export-linked firms. The broader Topix index advanced 1.8 percent. The dollar traded well above the 99 yen line, helping lift Mazda Motor, Advantest and Kyocera up 4-6 percent.

JFE Holdings soared 6.6 percent after the steelmaker posted a 28-fold jump in fourth-quarter profit. Mitsubishi Motors shot up 20 percent as the automaker revised up its group net profit for fiscal 2012 to a record high.

Heavyweights like SoftBank and KDDI rose over 4 percent each, Fast Retailing gained 1.6 percent, shipping lines Mitsui OSK and Nippon Yusen soared 4-7 percent and farm equipment maker Kubota added 2.9 percent.

Chinese shares rose for the first time in three days, with financials gaining ground ahead of a slew of quarterly earnings. The benchmark Shanghai Composite closed up 1.6 percent. Hong Kong's Hang Seng index gained 1.7 percent after Chinese electricity producer Huaneng Power International Inc. posted robust Q1 earnings.

Australian shares rose sharply to a five-week high as weak Chinese and German manufacturing data heightened expectations of central-bank action. The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 rose 1.7 percent. Banks led the gainers after benign inflation data spurred talk of an interest rate cut. The consumer price index rose by a weaker-than-expected 0.4 percent in the March quarter, undershooting market expectations of a 0.7 percent increase, data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics showed.

On an annual basis, consumer prices were up 2.5 percent from a year earlier, well within the RBA's 2-3 percent target range. The central bank is due to hold its next policy review on May 7.

ANZ, Commonwealth, NAB and Westpac all ended up over 2 percent each, while investment bank Macquarie Group rose 1.4 percent and insurer Suncorp Group rallied 3.8 percent. Woodside Petroleum advanced 2 percent, a day after it announced a 63 US cents per share special dividend. Diversified global miners BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto rose 1-2 percent, but gold and iron ore miners Silver Lake Resources, Fortescue Metals and Atlas Iron fell 4-7 percent.

Seoul shares rose to a two-week high, mirroring firm regional cues. The benchmark Kospi average closed 0.9 percent higher, with fears that there is room for the yen to weaker further capping gains. SK Hynix rose 0.9 percent after the chipmaker swung back to a profit in the first quarter, thanks to better-than-expected sales on higher chip prices. Shares of LG Electronics eased 0.4 percent after its first-quarter net profit plunged 91 percent from a year earlier, missing analyst estimates.

New Zealand shares rose to a record high on the back of strong global cues. The benchmark NZX-50 index gained half a percent. Retailer Warehouse Group rose 2.6 percent to a 21/2-year high after the company completed the sale of Silverdale Centre in Auckland to DNZ Property Fund. Growth stories such as Diligent Board Member Services, Xero and A2 Corp soared 4-7 percent.

National carrier Air New Zealand rallied 5.6 percent after the company forecast its earnings will more than double in the 2012-13 financial year. Fonterra Shareholders Fund rose 1.7 percent after announcing senior management changes at its Asia Pacific/Middle East/Africa (APMEA) business unit. Exporter Fisher & Paykel Healthcare shed 0.8 percent on a stronger kiwi dollar after Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler backed away from talking tough on the strength of the currency.

Meanwhile, the Reserve Bank of New Zealand left its key official cash rate unchanged, citing benign inflationary pressure despite signs of growing economic momentum.

Elsewhere, the Taiwan Weighted average gained over a percent, Singapore's Straits Times index was moving up 0.7 percent, Indonesia's Jakarta Composite was up half a percent and Malaysia's KLSE Composite edged up 0.4 percent. The Indian market was closed on account of Mahavir Jayanti.




Commodities
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Crude Edges Up Ahead Of Official Inventories Data

The price of crude oil was moving higher Wednesday morning as traders await cues on inventories position from the official data, due out later during the session.

Yesterday, Goldman Sachs cut its three-month outlook for Brent to $100 a barrel from $110 and lowered its 2013 forecast to $105 from $110, citing slower oil demand in China, the world's second- largest crude consumer.

Light Sweet Crude Oil (WTI) futures for June delivery, edged up $0.45 to $89.63 a barrel. Yesterday, oil snapped its three-session gaining streak to settle a cent lower paring much of the losses, ahead of the supply data while tracking rising global equity markets with the dollar strengthening against a basket of major currencies. Oil prices were impacted on some weak macroeconomic data out of Europe and China indicating a slowdown in economic activity, coupled with some soft new home sales from the U.S.

Tuesday after the market hours, the API said crude supplies fell 845,000 barrels, compared with expectations of a 1.4 million-barrel climb by analysts. Gasoline inventories declined 2.7 million barrels

This morning, the U.S. dollar was hovering near its two-week high versus the euro and sterling. The buck was extending its three-week high against the Swiss franc and steady near its 4-year high versus the yen.

Gold Steady Above $1,400

The price of gold was moving higher Wednesday morning despite a steady US dollar and continued drop in ETF holdings.

Gold for June delivery, the most actively traded contract, moved up $12.80 to $1,421.60 an ounce. Yesterday, gold settled lower on some weak macroeconomic data out of China indicating a slowdown in economic activity, coupled with some soft new home sales from the U.S. Gold prices also stumbled with the dollar gaining in strength against a basket of major currencies and the euro. Investors sought riskier assets with global equity markets trending higher, even as physical demand for commodities waned.

Holdings of SPDR Gold Trust, the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, moved down to 1,097.19 tons from 1,104.71 tons.

Morning Market Briefing -April 24, 2013-: Stock Futures Give Back Ground On Disappointing Data

Commentary April 24, 2013
After pointing to a higher open earlier in the morning, stock futures have given back ground following some disappointing economic data. The major index futures are currently pointing to a mixed open for the markets. While the Dow futures are up by 9 points, the Nasdaq futures are down by 3 points. (Apr 24, 2013) Full Article 
Economic News
The Reserve Bank of New Zealand announced Wednesday its decision to leave interest rate unchanged at levels it has been in the past two years, as Governor Graeme Wheeler expects inflation to remain contained even as economic growth gathers momentum. (Apr 24, 2013) Full Article 
Australia's inflation increased less than forecast in the first quarter of 2013, giving more room for the central bank to ease monetary policy. The consumer price index rose 0.4 percent quarter-on-quarter in the first three months of the year, weaker than the 0.7 percent increase expected by economists. This followed a 0.2 percent increase in the fourth quarter of 2012. (Apr 24, 2013) Full Articcle 
The Bank of England and the HM Treasury on Wednesday announced an extension of the Funding for Lending Scheme (FLS) for one year with an aim to boost credit supply to small businesses. (Apr 24, 2013) Full Article 
A sharp deterioration in German business confidence due to increasing caution among companies, cast doubt about the ability of the economy to recover strongly even in the second quarter. The business confidence index fell more-than-expected to 104.4 April from 106.7 in March, survey conducted by the Ifo Institute among 7,000 firms revealed Wednesday. (Apr 24, 2013) Full Article
In another troubling sign for the manufacturing sector, the Commerce Department released a report on Wednesday showing a much bigger than expected drop in new orders for manufactured durable goods in the month of March. (Apr 24, 2013) Full Article
Earnings News
AT&T Inc. (T) on Tuesday reported a rise in first-quarter earnings that came in line with estimates, helped by growth in its wireless business, amid better margins. Top-line for the period edged down and missed Street view. (Apr 24, 2013) Full Article 
Apple Inc. (AAPL) on Tuesday doubled its plan to return cash to shareholders through dividends and share buybacks, while reporting a drop in second-quarter earnings, hurt by weaker margins. (Apr 24, 2013) Full Article
Broadcom Corp. (BRCM) on Tuesday reported a sharp rise in earnings for the first quarter, as robust demand for chips boosted revenues. The results for the period came in ahead of Street expectations. (Apr 24, 2013) Full Article
Yum! Brands Inc. (YUM) on Tuesday reported a fall in earnings for the first quarter, as business in China took a big hit. The Fast-food chain confirmed its adjusted results outlook for the full year. (Apr 24, 2013) Full Article 
Whirlpool Corp. (WHR) on Wednesday confirmed its profit forecast for the full year, after posting a spike in earnings for the first quarter, reflecting certain U.S. energy tax credits. Adjusted earnings beat consensus, while revenue fell in short of view. (Apr 24, 2013) Full Article  
WellPoint Inc. (WLP) reported Wednesday a better-than-expected profit, as Amerigroup acquisition boosted consumer business during the first quarter. The Health insurer raised its annual earnings forecast. (Apr 24, 2013) Full Article 
Boeing Co. (BA) on Wednesday reported a higher first-quarter profit, despite its 787 Dreamliner problems, as lower costs masked a small decline in revenues. The company backed its business outlook for full year. (Apr 24, 2013) Full Article 
Eli Lilly and Co. (LLY) on Wednesday reported a climb in first-quarter earnings, even as revenues remained flat with last year. Adjusted earnings beat expecations, and the drug maker reaffirmed its annual forecast. (Apr 24, 2013) Full Article 
Procter & Gamble Co. (PG) reported Wednesday a rise in earnings for the third quarter and lifted annual profit view, on cost savings and productivity improvements. Core profit surpassed Street expectations, while top-line came in below consensus. (Apr 24, 2013) Full Article 
Broker Ratings Changes
FBR Capital Markets Cuts VOCUS, INC. (VOCS) To Market Perform From Outperform With $12 down from $24 Price Target
(Apr 24, 2013)  
FBR Capital Markets Lowers Flushing Financial Corp. (FFIC) To Market Perform From Outperform With $17 down from $18.50 Price Target
(Apr 24, 2013)  
Todays WS Events
Boeing Co. Q1 13 Earnings Conference Call At 10:30 AM ET
Boeing Co. (BA) will host a conference call at 10:30 AM ET April 24, 2013, to discuss its Q1 13 earnings results. To access the live webcast, log on at http://www.boeing.com/companyoffices/financial/ (Apr 24, 2013)
Eli Lilly Q1 13 Earnings Conference Call At 9:00 AM ET
Eli Lilly And Co. (LLY) will host a conference call at 9:00 AM ET on April 24, 2013, to discuss its Q1 13 earnings results. To access the live webcast log on to www.lilly.com (Apr 24, 2013) 
EMC Q1 13 Earnings Conference Call At 8:30 AM ET
EMC Corp. (EMC) will host a conference call at 8:30 AM ET on April 24, 2013, to discuss its Q1 13 earnings results. To access the live webcast log on to http://www.emc.com/ir (Apr 24, 2013)  
Nasdaq OMX Group Q1 13 Earnings Conference Call At 8:00 AM ET
Nasdaq OMX Group Inc. (NDAQ) will host a conference call at 8:00 AM ET on April 24, 2013, to discuss its Q1 13 earnings results. To access the live webcast log on to http://ir.nasdaqomx.com/ To listen to the live call, dial 877.645.6210 (US) or 914.495.8566 (International). For a replay call, dial 855.859.2056 (US) or 404.537.3406 (International), Passcode: 36537536 (Apr 24, 2013) 
Procter & Gamble Q3 13 Earnings Conference Call At 8:30 AM ET
The Procter & Gamble Company (PG) will host a conference call at 8:30 AM ET on April 24, 2013, to discuss its Q3 2012/2013 earnings result. To access the live webcast, log on at www.pg.com/investors (Apr 24, 2013)  
Qualcomm Q2 13 Earnings Conference Call At 4:45 PM ET
Qualcomm Inc. (QCOM) will host a conference call at 4:45 PM ET on April 24, 2013 , to discuss its Q2 13 earnings results. To access the live webcast log on to www.qualcomm.com For Replay , dial (855) 859-2056 (US) or (404) 537-3406 (International) with reservation number 29888090 (Apr 24, 2013)   
Sprint Nextel Corp. Q1 13 Earnings Conference Call At 8:00 AM ET
Sprint Nextel Corp. (S) will host a conference call at 8:00 AM ET April 24, 2013, to discuss its Q1 13 earnings results. To access the live webcast, log on at www.sprint.com/investors A call can be accessed by dialing 800-938-1120 (US/Canada) or International: 706-634-7849 with ID required: 29196505. For replay a call, dial 800-585-8367 and entering the code: 29196505 (Apr 24, 2013)  
WellPoint Inc. Q1 13 Earnings Conference Call At 8:30 AM ET
WellPoint Inc. (WLP) will host a conference call at 8:30 AM ET April 24, 2013, to discuss its Q1 13 earnings results. To access the live webcast, log on at www.wellpoint.com A call can be accessed by dialing 800-230-1059 (US) or 612-332-0107 (International) . For replay a call, dial 800-475-6701 (US) or 320-365-3844 (International ) with access code 272699 . (Apr 24, 2013)  
Whirlpool Q1 13 Earnings Conference Call At 10:00 AM ET
Whirlpool Corp.(WHR) will host a conference call at 10:00 AM ET April 24, 2013, to discuss its Q1 13 earnings results. To access the live webcast, log on at www.whirlpoolcorp.com A call can be accessed by dialing (800) 895-1549 (US) or (785) 424-1057 (International) with passcode: Whirlpool. (Apr 24, 2013)