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Jun 21, 2013

The New York Times Afternoon Update; June 24, 2013: Farm Bill's Fate in House Bodes Ill for Overhaul of Immigration


Farm Bill's Fate in House Bodes Ill for Overhaul of Immigration

The Senate and House are set on disparate trajectories that may well linger beyond this Congress, and may be a dark harbinger for immigration legislation.

Negotiations With Taliban Could Hinge on Detainees

Five prisoners at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, could be the key to whether the talks the United States has long sought with the Taliban are a success.

Infrastructure Plan in Russia to Tap Reserve Funds

Despite warnings from global economics experts, President Vladimir V. Putin announced an ambitious stimulus program that would use pension reserves.

China's Credit Squeeze Relaxes as Interest Rates Drop

Tight credit eased Friday, but financial markets remained under pressure as Beijing seemed to be tackling poor lending practices.
On Pro Basketball

A Maturing James Is Only Getting Started

The moral of the 2013 finals should be that on the complicated subject of legacy, such as LeBron James's, never hazard a guess at the halftime of a career.

Video: The Sweet Spot: 'Cinematic Kryptonite'

In this week's episode, A. O. Scott and David Carr talk about the sour experience of seeing a movie that's "not very super."

Room for Debate

When the Government Is in the Mortgage Business

Does it make sense to encourage homeownership, through entities like Fannie and Freddie and through tax policies?

Demise of 'Rock Center' Shows Difficulty of Creating a Newsmagazine

The NBC show was an ambitious effort to mimic the breadth of "60 Minutes," but it never generated much of an audience. Friday night is its last night.

Indexes Swing on Wall Street

Wall Street gyrated between gains and losses in a volatile Friday session after two days of sharp declines.

Michael Dell Defends His Leveraged Buyout Offer

Michael S. Dell on Friday defended his $24.4 billion bid to buy control of Dell, arguing that an alternative proposal by Carl C. Icahn would severely weaken the computer company.

F.A.A. to Consider Relaxed Rules for Devices on Planes

An industry working group assigned by the Federal Aviation Administration is expected to recommend relaxing the ban of portable electronic devices during takeoff and landing.

Senator Criticizes Lack of Supervision for Banks' Consultants

A warning from Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio that there was a risk to the economy in the lax oversight of firms that banks hire to help them comply with federal rules.

U.S. stocks edge up Friday, but post weekly losses: Wall Street at Close Report by MarketWatch, June 21, 2013.

By Polya Lesova and Victor Reklaitis, MarketWatch 

NEW YORK (MarketWatch) U.S. stocks eked out modest gains on Friday, but posted losses for the week, which was dominated by fears that the Federal Reserve may begin pulling back stimulus later this year. 

After a very choppy trading session, the S&P 500 index SPX +0.27% gained 4.24 points, or 0.3%, to end at 1,592.43. It fell 2.1% for the week. 

Eight of the S&P 500’s 10 major sectors ended higher, with consumer staples leading gainers and information technology leading decliners. 

The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA +0.28% rose 41.08 points, or 0.3%, to 14,799.40, leaving it down 1.8% for the week. This was the Dow’s worst week since the one ended on April 19. 

Hewlett-Packard Co. HPQ -2.31%  was the top decliner, while Procter & Gamble Co. PG +2.90%  was the top gainer in the Dow on Friday. 

Bullard weighs in on Fed decision

Bullard weighs in on Fed decision
Paul Vigna and David Wessel discuss comments from St. Louis Fed President James Bullard, and TollGrade CEO Edward Kennedy looks at how best to prevent summer power outages. 

The Nasdaq Composite COMP -0.22%  fell 7.39 points, or 0.2%, to end at 3,357.25, leaving it with a weekly loss of 1.9%. The tech-heavy index was hurt by a 9.3% drop in shares of Oracle Corp. ORCL -0.02% . The tech bellwether delivered a disappointing quarterly earnings report late Thursday

More than 2 billion shares traded on the New York Stock Exchange. Composite volume topped 5.6 billion. 

Friday was a quadruple-witching session, meaning expirations for index futures, options on index futures, single-stock futures and stock options. Such sessions can be the most heavily traded days of the year. 

Friday’s gains came after The Wall Street Journal suggested that investors may be misreading the Federal Reserve’s message. Jon Hilsenrath, the Journal’s Fed watcher, wrote a blog saying that markets may be overlooking several dovish signals sent by Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke.
U.S. stocks, along with commodities and bonds, fell sharply in the previous two sessions after Bernanke said in a news conference Wednesday that the central bank may scale back its bond buying later this year. While the Fed may do so, Hilsenrath wrote, it will be a long time before the Fed raises short-term interest rates.
The Dow’s slide on Wednesday and Thursday — a drop of 560 points or 3.66% — was its worst two-day drop since the two sessions ended Nov. 1, 2011. 

James Bullard
Investors also absorbed remarks from St. Louis Federal Reserve President James Bullard, who explained on Friday why he voted against the Fed decision. Bullard said the Fed’s decision to lay out its plans to taper bond buys was badly timed. The Fed should have waited “for more tangible signs” of economic improvement and a halt in the downward direction for inflation, according to Bullard. 

The rise in the 10-year Treasury yield 10_YEAR +0.16%  — which surged to 2.53% on Friday, its highest level since August 2011 — is providing a headwind for stocks, according to Bruce Bittles, chief investment strategist at Robert W. Baird & Co. He said 2.5% is a key level. “If it breaks through there, I think the market will really have some problems,” he said. 

Meanwhile, Goldman Sachs analysts said Friday in a note that their top recommendation for 2013 is still to buy stocks and sell bonds. 

“We continue to expect the index will close the year at 1,750, a rise of approximately 10% from today’s level,” the analysts wrote, referring to the S&P 500 index. “However, median historical drawdown episodes suggest at some point during the next six months that the S&P 500 may decline to the mid-1,500s before rebounding to our year-end target.” 

Jonathan Krinsky, chief technical strategist at Miller Tabak, also sees potential support for the S&P 500 in the mid-1,500s. “We have just broken the psychological 1,600 level after two prior tests, which now creates short-term resistance in the 1,598 to 1,608 range,” Krinsky wrote in a note.
“There should be downside support in the 1,550-1,575 area, which marked major resistance over the last decade.” 

Shares of Facebook Inc. FB +2.64%  rose 2.6% after UBS analysts upgraded the social-network company to a buy rating, citing new monetization efforts and higher advertising revenue. 

In Asia on Friday, stocks in Shanghai and Hong Kong ended lower, but Japanese stocks advanced. European stocks dropped, with the Stoxx Europe 600 index XX:SXXP -1.16%  falling 1.2% to 280.40, its lowest closing level of the year. For the week, the index declined 3.7%. 

Gold for August delivery GCQ3 +0.89% rose $5.80 on Friday to close at $1,292 an ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange, but posted a weekly loss of $95.60 an ounce. 

Crude oil for August delivery CLQ3 -1.25%  fell $1.45 to end at $93.69 a barrel on Nymex, leaving it with a weekly loss of $4.38 for the week. 

On Thursday, the Dow dived 354 points, or 2.3%, representing its largest one-day percentage decline since Nov. 7, the day after the U.S. election, and its largest one-day points drop since Nov. 9, 2.4011. Gold and oil prices also tumbled, while the dollar and the 10-year Treasury yield jumped. 

Polya Lesova is MarketWatch's New York deputy bureau chief. Follow her on Twitter @PolyaLesova. Victor Reklaitis is a New York-based markets writer for MarketWatch. Follow him on Twitter @VicRek.

Stocks Halt 2-Day Selloff, but Finish Sharply Lower for Week: Wall Street at Close report by CNBC; June 21, 2013.

Stocks finished mixed in volatile trading Friday, with major averages putting an end to two days of heavy losses triggered by Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke's comments that the central bank may scale back its asset purchases later this year.

"The Fed and policies in other countries should continue to drive market volatility in the near term," according to strategists at Wells Fargo Advisors. "Economic conditions are improving and the outlook for the U.S. economy remains favorable…We continue to view pullbacks in equities as buying opportunities to accumulate stocks in cyclical sectors as valuations remain below the longer-term average."

Name Price Change %Change
DJIA Dow Jones Industrial Average 14799.40
41.08 0.28%
S&P 500 S&P 500 Index 1592.43
4.24 0.27%
NASDAQ Nasdaq Composite Index 3357.25
-7.39 -0.22%

The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished higher, led by P&G and Coca-Cola, after plummeting more than 350 points in the previous session.

The S&P 500 also finished in positive territory, while the Nasdaq ended in negative territory. The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX), widely considered the best gauge of fear in the market, declined below 19.

Most key S&P sectors closed higher, led by consumer staples and utilities, the hardest-hit sectors in the last two days.

Major averages have been on a rollercoaster ride all week, amid anxiety over the Fed meeting. Stocks took a sharp nosedive Thursday, with the Dow and the S&P 500 posting their worst losses of 2013.

"There appears to be relative calm following a calamitous period since the Fed threatened to take away the steroids. In the grand scheme of things, stocks still look relatively cheap when compared to cash and government bonds, so investors will be on a bargain hunt following yesterday's battering," said Mike McCudden, head of derivatives at stockbroker Interactive Investor.

(Read More: Stock Drop an Overreaction: Morgan Stanley CEO)

The benchmark 10-year Treasury notes fell, pushing their yield to a near two-year high of 2.516 percent. The Treasury is scheduled to auction $99 billion in new coupon-bearing notes, including $35 billion in two-year notes on Tuesday, $35 billion in five-year notes on Wednesday and $29 billion in seven-year notes on Thursday.

"All the concern in the markets is because the Fed sees the economy stronger in the future," said widely-followed hedge fund manager David Tepper, founder of Appaloosa Management in a statement to CNBC. "In fact, their forecast shows that they will wait until a lower unemployment rate(closer to 6 percent than 6.5 than) to raise interest rates. So they are a bit easier on that front...I obviously thought they should start to taper. [But] the bottom line when the dust settles [is that the] only one place to be [is] STOCKS."

St. Louis Federal Reserve President James Bullard said the decision by the central bank to lay out its plans to taper its bond-buying program was badly timed and that the Fed should have waited for "more tangible signs" of economic improvement and a halt in the downward direction for inflation.
Asian shares stabilized Friday, led by a stellar rebound in Japan's benchmark Nikkei index, which crossed the 13,000 level to rally as much as 2 percent, notching up gains of over 4 percent on the week. Meanwhile, Europe shares closed at their lowest level since January.

There were no major economic reports released. But Friday marked quadruple witching, when index futures, options on index futures, single-stock futures and stock options expire.

Gogo tumbled in its trading debut on the Nasdaq after the inflight Wi-Fi provider priced its 11 million shares at $17 a share.

Oracle slumped to lead the S&P 500 laggards after the technology giant missed forecasts for software sales and subscriptions for the second straight quarter. Additionally, at least five brokerages lowered their price targets on the company.

Facebook gained after UBS raised its rating on the social-networking giant to "buy" from "neutral."

Plus, Sprint Nextel raised its buyout offer for Clearwire to $5 per share late on Thursday, and announced support from a key group of dissident shareholders, trumping rival suitor Dish Network.
—By CNBC's JeeYeon Park (Follow JeeYeon on Twitter:

Jim Jubak Looks at the Global Hot Spots: MoneyShow Investors Daily Alert: June 21, 2013.

Jim Jubak on
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CMI I Spot Prices as of Close of Trading in New York; June 21, 2013.

Spot Prices as of close of trading in New York
Friday, June 21, 2013

Updated 6/21/2013 Today Change Week Ago Month Ago Year Ago
GOLD $1,293.70 +$6.30 $1,388.95 $1,379.85 $1,565.40
SILVER $20.06 +$0.14 $22.06 $22.55 $26.89
PLATINUM $1,372.00 +$2.90 $1,451.00 $1,461.50 $1,444.70
PALLADIUM $672.00 -$8.60 $732.60 $751.00 $609.50

White Spot expands to the Philippines as part of rapid Asian growth: BIV Today's Business News; June 21, 2013.

Hospitality and Tourism

White Spot CEO Warren Erhart

White Spot expands to the Philippines as part of rapid Asian growth

Vancouver's White Spot Restaurants is forging ahead with its Asian growth plans by opening a franchised Triple O’s-branded eatery in ... READ MORE

Mining and Energy


Exxon Mobile seeks
NEB approval to export
30 million tonnes of
LNG from B.C.

Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE:XOM) and its Canadian subsidiary Imperial Oil Resources Ltd. (TSX:IMO) applied to the National Energy Board for approval to export 30 million ... READ MORE


Avanti strikes
$2.7 billion deal over Kitsault mine

Avanti Mining Inc. has struck an agreement with ThyssenKrupp Metallurgical Products GMBH, a German industrial trading company, which has agreed to ... READ MORE



CUPE angered by permanent closure of CanJet Vancouver

The union representing Canadian flight attendants is crying foul over CanJet’s decision to permanently close its Vancouver operations, resulting in the loss of 32 ... READ MORE

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Controversial New Prosperity mine goes to public hearings

Call for nominations of great tech startups in Vision to Reality Awards

Canada’s aerospace industry finally seeing growth this year

This Week's Issue


City commercial real estate rent controls pushed

Small-business owners want B.C.’s new Christy Clark government to intervene in the marketplace and limit ... READ MORE

New Filing Requirements for FCMs that Act as a Counterparty to a Forex Transaction with an ECP: NFA I Press Release; June 21, 2013