What started off as a big down day was quickly recovered in the opening moments. The S&P 500
closed marginally lower, but the NDX-100
was better on the day. European finance ministers met in Brussels today to continue hammering out solutions to the financing gap that faces Greece. By the US equity market's close, there were no definitive agreement or headlines. Later in the day, there were headlines suggesting that the ECB was prepared to do whatever it takes with regards to Greece and preventing a collapse of the monetary union. However, German government officials were completely against any official sector participation and that means that any effort to move forward would mean a German exit from the eurozone.
Trading activity was lower than normal today on the back of post-holiday action. Natural gas futures came under significant pressure, falling more than 5% on updated forecasts calling for warmer weather over the next six to 10 days. Natural gas had peaked near the technical resistance of $3.96 before falling to a price of $3.73/BTU at today's close of floor trading.
(NASDAQ:FB) rallied more than 8% after receiving favorable upgrades from both BTIG and Bernstein. BTIG's upgrade was notable as the company had issued dire forecasts in the prior few months, but now sees Facebook beating estimates for the coming quarter on the back of increasing mobile ad revenues.
On the regulatory front, SEC Chairman Mary Schapiro resigned and Director Elisse Walter was chosen to take over this position. Also, the Bank of England nominated current Bank of Canada governor Mark Carney to become its new governor. While current BoC minutes are not published, Carney has come across as a more moderate economist, somewhat less dovish than the sitting Governor Mervyn King.
Tomorrow's Financial Outlook
Tomorrow will be much more active on the economic data front. Durable goods orders will be released in the morning. Following a noticeable decline, without the negative effects of Hurricane Sandy in industrial production, this volatile gauge of US manufacturing is expected to decline 1% on a monthly basis after rising 9.1% last month. The S&P/Case-Shiller index of urban and residential home prices is also forecast to show an annualized gain of 2.90% from last month's gained of 2.03%.
In global economic data, China will release data on leading economic indicators and industrial profits. Earlier this month, the HSBC Manufacturing PMI index showed a slight increase to 50.4 from last month's 49.45. Additionally, the UK will release the preliminary estimate of GDP data. Economists expect that the UK will grow at an annual rate of 1%, unchanged from last month. However, the Bank of England already forecast this rise in an earlier release this month.
Earnings releases include Green Mountain Coffee Roasters
(NYSE:GMCR) and ADT
No positions in stocks mentioned.
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