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Equities Remain Strong Despite Apple Weakness

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Today's financial recap and tomorrow's financial outlook.

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The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) unexpectedly raised its main policy rate at today's meeting by 25bps to 7%. The central bank said it continued to see inflation remaining firm in the country, despite recent soft economic data. In addition to trying to defend the price of the rupee, the surprise hike was likely done to preempt the Turkish central bank, which is set to meet later this evening and is likely increase its own policy rates.

Fourth-quarter UK GDP rose at the fastest rate since the first quarter of 2008, up 2.8% year-over-year. This was in line with the economist estimate; growth rose at a 0.7% quarterly rate.

With the exception of Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and its food chain of stocks, US equities remained relatively strong today. The S&P 500 (INDEXSP:.INX) rose 0.61% after three straight days of severe losses. Nine out of 10 basic S&P sectors were positive with the tech sector the lone decliner. The health care and financial sectors both advanced strongly after being the weakest performers in the past week. Strong earnings from US Steel (NYSE:X) and AK Steel (NYSE:AKS) in the past 24 hours helped keep a bid under the industrials.

The Conference Board's January consumer confidence index rose to 80.7 from 78.1 in the month prior, ahead of the 78.0 estimate. Also, November 2013 home prices, according to S&P/Case Shiller indices, rose 13.71% from a year ago, a slightly faster pace than 13.61% year-to-year in the month prior. Lastly, durable goods orders fell 4.3% in December 2013, and capital goods orders fell 1.3%. Neither of these reports bode well for continued economic strength in the first quarter 2014.


Tomorrow's Financial Outlook

The highlight of tomorrow's trading day will be the FOMC meeting at 2:00 p.m. EST, the last for current Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke. Many market participants are expecting the Fed to taper its asset purchases by an additional $10 billion, bringing the total monthly purchases down to $65 billion.

February German GfK consumer confidence will be released tomorrow morning. Economists estimate that the survey will remain unchanged in the new month.

Over 30 major US companies will report earnings tomorrow. Notable reports include Boeing (NYSE:BA), Marathon Petroleum (NYSE:MRO), Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM), Dow Chemical (NYSE:DOW), Biogen (NASDAQ:BIIB), Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), Las Vegas Sands (NYSE:LVS), and JetBlue Airways (NASDAQ:JBLU).


Twitter: @Minyanville

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No positions in stocks mentioned.

The information on this website solely reflects the analysis of or opinion about the performance of securities and financial markets by the writers whose articles appear on the site. The views expressed by the writers are not necessarily the views of Minyanville Media, Inc. or members of its management. Nothing contained on the website is intended to constitute a recommendation or advice addressed to an individual investor or category of investors to purchase, sell or hold any security, or to take any action with respect to the prospective movement of the securities markets or to solicit the purchase or sale of any security. Any investment decisions must be made by the reader either individually or in consultation with his or her investment professional. Minyanville writers and staff may trade or hold positions in securities that are discussed in articles appearing on the website. Writers of articles are required to disclose whether they have a position in any stock or fund discussed in an article, but are not permitted to disclose the size or direction of the position. Nothing on this website is intended to solicit business of any kind for a writer's business or fund. Minyanville management and staff as well as contributing writers will not respond to emails or other communications requesting investment advice.

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