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Markets Hit New Record Highs, Carl Icahn Still Loves Apple


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

The S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average hit all-time highs at 2,131.78 and 18,325.54 respectfully this afternoon as Apple (AAPL) led a modest rally. 

Carl Icahn released his long-awaited report on Apple, assigning the stock a price target of $240, above his earlier target of $203.

Icahn identified Apple entering the television and automobile sectors as growth factors that haven't yet been priced into the stock.

Apple shares rallied 1.1% on the news, which in turn helped the NASDAQ Composite rise 0.6% to 5,078.44.

Biotechs performed particularly well today, the S&P Biotech ETF (XBI) rallying 2.0% and NASDAQ Biotech ETF (IBB) gaining 1.2%.

Financials were also strong as Treasury yields rose, with regional banks standing out to the upside.

The NAHB Housing Market Index was 54 in May, missing the 57 consensus.

Oil prices dipped below $60 on the rising dollar, and as Saudi Arabia posted its highest monthly production numbers in 10 years.

Ann Inc, (ANN) jumped 19.9% upon receiving a buyout offer from Ascena Retail Group Inc (ASNA) for $2.1 billion. Ascena rose early in the day, but gave up its gains, finishing down 1.0%.

Endo International (ENDP) shares fell 5.4% today after it announced that it would acquire privately-held Par Pharmaceutical in an $8 billion deal. The acquisition will position Endo as part of the top five generic drug makers in the US. Endo CEO Rajiv De Silva expects double-digit growth from the deal, begining in 2016.

Greece was back in the news as there was still no deal in sight for the country and its creditors. According to CNBC, Greece was so close  to defaulting on its payment to the IMF last week that Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras warned that the loan could not be repaid without help from the EU. The shock caused the Greek 10-year bond yield to rise nearly 57 basis points to 11.326%.

European markets finished up with Germany's DAX rallying 1.29%.

Asian markets were down as China posted disappointing housing data. China's mainland house price index fell 6.1% in April. The Hang Seng fell 0.8%, while the Shanghai Composite fell 0.50%.

Japan's Nikkei rose 0.8% on stronger-than-expected machinery orders in March.

Tuesday's Financial Outlook

For US economic news we have housing starts and building permits for April.

Overseas we have Briain's consumer price index, German and eurozone ZEW Economic Sentiment Survey, eurzone CPI, Japan's GDP and Australian Consumer Confidence.

For pre-market earnings announcements, we have retailers Dick's Sporting Goods (DKS), Home Depot (HD), TJX (TSX), and Wal-Mart (WMT).

After the close, we'll be hearing from Analog Devices (ADI), Computer Sciences (CSC), and Qihoo 360 (QIHU).
No positions in stocks mentioned.
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