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Stocks Mostly Higher with Long Weekend in Sight


      The U.S. equity markets are nudging higher in afternoon action, as European stocks staged a late-day rally to finish to the upside despite festering Ukraine concerns, while domestic economic reports showed consumer sentiment and regional manufacturing activity topped expectations. Meanwhile, volume is lighter than usual and conviction could be getting held in check ahead of some key global economic data next week, which will begin with the U.S. markets closed for Labor Day. Treasuries are mostly unchanged, as the aforementioned upbeat U.S. data was accompanied by a … [Read more...]

Stocks Hugging the Flatline Following Recent Rally


      The U.S. equity markets are hovering around the flatline in afternoon action, pausing from their recent rally that returned the Dow and S&P 500 to record territory, though volume and economic data are on the lighter side. Meanwhile, the Street continues to digest earnings reports from the retail sector, with Tiffany & Co and Express both topping the Street's quarterly expectations and lifting their profit outlooks, while Chico's FAS missed analysts' 2Q forecasts. Treasuries are moving higher, despite a second-consecutive weekly increase for U.S. mortgage … [Read more...]

Upbeat Data Keeping Equity Markets in Drive


      The Dow and S&P 500 are back in record territory as stocks continue their recent rally in afternoon action, with favorable reads on U.S. Consumer Confidence and regional manufacturing activity underpinning sentiment. The data is helping overshadow a noisy durable goods report and a softer-than-expected read on June housing prices, along with lingering geopolitical concerns as leaders in Russia and Ukraine are meeting in Europe. Treasuries are ticking lower following the data and the U.S. dollar is flat, while gold is higher and crude oil prices are mixed. In … [Read more...]

Upward Momentum for Equities Continues


    The U.S. equity markets are higher in late-morning action on the heels of their third-straight weekly advance, with the S&P 500 breaching the 2,000 mark for the first time, despite some mixed domestic reports on new home sales and business activity. Optimism of further stimulus measures out of Japan and Europe are aiding sentiment, along with some M&A news. Burger King Worldwide and Canadian coffee and doughnut chain Tim Hortons confirmed media reports that they are in merger discussions, while Switzerland's Roche Holding announced an agreement to acquire … [Read more...]

Mixed Response to Yellen’s Speech


        The U.S. equity markets are mixed in afternoon action, with traders grappling with Fed interest rate hike expectations as Chairwoman Janet Yellen's speech at the Jackson Hole Symposium appeared to carefully walk the line between hawkish and dovish views. Meanwhile, in the wake of this week's solid gains, conviction could be getting stymied by reports of an unauthorized Russian aid convoy crossing the Ukrainian border. Treasuries are mixed and crude oil prices are lower, while the U.S. dollar and gold prices are higher. In equity news, Gap topped the … [Read more...]

Rally Remains on a Plethora of Positive U.S. Data


        The U.S. equity markets are modestly adding to their recent rally on the heels of a plethora of stronger-than-expected domestic economic data, highlighted by existing home sales and jobless claims. However, the advance is possibly being held in check following yesterday's slightly more hawkish meeting minutes from the Federal Reserve's July meeting, while the Central Bank is beginning its annual Jackson Hole Symposium. Treasuries are slightly higher and crude oil prices are mixed, while gold and the U.S. dollar are lower. In equity news, Hewlett-Packard … [Read more...]

Markets Able to Battle Back From Fed Tumble


      U.S equities were able to recoup most of the lost ground that came following the release of the minutes from the Federal Reserve's July meeting that roused the possibility that monetary policy stimulus may end sooner than some had expected. The report came on the eve of the Federal Reserve's multi-day Jackson Hole Symposium, which could draw even more attention for any clues to the timing of the first rate hike given the backdrop of the Fed minutes. On the equity front, Target missed analysts' forecasts and lowered its full-year earnings outlook, but some upbeat … [Read more...]

Upward Momentum Remains as Housing Data Pleases


    The domestic equity markets are adding onto yesterday's solid gains in late-morning action, as a continued cooling of geopolitical concerns is being accompanied by some favorable reports out of the housing sector. Dow member Home Depot posted stronger-than-expected quarterly results and lifted its full-year profit outlook, while on the economic front, July domestic housing starts and building permits both rose more than expected. Treasuries are nearly unchanged following the housing data, while a separate report showed U.S. consumer price inflation matched expectations. In … [Read more...]

Equities Gaining Ground, Aided by Upbeat Housing Report


      The U.S. equity markets are higher in late-morning action as eased geopolitical concerns are being accompanied by an unexpected improvement in domestic homebuilder sentiment. Meanwhile, reads on U.S. housing sales and construction, as well as inflation are slated for later this week. Moreover, the Federal Reserve is poised to be a focal point during the week, as it will deliver its July meeting minutes and begin its Jackson Hole Economic Summit. Treasuries are moving lower amid to gains for stocks, along with gold and crude oil prices, while the U.S. dollar is … [Read more...]

Stocks Victimized by Geopolitical Risk


      Although off of the lows, the U.S. equity markets remain lower in afternoon action after reversing to the downside amid reports that Ukrainian artillery destroyed a significant portion of a column of Russian armored vehicles that crossed the Ukraine border overnight. Gold and the U.S. dollar are lower, while Treasuries and crude oil prices are solidly higher. Stocks gave up early gains that came from a plethora of U.S. economic data which further cooled concerns about a sooner-than-expected Fed rate hike. Producer price inflation rose as expected, consumer sentiment … [Read more...]