Live Index – Fri, 21 Mar 2014 Premarket
June E-mini S&Ps (ESM14 +0.28%) this morning are up +0.24% at a 1-week high and European stocks are up +0.63% on signs that China is loosening funding restrictions for property developers and banks to support economic growth. Asian stocks closed mostly higher: Japan closed for holiday, Hong Kong +1.20%, China +3.44%, Taiwan -0.23%, Australia +0.83%, Singapore +0.53%, South Korea +0.80%, India +0.06%. China’s Shanghai Stock Index surged over 3% and posted a 2-week high after the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) said that lenders can issue preferred stock and that regulators are reviewing financing applications from “many” listed developers. China’s policy makers are trying to help real estate and financial companies weather the slowdown in the economy as bad debts increase, and by allowing banks to sell preferred stock it would give them a new way to meet long-term financing requirements. Russia’s Micex Stock Index tumbled nearly 2% after Fitch Ratings and Standard & Poor’s cut Russia’s credit rating outlook to negative on concern that reluctance of foreign banks and investors to lend to Russia under current circumstances may slow Russia’s economy further. Commodity prices are mixed. May crude oil (CLK14 +0.48%) is up +0.18%. May gasoline (RBK14 +0.16%) is up +0.07%. Apr gold (GCJ14 +0.76%) is up +0.67%. May copper (HGK14 +1.50%) is up +0.56%. Agriculture and livestock prices are mixed. The dollar index (DXY00 -0.09%) is down -0.96%. EUR/USD (^EURUSD) is up +0.06%. USD/JPY (^USDJPY) is down -0.14%. June T-note prices (ZNM14 +0.01%) are up +1.5 ticks.
China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) said that companies in the Shanghai Stock Exchange 50 A-Share Index, which includes at least 10 banks, can issue preferred stock and use the funds to pay for acquisitions and buy back stock. China’s banks are facing increased competition for deposits and selling preferred stock would enable them to have a new supply of capital and meet long-term financing requirements.
The Eurozone Jan unadjusted current account fell to a 6.4 billion euros surplus from a downward revised 28.2 billion euros surplus in Dec, the smallest surplus in a year.
UK Feb public sector net borrowing rose 7.5 billion pounds, less than expectations of 7.9 billion pounds, and Jan was revised lower to a 1-year low of -6.8 billion pounds from the originally reported -6.4 billion pounds.
There are no U.S. economic reports today. There are 2 of the Russell 1000 companies report earnings today: Tiffany (consensus $ 1.52), Darden Restaurants (0.88). There are no equity conferences today.
United Technologies (UTX -0.21%) was upgraded to ‘Buy’ from ‘Neutral’ at Goldman Sachs.
Keurig Green Mountain (GMCR +0.16%) will replace WPX Energy (WPX +1.04%) in S&P 500 as of today’s close.
Herbalife (HLF -3.66%) was downgraded to ‘Hold’ from ‘Buy’ at Argus.
Boeing (BA +1.22%) and ConAgra (CAG +1.35%) were both downgraded to ‘Neutral’ from ‘Buy’ at Goldman Sachs.
Walgreens (WAG -0.49%) was downgraded to ‘Sell’ from ‘Hold’ at Cantor.
Darden Restaurants (DRI +0.45%) reported Q3 EPS of 88 cents, right on expectations.
Tiffany & Co. (TIF -1.75%) reported Q4 EPS of $ 1.47, below consensus of $ 1.52.
Ann Inc. (ANN -0.48%) rose over 11% in after-hours trading after Golden Gate Capital reported a 9.5% stake in the company.
Luxor Capital Group reported a 5.1% passive stake in Lamar Advertising (LAMR +0.42%) .
CommScope (COMM +0.23%) raised guidance on Q1 adjusted EPS view to 43 cents-47 cents from 36 cents-40 cents, above consensus of 38 cents.
Exelon (EXC +1.00%) was upgraded to ‘Outperform’ from ‘Neutral’ at Credit Suisse.
Nike (NKE +0.15%) fell over 3% in after-hours trading after it reported Q3 continuing operations EPS of 76 cents, better than consensus of 72 cents, but then said expects forex headwinds to reduce EPS growth in Q4 and into fiscal 2015.
AAR Corp. (AIR +0.62%) reported Q3 EPS of 45 cents, less than consensus of 47 cents, and then lowered guidance on fiscal 2014 EPS view to $ 1.79-$ 1.82 from $ 1.95-$ 2.00, well below consensus of $ 1.97.
Zions bank (ZION +3.19%) is the only bank to fall short of minimum capital level in the Fed’s stress test.
Symantec (SYMC +1.60%) fell over 9% in after-hours trading after it announced that it terminated CEO Steve Bennett and appointed Michael Brown as interim CEO effective immediately. Symantec was then downgraded to ‘Hold’ from ‘Buy’ at Jefferies.
June E-mini S&Ps (ESM14 +0.28%) this morning are up +4.50 points (+0.24%). The S&P 500 on Thursday erased early losses and closed higher. Bullish factors included (1) the U.S. weekly initial unemployment claims report of +5,000 to 320,000, slightly below expectations of 322,000, (2) the Mar Philadelphia Fed manufacturing index of +15.3 to 9.0, stronger than expectations of +9.5 to 3.2, and (3) the +0.5% increase in Feb leading indicators, better than expectations of +0.2%. Closes: S&P 500 +0.60%, Dow Jones +0.67%, Nasdaq +0.31%.
Jun 10-year T-notes (ZNM14 +0.01%) this morning are up +1.5 ticks. Jun 10-year T-note futures prices on Thursday closed lower. Bearish factors included (1) the smaller-than-expected increase in weekly jobless claims,, (2) the stronger-than-expected Mar Philadelphia Fed manufacturing index, and (3) carry-over weakness from Fed Chair Yellen’s indication that the funds rate might be raised as soon as spring 2015. Closes: TYM4 -2.50, FVM4 -3.00.
The dollar index (DXY00 -0.09%) this morning is down -0.051 (-0.06%). EUR/USD (^EURUSD) is up +0.0008 (+0.06%). USD/JPY (^USDJPY) is down -0.14 (-0.14%). The dollar index on Thursday posted a 3-week high and closed higher. The main bullish factor for the dollar was continued support from the FOMC’s action on Wed to raise its federal funds rate forecast to 1.00% at the end of 2015 from a Dec projection of 0.75%, which implies that the Fed may raise interest rates sooner than expected. Closes: Dollar index +0.197 (+0.25%), EUR/USD -0.00543 (-0.39%), USD/JPY +0.056 (+0.05%).
May WTI crude oil (CLK14 +0.48%) this morning is up +18 cents (+0.18%) and May gasoline (RBK14 +0.16%) is up +0.0019 (+0.07%). May crude and gasoline prices on Thursday settled mixed. Crude prices posted a 1-week high and May gasoline recovered from a 1-1/2 month low on signs of economic strength after Feb leading indicators and the Mar Philadelphia Fed manufacturing index rose more than expected. However, crude oil prices retreated after the dollar index rose to a 3-week high and on negative carry-over from Wednesday’s increase in EIA crude stockpiles to a 3-1/2 month high. Closes: CLK4 -0.27 (-0.27%), RBK4 +0.0262 (+0.92%).
|US||1145 ET||St. Louis Fed President James Bullard speaks on a Brookings Institute panel on Debt and Incomplete Financial Markets: a Case for Nominal GDP.|
|1345 ET||Dallas Fed President Richard Fisher delivers a speech at the London School of Economics and Political Sciences Systemic Risk Centre Conference on Forward Guidance: Fad or the Future of Monetary Policy.|
|1500 ET||USDA Feb Cold Storage.|
|1500 ET||USDA Feb Cattle on Feed.|
|1630 ET||Minneapolis Fed President Narayana Kocherlakota speaks on a panel discussion of Transitional and Longer-Term Challenges for Monetary Policy.|
|1920 ET||Fed Governor Jeremy Stein delivers keynote address at the International Research Forum on Monetary Policy.|
|EUR||0500 ET||Eurozone Jan current account, Dec +33.2 billion euros (nsa).|
|1100 ET||Eurozone Mar consumer confidence expected +0.4 to -12.3, Feb -12.7.|
|UK||0530 ET||UK Feb public sector net borrowing expected +7.9 billion pounds Jan -6.4 billion pounds.|
|JPN||n/a||Japanese markets closed for Vernal Equinox Day.|
|Company Name||Ticker||Time||Event Description||Period||Estimate|
|Tiffany & Co||TIF US||Bef-mkt||Q4 2014 Earnings Release||Q4 2014||1.515|
|Darden Restaurants Inc||DRI US||Bef-mkt||Quarterly Sales Release|
|Darden Restaurants Inc||DRI US||7:00||Q3 2014 Earnings Release||Q3 2014||0.88|
|WellPoint Inc||WLP US||8:00||Investor Day||Y 2014|
|Tiffany & Co||TIF US||8:30||Q4 2014 Earnings Call||Q4 2014|
|MSCI Inc||MSCI US||8:30||Investor Day||Y 2014|
|Darden Restaurants Inc||DRI US||8:45||Q3 2014 Earnings Call||Q3 2014|
|Pepco Holdings Inc||POM US||9:00||Analyst Conference||Y 2014|
|Twenty-First Century Fox Inc||FOXA US||10:00||Extraordinary Shareholders Meeting||Y 2014|
|Walt Disney Co/The||DIS US||U.S. Box Office Release of Movie Muppets Most Wanted""|
|LSI Corp||LSI US||ITC Due to Release Findings in Realtek vs. LSI Patent-Infringement Case|
|Celgene Corp||CELG US||PDUFA, apremilast, psoriatic arthritis|
|Lions Gate Entertainment Corp||LGF US||U.S. Box Office Release of Movie Divergent""|
|Principal Financial Group Inc||PFG US||Roadshow-Europe-Day 3||Y 2014|