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Discussion in 'International Markets' started by bigdog, Jan 16, 2007.

  1. bigdog

    bigdog Retired

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    https://www.usnews.com/news/busines...ixed-ahead-of-trump-xi-meeting-at-g-20-summit

    Stocks Climb as Investors Hope for Trump-Xi Trade Progress
    After a shaky start, stocks finish with strong gains ahead of the highly anticipated meeting between President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping

    By MARLEY JAY, AP Markets Writer

    NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks climbed again Friday as investors waited for President Donald Trump and President Xi Jinping of China to meet and discuss trade, a meeting they hope will start to resolve the nations' trade dispute. The U.S. market jumped this week after falling to a six-month low the week before.

    Technology and health care companies made the largest gains Friday. Energy companies slipped as U.S. crude oil fell again, and briefly traded under $50 a barrel. The price of crude oil dropped 22 percent in November, its worst month in a decade. Hotel operator Marriott tumbled after it announced a data breach that could affect 500 million guests.

    The rally this week helped the market finish with a modest gain in November, but the S&P 500 is still 5.8 percent away from the all-time high it set in late September. Among other issues, that drop reflects investors' pessimism that the U.S. and China will resolve their differences without causing damage to the global economy. They have been sparring for months over issues including China's technology policy.

    "The outlook for the global economy in 2019 does depend on some peace in the trade dispute between the U.S. and China," said David Kelly, chief global strategist for JPMorgan Funds. He said global stocks will probably jump if the two leaders announce the framework of a deal and fall if they don't. In any case, he thinks the two sides will reach an agreement by early 2019.

    "Nobody's got much to gain from fighting a trade war, but we both are threatened with recession," he said.

    The S&P 500 index gained 22.40 points, or 0.8 percent, to 2,760.16. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 199.62 points, or 0.8 percent, to 25,538.46. The Nasdaq composite jumped 57.45 points, or 0.8 percent, to 7,330.54. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks added 7.88 points, or 0.5 percent, to 1,533.27.

    The U.S. has announced tariffs on $250 billion in Chinese imports so far, with the tax rate on many products set to rise Jan. 1, while China put new taxes on $110 billion in U.S. goods. Investors are concerned that the lingering dispute will keep businesses from spending money. That might not change even if the nations announce a cease-fire on new tariffs or the outlines of a deal this weekend.

    "There's still a long way to resolve all of the issues," said Kate Warne, an investment strategist with Edward Jones. "I suspect we'll continue to see more of the back and forth that we've seen this week, prompting further market volatility as well as greater uncertainty."

    Among technology companies, Intel gained 3.4 percent to $49.31 and Nvidia climbed 3.9 percent to $163.43. Microsoft rose 0.6 percent to $110.89. Apple lost 0.5 percent to $178.58, which meant Microsoft surpassed Apple as the world's most valuable publicly traded company. Microsoft's current market value is $851.2 billion to $847.4 billion for Apple. Amazon isn't far behind, at $826.4 billion.

    Microsoft was the world's most valuable publicly traded company during the dot-com boom, but hadn't held the title since 2000. Apple became No. 1 earlier this decade, when it surpassed Exxon Mobil.

    Health care companies climbed as well. Biotech drugmaker AbbVie rose 4.8 percent to $94.27 after it said Pfizer agreed to wait until November 2023 before it starts selling a generic version of AbbVie's inflammatory disease drug Humira in the U.S. The agreement is part of a licensing deal between the companies. Humira is the biggest-selling drug in the world by revenue, and it's responsible for about two-thirds of AbbVie's total sales.

    Other biotech drugmakers also traded higher. Gilead Sciences rallied 3.2 percent to $71.94 and Amgen rose 2.9 percent to $208.25.

    Bond prices rose further. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 3 percent, its lowest since mid-September, from 3.03 percent.

    Marriott said the Starwood data beach began in 2014 and ended in September 2018. It bought Starwood in 2016. The company said the credit card information of some guests may have been taken, along with other personal details. The affected brands include W Hotels, St. Regis, Sheraton, Westin, Element, Aloft, The Luxury Collection, Le Méridien and Four Points.

    The Attorney General of New York said she is opening an investigation into the breach. Marriott stock lost 5.6 percent to $115.03.

    Benchmark U.S. crude fell more than 3 percent in morning trading and briefly slipped below $50 a barrel. It closed down 1 percent at $50.93 a barrel in New York. Brent crude lost 1.3 percent to $58.71 a barrel in London.

    Oil prices have been falling since early October as supplies have built up, partly because the U.S. agreed to hold off on sanctions for countries that import oil from Iran. Investors are also worried that a slowdown in global economic growth will reduce demand for fuels.

    The dollar rose to 113.61 yen from 113.43 yen. The euro fell to $1.1309 from $1.1389.

    Gold lost 0.4 percent to $1,226 an ounce. Silver fell 1.3 percent to $14.22 an ounce. Copper held steady at $2.79 a pound.

    Wholesale gasoline lost 0.9 percent to $1.44 a gallon. Heating oil was little changed at $1.85 a gallon. Natural gas fell 0.7 percent to $4.61 per 1,000 cubic feet.

    The FTSE 100 index in Britain shed 0.8 percent and Germany's DAX lost 0.4 percent. France's CAC 40 fell less than 0.1 percent.

    Japan's Nikkei 225 index climbed 0.4 percent and the Hang Seng in Hong Kong added 0.2 percent. South Korea's Kospi fell 0.8 percent.

    7715
     
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  2. bigdog

    bigdog Retired

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    GREAT TO SEE SEA OF GREEN
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    https://www.usnews.com/news/busines...ance-in-asia-following-xi-trump-tariffs-truce

    US-China Trade Truce Sends US Stocks Solidly Higher
    US stocks closed solidly higher after the US and China agreed to a 90-day truce in their trade dispute.

    By ALEX VEIGA, AP Business Writer

    A welcome truce in the escalating U.S.-China trade dispute put investors in a buying mood Monday, sending U.S. stocks solidly higher and extending the market's gains from last week.

    The broad rally, which lost some of its early morning momentum, followed gains in overseas markets as investors welcomed news of the temporary, 90-day stand-down, which was agreed to over dinner between President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping at the G-20 summit over the weekend.

    The long-running dispute between the world's two largest economies has rattled investors for months, stoking traders' fears that it could begin dragging down corporate profits and weighing on global economic growth.

    "We're going to have to see what happens over these 90 days," said Tom Martin, senior portfolio manager at Globalt Investments. "In the meantime, you're not getting an increase in the tariffs, so that's an interim positive."

    The encouraging development on trade helped extend a swift turnaround for the market, which notched its biggest weekly gain in nearly seven years last week after Fed Chairman Jerome Powell indicated the central bank might consider a pause in rate hikes next year while it gauges the impact of its credit tightening program.

    Technology stocks, automakers, retailers and industrial companies accounted for much of the market's gains Monday, offsetting losses in household goods makers. Energy stocks also climbed as U.S. crude oil prices rose sharply.

    U.S. traders observed a moment of silence before markets opened Monday in honor of former President George H.W. Bush, who died Friday at 94. The New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq said they will close trading Wednesday in observance of a national day of mourning for Bush. The federal government will also be closed.

    The S&P 500 index climbed 30.20 points, or 1.1 percent, to 2,790.37. The benchmark index vaulted 4.9 percent last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 287.97 points, or 1.1 percent, to 25,826.43. The average was up as much as 441 points earlier.

    The Nasdaq composite rose 110.98 points, or 1.5 percent, to 7,441.51. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks picked up 15.69 points, or 1 percent, to 1,548.96.

    Markets in Europe also finished higher. Germany's DAX gained 1.8 percent, while France's CAC 40 rose 1 percent. Britain's FTSE 100 added 1.2 percent.

    After a steep decline in October, U.S. stocks steadied in early November. But the selling picked up again as investors abandoned high-flying technology stocks amid concerns over the U.S.-China trade tussle and slowing global economic growth and bailed on energy stocks as the price of oil plummeted.

    Presidents Trump and Xi of China met at the G-20 summit over the weekend and agreed to a cease-fire, lasting for at least 90 days, to allow time to smooth out a dispute over Chinese technology policies that the U.S. and other trading partners consider predatory.

    Trump agreed to hold off on plans to raise tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese goods, which were supposed to kick in on Jan. 1. In return, Xi agreed to buy a "very substantial amount" of agricultural, energy and industrial products from the U.S. to reduce its large trade deficit with China, the White House said.

    The U.S. had announced tariffs on $250 billion in Chinese imports this year, with the tax rate on many products set to rise Jan. 1, while China put new taxes on $110 billion in U.S. goods.

    While the truce has the potential to steady markets through the end of the year, the countries still need to hammer out a lasting trade deal.

    "Three months is not a very long time to achieve this so there are naturally plenty of sceptics out there but this is a rare piece of good news in a conflict that has yet to produce any," said Craig Erlam, senior market analyst at OANDA.

    The trade truce was one of several factors that helped push oil prices higher Monday. Crude prices also jumped on news that Qatar will withdraw from OPEC in January. The move, which marks the first time a Mideast nation has exited the cartel since its founding in 1960, came ahead of an OPEC meeting on Thursday.

    In addition, the government of the Canadian province of Alberta announced a large cut in oil production Monday.

    "We expect OPEC to follow suit and agree to a production cut in Vienna this coming Thursday," analysts with Goldman Sachs wrote in a published note Monday.

    Benchmark U.S. crude gained 4 percent to settle at $52.95 per barrel in New York. Brent crude, the international standard, rose 3.8 percent to close at $61.69 per barrel in London.

    Oil prices had been falling in recent weeks as supplies built up, partly because the U.S. agreed to hold off on sanctions for countries that import oil from Iran. Traders have also been worried that a slowdown in global economic growth will reduce demand for fuels.

    Monday's pickup in oil prices gave energy stocks a boost. Devon Energy climbed 6.4 percent to $28.77.

    Gains in technology companies helped drive the market higher. Chipmaker Advanced Micro Devices jumped 11.3 percent to $23.71.

    Auto manufacturers also rose after Trump said on Twitter late Sunday that Beijing agreed to cut import duties on U.S. autos. There was no Chinese confirmation of the move, which would have little impact on trade because most American vehicles sold in China are made there.

    Ford Motor rose 2 percent to $9.60, while General Motors added 1.3 percent to $38.45. Tesla gained 2.3 percent to $358.49.

    A couple of corporate deals also helped move the market Monday.

    Tribune Media jumped 11.7 percent to $44.98 after the TV station owner agreed to be acquired by Nexstar Media Group, four months after a bid from Sinclair Broadcast Group collapsed. Nextar shares added 6.9 percent to $88.32.

    GlaxoSmithKline PLC slumped 7.8 percent to $38.61 after the drugmaker agreed to acquire Tesaro, which makes the ovarian cancer treatment Zejula. Shares in Tesaro soared 58.5 percent to $73.50.

    Meanwhile, Wynn Resorts gained 9.5 percent to $119.79 after the gambling revenue in Macau rose last month at a higher rate than analysts expected.

    Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.97 percent from 3.01 percent late Friday.

    The dollar rose to 113.69 yen from 113.63 yen late Friday. The euro strengthened to $1.1342 from $1.1309.

    Gold gained 1.1 percent to $1,239.60 an ounce. Silver jumped 2 percent to $14.50 an ounce. Copper added 0.8 percent to $2.81 a pound.
     
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  3. bigdog

    bigdog Retired

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    NOT AT ALL LOOKING GOOD FOR TODAY

    Wednesday closure of U.S. stock and bond markets in observance of a national day of mourning for former President George H.W. Bush.

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    https://www.usnews.com/news/busines...all-dollar-slips-after-us-china-tariffs-truce

    Renewed Jitters Over Trade Send Stocks, Bond Yields Lower
    Stocks slumped on Wall Street Tuesday as traders worried that the U.S. and China made less progress than originally thought on defusing their dispute over trade.

    By ALEX VEIGA, AP Business Writer

    Stocks slumped on Wall Street Tuesday as traders worried that the U.S. and China made less progress than originally thought on defusing their dispute over trade. Bond prices surged, sending yields sharply lower as investors turned to lower-risk assets.

    The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell nearly 800 points and the yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note declined to its lowest level in three months.

    The wave of selling erased the market's gains from a day earlier, when stocks rallied after the administration said U.S. and China agreed to a temporary truce in their trade dispute. Investors' confidence in that truce faltered Tuesday, contributing to renewed fears that the disagreement between the two economic powerhouses could slow the global economy.

    "This trade issue is the big overhang, the biggest ceiling, if you will, to keeping the markets from moving higher," said Randy Frederick, vice president of trading & derivatives at Charles Schwab.

    Technology companies, banks and industrial stocks accounted for much of the broad sell-off. Utilities stocks rose. Smaller-company stocks fell more than the rest of the market.

    Big losses for Boeing and Caterpillar, major exporters which would stand to lose much if trade tensions persist, weighed on the Dow.

    The bond market signaled its concerns as the gap between two-year and 10-year Treasurys reached its narrowest difference since 2007. The 10-year yield is still higher, but not by much.

    When yields for long-term bonds drop lower than yields for short-term bonds, it's what economists call an "inverted yield curve." It indicates that investors are forecasting a weaker economy and inflation in coming years. An inverted yield curve has also preceded each recession of the last 60 years, though sometimes by more than a year.

    "You have the drop in bond yields and the implications on growth going forward," said Willie Delwiche, investment strategist at Baird. "The bigger issue is you have this unwind from yesterday's rally."

    The S&P 500 index slid 90.31 points, or 3.2 percent, to 2,700.06. The Dow plunged 799.36 points, or 3.1 percent, to 25,027.07, more than erasing its 488-point gain over the previous two trading days. It was down as much as 818 points earlier.

    The technology-heavy Nasdaq composite lost 283.09 points, or 3.8 percent, to 7,158.43.

    Small-company stocks, which investors see as more risky than large multinationals, fell more than the rest of the market. The Russell 2000 index gave up 68.20 points, or 4.4 percent, to 1,480.76.

    The sell-off came ahead of Wednesday's closure of U.S. stock and bond markets in observance of a national day of mourning for former President George H.W. Bush.

    The sharp turn in the markets followed a strong rally on Monday fueled by optimism over the news that President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping had agreed at the G-20 summit over the weekend to a temporary, 90-day stand-down in the two nations' escalating trade dispute.

    But the market's optimism faded Tuesday amid published reports questioning the scant details out of the Trump-Xi talks and growing skepticism that Beijing will yield to U.S. demands anytime soon.

    "The actual amount of concrete progress made at this meeting appears to have been quite limited," Alec Phillips and other economists at Goldman Sachs wrote in a research note.

    Delwiche echoed those doubts.

    "The sense is that there's less and less agreement between the two sides about what actually took place," Delwiche said. "There was a rally in the expectation that something had happened, the problem is that something turned out to be nothing."

    Moody's Investors Service suggested in a report Tuesday that despite the latest U.S.-China talks, both countries remain far from resolving their dispute.

    "Narrow agreements and modest concessions in their ongoing trade dispute will not bridge the wide gulf in their respective economic, political and strategic interests," Moody's analysts wrote.

    The trade dispute has rattled markets in recent months as signs emerged that it has begun affecting corporate profits. That's stoked traders' fears that if it drags much longer it could further weigh on global economic growth.

    "There are plenty of reasons to believe that growth in either the economy or the markets is going to soften next year," Frederick said.

    The jitters helped drive demand for government bonds Tuesday, pushing prices higher. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.91 percent from 2.99 percent late Monday, a large move. The slide in bond yields, which affect interest rates on mortgages and other consumer loans, weighed on bank stocks. Citigroup fell 4.5 percent to $62.26.

    Chipmakers were among the biggest decliners in a technology sector slide. Advanced Micro Devices dropped 10.9 percent to $21.12, while Micron Technology lost 7.9 percent to $36.88.

    Homebuilders fell after luxury homebuilder Toll Brothers issued a cautious assessment of the housing market. Toll's shares slid 1.6 percent to $32.99.

    Apple lost 4.4 percent to $176.69 after the consumer electronics giant was downgraded by HSBC analysts, citing the possibility that iPhone volume and value growth may moderate due to a saturated mobile phone market.

    United Parcel Service slumped 7.4 percent to $106.77 and FedEx dropped 6.3 percent to $215.52. Morgan Stanley analysts said in a note that the market was underestimating the challenge those companies would face from Amazon Air.

    Oil prices rose ahead of an OPEC meeting on Thursday, where members are expected to agree to cut output in 2019. Benchmark U.S. crude gained 0.6 percent to settle at $53.25 per barrel in New York. Brent crude, the international standard, added 0.6 percent to close at $62.08 per barrel in London.

    The dollar weakened to 112.82 yen from 113.69 yen late Monday. The euro was little changed at $1.1342. The British pound fell to $1.2716 from $1.2728.

    Gold gained 0.6 percent to $1,246.60 an ounce. Silver rose 1 percent to $14.64 an ounce. Copper fell 1.8 percent to $2.78 a pound.

    Wholesale gasoline gained 0.8 percent to $1.44 a gallon. Heating oil climbed 0.7 percent to $1.90 a gallon. Natural gas picked up 2.7 percent to $4.46 per 1,000 cubic feet.

    Overseas, Germany's DAX lost 1.1 percent, while France's CAC 40 dropped 0.8 percent. The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares slid 0.6 percent.

    Japan's Nikkei 225 index gave up 2.4 percent and the Kospi in South Korea lost 0.8 percent. Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 0.3 percent.
     
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  4. bigdog

    bigdog Retired

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    SEA OF RED

    Wednesday U.S. stock and bond markets CLOSED in observance of a national day of mourning for former President George H.W. Bush.

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    Rest of World
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    https://www.usnews.com/news/business/articles/2018-12-05/asia-shares-sink-after-wall-street-sell-off

    Global Shares Slip on Doubts Over US-China Trade Deal
    Global stock prices have fallen, though not as much as Wall Street the day before, amid doubts about a U.S.-China tariff cease-fire.

    By JOE McDONALD, AP Business Writer

    BEIJING (AP) — Global stock prices fell Wednesday, though not as much as Wall Street the day before, amid confusion about what the U.S. and China agreed to in a tariff cease-fire.

    KEEPING SCORE: In Europe, London's FTSE 100 index fell 1.4 percent to close at 6,921.84 and German's DAX lost 1.2 percent to 11,200.24. France's CAC 40 retreated 1.4 percent to 4,944.37. U.S. stock trading was closed to mourn the death of former President George H.W. Bush.

    ASIA'S DAY: Hong Kong's Hang Seng index fell 1.6 percent to 26,819.58 and the Shanghai Composite Index declined 0.6 percent to 2,649.81. Tokyo's Nikkei 225 lost 0.5 percent to 21,919.33 and Sydney's S&P-ASX 200 shed 0.8 percent to 5,668.40. Seoul's Kospi gave up 0.8 percent to 2,101.31 and India's Sensex was 0.6 percent lower at 35,902.74.

    TRADE QUESTIONS: Investor confidence in the U.S.-China agreement faltered after confusing and conflicting comments from President Donald Trump and some senior officials. That revived fears the disagreement between the world's two biggest economies could slow global growth. Trump previously said the agreement would lead to sales of American farm goods and cuts in Chinese auto tariffs, but Beijing has yet to confirm that. Trump renewed threats of tariff hikes on Tuesday, saying on Twitter that Washington would have a "real deal" with China or else would charge "major tariffs" on Chinese goods. That cast further doubt on the weekend agreement.

    FED WATCH: Markets also got a jolt from remarks by the president of the Fed's New York regional bank. John Williams said that given his outlook for strong economic growth, he expects "further gradual increases in interest rates will best sponsor a sustained economic expansion." That seemed to counter Fed Chairman Jay Powell's remarks last week. The jitters helped drive demand for government bonds. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.91 percent from 2.99 percent late Monday, a large move.

    ANALYST'S TAKE: "Positive sentiment from the China-U.S. trade war truce dissipated quickly," Eugene Leow and Radhika Rao of DBS Group said in a report. "Questions on trade, worries about U.S. growth and perceived dovishness on the Fed all play a part in explaining these market moves. Concerns were also compounded by increasing news narrative on inverted curves and risks of a recession."

    ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude fell 0.7 percent to settle at $52.89 per barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, declined 0.8 percent to close at $61.56 per barrel in London.

    Representatives of oil-producing nations will hold a highly anticipated meeting Thursday in Vienna, with analysts predicting that they will agree on a cut of at least 1 million barrels a day in an effort to bolster prices.

    Russian President Vladimir Putin boosted expectations for a deal when he said at the G20 summit over last weekend that Russia and Saudi Arabia have agreed to extend an attempt by OPEC to balance oil supply and demand, although he provided no figures.

    Crude prices began falling in October and continued to plunge last month due to oversupply and fears that weaker global economic growth would dampen energy demand.

    In other energy futures trading Wednesday, wholesale gasoline added 0.2 percent to $1.45 a gallon. Heating oil slid 0.6 percent to $1.89 a gallon. Natural gas picked up 0.3 percent to $4.47 per 1,000 cubic feet.

    CURRENCY: The dollar gained to 113.19 yen from Wednesday's 112.82 yen. The euro held steady at $1.1342.

    METALS: Gold fell 0.3 percent to $1,242.60 an ounce. Silver slid 0.4 percent to $14.58 an ounce. Copper added 0.5 percent to $2.77 a pound.
     
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  5. bigdog

    bigdog Retired

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    U.S. stocks clawed most of their way back from a deep slide Thursday that at one point had wiped out the market's gains for the year.

    The sell-off eased by late afternoon, however, after The Wall Street Journal reported that said the Federal Reserve is considering breaking with its current approach of steady interest rate hikes, favoring a wait-and-see approach. That was relief to investors worried that the Fed might raise interest rates too fast, which could choke off economic growth

    upload_2018-12-7_8-38-20.png

    https://www.usnews.com/news/busines...id-as-huawei-cfo-arrest-revives-trade-jitters

    US Stocks Claw Back From an Early Plunge on Fed Report
    U.S. stocks clawed most of their way back from a deep slide Thursday that at one point had wiped out the market's gains for the year.

    By ALEX VEIGA, AP Business Writer

    U.S. stocks clawed most of their way back from a deep slide Thursday that at one point had wiped out the market's gains for the year.

    An early plunge briefly knocked more than 700 points off the Dow Jones Industrial Average as the arrest of a senior Chinese technology executive threatened to cause another flare-up in tensions between Washington and Beijing.

    The sell-off eased by late afternoon, however, after The Wall Street Journal reported that said the Federal Reserve is considering breaking with its current approach of steady interest rate hikes, favoring a wait-and-see approach. That was relief to investors worried that the Fed might raise interest rates too fast, which could choke off economic growth.

    "The Fed is trying to, in essence, come out and make it clear they are not on a rigid schedule of rate hikes next year," said Quincy Krosby, chief market strategist at Prudential Financial.

    The S&P 500 index fell 4.11 points, or 0.2 percent, to 2,695.95. The benchmark index had been down as much as 2.9 percent.

    The Dow dropped 79.40 points, or 0.3 percent, to 24,947.67. The average briefly slumped as much as 784 points.

    The technology-heavy Nasdaq composite reversed an early loss to finish with a gain, adding 29.83 points, or 0.4 percent, to 7,188.26.

    The Russell 2000 index of small-company stocks gave up 3.34 points, or 0.2 percent, to 1,477.41.

    Traders continued to shovel money into bonds, a signal that they see weakness in the economy ahead. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.89 percent from 2.92 percent on Tuesday, a large move.

    U.S. stock and bond trading were closed Wednesday because of a national day of mourning for President George H.W. Bush.

    Losses in banks and energy and industrial stocks outweighed gains in internet and real estate companies.

    Citigroup fell 3.5 percent to $60.06. Halliburton slid 4.7 percent to $29.79. Discovery climbed 4.7 percent to $26.99.

    Last week, stocks jumped after Fed Chairman Jerome Powell indicated the central bank might consider a pause in rate hikes next year while it gauges the impact of its credit tightening program.

    The Fed has raised rates three times this year and is expected to boost rates for a fourth time at its Dec. 18-19 meeting of policymakers. That steady pace of rate hikes has begun to worry some investors amid growing signs that some sectors of the economy are hurting, including U.S. home sales. At the same time, there has been growing evidence that the global economic growth is slowing.

    "The market seems right now to be focused on increased risks for a 2020 recession," said Patrick Schaffer, Global Investment Specialist, J.P. Morgan Private Bank. "It's a very hard market to buy when you see really strong signals that we are indeed late (in the economic) cycle."

    Thursday's initial wave of selling in the market came about as traders reacted to the news that Canadian authorities arrested the chief financial officer of China's Huawei Technologies on Wednesday for possible extradition to the U.S. The Globe and Mail newspaper, citing law enforcement sources, said Meng is suspected of trying to evade U.S. trade curbs on Iran.

    Meng is a prominent member of Chinese society as deputy chairman of the board and the daughter of company founder Ren Zhengfei. China has demanded Meng's immediate release.

    The arrest came less than a week after President Donald Trump met with Chinese President Xi Jinping at the G-20 summit in Argentina.

    Markets rallied on Monday on news that Trump and Xi agreed to a temporary, 90-day stand-down in their trade dispute. That optimism quickly faded as skepticism grew that Beijing will yield to U.S. demands anytime soon, leading to a steep sell-off in global markets on Tuesday.

    On Thursday, China's government said it would promptly carry out the tariff cease-fire with Washington. It also expressed confidence that the two nations can reach a trade agreement. The remarks suggest Beijing wants to avoid disruptions from Meng's arrest.

    Even so, investors remained skeptical.

    "Trade tensions aren't going away," Schaffer said. "Contradictory statements from the administration have given some people a little bit of pause with respect to the optimism that people felt following the Argentina G-20 conference."

    The renewed jitters over the implications that Meng's arrest could have on U.S.-China trade negotiations weighed on overseas markets.

    Major indexes overseas also fell sharply. The DAX in Germany dropped 3.5 percent, while France's CAC 40 lost 3.3 percent. The FTSE 100 in Britain declined 3.1 percent, its biggest drop since the country held a vote to leave the European Union in June 2016.

    The news also resulted in another down day for markets in Asia.

    Hong Kong's Hang Seng index tumbled 2.5 percent and Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 fell 1.9 percent. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 lost 0.2 percent, while South Korea's Kospi sank 1.6 percent. Shares also fell in Taiwan and all other regional markets.

    Oil prices fell sharply as traders appeared to doubt that an expected production cut by OPEC will be enough to boost the price of crude.

    OPEC countries gathered in Vienna Thursday to find a way to support the falling price of oil. Analysts predicted the cartel and some key allies, like Russia, would agree to cut production by at least 1 million barrels per day. OPEC heavyweight Saudi Arabia indicated it was in favor of such a cut.

    The expectation did not keep the price of oil from falling, however, as investors focused on the potential economic disruption from any escalation in the U.S.-China trade dispute.

    Benchmark U.S. crude dropped 2.6 percent to settle at $51.49 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, slid 2.4 percent to close at $60.06 per barrel.

    The dollar weakened to 112.65 yen from 113.19 yen late Wednesday. The euro rose to $1.1373 from $1.1342.

    Gold gained 0.1 percent to $1,243.60 an ounce. Silver fell 0.5 percent to $14.51 an ounce. Copper dropped 1.1 percent to $2.74 a pound.

    In other commodities trading, wholesale gasoline lost 0.8 percent to $1.43 a gallon. Heating oil gave up 1.6 percent to $1.86 a gallon. Natural gas slid 3.2 percent to $4.33 per 1,000 cubic feet.
     
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  6. bigdog

    bigdog Retired

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    https://www.usnews.com/news/busines...es-steady-as-beijing-calms-us-china-trade-row

    Stocks Drop 4 Percent in Rocky Week on Trade, Growth Worries
    Wall Street capped a turbulent week of trading Friday with the biggest weekly loss for the U.S. stock market in nearly nine months.

    By ALEX VEIGA, AP Business Writer

    Wall Street capped a turbulent week of trading Friday with the biggest weekly loss since March as traders fret over rising trade tensions between Washington and Beijing and signals of slower economic growth.

    The latest wave of selling erased more than 550 points from the Dow Jones Industrial Average, bringing its three-day loss to more than 1,400. For the week, major indexes are down more than 4 percent.

    Worries that the testy U.S.-China trade dispute and higher interest rates will slow the economy has made investors uneasy, leading to volatile swings in the market from one day to the next.

    On Monday, news that the U.S. and China had agreed to a 90-day truce in their escalating trade conflict drove stocks sharply higher, adding to strong gains the week before. The next day, as doubts mounted over the likelihood of a swift resolution to the trade dispute, stocks sank. On Friday, another early rally faded into another sharp drop.

    "We're in a market where investors just want to sell any upside that they see," said Lindsey Bell, investment strategist at CFRA. "The volatility we've seen the last couple of weeks has been pretty extreme in both directions."

    The S&P 500 index fell 62.87 points, or 2.3 percent, to 2,633.08. The index has ended lower three out of the last four weeks. The Dow dropped 558.72 points, or 2.2 percent, to 24,388.95.

    The Nasdaq composite slid 219.01 points, or 3 percent, to 6,969.25. The Russell 2000 index of small-company stocks gave up 29.32 points, or 2 percent, to 1,448.09.

    The S&P 500 and Dow are now in the red for the year again. The Nasdaq was holding on to a modest gain.

    Volatility has gripped the market since early October, reflecting investors' worries that the Federal Reserve might overshoot with its campaign of rate increases and hurt U.S. economic growth.

    Traders also fear that a prolonged trade dispute between the U.S. and China could crimp corporate profits and that tariffs will raises costs for businesses and consumers. Uncertainty over those issues helped drive the market's sell-off this week.

    "The Fed has taken the punch bowl away in getting back to rates where they are today," said Doug Cote, chief market strategist for Voya Investment Management. "We're also going to get back to more normal volatility."

    At the same time, traders are also worried about a sharp drop in long-term bond yields as investors plow money into Treasurys, which tends to happen when investors expect slower economic growth.

    Technology stocks accounted for much of the market's broad slide Friday. Chipmaker Advanced Micro Devices slid 8.6 percent to $19.46.

    Health care sector stocks, the biggest gainer in the S&P 500 this year, took some of the heaviest losses. Medical device company Cooper lost 12.3 percent to $243.01.

    Utilities, which investors favor when they're fearful, eked out a slight gain. PPL Corp. gained 2.8 percent to $31.09.

    Oil prices rose after OPEC countries agreed to reduce global oil production by 1.2 million barrels a day for six months, beginning in January. The move would include a reduction of 800,000 barrels per day from OPEC countries and 400,000 barrels per day from Russia and other non-OPEC nations.

    The news, which had been widely anticipated, pushed crude oil prices higher. U.S. benchmark crude rose 2.2 percent to $52.61 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, gained 2.7 percent to $61.67 a barrel in London.

    The Labor Department said U.S. employers added 155,000 jobs in November, a slowdown from recent months but enough to suggest that the economy is expanding at a solid pace despite sharp gyrations in the stock market. The unemployment rate remained at 3.7 percent, nearly a five-decade low, for the third straight month.

    Bond prices rose, sending yields slightly lower. The yield on the 10-year Treasury fell to 2.86 percent from 2.87 percent late Thursday.

    The decline in bond yields, which affect interest rates on mortgages and other consumer loans, weighed on banks, which make more money when rates are rising. Morgan Stanley slid 3 percent to $41.32.

    The dollar rose to 112.66 yen from 112.65 yen late Thursday. The euro strengthened to $1.1418 from $1.1373.

    Gold gained 0.7 percent to $1,252.60 an ounce. Silver climbed 1.3 percent to $14.70 an ounce. Copper added 0.6 percent to $2.76 a pound.

    In other commodities trading, wholesale gasoline climbed 3.7 percent to $1.49 a gallon. Heating oil rose 1.5 percent to $1.89 a gallon. Natural gas gained 3.7 percent to $4.49 per 1,000 cubic feet.

    In Europe, Germany's DAX dipped 0.2 percent while the CAC 40 in France rose 0.7 percent. Britain's FTSE 100 jumped 1.1 percent. Major indexes in Asia finished mostly higher.

    Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 added 0.8 percent and Australia's S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.4 percent. South Korea's Kospi rose 0.3 percent. Hong Kong's Hang Seng gave up 0.3 percent.

    8190
     
  7. Darc Knight

    Darc Knight Investor not Trader

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    Love the week's summary Bigdog, thanks.
     
  8. bigdog

    bigdog Retired

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    THE Australian share market slumped to a two-year low yesterday, weighed down by the major banks as hopes for a trade resolution between the US and China dissipated.

    The benchmark ASX 200 index closed down 129 points, or 2.3 per cent, at 5552.5, while the broader All Ordinaries fell 2.2 per cent to 5627.5.

    CommSec market analyst James Tao said there was now “less certainty” about the likely impact of a truce proposed in recent weeks by US President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, in their trade stoush.

    The key Wall Street indices had fallen heavily overnight Friday, with technology stocks among those taking big hits.

    Our market followed suit yesterday. Shares in consumer credit provider Afterpay Touch tumbled 5.7 per cent to $11.97, while logistics software group Wisetech Global lost 4.8 per cent to $17.35.

    Financials were the heaviest drag. ANZ suffered the biggest loss of the big four banks, down 4.2 per cent to $24.64, while Westpac fell 3.4 per cent to $24.86.

    The Commonwealth Bank dropped 3 per cent to $68.27 and National Australia Bank slipped 2.5 per cent to $23.39.

    Among other financial services companies, investment bank Macquarie fell 3 per cent to $109.89.

    Elsewhere, Telstra fell 1.3 per cent, or 4c, to $3.04. It came after the telco bought the lion’s share of lots that were on offer in a government auction of spectrum that will be used for 5G mobile services. Telstra will pay $386 million for its lots.


    The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost as much as 507 points in early trading before ending with a gain of 34.

    The Americans will pay or be taxed extra for the tariffs on Chinese imports


    upload_2018-12-11_8-43-46.png

    https://www.usnews.com/news/busines...-fall-as-huawei-arrest-risks-china-us-fallout

    Stocks Struggle Higher as Markets Remain Volatile; Oil Drops
    US stocks recover from steep early losses as technology companies climb but banks and energy companies slip.

    By MARLEY JAY, AP Markets Writer

    NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks remained volatile Monday as the market took a dive in early trading only to erase those losses later and end slightly higher.

    The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost as much as 507 points in early trading before ending with a gain of 34.

    Energy companies fell as the price of crude oil dropped 3 percent, giving back its gains from last week. Banks fell as investors expected slower increases in interest rates.

    Technology companies led the gainers. Qualcomm rose after the chipmaker said a Chinese court banned some Apple phones as part of a long-running dispute over patents.

    Weak economic data in China and Japan and uncertainty over Britain's status in the European Union knocked down overseas indexes. The British pound dropped to its lowest level in more 18 months after Prime Minister Theresa May postponed a vote on the country's departure from the European Union.

    Tensions between the U.S. and China kept climbing following the detention of Huawei Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou. She is suspected of trying to evade U.S. trade curbs on Iran, and she was detained while changing planes in Canada.

    China summoned both the U.S. and Canadian ambassadors to meetings over the weekend and protested her arrest. Meng's arrest has jolted the stock market.

    "It's a source of great anger for China that this could happen," said Kristina Hooper, chief global market strategist for Invesco. "China is looking for retaliation, and the most appropriate place for retaliation would be in trade negotiations with the U.S."

    The S&P 500 index gained 4.64 points, or 0.2 percent, to 2,637.72. The Dow added 34.31 points, or 0.1 percent, to 24,423.26. Technology companies, which have fallen sharply since October, did better. The Nasdaq composite rose 51.27 points, or 0.7 percent, to 7,020.52.

    The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks dipped 4.99 points, or 0.3 percent, to 1,443.09.

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    U.S. indexes have been lurching up and down since October, mostly down. The S&P 500 plunged 4.6 percent last week for its biggest loss in more than eight months as investors felt the U.S. and China are still nowhere close to ending their trade dispute.

    Volatility has been high not only week to week but also minute to minute. The S&P 500 zoomed from a gain of 0.2 percent to a loss of 1.8 percent Monday morning.

    Technology companies ended higher. Microsoft climbed 2.6 percent to $107.59 and Qualcomm added 2.2 percent to $57.24. Broadcom jumped 4.7 percent to $239.25.

    Crude oil resumed a steep decline that began in early October. Benchmark U.S. crude fell 3.1 percent to $51 per barrel in New York. Brent crude, the international standard, lost 2.8 percent to $59.97 a barrel in London.

    Prices steadied last week after OPEC and other major oil producers said they will reduce production by 1.2 million barrels a day starting from January. The cuts will last for six months.

    Energy stocks took dipped. Exxon Mobil lost 1.4 percent to $76.54 and Schlumberger shed 2.5 percent to $41.97.

    Bond prices ended slightly lower. The yield on the 10-year Treasury slipped early on, but later rose to 2.86 percent from 2.85 percent late Friday. The 10-year yield spiked to a seven-year high in early November and has fallen sharply since then.

    Hooper, of Invesco, said stocks have bounced back from their early losses because Wall Street thinks the Fed might react to the trade turmoil by raising interest rates at a slower pace.

    "There are certainly some bargain hunters at work today, but more than that is the growing recognition that we could see the Fed take its foot off the accelerator," she said. "That could be a source of momentum, a positive force for markets."

    Lower interest rates harm banks, however, because they reduce profits from lending. Bank of America sank 2.6 percent to $24.76 and JPMorgan Chase lost 1.9 percent to $101.36.

    Britain's May postponed a vote on her deal for Britain to exit the European Union, which had been scheduled for Tuesday. She acknowledged that she would have lost the vote by a significant margin.

    The pound sank to $1.2557, down from $1.2751 late Friday. The FTSE 100 stock index fell 0.8 percent. That was better than many other European indexes, as the falling pound helped British exporters.

    In Europe, investors bought bonds and sold stocks. Germany's DAX lost 1.5 percent, and the CAC 40 in France declined 1.4 percent.

    Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 slid 2.1 percent, South Korea's Kospi fell 1.1 percent and Hong Kong's Hang Seng shed 1.2 percent.

    Revised data showed the Japanese economy shrank by 2.5 percent in the third quarter, a larger decline than analysts expected. Chinese imports and exports climbed at a much slower pace in November than they had in October.

    In other commodities trading, wholesale gasoline fell 4.5 percent to $1.42 a gallon. Heating oil skidded 2.2 percent to $1.84 a gallon. Natural gas rose 1.3 percent to $4.55 per 1,000 cubic feet.

    Gold slipped 0.3 percent to $1,249.40 an ounce. Silver lost 0.6 percent to $14.61 an ounce. Copper slid 1.4 percent to $2.72 a pound.

    The dollar rose to 113.21 Japanese yen from 112.64 yen late Friday. The euro slipped to $1.1353 from $1.1422.
     
  9. bigdog

    bigdog Retired

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    https://www.usnews.com/news/busines...mixed-on-concerns-over-trade-economic-outlook

    Wild Ride to Nowhere: US Stocks Rise, Fall and Repeat
    U.S. stocks careened through another dizzying day Tuesday after indexes shot to big early-morning gains only to give them all up and then yo-yo between gains and losses.

    By STAN CHOE, AP Business Writer

    NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks careened between big gains and losses on Tuesday before indexes ended the day mixed, the latest dizzying run for a market that's been dominated by them in recent months.

    A morning burst driven by hopes for U.S.-China trade talks gave way to losses triggered by falling bank stocks and the threat of a federal government shutdown. The result of Tuesday's trip through the spin cycle, though, belies all the action. Indexes ended the day nearly where they began.

    The S&P 500 dipped by 0.94 points, or less than 0.1 percent, to 2,636.78, while the Dow Jones industrial average fell 53.02, or 0.2 percent, to 24,370.24, and the Nasdaq composite rose 11.31, or 0.2 percent, to 7,031.83. Slightly more stocks fell on the New York Stock Exchange than rose.

    It's the latest in a series of sharp turns in direction for the market, which has lurched up and mostly down since late September as investors recalibrate how worried they are about the global trade war, rising interest rates and expectations for a slowing economy.

    The whipsaw action is a nerve-wracking departure from much of the past decade, when investors enjoyed a largely calm, rising market, and analysts are debating how big a turning point it is for the longest bull market on record.

    "It's the last gasps of a bull market," said Rich Weiss, chief investment officer of multi-asset strategies at American Century Investments. Weiss has become more cautious about stocks as he's watched leadership shift from high-flying technology companies to makers of household products and other stocks that tend to do better in the late stages of a bull market.

    Jon Adams, senior investment strategist at BMO Global Asset Management, is more optimistic that stocks can keep rising. But he says investors should get used to this increase in volatility, which follows a calmer-than-usual run.

    "We came from a very low-volatility, benign environment in 2017, and I think we're getting to a more normal level of volatility, although a bit higher than historically," he said. "I think investors need to brace themselves for a higher level of volatility."

    Behind that volatility is many forces pushing and pulling the market in different directions, and how optimistic or pessimistic investors are feeling about them on a given day. Several were on display Tuesday.

    Early in the morning, the S&P 500 jumped as much as 1.4 percent after China's Commerce Ministry said that U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Chinese Vice Premier Liu He spoke by phone about "the promotion of the next economic and trade consultations."

    Media reports also said that China agreed to reduce tariffs on U.S. autos. That raised hopes that the two countries can make progress on their trade dispute. Investors worry weaker global trade would dent economic growth around the world and corporate profits.

    Indexes veered to losses in the afternoon, hurt by falling bank stocks. Financial stocks in the S&P 500 fell at least 1 percent for the fifth straight day, and the S&P 500 was down as much as 0.6 percent at one point Tuesday afternoon.

    Also weighing on the market was President Donald Trump's threat to shut down the government if Congress doesn't provide money to build a wall at the Mexican border.

    In overseas stock markets, Germany's DAX was up 1.5 percent, and France's CAC 40 rose 1.3 percent. Britain's FTSE 100 gained 1.3 percent.

    In Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 lost 0.3 percent, South Korea's Kospi fell less than 0.1 percent to 2,052.97 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng edged up 0.1 percent.

    Benchmark U.S. crude oil rose 65 cents to settle at $51.65 per barrel. Brent crude, the international standard, gained 0.4 percent to $60.20.

    Natural gas fell 14 cents to $4.41 per 1,000 cubic feet, heating oil was close to flat at $1.85 per gallon and wholesale gasoline rose 2 cents to $1.44 per gallon.

    Gold slipped $2.20 to $1,247.20 per ounce, silver rose 2 cents to $14.63 per ounce and copper rose 5 cents to $2.77 per pound.

    The yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 2.87 percent from 2.85 percent late Monday, while the two-year yield rose to 2.75 percent from 2.73 percent.

    The gap between those two yields has been shrinking this year, which has worried some investors. When the 10-year yield falls below the two-year yield, investors call it an "inverted yield curve" and see it as a precursor to a recession.

    In the currency markets, the dollar rose to 113.40 Japanese yen from 113.21 yen late Monday. The euro slipped to $1.1325from $1.1353, and the British pound dipped to $1.2527 from $1.2557.
     
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  10. bigdog

    bigdog Retired

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    A sea of green!

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    https://www.usnews.com/news/busines...ina-trade-talks-help-push-asian-shares-higher

    Wall Street Ends Higher With Help From Tech and Health Care
    U.S. stocks gave up much of an early rally but still ended higher, led by gains in technology and health care companies.

    By MARLEY JAY, AP Markets Writer

    NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks couldn't hang on to a big gain Wednesday, but they still finished broadly higher as technology and health care companies rose. That helped reverse some of the market's big losses from the week before.

    Stocks initially rallied after the Wall Street Journal reported that China's government could make changes to its "Made in China 2025" economic development plan. That could be one step toward easing dispute between the world's two largest economies. The Dow Jones Industrial Average surged as much as 458 points in morning trading, but gave later back much of that gain.

    "Any time you get some semblance of good news on trade, you've had this tendency to see a pretty sharp rally," said Liz Ann Sonders, chief investment strategist for Charles Schwab.

    After taking steep losses at the end of last week, stocks have gyrated this week: on Monday they rallied to erase a big early loss, while on Tuesday a big morning gain turned into a small decline.

    On Wednesday, most of the day's gains evaporated in the afternoon. The hour-to-hour changes reflect investors' nervousness about the health of the global economy: economic growth is expected to slow in 2019 and the U.S.-China trade dispute and rising interest rates could both make that slowdown more painful. Sonders said investors overlooked those threats for a time, but can't ignore them anymore.

    "Some of these intraday reversals have been quite extraordinary," said Sonders. "You have to go back to the financial crisis era to see ... such a big swing on consecutive days."

    The S&P 500 index rose 14.29 points, or 0.5 percent, to 2,651.07. The Dow gained 157.03 points, or 0.6 percent, to 24,527.27. The Nasdaq composite jumped 66.48 points, or 0.9 percent, to 7,098.31. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks added 15.19 points, or 1.1 percent, to 1,455.32.

    Among technology companies, chipmaker Broadcom gained 3.3 percent to $254.98. Amazon gained 1.2 percent to $1,663.54 to lead retailers, and Netflix jumped 3.6 percent to $274.88 as internet and media companies joined in the gains.

    Among industrials, machinery maker Caterpillar climbed 1.7 percent to $125.37 and equipment rental company United Rentals surged 6.3 percent to $108.30 after it gave strong forecasts for 2019 and said it will start buying back stock this month.

    Through the "Made in China 2025" initiative, Beijing aims to create leading companies in fields like artificial intelligence, electric cars and robotics. The Trump administration says the government is unfairly subsidizing Chinese companies and discriminating against foreign rivals. Along with disputes over China's handling of intellectual property, it's a significant piece of the trade tensions between the countries.

    Despite Wednesday's gains, almost half of the 500 stocks that make up the S&P 500 have fallen into a "bear market," meaning they have dropped at least 20 percent from their most recent peaks. The S&P 500 itself is down 9.5 percent from its record high in late September. The last bear market for the index ended in March 2009.

    British legislators forced a no-confidence vote in Prime Minister Theresa May, threatening an end to her tenure. She won the vote, which was revealed after the close of U.S. trading. Lawmakers within May's Conservative Party have expressed frustrations over her negotiations of Britain's departure from the European Union, and many of them want a cleaner break from the trading bloc. Opposition lawmakers don't want Britain to leave the EU.

    The uncertainty has knocked the British pound sharply lower in recent days, but it rose Wednesday to $1.2634 from $1.2527. The FTSE 100 stock index added 1.1 percent.

    Deutsche Bank jumped after Bloomberg News reported that the German government might take steps to make it easier for the struggling bank to combine with competitor Commerzbank. U.S.-traded shares of Deutsche Bank gained 8.4 percent to $9.03, but they're still down 52.5 percent this year and have fallen almost 80 percent over the past five years as the company reels from weak results and investments in Greek and Italian bonds that went bad.

    Commerzbank stock added 5.6 percent in Frankfurt.

    Bond prices slipped. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.91 percent from 2.88 percent.

    Tencent Music Entertainment, the largest music streaming service in China, climbed 7.7 percent in its first day of trading on the New York Stock Exchange. The company's IPO of 82 million shares priced at $13 a share and closed at $14 a share. Slightly more than half are being sold by the company and the rest are being sold by shareholders.

    The CAC 40 in France surged 2.1 percent and Germany's DAX rose 1.4 percent. Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 jumped 2.2 percent and South Korea's Kospi rose 1.4 percent. The Hang Seng in Hong Kong added 1.6 percent.

    Benchmark U.S. crude oil fell 1 percent to $52.15 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, the international standard, lost 0.1 percent to $60.15 per barrel in London.

    Wholesale gasoline dipped 1.3 percent to $1.42 a gallon and heating oil was unchanged at $1.85 a gallon. Natural gas dropped 6.1 percent to $4.14 per 1,000 cubic feet.

    The dollar dipped to 113.22 yen from 113.40 yen. The euro rose to $1.1367 from $1.1325.

    The price of gold rose 0.2 percent to $1,250 an ounce, silver rose 1.5 percent to $14.85 an ounce and copper edged up 0.1 percent to $2.77 a pound.
     
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  11. bigdog

    bigdog Retired

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    "Over the last few weeks the mentality of 'buy the dip' has been replaced by something more like 'sell the rally,'" she said. "There is a little bit of a void right now, and I think that is creating some of this shift out of the most crowded and most profitable trades, and this overall shift in market mentality."

    upload_2018-12-14_8-40-38.png

    https://www.usnews.com/news/busines...s-advance-following-strong-wall-street-finish

    Stocks Indexes Settle Down, but Small Companies Drop Again
    US stocks finish mostly lower as banks, retailers and smaller companies fall, but the moves are small after a turbulent few days on Wall Street.

    By MARLEY JAY, AP Markets Writer

    NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks wobbled Thursday as the markets turned fairly quiet after a very turbulent start to the week. Small companies dropped and high-dividend stocks, which investors favor when they want to reduce risk, rose.

    Major stock indexes spent the day switching between small gains and losses after several days of much bigger moves. Clothing companies and other retailers fell, weighed down by weak earnings reports, and a disappointing forecast from Delta hurt airlines.

    Chemical and basic materials makers also sank. Investors shifted some money into high-dividend stocks including utilities, household goods makers and real estate investment trusts.

    Trading has been jagged over the last few months as investors worried about growing trade tensions and rising interest rates. Mona Mahajan, U.S. investment strategist for Allianz Global Investors, said traders aren't sure what strategy to use right now: many recent market favorites, including Facebook, Amazon, Netflix and Google, have taken a beating. Yet the global economy is still growing, making high-dividend, low-growth stocks like utilities feel like a strange choice, she said.

    "Over the last few weeks the mentality of 'buy the dip' has been replaced by something more like 'sell the rally,'" she said. "There is a little bit of a void right now, and I think that is creating some of this shift out of the most crowded and most profitable trades, and this overall shift in market mentality."

    The European Central Bank said it will end its bond-buying stimulus program at the end of the year, but trimmed its forecasts for growth across Europe. The bank isn't ending its stimulus program entirely, as it will continue to invest money from maturing bonds and will take other steps to encourage banks to lend money.

    The S&P 500 index lost 0.53 points to 2,650.54. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 70.11 points, or 0.3 percent, to 24,597.38 as McDonald's and Procter & Gamble rose. The Nasdaq composite fell 27.98 points, or 0.4 percent, to 7,070.33.

    The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies fell 22.62 points, or 1.6 percent, to 1,432.70. The Russell has fallen 17.7 percent since setting a record high in late August and is trading at its lowest level since September 2017.

    Among other issues, that reflects investors' fears about slowing economic growth in the U.S. and rising interest rates. Smaller companies are more vulnerable in times of slower growth, and they tend to carry higher levels of debt than larger companies do. Higher rates make those debts more costly.

    Shaky reports from retailers may have added to those worries Thursday as apparel company Tailored Brands and Oxford Industries, the parent of Tommy Bahama and Lilly Pulitzer, both cut their forecasts for the year. Tailored Brands nosedived 29.8 percent to $14.13 and Oxford slipped 10.1 percent to $67.24. Smaller industrial and financial companies also dropped and larger retailers struggled as well.

    The European Central Bank has spent about $3 trillion on bonds since early 2015 in an effort to encourage growth in Europe's economy, and the end of its bond-buying program comes as credit conditions around the world are gradually getting tighter.

    The Federal Reserve has been steadily raising interest rates for three years and is letting its balance sheet shrink, and the Bank of England is also backing away from the stimulus efforts it employed following the global financial crisis of 2007-2009 and the Great Recession.

    Those programs helped push global stock markets higher in recent years and their end might contribute to more volatility, but investors appeared to take the news in stride. Germany's DAX and the British FTSE 100 were little changed while the CAC 40 in France fell 0.3 percent.

    Oil prices climbed following a Bloomberg News report that Saudi Arabia plans to cut exports to the U.S. The Senate also passed a resolution recommending the U.S. end its assistance to the kingdom for the war in Yemen, and also blamed Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. The resolution may not become law, but could increase tensions between Saudi Arabia and the U.S.

    General Electric climbed 7.3 percent to $7.20 after JPMorgan Chase analyst C. Stephen Tusa upgraded the stock to "Neutral" from "Underweight." GE has fallen almost 60 percent this year after slashing its dividend, replacing its CEO, and taking big charges tied its power business and its insurance business. Analysts are concerned that several of its divisions are years away from being profitable.

    The Japanese Nikkei 225 index gained 1 percent and Hong Kong's Hang Seng jumped 1.3 percent while the Kospi in South Korea added 0.6 percent.

    Benchmark U.S. crude oil jumped 2.8 percent to $52.58 per barrel in New York. Brent crude, the international standard, rose 2.2 percent to $61.45 per barrel in London.

    Wholesale gasoline climbed 4.1 percent to $1.48 a gallon and heating oil rose 1.4 percent to $1.88 a gallon. Natural gas slipped 0.3 percent to $2.14 per 1,000 cubic feet.

    Bond prices edged lower. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.91 percent at 2.90 percent.

    Gold dipped 0.2 percent to $1,247.40 an ounce. Silver was little changed at $14.89 an ounce and copper stayed at $2.77 a pound.

    The dollar rose to 113.60 yen from 113.22 yen. The euro finished unchanged at $1.1367. The British pound rose to $1.2660 from $1.2634.
     
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  12. bigdog

    bigdog Retired

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    DUMP TRUMP

    SEA OF RED

    Stocks Plunge to 8-Month Lows on Growth Fears; J&J Nosedives
    Stocks fall sharply on Wall Street, shaving 496 points off the Dow Jones Industrial Average, as traders worry about signs of weaker economic growth in China and Europe.

    December is typically the best month of the year for stocks and Wall Street usually looks forward to a "Santa Claus rally" that adds to the year's gains. With 10 trading days left this month, however, the S&P 500 is down 5.8 percent. That followed a small gain in November and a steep 6.9 percent drop in October.

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    https://www.usnews.com/news/busines...ian-shares-fall-on-poor-chinese-economic-data

    Stocks Plunge to 8-Month Lows on Growth Fears; J&J Nosedives
    Stocks fall sharply on Wall Street, shaving 496 points off the Dow Jones Industrial Average, as traders worry about signs of weaker economic growth in China and Europe.

    By MARLEY JAY, AP Markets Writer

    NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks staggered to eight-month lows Friday after weak economic data from China and Europe set off more worries about the global economy. Mounting tensions in Europe over Britain's impeding departure from the European Union also darkened traders' moods.

    The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped as much as 563 points. On the benchmark S&P 500 index, health care and technology companies absorbed the worst losses. Johnson & Johnson plunged by the most in 16 years after Reuters reported that the company has known since the 1970s that its talc Baby Powder sometimes contained carcinogenic asbestos. The company denied the report.

    China said industrial output and retail sales both slowed in November. That could be another sign that China's trade dispute with the U.S. and tighter lending conditions are chilling its economy, which is the second-largest in the world. Meanwhile, purchasing managers in Europe signaled that economic growth was slipping.

    Sameer Samana, senior global market strategist for Wells Fargo Investment Institute, said investors are concerned that weakness will make it way to the U.S. They're wondering if the U.S. economy is likely to run out of steam sooner than they had thought.

    "Market consensus has been that the next recession is probably in 2020 or beyond," he said. Now, he said, the market is "really testing that assumption and trying to figure out whether it's sooner."

    The S&P 500 index lost 50.59 points, or 1.9 percent, to 2,599.95, its lowest close since April 2. The Dow retreated 496.87 points, or 2 percent, to 24,100.51.

    The Nasdaq composite slid 159.67 points, or 2.3 percent, to 6,910.66. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks fell 21.89 points, or 1.5 percent, to 1,410.81.

    December is typically the best month of the year for stocks and Wall Street usually looks forward to a "Santa Claus rally" that adds to the year's gains. With 10 trading days left this month, however, the S&P 500 is down 5.8 percent. That followed a small gain in November and a steep 6.9 percent drop in October.

    Johnson & Johnson dropped 10 percent to $133 in very heavy trading. Its market value fell by $40 billion.

    Reuters reported that court documents and test results show Johnson & Johnson has known for decades that its raw talc and finished Baby Powder sometimes contained asbestos, but that the company didn't inform regulators or the public. The company called the story "false and inflammatory."

    In July the company lost a lawsuit from plaintiffs who argued that its products were linked to cases of ovarian cancer and mesothelioma. A St. Louis jury awarded plaintiffs $4.7 billion. Johnson & Johnson faces thousands of other lawsuits.

    For more than 20 years, China has been one of the biggest contributors to growth in the global economy, and when investors see signs the Chinese economy is weakening, they expect it will affect other countries like the U.S. that sell things to China.

    In Europe, the index of purchase managers fell in France, which is racked by protests, to a level that points toward economic contraction. Germany's reading still pointed to growth, but it fell to its lowest level in four years.

    Those reports canceled out some potential good news on trade: the Chinese government announced a 90-day suspension of tariff increases on U.S. cars, trucks and auto imports. It's part of a cease-fire that China and the U.S. announced earlier this month to give them time to work on other issues.

    Among technology companies, Apple dipped 3.2 percent to $165.48. Adobe skidded 7.3 percent to $230 after its fourth-quarter profit disappointed investors and it also forecast lower-than-expected earnings in the current fiscal year. Industrial companies sank as well. Boeing lost 2.1 percent to $318.75.

    Oil prices again turned lower, as a slower global economy would weaken demand for oil and other fuels. Benchmark U.S. crude fell 2.6 percent to $51.20 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, dropped 1.9 percent to settle at $60.28 a barrel in London.

    European Union leaders rejected British Prime Minister Theresa May's request to make changes to their deal covering Britain's departure from the EU on March 29. British legislators aren't satisfied with the terms May negotiated, and she canceled a scheduled vote earlier this week because it was clear Parliament wouldn't approve it. Britain's economy and financial markets across Europe face severe disruption without an agreement.

    European bond prices rose and yields fell. Both the British pound and the euro weakened. The pound slipped to $1.2579 from $1.2660 and the euro fell to $1.1303 from $1.1367.

    Germany's DAX declined 0.5 percent and the CAC 40 in France declined 0.8 percent. Britain's FTSE 100 fell 0.5 percent.

    Japan's Nikkei 225 index slid 2 percent and the Kospi in South Korea lost 1.3 percent. Hong Kong's Hang Seng was down 1.6 percent.

    Bond prices edged higher. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.89 percent 2.90 percent.

    In other commodities trading, wholesale gasoline lost 3 percent to $1.43 a gallon. Heating oil fell 1.7 percent to $1.85 a gallon and natural gas dropped 7.2 percent to $3.83 per 1,000 cubic feet.

    Gold fell 0.5 percent to $1,241.40 an ounce. Silver dipped 1.5 percent to $14.64 an ounce. Copper was little changed at $2.77 a pound.

    The dollar fell to 113.29 yen from 113.60 yen.

    8658
     
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  13. bigdog

    bigdog Retired

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    The S&P 500 index, the benchmark for many investors and funds, finished at its lowest level since Oct. 9, 2017. It has fallen 13.1 percent since its last record close on Sept. 20. The Russell 2000, an index of smaller companies, has dropped more than 20 percent since the end of August, meaning that index is now in what Wall Street calls a "bear market."

    Another day of big losses knocked U.S. stocks to their lowest levels in more than a year Monday.

    U.S. stocks sink to their lowest levels in 14 months Monday as retailers and health care and technology stocks fall.

    upload_2018-12-18_8-42-6.png

    https://www.usnews.com/news/busines...-shares-edge-higher-with-fed-meeting-in-focus

    Dow Jones Industrials Take Second Straight 2-Percent Plunge
    U.S. stocks sink to their lowest levels in 14 months Monday as retailers and health care and technology stocks fall.

    By MARLEY JAY, AP Markets Writer

    NEW YORK (AP) — Another day of big losses knocked U.S. stocks to their lowest levels in more than a year Monday. Investors dumped high-growth technology and retail companies as well as steadier, high-dividend companies. Oil fell below $50 a barrel for the first time since October 2017.

    Hospitals and health insurers slumped after a federal judge in Texas ruled that the 2010 Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional. Other stocks wobbled in morning trading, then plunged in the afternoon. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 507 points after a 496 point drop Friday.

    Amazon led a rout among retailers and tech companies including Microsoft turned sharply lower. Some of the largest losses went to utilities and real estate companies, which have done better than the rest of the market during the turbulence of the last three months.

    "That is basically retail investors panicking," said Mark Hackett, chief of investment research at Nationwide Investment Management. "Investors basically are confusing the idea of a slowdown with a recession."

    But investors dumped almost everything. Less than 40 of the 500 stocks comprising the S&P 500 finished the day higher.

    The S&P 500 index, the benchmark for many investors and funds, finished at its lowest level since Oct. 9, 2017. It has fallen 13.1 percent since its last record close on Sept. 20. The Russell 2000, an index of smaller companies, has dropped more than 20 percent since the end of August, meaning that index is now in what Wall Street calls a "bear market."

    Germany's main stock index also fell into a bear market Monday as companies like Siemens and SAP kept falling.

    Smaller U.S. stocks have taken dramatic losses as investors have lost confidence in the U.S. economy's growth prospects. Smaller companies are considered more vulnerable in a downturn than larger companies because they are more dependent on economic growth and tend to have higher levels of debt.

    Hackett said the current drop is similar to the market's big plunge in late 2015 and early 2016, which was also tied to fears that the global economy was weakening in a hurry. But even though the economy is slowing down after its surge in 2017 and 2018, it should continue to do fairly well.

    "It's a slowdown from extremely high levels to healthy levels," he said. "The globe isn't going into a recession."

    The S&P 500 skidded 54.01 points, or 2.1 percent, at 2,545.94. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 507.53 points, or 2.1 percent, to 23,592.98. The Nasdaq composite fell 156.93 points, or 2.3 percent, to 6,753.73. The Russell 2000 index dipped 32.97 points, or 2.3 percent, to 1,378.14.

    Following the health care ruling, hospital operator HCA dropped 2.8 percent to $123.1 and health insurer UnitedHealth lost 2.6 percent to $258.07. Centene, a health insurer that focuses on Medicaid and the Affordable Care Act's individual health insurance exchanges, fell 4.8 percent to $121.42 and Molina skidded 8.9 percent to $120.

    Many experts expect the ruling will be overturned, but with the markets suffering steep declines in recent months, investors didn't appear willing to wait and see.

    Benchmark U.S. crude fell 2.6 percent to $49.88 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, dipped 1.1 percent to $59.61 a barrel in London. Weaker economic growth would mean less demand for oil, and traders have been concerned there is too much crude supply on the market. That's chopped oil prices by one-third since early October.

    Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.86 percent from 2.89 percent.

    The Federal Reserve is expected to raise interest rates again Wednesday, the fourth increase of this year. It's been raising rates over the last three years, and investors will want to know if the Fed is scaling back its plans for further increases based on the turmoil in the stock market over the last few months and mounting evidence that world economic growth is slowing down.

    Hackett, of Nationwide, said investors will be happy if the Fed adjusts its plans and projects fewer increases in interest rates next year. But he said investors might be startled if the Fed doesn't raise rates this week, as has been widely expected.

    British Prime Minister Theresa May said Parliament will vote Jan. 14 on her deal setting terms for Britain's departure from the European Union. She canceled a vote on the deal last week because it was clear legislators were going to reject it. May insists she can save the deal, but pressure is mounting for either a vote by lawmakers or a new referendum on the issue.

    Britain is scheduled to leave the EU in late March, and if it does so without a deal in place governing its trade and economic relationships with the bloc, it could bring huge disruptions to the British and European economies and financial markets.

    Germany's DAX lost 0.9 percent. That means the DAX, which represents Europe's largest single economy, is also in a bear market. France's CAC 40 and Britain's FTSE 100 both fell 1.1 percent.

    Japan's Nikkei 225 index added 0.6 percent and the Kospi in South Korea gained 0.1 percent. Hong Kong's Hang Seng was less than 0.1 percent lower. Both the Kospi and Hang Seng are in bear markets as well.

    In other energy trading, wholesale gasoline shed 1.7 percent to $1.41 a gallon and heating oil slid 1 percent to $1.83 a gallon. Natural gas dropped 7.8 percent to $3.53 per 1,000 cubic feet.

    Gold rose 0.8 percent to $1,251.80 an ounce. Silver added 0.8 percent to $14.76 an ounce. Copper dipped 0.3 percent to $2.75 a pound.

    The dollar slipped to 112.75 yen from 113.29 yen. The euro rose to $1.1350 from $1.1303. The British pound rose to $1.2629 from $1.2579.
     
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  14. bigdog

    bigdog Retired

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    U.S. crude oil fell to its lowest price since August 2017, and it has now fallen almost 40 percent since early October.

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    https://www.usnews.com/news/busines...s-slip-as-traders-brace-for-fed-rate-increase

    Stocks Waver as Plunging Oil Prices Pull Energy Stocks Lower
    U.S. give up an early gain and finish little changed as a 7 percent plunge in the price of crude oil weighs on energy companies.

    Dec. 18, 2018, at 5:07 p.m.

    By MARLEY JAY, AP Markets Writer

    NEW YORK (AP) — After two days of huge losses, U.S. stocks ended the day back where they started on Tuesday. Energy companies sank as crude oil plunged 7 percent, but technology and consumer-focused companies climbed.

    U.S. crude oil fell to its lowest price since August 2017, and it has now fallen almost 40 percent since early October. Investors are worried that supplies continue to increase and that demand is slowing as the global economy weakens. The plunge in oil prices has crushed energy company stocks in recent weeks.

    Energy stocks including Exxon Mobil fell again on Tuesday, but some of those losses were offset by gains in Apple, Amazon, Microsoft and Boeing. Boeing raised its quarterly dividend and said it will buy back another $20 billion of its own stock. Boeing has tumbled on worries that the global trade war will hit its profits particularly hard.

    The Federal Reserve started its last meeting of the year. Investors expect it to raise interest rates on Wednesday when the meeting concludes. That would be its fourth increase this year, and its ninth in three years. Investors are hoping the Fed will say the increases are going to slow down in 2019 in light of recent signs that economic growth is slowing.

    Trading was turbulent. Two days of widespread market declines had knocked 1,004 points off the Dow Jones Industrial Average, and on Tuesday, investors couldn't find a convincing reason for stock prices to go higher. On the other hand they didn't see cause for another big decline, either.

    There haven't been any big developments in U.S.-China trade talks, a major focus for markets, since the beginning of this month. JJ Kinahan, chief markets strategist for TD Ameritrade, said that's left investors confused about the state of the trade dispute and reluctant to commit to stocks, while businesses aren't spending.

    "We don't know the rules of the game," he said. "People can't plan. When you can't plan, you're not anxious to buy stocks."

    The S&P 500 index inched up 0.22 points to 2,546.16, but is still trading at its lowest levels in 14 months. The Dow industrials added 82.66 points, or 0.4 percent, to 23,675.64. The Nasdaq composite gained 30.18 points, or 0.4 percent, to 6,783.91.

    The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies lost another 0.97 points, or 0.1 percent, to 1,377.18. The index is 21 percent below the peak it set in August, meaning it's in what Wall Street calls a "bear market."

    Benchmark U.S. crude plunged 7.3 percent to $46.24 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, sank 5.6 percent to $56.26 a barrel in London.

    The twin fears of slower global economic growth and rising stockpiles are bad for crude prices. While OPEC and several other countries recently agreed to cut production of oil in 2019, that hasn't stemmed the decline in prices. Traders have doubts that the cut is large enough to balance supply and demand.

    "They're not the only game in town anymore," Kinahan said of OPEC. He said rising oil production in the U.S. and a combination of alternative fuels and greater efficiency by businesses has reduced OPEC's ability to sway the oil market.

    On Tuesday, the Energy Information Administration said U.S. shale oil production will keep climbing in January, and the Wall Street Journal reported that oil production in Russia reached a record high in December.

    The Federal Reserve recently forecast three more increases in interest rates next year, but investors doubt that's going to happen. The Fed's rates help set borrowing costs for various types of loans. Higher rates can slow economic growth, and that's something investors have been worrying about as China and Europe have suggested growth is slowing, and the U.S. economy is also expected to cool off in 2019.

    Those higher rates also make stocks look relatively less attractive.

    After the increase in its dividend and the larger stock repurchase, Boeing climbed 3.8 percent to $328.06. The stock has dropped 16 percent since early October. Several other companies that have recently suffered big losses also said they will buy back more stock, including health care products giant Johnson & Johnson and insurer Allstate.

    The Commerce Department said developers broke ground on more apartments in November, and homebuilders climbed. Lennar gained 2.5 percent to $41.01 and NVR added 1.1 percent to $2,479.81. The companies have taken huge losses this year as rising mortgage rates and prices have reduced home sales.

    Real estate investment trusts also rose Tuesday. Apartment building owner AvalonBay Communities gained 1.1 percent to $181.91 and CBRE Group rose 4.3 percent to $41.15. Real estate companies had taken sharp losses Monday.

    Bond prices rose again. The yield on the 10-year Treasury dipped to 2.82 percent from 2.85 percent late Monday.

    Germany's DAX lost 0.3 percent, deepening its slide into a bear market. Britain's FTSE 100 shed 1.1 percent and France's CAC 40 dripped 1 percent lower.

    Losses were more severe in Asia. The Nikkei 225 in Japan lost 1.8 percent, the Hang Seng in Hong Kong dropped 1 percent and South Korea's Kospi slipped 0.4 percent.

    In other commodities trading, wholesale gasoline fell 4.2 percent to $1.35 a gallon and heating oil lost 4 percent to $1.75 a gallon. Natural gas jumped 8.8 percent to $3.84 per 1,000 cubic feet.

    Gold inched up 0.1 percent to $1,253.30 an ounce. Silver fell 0.4 percent to $1470 an ounce. Copper skidded 3.3 percent to $2.66 a pound.

    The dollar dipped to 112.53 Japanese yen from 112.75 yen late Monday. The euro rose to $1.1357 from $1.1350, and the British pound rose to $1.2639 from $1.2629.
     
  15. bigdog

    bigdog Retired

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    Stocks gave up a big rally and took a dive in afternoon trading Wednesday after the Federal Reserve raised interest rates again and said it plans to keep raising them next year. The market finished at its lowest level since September 2017

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    https://www.usnews.com/news/busines...ed-in-asia-on-fed-rate-decision-japanese-data

    Stocks Skid to 15-Month Low After Fed Raises Rates Again
    Stocks surrendered a substantial gain after the Federal Reserve raised interest rates again and said it plans to keep raising them next year. Some investors had hoped the Fed would signal a sharper slowdown in its credit tightening policy.

    Dec. 19, 2018, at 4:34 p.m.

    By MARLEY JAY, AP Markets Writer

    NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks gave up a big rally and took a dive in afternoon trading Wednesday after the Federal Reserve raised interest rates again and said it plans to keep raising them next year. The market finished at its lowest level since September 2017.

    The U.S. central bank said it expects to increase interest rates at a slightly slower pace next year, and also said it isn't planning any changes in the gradual shrinking of its large bond portfolio. Investors appeared to hope the Fed would unveil a sharper slowdown in interest rate hikes and other credit tightening policies because economic growth is likely to slow down.

    The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 351 points and lost 513 points at its lowest point. Before the Fed's decision was announced at 2 p.m. Eastern Time, it was up 381 points.

    Bond prices rose, sending yields sharply lower. Bond yields are benchmarks for many kinds of long-term loans including mortgages.

    The Fed raised its short-term interest rate for the fourth time this year, to a range of 2.25 percent to 2.5 percent. The Fed's benchmark rate is at its highest point since 2008, which means higher borrowing costs for many consumers and businesses.

    The Fed is now forecasting two increases in rates in 2019 instead of three. The central bank expects the long-term level of its main interest rate will be 2.8 percent, down from an earlier projection of 3 percent.

    Bond prices rose following the Fed's announcement. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.78 percent from 2.84 percent immediately before the Fed's announcement and 2.82 late Tuesday. That's a substantial move for that benchmark lending rate.

    The yo-yo movements for the stock market were a result of markets trying to parse Powell's comments, which essentially were: The economy is strong enough to warrant a rate increase now, but not so strong to need three rate increases, as the Fed had indicated a few months ago.

    "Chairman Powell was threading the needle today," said Frances Donald, head of macroeconomic strategy at Manulife Asset Management. "He had to say that the economic picture is not as good as three months ago, while also saying that the pillars of the economy remain intact. And markets have to react, live, to that 'on the one hand, on the other hand' that Powell has to play in this economy."

    Internet, technology and consumer-focused companies dropped. Facebook fell sharply after the New York Times reported that the social media network gave companies more access to users' personal data than it has previously said. The report said Facebook had arrangements with more than 150 companies including Microsoft, Amazon, Spotify and Netflix that let different companies read, write and delete users' private messages, see the names of a user's friends or their news feeds without their consent.

    Separately, the District of Columbia sued Facebook for allowing Cambridge Analytica, a data-mining firm working for the Trump campaign, to improperly access data from as many as 87 million Facebook users.

    Facebook lost 7.2 percent to $133.25. It's down 39 percent since late July on concerns about a slowdown in user growth, multiple privacy and safety scandals, as well as the possibility of increased regulation in the future.

    FedEx plunged after saying international shipping, especially in Europe, fell in the latest quarter. FedEx also said the U.S.-China trade dispute is affecting its business. The shipping company posted a smaller profit than analysts expected and said it will cut spending and offer buyouts to some workers to help make up for the shaky results.

    FedEx stock lost 12.2 percent to $162.51. It has dropped 35 percent this year. Rival UPS lost 3 percent to $94.32 and has slumped 21 percent in 2018.

    The Dow fell 1.5 percent to 23,323.66. The S&P 500 skidded 39.20 points, or 1.5 percent, to 2,506.96. It's tumbled 14.5 percent in the last three months, including a loss of 9.2 percent so far in December.

    The Nasdaq composite gave up 147.08 points, or 2.2 percent, to 6,636.83. The Russell 2000 index, which has suffered broader declines than the rest of the market, fell 27.95 points, or 2 percent, to 1,349.23.

    Despite the losses, David Kelly, the chief global strategist for JPMorgan Funds, said the market will ultimately react to the health of the economy. He said the Fed's moves Wednesday made sense and could prolong the already long-lasting growth in the U.S.

    "The Fed behaving in a very prudent, balanced way increases the possibility of a very balanced expansion" continuing, he said.

    Oil prices turned higher after plunging a day earlier on worries about rising supplies and weakening global growth, which could weigh on demand.

    Benchmark U.S. crude climbed 2.1 percent to $47.20 a barrel in New York. It dropped 7 percent Tuesday and closed at a 16-month low, and has fallen almost 40 percent since Oct. 3. Brent crude, used to price international oils, rose 1.7 percent to $57.24 a barrel in London.

    Wholesale gasoline rose 2.7 percent to $1.39 a gallon and heating oil added 2.9 percent to $1.81 a gallon. Natural gas lost 2.9 percent to $3.73 per 1,000 cubic feet.

    Energy company stocks fell again. They're trading at their lowest levels since early 2016.

    The dollar was down for the day and recovered slightly after the Fed's move. The dollar slipped to 112.36 yen from 112.53 yen. The euro rose to $1.1368 from $1.1357 and the British pound dipped to $1.2621 from $1.2639.

    European stocks rose after Italy's government reached an agreement with the European Commission on its budget plans. The Italian FTSE MIB jumped 1.6 percent. Britain's FTSE 100 rose 1 percent while Germany's DAX added 0.2 percent and the CAC 40 in France rose 0.5 percent.

    Japan's Nikkei 225 index fell 0.6 percent and while South Korea's Kospi rose 0.8 percent. Hong Kong's Hang Seng was 0.2 percent higher.

    Gold rose 0.2 percent to $1,256.40 an ounce. Silver added 0.8 percent to $14.82 an ounce. Copper climbed 1.9 percent to $2.72 a pound.
     
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  16. bigdog

    bigdog Retired

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    The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 464 points Thursday, bringing its losses to more than 1,700 points since Friday.

    The benchmark S&P 500 index has slumped 10.6 percent this month and is almost 16 percent below the peak it reached in late September.

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    https://www.usnews.com/news/busines...ks-plunge-after-wall-street-fall-on-rate-hike

    Dow Sinks Another 464 Points as Slowdown Fears Worsen
    Stocks took another dive on Wall Street, adding to the steep losses in recent days as investors remain concerned that economic growth around the world and in the U.S. could slow dramatically over the next few years.

    By MARLEY JAY, AP Markets Writer

    NEW YORK (AP) — It was another miserable day on Wall Street as a series of big December plunges continued, putting stocks on track for their worst month in a decade.

    The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 464 points Thursday, bringing its losses to more than 1,700 points since Friday.

    The benchmark S&P 500 index has slumped 10.6 percent this month and is almost 16 percent below the peak it reached in late September.

    The steady gains of this spring and summer now fell like a distant memory. As we've entered the fall, investors started to worry that global economic growth is cooling off and that the U.S. could slip into a recession in the next few years. The S&P 500 is on track for its first annual loss in a decade.

    The technology stocks that have led the market in recent years are now dragging it down. The technology-heavy Nasdaq composite is now down 19.5 percent from the record high it reached in August.

    The market swoon is coming even as the U.S. economy is on track to expand this year at the fastest pace in 13 years. Markets tend to move, however, on what investors anticipate will happen well into the future, so it's not uncommon for stocks to sink even when the economy is humming along.

    Right now, markets are concerned about the potential for a slowing economy and two threats that could make the situation worse: the ongoing trade dispute between the U.S. and China, which has lasted most of this year, and rising interest rates, which act as a brake on economic growth by making it more expensive for businesses and individuals to borrow money.

    The selling in the last two days came after the Federal Reserve raised interest rates for the fourth time this year and signaled it was likely to continue raising rates next year, although at a slower rate than it previously forecast.

    Scott Wren, senior global equity strategist at Wells Fargo Investment Institute, said investors felt Fed Chairman Jerome Powell came off as unconcerned about the state of the U.S. economy, despite deepening worries on Wall Street that growth could slow even more in 2019 and 2020. Wren said investors want to know that the Fed is keeping a close eye on the situation.

    "He may be a little overconfident," said Wren. "The Fed needs to be paying attention to what's going on."

    Powell also acknowledged that the Fed's decisions are getting trickier because they need to be based on the most up-to-date figures on jobs, inflation, and economic growth. For the last three years the Fed told investors weeks in advance that it was almost certain to increase rates. But things are less certain now, and the market hates uncertainty.

    Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the market's reaction to the Fed was "completely overblown."

    Investors have responded to a weakening outlook for the U.S. economy by selling stocks and buying ultra-safe U.S. government bonds. The bond-buying has the effect of sending long-term bond yields lower, which reduces interest rates on mortgages and other kinds of long-term loans. That's generally good for the economy.

    At the same time, the reduced bond yields can send a negative signal on the economy. Sharp drops in long-term bond yields are often seen as precursors to recessions.

    The S&P 500 index skidded 39.54 points, or 1.6 percent, to 2,467.42. The Dow fell 464.06 points, or 2 percent, to 22,859.60 after sinking as much as 679.

    The Nasdaq fell 108.42 points, or 1.6 percent, to 6,528.41. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies dropped another 23.23 points, or 1.7 percent, to 1,326.

    Smaller company stocks have been crushed during the recent market slump because slower growth in the U.S. will have an outsize effect on their profits. Relative to their size, they also tend to carry more debt than larger companies, which could be a problem in a slower economy with higher interest rates.

    The Russell 2000 is down almost 24 percent from the peak it reached in late August and it's down 13.6 percent for the year to date. The S&P 500, which tracks larger companies, is down 7.7 percent.

    The possibility of a partial shutdown of the federal government also loomed over the market on Thursday, as funding for the government runs out at midnight Friday. In general, shutdowns don't affect the U.S. economy or the market much unless they stretch out for several weeks, which would delay paychecks for federal employees.

    Oil prices continued to retreat. Benchmark U.S. crude fell 4.8 percent to $45.88 a barrel in New York, and it's dropped 40 percent since early October. Brent crude, used to price international oils, slipped 5 percent to $54.35 a barrel in London.

    After early gains, bond prices headed lower. The yield on the two-year Treasury rose to 2.87 percent from 2.65 percent, while the 10-year note rose to 2.80 percent from 2.77 percent.

    The gap between those two yields has shrunk this year. When the 10-year yield falls below the two-year yield, investors call it an "inverted yield curve." That hasn't happened yet, but investors fear it will. Inversions are often taken as a sign a recession is coming, although it's not a perfect signal and when recessions do follow inversions in the yield curve, it can take a year or more.

    "The bond market has been telling us something for about a year, and that is there's not going to be much inflation and there's not going to be a sustained surge in economic growth," said Wren, of Wells Fargo.

    In France, the CAC 40 lost 1.8 percent and Germany's DAX fell 1.4 percent. The British FTSE 100 slipped 0.8 percent. Indexes in Italy, Portugal and Spain took bigger losses.

    Tokyo's Nikkei 225 lost 2.8 percent and Hong Kong's Hang Seng gave up 1 percent. Seoul's Kospi shed 0.9 percent.

    As investors adjusted to the prospect of a weaker economy and lower long-term interest rates, the dollar fell to 111.11 yen from 112.36 yen. The euro rose to $1.1469 from $1.1368.

    The British pound rose to $1.2671 from $1.2621. That sent the price of gold higher, and it gained 0.9 percent to $1,267.9 an ounce. Silver rose 0.3 percent to $14.87 an ounce and copper, which is considered an indicator of economic growth, fell 0.7 percent to $2.70 a pound.

    Other fuel prices also fell. Wholesale gasoline lost 4.6 percent to $1.32 a gallon and heating oil slid 3.1 percent to $1.75 a gallon. Natural gas gave up 3.8 percent to $3.58 per 1,000 cubic feet.
     
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  17. bigdog

    bigdog Retired

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    Another day of big losses Friday left the U.S. market with its worst week in more than seven years. All of the major indexes have lost 16 to 26 percent from their highs this summer and fall. Barring huge gains during the upcoming holiday period, this will be the worst December for stocks since 1931.

    Stocks are now headed for their single worst month since October 2008, when the market was being battered by the global financial crisis.

    The major U.S. indexes fell 7 percent this week and they've sunk more than 12 percent in December.

    Note that the NYSE major indexes are all marginally above the "52-Wk Low" index lows in the main chart below

    upload_2018-12-22_9-14-44.png

    upload_2018-12-22_9-4-27.png

    https://www.usnews.com/news/busines...ocks-sink-for-2nd-day-after-wall-street-slide

    A Decade-Long Rally on Wall Street Looks Like It's Ending
    The nearly 10-year stock market rally looks like it's fading after another day of big losses Friday left the U.S. market with its worst week in more than seven years.

    By MARLEY JAY, AP Markets Writer

    NEW YORK (AP) — After almost 10 years, Wall Street's rally looks like it's ending.

    Another day of big losses Friday left the U.S. market with its worst week in more than seven years. All of the major indexes have lost 16 to 26 percent from their highs this summer and fall. Barring huge gains during the upcoming holiday period, this will be the worst December for stocks since 1931.

    There hasn't been one major shock that has sent stocks plunging. The U.S. economy has been growing since 2009, and most experts think it will keep expanding for now. But it's likely to do so at a slower pace.

    As they look ahead, investors are finding more and more reasons to worry. The U.S. has been locked in a trade dispute with China for nine months. Economies in Europe and China are slowing. And rising interest rates in the U.S. could slow its economy even more.

    Stocks are now headed for their single worst month since October 2008, when the market was being battered by the global financial crisis.

    December is generally the strongest time of the year for U.S. stocks. Traders often talk about a "Santa rally" that adds to the year's gains as people adjust their portfolios in anticipation of the year to come.

    But not this year.

    No sector of the market has been spared. Large multi-national companies join smaller domestic ones in their losses. And huge high-tech companies, once the best-performing stocks on the market, are now leading the way lower.

    Technology's huge popularity during the recent boom years made it even more vulnerable as investors' moods turn sour. Amazon, Facebook, Apple, Netflix, and Google's parent company, Alphabet, have seen their market values fall by hundreds of billions of dollars.

    "If you live by momentum, you die by momentum," said Sam Stovall, chief investment strategist for CFRA.

    The Nasdaq composite, which contains a high concentration of tech stocks, has sunk almost 22 percent from its record high in late August. Several big technology companies, notably Facebook and Twitter, have also suffered as a result of scandals over matters such as data privacy and election meddling, and traders worry that the industry will face greater government regulation that could increase costs and affect their profits.

    The major U.S. indexes fell 7 percent this week and they've sunk more than 12 percent in December.

    Investors around the world have grown increasingly pessimistic about the global economy's prospects over the next few years. It's widely expected to slow down, but traders are concerned the cooling might be worse than they previously believed.

    After a sharp early gain Friday, the S&P 500 index retreated 50.84 points, or 2.1 percent, to 2,416.58. The S&P 500, the benchmark for many index funds, has fallen 17.5 percent from its high in September.

    The Dow Jones Industrial Average sank 414.23 points, or 1.8 percent, to 22,445.37. The Nasdaq skidded 195.41 points, or 3 percent, to 6,332.99. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks lost 33.92 points, or 2.6 percent, 1,292.09.

    European markets rose slightly and Asian markets were mixed.

    The price of oil has also fallen sharply in recent weeks, down 40 percent from the high it reached in October, amid concerns over a glut in the market and the slowing economy.

    On Friday the price of U.S. crude slipped 0.6 percent to $45.59 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, the standard for international oil prices, fell 1 percent to $53.82 a barrel in London.

    In other trading:

    —Wholesale gasoline was little changed at $1.32 a gallon. Heating oil fell 1 percent to $1.73 a gallon. Natural gas jumped 6.5 percent to $3.82 per 1,000 cubic feet.

    —Bond prices were mixed. The yield on the 2-year Treasury note fell to 2.62 percent from 2.65 percent. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note dipped to 2.78 percent from 2.79 percent.

    —Gold lost 0.8 percent to $1,258.10 an ounce and silver fell 1.1 percent to $14.70 an ounce. Copper lost 0.8 percent to $2.67 a pound.

    —The U.S. dollar ticked higher after two days of sharp losses brought on by fears about the economy and slower increases in interest rates. The dollar rose 111.36 yen from 111.11 yen. The euro fell back to $1.1369 from $1.1469 and the British pound slipped to $1.2639 from $1.2671.

    9268
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2018
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  18. bigdog

    bigdog Retired

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    The major indexes on Wall Street fell another 2 percent Monday, making it very possible that the market will end this month as the worst December for stocks since 1931.

    Trading was choppy and volume was light Monday during a shortened trading session ahead of the Christmas holiday Tuesday. U.S. markets are due to reopen for trading on Wednesday.

    The past two trading days, however, have been dominated by something else: major losses immediately following tweets from the president criticizing Fed Chairman Jerome Powell and the central bank, which sets monetary policy for the nation.

    Trump's morning tweet blasting the Fed generated fears about the economy being destabilized by any efforts to undermine Powell or strip him of office.

    Today all major indexes finished at 12 months lows - refer RH side of chart

    upload_2018-12-25_6-45-36.png

    upload_2018-12-25_6-37-48.png

    https://www.usnews.com/news/busines...ump-in-early-trade-ahead-of-christmas-holiday

    Not Very Merry: US Stocks Plunge Before Christmas
    President Donald Trump's attack on the Federal Reserve spooked financial markets on Christmas Eve, raising fears about an uncertain future should the White House try to undermine or remove the head of the U.S. central bank.

    Dec. 24, 2018, at 1:40 p.m.

    By ALEX VEIGA, AP Business Writer

    President Donald Trump's attack on the Federal Reserve spooked financial markets on Christmas Eve, raising fears about an uncertain future should the White House try to undermine or remove the head of the U.S. central bank.

    Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin calls to the top executives at six major banks Sunday in an attempt to stabilize jittery markets had the opposite effect.

    The major indexes on Wall Street fell another 2 percent Monday, making it very possible that the market will end this month as the worst December for stocks since 1931.

    The market has been roiling for most of the month over concerns about a slowing global economy, an escalating trade dispute with China and recent interest rate hike by the Federal Reserve.

    The past two trading days, however, have been dominated by something else: major losses immediately following tweets from the president criticizing Fed Chairman Jerome Powell and the central bank, which sets monetary policy for the nation.

    Trump's morning tweet blasting the Fed generated fears about the economy being destabilized by any efforts to undermine Powell or strip him of office.

    "We've never seen anything like this full-blown and full-frontal assault," said Peter Conti-Brown, a financial historian at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. This is a disaster for the Fed, a disaster for the president and a disaster for the economy."

    Fed board members are nominated by the president, but they've historically made decisions independent of the White House in order to shield decisions about employment and inflation from political maneuvering. Trump has voiced his anger over the Fed's decision to raise its key short-term rate four times this year. Those measures are intended to prevent the economy from overheating at a time of brisk growth and an unemployment rate near a half-century low.

    Trump's latest remarks, which came after administration officials spent the weekend trying to reassure financial markets that Powell's job as Fed chairman is safe, created more uncertainty for already unnerved investors that have seen all of the stock market gains from this year evaporate.

    "Now we're having a correction and we're down for the year, so the narrative people get drawn to is that perhaps (Trump's) more unpredictable policies are bad for the market," said Craig Birk, chief investment officer at Personal Capital. "The separation between the president and the Fed, maybe just causes a little more concern than it would have a few months ago."

    The S&P 500 index slid 65.52 points, or 2.7 percent, to 2,351.10. The Dow Jones Industrial Average sank 653.17 points, or 2.9 percent, to 21,792.20. The Nasdaq skidded 140.08 points, or 2.2 percent, to 6,192.92. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks gave up 25.16 points, or 2 percent, 1,266.92.

    Monday's sell-off extends the market's losses after its worst week I more than seven years. The major indexes are down 16 to 26 percent from their autumn highs.

    Trading was choppy and volume was light Monday during a shortened trading session ahead of the Christmas holiday Tuesday. U.S. markets are due to reopen for trading on Wednesday.

    Technology stocks, health care companies and banks took some of the heaviest losses in the sell-off, which began following news that the Mnuchin called CEOs of six major banks Sunday in an apparent attempt to stabilize jittery markets.

    Mnuchin said the heads of Bank of America, Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase, Morgan Stanley and Wells Fargo all assured him they have ample money to finance their normal operations, even though there haven't been any serious liquidity concerns rattling the market. But the calls added to the underlying worries that have gripped markets of late.

    Bank stocks declined Monday. Wells Fargo slid 1.9 percent to $44.26.

    The market briefly bounced back from the steep opening slide, then veered lower again around midmorning after Trump tweeted his latest volley of criticism at the Fed, which included: "The Fed is like a powerful golfer who can't score because he has no touch - he can't putt!"

    Health care and technology stocks accounted for a big share of the selling Monday. Microsoft fell 2.2 percent to $96.05. Johnson & Johnson lost 4 percent to $122.99.

    Oil prices, which have sunk on concerns about the state of the global economy and also oversupply in the market, continued to slide. Benchmark U.S. crude fell 3.1 percent to $44.18 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, declined 2.6 percent to $52.43 a barrel in London.

    The decline in oil prices weighed on energy stocks. Hess slumped 8.1 percent to $38.11.

    Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.77 percent from 2.79 percent late Friday.

    The dollar fell to 110.50 yen from 111.31 yen on Friday. The euro strengthened to $1.1415 from $1.1370.

    In Christmas holiday-thinned half-day trading in Europe, France's CAC 40 fell 1.5 percent, while the FTSE 100 index of leading British shares slid 0.5 percent. Germany's DAX was closed.

    Major indexes in Asia finished mixed. South Korea's Kospi dropped 0.3 percent, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng lost 0.4 percent on a short trading day. Australia's S&P ASX 200 added 0.5 percent. Markets in Japan and Indonesia, which is reeling from a weekend tsunami that has killed at least 373 people, were closed.
     
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  19. bigdog

    bigdog Retired

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    U.S. markets closed December 25 and reopen Wednesday

    Japanese stocks plunged Tuesday and other Asian markets declined following heavy Wall Street losses triggered by President Donald Trump's criticism of the U.S. central bank.

    The Nikkei 225 fell by an unusually wide margin of 5 percent to 19,155.14. The Shanghai Composite Index ended off 0.9 percent at 2,504.82 after being down as much as 2.3 percent at midday. Benchmarks in Thailand and Taiwan also declined.


    The only markets open in Asia December 25 were

    upload_2018-12-26_8-19-1.png
    upload_2018-12-26_8-19-54.png

    https://www.usnews.com/news/busines...lunge-other-asia-markets-fall-after-us-losses

    Japan Stocks Plunge, Other Asia Markets Fall After US Losses
    Japanese stocks plunge and other Asian markets decline following heavy Wall Street losses triggered by Trump's attack on US central bank.

    By JOE McDONALD, AP Business Writer

    BEIJING (AP) — Japanese stocks plunged Tuesday and other Asian markets declined following heavy Wall Street losses triggered by President Donald Trump's criticism of the U.S. central bank.

    The Nikkei 225 fell by an unusually wide margin of 5 percent to 19,155.14. The Shanghai Composite Index ended off 0.9 percent at 2,504.82 after being down as much as 2.3 percent at midday. Benchmarks in Thailand and Taiwan also declined.

    Markets in Europe, Hong Kong, Australia and South Korea were closed for Christmas.

    Wall Street indexes fell more than 2 percent on Monday after Trump said on Twitter the Federal Reserve was the U.S. economy's "only problem." Efforts by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to calm investor fears only seemed to make matters worse.

    U.S. stocks are track for their worst December since 1931 during the Great Depression.

    Shanghai is down almost 25 percent this year. Tokyo, Hong Kong and other markets are on track to end 2018 down more than 10 percent.

    Markets have been roiled by concerns about a slowing global economy, the U.S.-Chinese tariff battle and another interest rate increase by the Fed.

    Trump's Monday morning tweet heightened fears about the economy being destabilized by a president who wants control over the Fed. Its board members are nominated by the president but make decisions independently of the White House. The board's chairman, Jerome Powell, was nominated by Trump last year.

    "The only problem our economy has is the Fed," the president said on Twitter. "They don't have a feel for the Market, they don't understand necessary Trade Wars or Strong Dollars or even Democrat Shutdowns over Borders. The Fed is like a powerful golfer who can't score because he has no touch — he can't putt!"

    The Standard & Poor's 500 index slid 2.7 percent. The benchmark index is down 19.8 percent from its peak on Sept. 20, close to the 20 percent drop that would officially mean the end of the longest bull market for stocks in modern history — a run of nearly 10 years.

    The Dow Jones Industrial Average sank 2.9 percent while the Nasdaq skidded 2.2 percent.

    On Sunday, Mnuchin made a round of calls to the heads of the six largest U.S. banks, but the move only raised new concerns about the economy.

    Most economists expect U.S. economic growth to slow in 2019, not slide into a full-blown recession. But the president has voiced his anger over the Fed's decision to raise its key short-term rate four times in 2018. That is intended to prevent the economy from overheating.

    Technology stocks, health care companies and banks took some of the heaviest losses in Monday's sell-off. Wells Fargo slid 3.4 percent, Microsoft 4.2 percent and Johnson & Johnson 4.1 percent.

    U.S. markets reopen Wednesday.

    In energy markets, Brent crude, used to price international oils, lost 9 cents to $50.68 per barrel in London. The contract plummeted $3.33 on Monday to close at $50.77.

    In currency trading, the dollar declined to 110.28 yen from Monday's 110.45 yen. The euro was little-changed at $1.1407.
     
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  20. bigdog

    bigdog Retired

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    U.S. stocks rebound after Christmas; Dow closes up more than 1,000 points

    upload_2018-12-27_8-30-14.png

    https://www.chicagotribune.com/business/ct-biz-stock-markets-dec-26-story.html

    U.S. stocks rebound after Christmas; Dow closes up more than 1,000 points

    Alex Veiga Associated Press

    U.S. stocks surged Wednesday, recovering all their losses from a Christmas Eve plunge and giving the market its best single-day percentage gain in 10 years.

    Gains in technology companies, retailers, health care and internet stocks drove the broad rally, which gave the benchmark S&P 500 index some breathing room after it slid Monday to just shy of what Wall Street calls a bear market — a 20 percent fall from an index's peak.

    Energy stocks also rebounded as the price of U.S. crude oil notched its biggest one-day gain in more than two years.

    Trading volume was lighter than usual following the Christmas holiday. Markets in Europe, Hong Kong and Australia were closed.

    "Today simply can only be really chalked up to a reflex rally after having been oversold," said Sam Stovall, chief investment strategist for CFRA. "The real question is do we have follow-through for the rest of this week."

    The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 5 percent or 1,086 points to 22,878. It was the Dow’s biggest one-day point gain ever.

    The benchmark S&P 500 gained 5 percent or 116 points to 2,467. Nasdaq rose 5.8 percent or 361 points to 6,554.

    Wednesday's gains pulled the S&P 500 back somewhat from the brink of a bear market, where it finished after a shortened trading session Monday. That would mark the end to the longest bull market for stocks in modern history after nearly 10 years.

    Stocks fell sharply Monday after President Donald Trump lashed out at the central bank. Administration officials had spent the weekend trying to assure financial markets that Fed chairman Jerome Powell's job was safe. On Tuesday, Trump reiterated his view that the Federal Reserve is raising interest rates too fast, but called the independent agency's rate hikes a "form of safety" for an economy doing well.

    On Wednesday, Kevin Hassett, chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, weighed in, saying Powell is in no danger of being fired, The Wall Street Journal reported.

    "The market is trying to find an equilibrium between earnings, revenue growth and the economy, but when you have an onslaught of headlines that just manifest uncertainty from Washington, it just feeds negative sentiment," said Quincy Krosby, chief market strategist at Prudential Financial.

    The market's sharp downturn since October intensified this month, erasing its 2018 gains and nudging the S&P 500 closer to its worst year since 2008. Despite Wednesday's rally, stocks are on track for their worst December since 1931, during the depths of the Great Depression.

    "This is a market that's heavily oversold, and typically you expect a strong bounce following that," Krosby said. "Oil prices have just moved quite markedly. And retail is having a very strong holiday season."

    The lackluster finish to 2018 comes as most economists expect growth to slow in 2019, though not by enough to slide into a full-blown recession. Many economic barometers still look encouraging. Unemployment is at 3.7 percent, the lowest since 1969. Inflation is tame. Pay growth has picked up. Consumers boosted their spending this holiday season.

    Even so, traders have been jittery this autumn over signs that the global economy is slowing, the escalating U.S. trade dispute with China and another interest rate increase by the Fed. Many investors are growing worried that corporate profits -- which drive stock market gains -- are poised to weaken.

    Some of what Wall Street sees coming out of the White House has added to the market's uncertainty, specifically the president's attacks on the Fed and remarks about the ongoing trade conflict with China.

    The president could help restore some stability to the market if he "gives his thumbs a vacation," Stovall said.

    "Tweet things that are more constructive in terms of working out an agreement with Democrats and with China. And then just remain silent as it relates to the Fed," Stovall said.

    Technology stocks accounted for much of Monday's early bounce. Big retailers were also among the gainers.

    Homebuilders mostly rebounded after an early slide following a report indicating that annual U.S. home price growth slowed in October.

    Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.79 percent from 2.75 percent late Monday.

    The dollar strengthened to 111.36 yen from 110.41 yen on Monday. The euro weakened to $1.1351 from $1.1404.

    Gold edged up 0.1 percent to $1,273 an ounce and silver gained 2 percent to $15.12 an ounce. Copper gained 1.5 percent to $2.70 a pound.

    The partial U.S. government shutdown that started Saturday is unlikely to hurt the economy much, although it may deprive the financial markets of data about international trade and gross domestic product. The Bureau of Economic Analysis said Wednesday that it's required to suspend all operations until Congress approves funding, which means that the government might not release its fourth-quarter report on gross domestic product as scheduled for Jan. 30.
     
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