February 19th, 2015
Daily Market Commentary
- Initial jobless claims in the U.S. were reported at 283K, below estimates of 293K.
- Continuing Jobless Claims in the U.S. were 2.425M, above estimates of 2.374M.
- EIA Natural Gas storage changes were reported at -111B, a larger move to the downside than expected.
- Consumer Confidence in the Eurozone was reported at -6.7, slightly above estimates of -7.55.
- Oil declined to a one-week low in New York on estimates that U.S. crude inventories increased from a record level.
- Gold futures rose the most this month after minutes from the Federal Reserve’s January meeting showed policy makers argued for keeping interest rates near record lows for longer. Silver advanced.
- Barrick Gold Corp. slashed jobs and hung the for sale sign on some of its Asia-Pacific assets, as the Canadian company vowed to reduce its debt by at least $3-billion (U.S.) this year. The miner also took a $2.8-billion impairment charge on its mines, most of which stemmed from its troubled Lumwana copper mine in Zambia. (Globe)
- Quebec’s economy minister said the province stands ready to provide financial assistance to Montreal plane and train maker Bombardier Inc. if its balance sheet deteriorates. (Globe)
- Western Forest Products said its Q4 profit fell to $0.03 a share from $0.13. Revenue was also lower, which the forest-products company attributed to lower log sales volumes and weaker log export pricing.
- U.S. stock-index futures were little changed as investors awaited earnings reports.
- Duke Energy reported sharply lower profit in its fourth quarter as its international energy business was weighed by widespread drought in Brazil, while the energy company also gave a muted outlook for 2015.
- Actavis raised its profit guidance for 2015, while acquisitions again helped drive revenue growth, as the company awaits the close of its deal to buy Botox maker Allergan.
- Campbell Soup plans a restructuring effort aimed at saving at least $200 million, or 2-3% of annual sales, over three years. The money will go toward boosting margins and spending on growth efforts.
- European stocks were little changed near a seven-year high, as an advance in Greek equities offset a decline in energy shares.
- BAE Systems Plc said full-year profit fell 12 percent as military spending in western states stuttered, sending sales lower, and Europe’s largest defence company reorganized its shrinking U.S. armoured vehicle and naval units.
- Nestle SA forecast 2015 sales growth near the low end of its long-term target after reporting the slowest annual sales growth in five years, hit by stagnant revenue in China.
- The European Central Bank’s profits fell by almost a third in 2014 as interest rates declined, bond holdings matured and creating a new regulatory unit boosted costs.
- Japan stocks rose, pushing the Nikkei 225 Stock Average to the highest close since May 2000, as the biggest banks jumped and Trend Micro Inc. and Sony Corp. gained.
- Japan’s auto workers are asking their employers for a bigger share of their projected 4 trillion yen ($33.6 billion) in annual profit in the form of a raise for the next fiscal year.
- Samsung Electronics Co. is acquiring LoopPay Inc. to gain a bigger toehold in mobile payments, a market that’s already luring its main rival Apple Inc.
*All information is taken from Bloomberg, unless otherwise noted.