Morning Notes

04/06/2018 - Argonaut Morning Note

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose more than 200 points Friday to recoup most of its losses for the week following an upbeat unemployment report that showed a modest gain in wages. Investors got a dose of good news about the U.S. economy after the Labor Department released its May unemployment report, which showed a healthy gain in jobs that pushed the unemployment rate to 3.8%, the lowest since April 2000, and a modest gain in wages. The robust jobs report helped steady a stock market that had been struggling this week with concerns about escalating trade tensions and eurozone stability, which eased after Italy struck a deal on a coalition government. The Dow industrials added 219 points, or 0.9%, to 24635. The S&P 500 rose 29 points, or 1.1%, to 2735, while the Nasdaq Composite added 112, or 1.5%, to 7554. Buoyed by the jobs report, investors bought shares of technology companies, a popular trade that contributed to much of the nine-year stock rally's gains. Tech stocks in the S&P 500 rose nearly 2% on Friday, with Facebook adding $2.21, or 1.2%, to $193.99 – its highest close ever. Still, Friday's gains weren't enough to lift the Dow industrials out from the heavy selling it suffered earlier in the week, when political drama in Italy and the Trump administration's push to enact tariffs on key allies sent the Dow down triple digits during two of the four trading sessions. The blue-chip index of 30 stocks fell 0.5% this week, while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq rose 0.5% and 1.6%, respectively. The US Gold price declined 0.4% to 1,293.10 US$/oz.

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01/06/2018

The Dow Jones Industrial Average slid nearly 300 points intraday after the Trump administration made good on its plan to impose tariffs on steel and aluminium imports.   Investors broadly sold off shares of big manufacturers and globe-spanning corporations over concerns that trade tariffs imposed on steel and aluminium products from Canada, Mexico and the European Union will ignite a trade war that could hurt corporate profits, push up inflation faster than expected and possibly disrupt the synchronized global growth upswing that fuelled much of the market's historic climb last year. The Dow industrials slid 252 points, or 1%, to 24,416 in recent trading. The S&P 500, which was also weighed down by weak earnings from discount retailers Dollar General and Dollar Tree, shed 0.8%. The Nasdaq Composite fell 0.3%, as shares of tech companies fared better than peers. The US Gold price declined 0.2% to 1,297.90US$/oz.

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31/05/2018 Argonaut Morning Note

U.S. stocks recovered most of their Tuesday losses as investors considered whether the prior day's selloff driven by Italy's unfolding political drama might have been overdone. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 1.3%, while the S&P 500 also climbed 1.3%. Both indexes had their worst day in more than a month Tuesday and closed at their lowest level in three weeks. The Nasdaq Composite added 1%. U.S. bank stocks, which were among the hardest hit Tuesday amid worries that debt-heavy governments like Italy's could weigh on the banking sector, bounced back Wednesday. The S&P 500 financial sector rose 2.1%. Investors were weighing news that planned talks on trade between the U.S. and Chinese governments could be derailed by the U.S. decision to move forward with tariffs on $50 billion in imports. HP raised its profit forecast for the year as the maker of personal computers and printers topped expectations in the most recent quarter. Shares added 3.8%. Cloud software firm Salesforce rose 2.4% after reporting record quarterly revenue. Stocks also got a boost from a rebound in oil prices, with S&P 500 energy firms climbing 3.3% as U.S. crude was on track to end a five-session losing streak. The US gold price gained 0.2% to record 1300.90 US$/oz.

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30/05/2018 Argonaut Morning Notes

 

The Dow Jones tumbled 392 points as investors worried whether political turmoil in Italy could unravel a fragile European economy and cause global growth to sputter. The blue-chip index fell 424 points, or 1.7%, to 24329, as 29 out of 30 components traded lower. The S&P 500 declined 1.2% and the Nasdaq Composite slipped 0.9%. The indexes were trading at their lowest levels in about three weeks as investors sought the safety of the U.S. dollar and Treasuries, both of which rallied sharply. The US Gold price gained only 0.1% to record 1298.40 US$/oz.

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29/05/2018

US markets were closed overnight in observance of the Memorial Day public holiday. A political crisis in Italy put markets on edge Monday, with Italian stocks selling off sharply, renewing fears among investors in one of Europe's largest economies. Italy's benchmark stock index, the FTSE MIB, on Monday closed down 2.1% after losing as much as 2.3% in mid-afternoon trading, helping to drag down European stocks broadly. The Stoxx Europe 600 closed down 0.3% after losing as much as 0.7% during the day.  Italian banks were especially hard hit. Banco BPM SpA was among the biggest losers on the Stoxx 600 Europe on Monday, having lost at least 6.3%. Plunging prices set off circuit breakers that halted trading briefly for banks BPM, BPER SpA, Unione di Banche Italiane SpA, FinecoBank Intesa Sanpaolo SpA, Banche Generali SpA, along with Italy's largest bank, UniCredit SpA. The suspensions were automatic and based on price fluctuations, the Italian Stock Exchange said. Italy was embroiled Monday in what some are calling a constitutional crisis after President Sergio Mattarella vetoed the appointment of a euroskeptic economy minister, recommended by a coalition of the populist 5 Star Movement and the League.

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