CANADA STOCKS-TSX gains on banks, energy issues - Reuters UK CANADA STOCKS-TSX gains on banks, energy issues - Reuters UK

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

CANADA STOCKS-TSX gains on banks, energy issues - Reuters UK

CANADA STOCKS-TSX gains on banks, energy issues - Reuters UK

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US STOCKS-Wall St edges up as ISM data offsets euro-zone woes - Reuters UK

Tue Jun 5, 2012 6:21pm BST

* U.S. ISM services index slightly exceeds forecast

* Euro zone's major economies in decline -surveys

* Dow up 0.01 pct, S&P 500 up 0.2 pct, Nasdaq 0.1 pct (Updates to early afternoon)

By Chuck Mikolajczak

NEW YORK, June 5 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks inched higher in choppy trade on Tuesday as investor angst about the euro zone's fiscal crisis was offset by data showing the U.S. economy's services sector grew slightly faster than expected in May.

The pace of growth in the U.S. services sector picked up in May as a gauge of new orders improved, according to an industry report released on Tuesday. The Institute for Supply Management's services index edged up to 53.7 in May from 53.5 in April, a touch above economists' forecast for it to hold steady.

The ISM data let investors breathe a brief sigh of relief from recent economic reports, which coupled with concerns about the euro zone, drove the S&P 500 down more than 6 percent for May.

"Banging around here, flat to down, flat to up - it feels like a little bit of a home run, to be honest," said Mark Lehmann, director of equities at JMP Securities in San Francisco.

"The facts are telling you what we all know. There are a lot of places where there is weakness in our economy and others. With most things financially related, confidence is the game ... and if you can restore confidence, things get better quickly."

Concerns about an escalation of the euro zone's debt crisis kept a weight on the market, however, and served to cap gains.

Spain's Treasury Minister Cristobal Montoro said the nation's high borrowing costs has effectively shut the euro zone's fourth-largest economy out of the bond market and the European Union should help Madrid recapitalize its debt-laden banks.

Statements on the outcome of emergency talks among the Group of Seven industrialized nations as they tackle the euro zone's deepening crisis offered little clarity to investors. The Treasury Department said G7 finance ministers "reviewed developments in the global economy and financial markets and the policy response under consideration."

Japan's finance minister said he told G7 members that Japan is confident in Europe's response to its problems, but indicated Tokyo was prepared to intervene in order to curb its currency.

The Dow Jones industrial average gained 1.44 points, or 0.01 percent, to 12,102.90. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index rose 2.28 points, or 0.18 percent, to 1,280.46. The Nasdaq Composite Index added 2.11 points, or 0.08 percent, to 2,762.12.

In the euro zone, most major economies are now in various states of decline, according to business surveys that suggested even Germany is no longer immune to the crisis.

The S&P financial sector index rose 1.3 percent, leading gains among the 10 major S&P 500 sectors. The financial sector index, however, is down more than 12 percent since the start of May.

Shares of JPMorgan Chase & Co rose 2.7 percent to $32.85, while Bank of America Corp added 2.5 percent to $7.07 and Citigroup advanced 2.9 percent to $25.53.

On the downside, Dollar General Corp shares dropped 2.8 percent to $47.15 after the company said key shareholders plan to sell up to 25 million shares. (Reporting by Chuck Mikolajczak; Editing by Jan Paschal)

Stocks Lean Higher In Light Trade; Pops 3% - Investors Business Daily

Markets Update

Stocks edged up in light trade Tuesday as services data for May topped expectations and Europe's markets improved in late trading.

The Nasdaq led, up 0.5%, despite heavy losses among some Nasdaq 100 stocks. The S&P 500 added 0.4% and the Dow Jones industrial average crept up 0.2%. Volume was lower compared with the same time Monday.

Financials led the Dow, with Bank Of America (BAC) and JPMorgan (JPM) adding 2% apiece. On the Nasdaq 100, Akamai Technologies (AKAM) dropped 8%, Fastenal (FAST) fell 6% and Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (GMCR) toppled 7%.

The Philadelphia semiconductor index jumped to a solid start, on the heels of 3% gains by Rubicon Technology (RBCN) and SanDisk (SNDK).

The service sector of the economy expanded more than expected in May, pushing the Institute of Supply Management's service index to 53.7. That is up from 53.5 in April and better than forecasts for a slip to 53.1.

Among IBD 50 stocks, Titan Machinery (TITN) climbed more than 3%, making its way back toward its 10-week moving average. The online surplus inventory auctioneer has closed below support at the 10-week line in light trade twice since May 16. Group (WWWW) popped 3% in weak trade. The website publishing software maker is in the fifth week of a possible flat base.

Overseas, Europe's markets improved heading into late-afternoon trading, as a conference call of G-7 finance ministers seemed to steady worries over Spain's precarious finances. Spain's budget minister pleaded for support for the country's failing banks, claiming rising risk premiums had effectively blocked the country from access to capital markets. The CAC-40 in Paris climbed 1.2%. Frankfurt's DAX narrowed its earlier losses and was down 0.4%. The London Stock Exchange was closed for a holiday.

See Also
  • Stocks Notch Respectable Gains, But Trade Declines
  • Fastenal Dives On May Sales Miss; W.W. Grainger Follows
  • Nationstar Buys BofA Portfolio
  • Netflix taking tech in-house
  • Fastenal down on weak May
More Markets Update Articles:
  • Stocks Tack On Gains, But Volume Unimpressive
  • Stocks Move Up But Volume Lags
  • Stocks Move Higher In Late Trading; SanDisk Adds 5%
  • Stocks Cling To Gains In Afternoon; Fastenal Plunges
  • Stocks Up At Midday On Strong Services Data; Titan Jumps

Dow up 26 points as financial, energy stocks gain - MSN Money
Charley BlaineUpdated: 9:40 p.m. ET

Stocks finished higher today, with the Dow Jones industrials ($INDU) breaking a four-day losing streak, as investors shrugged off worries about the European debt crisis and cheered a better-than-expected report on the services economy.

The rally was fueled by gains for financial and energy stocks, which were the weakest sectors of the market in May and in the past week. The Nasdaq Composite Index ($COMPX) and the Standard & Poor's 500 Index ($COMPX) enjoyed their first two-day winning streaks in a bit more than a month.

JPMorgan Chase (JPM) and Bank of America (BAC) were the top and third-best performers among the 30 Dow stocks. Citigroup (C), investment bank Morgan Stanley (MS), futures exchange operator Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) and insurance-giant American International Group (AIG) were among the top 14 S&P 500 performers. Oil-and-gas driller Noble Industries (RDC) was 13th-best in the S&P 500. Homebuilders were stronger, but Facebook (FB) fell below $26 for the first time, finishing down $1.03 to at $25.87 after an early rally fizzled.

Finance ministers from the G-7 nations held a conference call on what to do about crises in Greece and Spain, pledging to coordinate their efforts. Spain's IBEX 35 Index ($ES:IB) gained 28 points to 6,268 on the day even as Spain's budget minister said the government has effectively lost access to capital markets because of steep risk premiums demanded by bond investors.
The Dow closed up 26 points to 12,128. The S&P 500 added 7 points to 1,286, and the Nasdaq finished up 18 points to 2,778. The Nasdaq was up for the second day in a row for the first time since May 1-2. The S&P 500 enjoyed its first two-day gain since April 26-27.

Article continues below.

The Nasdaq-100  Index ($NDX), meanwhile, was up 9 points to 2,488. The Nasdaq-100 is normally heavily influenced by Apple (AAPL). But Apple was off $1.46 to $562.83. The real strength in the index today came from gains in Oracle (ORCL), Qualcomm (QCOM) and  Intel (INTC).

With today's close, the Dow was still 1.1% below its simple 200-day moving average. But the S&P 500 was just about at its 200-day average, with the Nasdaq trading 0.6% above the average. The moving average is an important barometer of investor confidence.

What's not clear is if the market is bottoming or waiting for the June 17 election in Greece, which may determine if the nation remains a eurozone country. If Greece leaves the eurozone, stocks could really slump. Standard & Poor's suggested Monday the odds could be 1 in 3.

Futures trading suggests stocks will open higher on Wednesday.

Is the Fed planning to stimulate?
Wednesday's market may be moved by the European Central Bank's interest-rate discussion, due before the market open; a Commerce Department report on productivity and wage growth; and the Federal Reserve's Beige Book report, due at 2 p.m. ET.

The Beige Book report, a narrative description of the economy as of late May, is the first of two important Fed events this week. The second is Chairman Ben Bernanke's testimony to Congress' Joint Economic Committee on Thursday.

Investors will study the Beige Book for signs of stress. And they will listen keenly to any Bernanke hints on Thursday that the Fed may engage in a new move to boost the economy.

Apparently, Fed officials are at least thinking about more stimulus, The Wall Street Journal reported late today. That's in contrast to April when they clearly signaled they was in no mood to do anything unless the economy shows serious signs of deterioration. While a number of Fed officials believe more aid is needed, other members of the Federal Open Market Committee, the Fed's interest-rate-making body, have been openly hostile to any new stimulus.

The Fed has cut interest rates nearly to zero, and it has been buying long-term Treasury securities and reinvesting maturing securities to ensure the economy has enough cash to fund expansion. The results have boosted profits, but the economy has been slow to respond.

The question now is whether a series of disappointing economic reports over the past few weeks -- especially Friday's jobs report that only 69,000 new jobs were created in May -- are evidence enough that the economy needs help now.

As important important would be the tools the Fed might employ. The Journal report was exceedingly vague on this point, leaving one to believe that FOMC officials are only beginning to think through the problem.

Homebuilder Hovnanian Enterprises (HOV) and resort operator Vail Resorts (VAIL) report quarterly results on Wednesday.

An OK report on ISM Non-Manufacturing Index
The one decent piece of U.S. economic news was the Institute for Supply Management's Non-Manufacturing Index, which rose slightly to 53.7. A reading above 50 is a signal of an expanding economy.

As welcome as the gain was, the underlying pieces of it were mixed, said economist Paul Edelstein of IHS Global Insight.

Business activity and new orders gained. But supplier deliveries sped up, and employment softened. Prices paid for raw materials fell slightly.

"The employment index is consistent with monthly gains in private-services payrolls of around 100,000, which is about what we got in May," wrote Paul Ashworth, chief U.S. economist with Capital Economics, a British economic consulting firm. "Overall, small comfort, but it is clear that the U.S. economy is far from immune to the global slowdown."

Crude oil and gold move higher
Crude oil (-CL) was up 34 cents to $84.32 a barrel. Brent crude was flat at $98.84.

Gold (-GC) settled up $3 to $1,616.90 an ounce. Silver (-SI) settled with a gain of 39.8 cents to $28.405 an ounce. Copper (-HG) slipped 1.8 cents to $3.289 a pound.

Interest rates were higher, with the 10-year Treasury yield rising to 1.556% from 1.527% on Monday. The dollar was higher against the euro and other currencies.

Homebuilders rise on ISM report
Even if it was small comfort to economists, the ISM report did help boost homebuilding stocks. Lennar (LEN) and PulteGroup (PHM) were the top two performers among S&P 500 stocks. Lennar had fallen 19% between May 16 and Monday.

Starbucks (SBUX) fell $1.49 to $52.41 a day after announcing ambitious plans to buy a small California bakery chain and remake its food offerings to compete more effectively with other companies that offer stronger food menus, such as Panera Bread (PNRA).

Panera was up 47 cents to $140.69 after falling to as low as $136.97.

Dollar General (DG) fell $1.73 to $46.76 after announcing late Monday that top executives and investors would sell some of their stock.

Netflix move on content delivery hits Limelight and Akamai

Shares of content delivery companies Limelight Networks (LLNW) and Akamai Technologies (AKAM) both tumbled early in the session after Netflix (NFLX) said it is shifting more video streaming traffic to its own content delivery network.

Limelight ended at $2.36, down 34 cents. Akamai finished down 92 cents to $27.44. The companies build networks and software that compresses video files for massive streaming over the Internet.

Netflix was down 17 cents to $64.83.

A nice day for bulls
Seventeen of the 30 Dow stocks were higher. While JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America were the leaders, followed by Hewlett-Packard (HPQ), the laggards were United Technologies (UTX) and Wal-Mart Stores (WMT).

About 390 S&P 500 stocks were higher. Chipmaker SanDisk (SNDK) was the index's third-best performer after Lennar and Pulte Group. The laggards were tool-and-fastener dealer Fastenal (FAST) and industrial-supplies distributor W.W. Grainger (GWW).

Meanwhile, 67 Nasdaq-100 stocks were higher, led by SanDisk, NetApp (NTAP) and Micron Technology (MU). The laggards were Fastenal and Akamai.

Short hits from the markets -- New York close



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