Stocks Rally, See Their Best Week Of The Year - WITN Stocks Rally, See Their Best Week Of The Year - WITN

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Stocks Rally, See Their Best Week Of The Year - WITN

Stocks Rally, See Their Best Week Of The Year - WITN

Stocks closed out their best week of the year with a modest rally led by defensive shares Friday as investors traded cautiously ahead of the weekend, when Spain is expected to request aid for its troubled banks.

The Dow Jones industrial average finished the day with a gain of 93 points.

For the week, the Dow rose 3.6 percent, the Nasdaq composite climbed 4 percent and the S&P 500 gained 3.7 percent to chalk up its best weekly gain of 2012.

Much of the market’s rise this week came from a big rally on Wednesday, when stocks scored their strongest day of the year on amid signs that Europe would move to help Spain's troubled banks.

"What's driving the market here is the belief we're in the final innings of approaching some form of a solution to contain the Spanish problem," said Robbert Van Batenburg, head of equity research at Louis Capital in New York. "I don't buy it, but maybe there's this understanding out there."

Analysts said the market was ripe for a rebound after a drop of more than 6 percent in May.

"Here is a real classic case of the market doing the opposite of what most people think," said Terry Morris, senior equity manager for National Penn Investors Trust Co.

"The market is telling you that it was still oversold, but they don't want to play the high (volatility) names just in case something happens over the weekend."

European Union and German sources said eurozone finance ministers were to hold a conference call Saturday. Spain's expected request was an effort to stem the tide of worsening market turmoil.

Underscoring the impact of Europe's debt crisis, McDonald's reported a lower-than-expected rise in global same-store sales in May and warned austerity measures in Europe were taking a toll.

President Barack Obama said European leaders face an "urgent need to act" to resolve the region's financial crisis as the threat of a renewed recession there spells dangers for an anemic U.S. recovery.

Chesapeake Energy plans to sell its pipeline and related assets to Global Infrastructure Partners in three separate transactions worth more than $4 billion, as the company scrambles to plug an estimated $10 billion funding shortfall.

Chesapeake shareholders delivered a broad rebuke of the company's board, withholding support for two members up for re-election in the wake of a governance crisis and poor financial performance.

Emerging Stocks Pare First Weekly Advance Since March - Bloomberg

Emerging-market stocks fell, paring the first weekly gain since March, on concerns China’s interest- rate cut will erode bank profits and as economic data from Germany and Italy disappointed.

The MSCI Emerging Markets Index slid 0.9 percent to 905.17 at the close in New York, decreasing its weekly advance to 1.3 percent. HTC Corp. (2498), Asia’s second biggest smartphone maker, tumbled 6.9 percent, extending its weekly retreat to 15 percent in Taipei. China Construction Bank Corp. (939) slid 4 percent, the most since Nov. 10. Brazil’s Bovespa added 1.9 percent, snapping its longest weekly losing streak since 2004.

China’s cut in funding costs comes a day before the nation is due to report inflation, investment and output figures. Spain’s credit ranking was cut three levels by Fitch Ratings to BBB, within two steps of non-investment grade. German exports dropped in April for the first time this year and industrial output in Italy fell more than economists estimated, reports showed today.

“Speculation that bank competition in China may accelerate and that the nation’s economic data may be worse than expected are hurting sentiment today,” said Chu Moon Sung, a Seoul-based fund manager at Shinhan BNP Paribas Asset Management Co., which oversees $28 billion.

The MSCI Emerging Markets Index (MXEF) trades at 9.8 times estimated earnings, cheaper than the 11.8 multiple for shares on the MSCI World Index, which rallied 3.1 percent in the past five days. That’s the biggest weekly advance in 2012.

Trade Deficit

The trade deficit in the U.S. shrank 4.9 percent to $50.1 billion from $52.6 billion in March as a drop in imports overshadowed the first decline in exports in five months, Commerce Department figures showed today. The median forecast in a Bloomberg News survey of 73 economists called for the deficit to shrink to $49.5 billion.

The Bovespa added 0.5 percent in Brazil, extending its five-day advance to 1.9 percent. Gafisa SA, a Brazilian homebuilder, surged 16 percent today after saying earlier this week it will buy the remaining stake in Alphaville Urbanismo SA that it doesn’t already own.

Usinas Siderurgicas de Minas Gerais SA, Brazil’s second- largest steelmaker, dropped 8 percent in Sao Paulo this week to lead declines on the index.

Russia’s Micex Index (INDEXCF) fell 0.3 percent in Moscow, paring its weekly advance to 2.7 percent. OAO Raspadskaya, the coal producer based in Russia’s Kemerovo region, slid 4.4 percent, lessening its five-day advance to 4.4 percent.

The financial and economic links between central and eastern European countries and the EU mean “they are all vulnerable to the euro-area stress,” Societe Generale SA wrote in a report to clients dated yesterday.

Chinese Banks

China’s biggest lenders raised deposit rates hours after the country’s central bank lowered its benchmark and gave them more freedom over pricing, underscoring the competition for funds. Bank profits may drop by more than 10 percent after the interest-rate reduction, according to Hao Hong, chief China strategist at BoCom.

Industrial & Commercial Bank of China declined 4.9 percent in Hong Kong, while China Construction Bank Corp. retreated 4 percent. The losses were the most since Nov. 10.

The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index lost 1.3 percent to an almost eight-month low and Taiwan’s Taiex Index (TWSE) fell 1.1 percent. HTC Corp. sank after Bank of America cut the smartphone maker’s rating.

South Korea’s Kospi index dropped 0.7 percent, while South Africa’s FTSE/JSE Africa All-Share Index slumped 0.7 percent as BHP Billiton Plc, the world’s biggest resources company, decreased 2.7 percent in Johannesburg. Turkey’s ISE National 100 Index slid 1.1 percent.

The extra yield investors demand to own emerging-market debt over U.S. Treasuries fell 1 basis points, or 0.01 percentage point, to 396, according to JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s EMBI Global Index.

To contact the reporters on this story: Christine Harvey in New York at; Saeromi Shin in Seoul at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Darren Boey at

US Stocks Rise after China Rate Cut - MENAFN

Conexus Financial Elevates Event Management Efficiency and Volume with Floktu - new Cloud Based Event Management Software - YAHOO!

A case study on how Conexus Financial, a fast growing professional services firm specializing in publishing and events for high-end financial services, adopted a new on-line cloud based events management platform and in doing so doubled its productivity and enabled expansion into global markets incl. the US and China.

Sydney, Australia (PRWEB) June 09, 2012

Conexus Financial is a specialized, independently owned, Australian publishing and events company based in Sydney. Their high profile, discerning clientele includes recognized leaders in the financial services and institutional banking arenas. With value-added products spanning both the institutional and retail financial services sectors, Conexus Financial is able to support businesses domestically in Australia and around the globe.

Conexus has grown rapidly during the past several years as a result of its client-centric philosophy, now touting its status as one of the world’s best practice events management organizations. The company’s extensive editorial contacts and industry expertise coupled with its comprehensive events management capability make it unique among its competition. As such, Conexus remains in high-demand, with events staged and publications read globally. Its publications include the Investment Magazine, I&T News, the Professional Planner, and the preeminent Top 1000 Funds web portal.

The Business Position:

In 2010, senior management at Conexus Financial, directed primarily by Ms. Rayma Creswell, determined that the company would need to pinpoint strategies for dramatically improving events management efficiencies so that it could expand its Australian and global business. Specifically, the company needed to boost the quantity of events it could comfortably manage while still accommodating a growing client list. All of this had to be accomplished without losing its hard earned reputation for delivering superior quality and attention-to-detail, as this helped to ensure high ratings from delegates and differentiated its work from its competitors.

“While looking to boost efficiencies, we’re not interested in high-volume, low-quality events,” explained Ms. Creswell. “The quality of the overall experience for our delegates remains paramount – from marketing to registration, scheduling, feedback, social events, and post-event-management reporting.”

Ms. Creswell and her team knew that raising productivity would require a shift from the old world of managing events manually offline, which employed excel spreadsheets and basic documents offering minimal real-time interaction, to one based on a sophisticated, automated, and advanced cloud-based platform.

The Internet was clearly the future. But the key challenge was in finding a way to integrate Internet or online technologies into the Conexus Financial events management culture – a far from straightforward prospect.

The Technical Position:

As an events management and media company, Conexus Financial lacked a large in-house technical team. The company knew technology would play an increasingly important role in its ability to deliver on its brand promise to clients.

Conexus Financial decided to evolve its technology structure from one founded in-house using license-based software to one that no longer required servers on its premises nor the associated maintenance and labour costs.

During the company’s assessment of its event management technology platform, senior managers identified a clear potential for significant productivity improvements by evolving from its old-world system to an online, real-time event management platform based in the cloud.

To accomplish this, Conexus Financial made the strategic decision to migrate its event management technology platform onto a primarily cloud-based Software as a Service (SaaS) model. The company initially contracted with a developer that had built its reputation as a market leader. However, it quickly became apparent that the nature of the offering from that vendor would not suit the needs of Conexus Financial. Specifically, the company did not provide the level of attention to detail Conexus expected, lacked customization support beyond registration, and was not based in Australia, limiting its ability to provide the support required for high-quality events.

The Solution:

Despite their disappointment in their first vendor choice, Conexus still believed that a cloud-based SaaS model – executed properly – would help the company reach its goals. So the company researched a number of alternative solutions providers, soon coming across Floktu, an Australian based high-end provider of state-of-the-art events management solutions.

Impressed, Conexus Financial approached Floktu in 2010.

Floktu’s out-of-the-box event management solution provides a robust content management system and administration function to help organizers intuitively build functional, custom-branded and professionally designed websites complete with real-time online updates, web-based ticketing and registration forms, automated RSVP emails, real-time schedules, speaker profiles, event locations and maps, and a range of relevant news, photos, and videos.

The Floktu system also includes mobile applications. Mobile applications assist organisers in promoting their event website and communicating with delegates across all digital channels. Each website feature is easily and intuitively administered under one secure login, driving productivity enhancements and cost reductions.

Floktu worked closely with key stakeholders at Conexus to identify a nexus between its out-of-the-box event management software suite and Conexus Financial’s unique business needs. The Floktu development team then designed a customized software edition to align with Conexus’ workflow complete with a wizard-driven events management and marketing platform to streamline the creation of multiple events.

The Results:

According to Conexus Financial, this platform continues to exceed their expectations, with functionality that includes:

  • Self-service, online event ticketing and registration.

  • Multiple event marketing and promotion via web, email, and social digital channels.
  • Intuitive content management for real-time updates.
  • Comprehensive on-the-fly reporting and analytics.
  • Custom event styling and branding.

Conexus Financial noticed immediate results after implementing the Floktu event management platform. Ms. Creswell now considers Floktu not only a software vendor but instead an essential strategic business partner. Because the platform is so easy to use, Conexus administrators avoid time-consuming training and the associated downtime. Floktu is fun to use and highly efficient, freeing employees to focus on more important customer and logistical responsibilities.

The Floktu platform has enabled Conexus Financial to:

  • Double its productivity and acquire more events across a larger spectrum of geographies including organizations in China and the United States.
  • Dramatically reduce the labour and software cost of events management.
  • Propel its competitive stance by generating highly accurate, real-time analytics on delegate event satisfaction.
  • Notably enrich the delegate experience and client loyalty by better managing off-site social engagements.

The Floktu platform enables Conexus Financial to provide its delegates with an unprecedented level of information before, during, and after attended events. This is particularly crucial for fostering client loyalty, explained Ms. Creswell, with Conexus Financial now able to offer delegates up-to-date changes regarding speaking times, speaker streams, exhibits, recommended restaurants, sightseeing, and other on- and off-site activities.

Going forward, Conexus Financial aims to evaluate incorporation of an even greater range of benefits for its clientele, with the newfound confidence that it can do so with the support of one of the most innovative events management software providers on the market.

About Floktu:

Floktu is an advanced, cloud-based event management solution that is provided as a full-featured, out-of-the-box platform. The Floktu development team is also available to consult with companies and design a custom adaptation to suit their precise needs. While other basic products exist that address different web-based event management functions, Floktu is the first event management software platform to bring web, mobile and marketing an event under one unified platform without requiring any technical or programming experience. Floktu makes the end-to-end process more transparent, more efficient, and far more enjoyable than ever possible before.

Nick Deverell - Sales Director
+ 61 2 9919 6968
Email Information

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