Entries in Wall Street (242)


Dow Surges to End Wild Week on Wall Street

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Wall Street finished out a wild week with a major rally, as the Dow surged 207 points to end the week at 15,248.

Friday was the second best day of the year for the Dow Jones Industrial Average.  

All the major averages closed the day around session highs and for the week all posted gains.

The main reason for Friday’s surge is that goldilocks jobs report -- not too hot or too cold. It was a just right number that analysts say will keep the Federal Reserve from pulling back on its bond buying stimulus program. Veteran market watchers now believe the Fed will keep pumping money into the economy through at least the end of the summer before beginning to taper.

All in all, it was a good week on Wall Street. While the Tuesday streak did come to an end, the week ended with a big Friday rally.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Stocks Drift Lower

Hemera/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- It may be time for Wall Street to take a pause, with the major market indexes recently nearing record highs.

The Dow fell 22 points to close at 13,971.24 Monday. The S&P lost one point, led by a decline in its energy sector. The index closed at 1,517.01. The Nasdaq was off about two points, closing at 3,192.

Crude oil futures closed up 1.4 percent at just over $97 dollars a barrel, while gold closed down nearly $18 at $1,648.20 an ounce.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Ahead of East Coast Blizzard, Stocks Close with Gains

Hemera/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Stocks got a boost to end the week from stronger than expected earnings reports, despite concerns about the impending blizzard on the east coast.
The Dow closed up 49 points, or 0.35 percent, at 13,992.97.  Earlier Friday, the index climbed above 14,000 for the first time since Tuesday. The Nasdaq added 29 points to close at 3,193.87, a 12-year high. The S&P gained nine points and called it a day at a 5 year high of 1,517.93.

The U.S. trade deficit narrowed sharply in December, falling 21 percent because oil imports plummeted and total exports rose.
Coinstar could use a little more change the company's 1st quarter earnings fell short of expectations.
Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Cat Beats Stock Pros in Investment Experiment

Comstock/Thinkstock(LONDON) -- It's long been sniped that investing in the stock market all but amounts to a high-profile crap shoot, and an experiment recently conducted by the U.K.'s Guardian seems to bear that out.

The newspaper started 2012 by giving around $8,000 each to a team of investment experts, a group of business students, and a cat, to see who'd best beat Wall Street.

While the experts used their knowledge to make informed decisions, the students resorted to best guesses, and Orlando the cat's picks were made even more randomly -- by the feline flinging a toy onto various company names.

At the end of the first quarter, the pros scored a profit of £497 -- or around $800, compared to the cat's $600.  At that point, the investors were allowed to change their strategies if they wanted.  The students and the cat partook, but the experts let it ride.

However, at the end of the year, the experts only managed a profit of around $280, while Orlando the cat sat pretty with a profit exceeding $870. The kids, meanwhile, had a loss of $250 for the year, though their final quarter profit bested the others.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Investors See Silver Lining in Budget Deal

Spencer Platt/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- The major stock indexes surged on Wednesday after Congress agreed to a budget deal late Tuesday night, bringing an end -- for now -- to the frenzy over the nation's fiscal cliff.

"I think it symbolizes that the deal is better than feared," said David Bianco, a U.S. equity strategist for Deutsche Bank.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average increased 243 points, or 1.9 percent, to 13,347 at about 10:45 a.m. ET, while the S&P 500 rose 27 points, or 1.9 percent, to 1,453.  The tech-heavy NASDAQ composite was up more than 2.4 percent to 3,092.

Investors appeared to respond mostly positively after the House of Representatives approved by 257 to 167 a bipartisan Senate deal to preserve Bush-era tax cuts for all Americans making less than $400,000 a year while increasing taxes for those wealthier.

Taxpayers earning more than $2.7 million will pay an average of $443,910 more this year, Bloomberg News reported.

But the part of the deal that fueled investor sentiment the most on Wednesday was that the dividend tax rate increased to 23.8 percent.  Though the dividend tax rate was increased from the previous 15 percent, the rate is still lower than the 43.4 percent some had expected, Bianco said.

"We are pleasantly surprised with that outcome," he said.

In response, Bianco said Deutsche Bank raised its forecast of the S&P 500 index to 1,575 from 1,500.

"In a low interest rate environment, the dividend yield and expectations of strong dividend growth should bring investors back to the equity market," Bianco said.

Some tax credits, such as the R&D credit, will be extended through this year.

Despite the surge in the markets, the bill does not address the country's long-term debt problems or the looming budget cuts agreed to as part of a temporary deal on the debt ceiling last year.  The "sequester" budget cuts scheduled to go into effect with the New Year -- a $1.2 trillion hit to defense and domestic programs -- were postponed for two months.

Republican leaders vowed to continue to press for additional spending cuts.

"Now the focus turns to spending," said House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, in a statement after the vote.  "The American people re-elected a Republican majority in the House, and we will use it in 2013 to hold the president accountable for the 'balanced' approach he promised, meaning significant spending cuts and reforms to the entitlement programs that are driving our country deeper and deeper into debt."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Markets Surge After Fiscal Cliff Deal

Hemera/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Wall Street is poised to get a big bounce on Wednesday after the House passed the Senate’s fiscal cliff agreement.

U.S. stock futures shot up after the drama finally ended late Tuesday.  Economists had warned hundreds of billions of dollars in automatic tax hikes and spending cuts could have triggered a U.S. recession this year.

Overseas, several leading European averages are up 2 percent on Wednesday as a result of the news.  Australian and Hong Kong stock indexes closed overnight at their highest levels since June 2011.

The vote brings tax increases on high earners for the first time in 20 years.  Single taxpayers earning more than $400,000 and couples over $450,000 will see their top marginal tax rate go up.  The wealthiest Americans will also pay more on capital gains and dividends.

The fiscal cliff deal stops income tax hikes for more than 98 percent of taxpayers.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Wall Street Closes Early with Stocks Down

Hemera/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- It was an abbreviated trading day on Wall Street on Monday. Investors are getting concerned whether lawmakers will reach a budget deal that will prevent the economy from going over the fiscal cliff.  

In a shortened holiday trading session the Dow fell 52 points, it's biggest drop this month.  The S&P gave up 3, and the Nasdaq lost 8.   

Congress is expected back on Thursday, but that only leaves four days to reach a deal.

Also, there was another drop in Herbalife stock.  The stock has tumbled 43 percent this month since a hedgefund founder claimed the nutritional supplements company is a pyramid scheme.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Will Fiscal Cliff Worries Cause Major Wall Street Sell Off?

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Fiscal cliff fears may lead to a major sell off Friday on Wall Street.

After the Republican revolt in the House on Thursday, House Speaker John Boehner was forced to abandon his plan to avert tax increases for most Americans. 

As a result, Asian stock markets were down sharply overnight.  European markets were also trading lower on Friday, while U.S. stock futures were in the red ahead of the opening bell.

Many business leaders warn the longer it takes to deal with taxes and spending, the greater the harm will be to the economy.

Coming into Friday's trading session, stocks are higher for the week.  The day before, the Dow rose 60 points to 13,312, while the Nasdaq gained six points and the S&P added eight.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Stocks Rise as Markets Open After Hurricane Sandy

Spencer Platt/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- U.S. stocks opened up Wednesday morning after being closed for two days because of Hurricane Sandy -- the longest weather-related closure since the blizzard of 1888 struck New York.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.49 percent to 13,172 after trading resumed at 9:30 A.M. eastern time, with Mayor Michael Bloomberg ringing the opening bell.

Concerned about safety, NYSE Euronext had decided to close trading due to Hurricane Sandy for the last two days, the first time in over 100 years that stock trading was closed for two straight days due to weather.

Guy LeBas, chief fixed income strategist with Janney Capital Markets, said from the perspective of the fixed income markets, “Sandy was little more than a blip, albeit a 1,000 mile wide one.”

The bond markets were open for a half day on Monday, with the lowest volume session in nearly four years, and were closed on Tuesday.

However, trading opened as usual in Tokyo and London.

“The challenge today will be the logistics of traders getting to the office, so activity is likely to be somewhat subdued, particularly in the morning,” LeBas said.  “Moreover, a lot of new issuance has been postponed, which has a further impact of slowing corporate and municipal bond trading activity.  The lasting impacts of Sandy are likely to be more economic in nature."

"Two days of lost productivity plus the expense of damaged infrastructure will have a negative short-term impact on economic growth, though in future months and quarters, the US economy should benefit from construction and rebuilding,” he continued.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Stock Markets to Reopen After Hurricane Sandy Shut Down NYSE

Hemera/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Hurricane Sandy‘s winds and rains subsided Tuesday, and the New York Stock Exchange announced it will open for normal operations on Wednesday.  This was the first time since 1888 that weather shut down stock trading for two days.

NYSE Euronext said trading will resume for all U.S. equities, bonds, options and derivatives markets on — perhaps fittingly — Halloween.

Investors have been grappling with a volatile earnings season as it is, and now are dealing with uncertainty as they wait for reliable estimates of the cost of damage caused by the storm.

“We are pleased to be able to return to normal trading tomorrow.  Our building and systems were not damaged and our people have been working diligently to ensure that we have a smooth opening tomorrow," said Duncan Niederauer, NYSE Euronext CEO, in a statement. "Our thoughts and prayers remain with the families and communities suffering in the wake of this terrible natural disaster."
On Monday evening, news reports — quickly denied by a spokesperson — said the floor of the exchange was flooded with three feet of water.

“It’s one more uncertainty, and loss of life and damage are always tragic, but to an extent, it’s not a big event that will throw us into recession. It’s more disruptive than anything,” said Scott Brown, chief economist with the investment firm Raymond James.

The last time the exchange was closed for two days for weather was March 12 and 13, 1888, due to the famed blizzard of 1888, according to the NYSE website. The New York Stock Exchange was formed when two dozen stock brokers signed the Buttonwood Agreement in 1792.

Hurricane Gloria, on Sept. 27, 1985 was the cause of the last weather-related closing.

The longest the exchange has recently closed was Sept. 11 to 14, 2001, following the attacks on the World Trade Center.

The NYSE says the exchange also closed at the outbreak of World War I, from July 31 to Nov. 27, 1914.

Brown, whose office in St. Petersburg, Fla. was far from the damage caused by Hurricane Sandy, said many investors are feeling anxious about the opening, though “there may be a bit of optimism if the markets are back in business.”

He said he is not concerned about a long term economic effect on the U.S.

“It pales in significance to the fiscal cliff,” he said.

Brown said most financial firms will recover from weather damage but lost electricity and transportation are also concerns for businesses.

“How will people get to work? Are subways going to be operating?” Brown said.

Though many transactions can be conducted online, that’s not much help if brokers’ homes are without power.  Stock watchers said they did not expect a great surge of trading volume in the morning to make up for the lost days.

“Activity may be a bit subdued if people can’t get to work and get around, but for the most part this is postponing activity that will occur later on,” Brown said regarding trading volume.

When asked what financial professionals have been doing for the last two days, Brown said, “Other than sheer boredom, for us it was an opportunity in research to take a step back and look at the broader themes rather than focus on the day to day.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio