Post Market Update
- US: Dow: 12805.39 (0.70%), S&P 500: 1368.71 (0.74%), NASDAQ: 3016.46 (0.84%)
- Europe: CAC: 3237.69 (0.62%), DAX: 6674.73 (1.02%), FTSE: 5634.74 (0.70%).
- Asia-Pacific: Australia: 4246.10 (-1.08%), China: 2308.92 (0.13%), Hong Kong: 20140.67 (-1.07%), India: 5226.85 (-0.32%), Japan: 9458.74 (-0.84%).
- Metals: Gold: 1660.30 (-0.02%), Silver: 31.52 (-0.50%), Copper: 3.64 (-0.29%)
- Energy: Crude Oil: 102.70 (1.66%), Natural Gas: 1.98 (-2.31%)
- Commodities: Corn: 6.36 (0.20%), Soya Bean: 14.22 (-0.28%), Wheat: 6.33 (0.24%)
- Currency: EUR/USD: 1.3111 (0.02%), GBP/USD: 1.5909 (0.02%), USD/JPY: 80.8700 (0.01%)
- 10 year US Treasury: 2.035% (0.053)
Market and Economy News Update
U.S. markets rebound: Halting a five-day decline, markets closed higher on Wednesday, as the earnings season kicked-off on an upbeat note. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:.DJI), the S&P 500 (INDEXSP:.INX) and the NASDAQ (INDEXNASDAQ:.IXIC) all closed with decent gains.
U.S. economy grew at a moderate pace: The Fed said today in its Beige Book business survey, the economy maintained its expansion in all 12 of its regions, as hiring showed a steady increase and residential real estate markets improved. However rising prices for gasoline and other energy products may weigh on the economy, the report said.
U.S. import prices jump in March: Prices of goods imported into the U.S rose in March by the most in nearly a year due to sharply higher fuel costs. The Labor Department said import prices climbed by 1.3 percent from the month before, the biggest gain since April 2011. Economists were expecting a 0.9% monthly increase.
Mortgage applications fall: Applications for U.S. home mortgages last week fell 2.4 percent from the prior week, the Mortgage Bankers Association said on Wednesday. Purchase applications had gone up in the previous two weeks.
Oil drops to eight-week low: Oil prices rose on Wednesday, after data from the U.S. Energy Department showed domestic fuel stocks fell much more than previously expected. Crude-oil futures for May delivery jumped 1.7 percent to $102.70 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent oil for May settlement gained 0.3 percent on the London- based ICE Futures Europe exchange.
Company News Update
- Alcoa Inc. (NYSE:AA) was the biggest gainer in the Dow Jones Industrial Average and closed 6.2 percent higher, after the largest U.S. aluminum producer posted an unexpected first-quarter profit yesterday after market close.http://www.valuewalk.com/2012/04/alcoa-ceo-says-china-may-not-slow-aluminum-production/
- U.S.-listed shares of Nokia Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:NOK) plunged 16 percent after the company lowered its first-quarter outlook citing a decline in gross margins amid stiff competition from rivals.http://www.valuewalk.com/2012/04/nokia-corporation-nok-cuts-q1-outlook-and-confirms-over-200m-lumia-phones-sold/
- Among banking stocks, Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) gained 3.8 percent after Guggenheim upgraded its rating on the financial giant to “buy” from “neutral.” Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) also rallied 1.2 percent after Evercore Partners increased its price target on the stock to $20.
- Homebuilders like PulteGroup, Inc. (NYSE:PHM), Lennar Corporation (NYSE:LEN) and DR Horton, Inc. (NYSE:DHI) ended sharply higher after Wells Fargo said that this year may see the beginning of the recovery for the housing market.
- Life insurer and mortgage guarantor, Genworth Financial Inc (NYSE:GNW) gained 3.2 percent after BTIG LLC initiating coverage on the stock, rated it a “buy”.
- Opnet Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ:OPNT) the network-performance-management company, slid 13.4 percent after indicating that fiscal fourth-quarter earnings and revenue would be below expectations.
- J.C. Penney Company, Inc. (NYSE:JCP) announced its CFO Michael Dastugue will demit office, and current COO Michael Kramer will assume charge on an interim basis.
- In an effort to offset plunging U.S. sales, Research In Motion Limited (USA) (NASDAQ:RIMM), is planning to open stores across the Middle East where local demand for its BlackBerry phones is still strong.
- Electronics retailer, Best Buy Co., Inc. (NYSE:BBY) has said that the probe into former Chief Executive Officer Brian Dunn’s personal conduct has not been closed.
Hedge Fund News Update
- The $2.7 billion London-based hedge fund firm Tyrus Capital, founded by Tony Chedraoui in 2009, has moved the majority of its operations to Monaco in response to the impending European Union regulations.
- Moody’s Corporation (NYSE:MCO) has put Man Group Plc (LON:EMG), the largest listed hedge fund manager in the world, on downgrade watch, citing general market weakness and growing challenges in the company’s core business. http://www.valuewalk.com/2012/04/man-group-plc-emg-on-review-for-downgrade-by-moodys-mco-we-had-a-hunch/
- BlueCrest Capital Management has appointed Greg Clerkson, director of alternative investments at consulting firm Russell Investment Group, as head of global consultant relations. Clerkson will spearhead U.K. institutional coverage at BlueCrest.
- Hedge fund consultancy firm Aksia, has hired Oliver Newton, formerly of Tarchon Capital Management, as senior advisor in its London office, and will advise the firm’s institutional investor clients in Europe and the Middle East.
- According to the latest data from eVestment Alliance, institutional investors pulled out $5 billion from equity funds in the first quarter of this year.
- New York-based hedge fund, Mason Capital, said it will vote against telecommunication company Telus Corp.’s plan to create a single class of common shares by combining non-voting shares with its common shares.