The stock markets in the United Stated declined today except the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA), up by 0.03%. Investors concern about China’s currency devaluation was alleviated after the country’s central bank expressed verbal support for the yuan.

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Investors are also paying close attention to economic data to determine the timing of any interest rate increase by the Federal Reserve.

In an interview with Bloomberg, Julian Emanuel commented that the markets over-reacted on China’s devaluation. He also said, “We saw the turnaround yesterday, and that’s all nice but the S&P is in a well-worn range, and the range may continue to prevail.”

Yesterday, the S&P 500 gained and erased a 1.5% loss caused by investors concern that China’s economy is falling. The People’s Bank of China (PBOC) stated that it would implement measures when it perceives excessive market volatility.

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PBOC Deputy Governor Yi Gand said the central bank will act “when the market’s volatility is excessive when the market begins behaving like a herd of sheep. Trust the market, respect the market, fear the market, and follow the market.”

Daniel Murray, head of research at EFG Asset Management commented, “The statement of the Chinses authorities calmed fears regarding the prospect of these awful phrases –currency wars. With concerns about China and Greece fading, the market can focus on fundamentals underlying the U.S. economy.”

Today, the U.S. Department of Commerce reported that the retail sales in July expanded 0.6%, in line with the median estimate of economists polled by Bloomberg.

A separate report from the Department of Labor showed that the number of people who filed for unemployment benefits was 274,000 for the week ended August 8. The number is close to a four-decade low, a sign that the labor market is improving steadily.

Bruce Bittles, chief investment strategist at Robert W. Baird & Co., does not think the data is a market mover and would influence the decision of the Federal Reserve on raising interest rates. However, he thinks that good numbers show some stability.”

U.S. Markets

  • Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) – 17,408.25 (+0.03%)
  • S&P 500- 2,083.39 (-0.13%)
  • NASDAQ- 5,033.56 (-0.21%)
  • Russell 2000- 1,204.74 (-0.35%)

European Markets

  • EURO STOXX 50 Price EUR- 3,516.15 (+0.91%)
  • FTSE 100 Index- 6,568.33 (-0.04%)
  • Deutsche Borse AG German Stock Index DAX- 11.92,014 (+0.82%)

Asia-Pacific Markets

  • Nikkei 225- 20,595.55 (+0.99%)
  • Hong Kong Hang Seng Index- 24,018.80 (+0.43%)
  • Shanghai Shenzhen CSI 300 Index- 4,075.46 (+1.48%)

Stocks in Focus

Coty gained more than 6% to $30.47 per share. The beauty company reported earnings of $0.08 per share for the fourth quarter on $1.02 billion revenue. Wall Street analysts expected the company to deliver earnings of $0.07 per share on $999.1 million revenue.

The stock price of Planar Systems surged more than 31% to $6.13 per share. The company agreed to be acquired by Leyard Optoelectronic for $6.58 per share of $156.8 million.

Intercept Pharmaceuticals declined nearly 8% to $214.09 per share.Analysts at Morgan Stanley initiated coverage on the stock with Underweight rating and $165 price target

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