Mid Day Market News Update – 12 March 2012

Mid Day Market News Update - 12 March 2012

Every afternoon ValueWalk provides an update on global market levels, economic news, and hedge fund news.

Market Action


Vanguard’s move into PE may change the landscape forever

Private equity has been growing in popularity in recent years as more and more big-name funds and institutional investors dive in. Now even indexing giant Vanguard is out to take a piece of the PE pie. During a panel at the Morningstar Investment Conference this year, Fran Kinniry of Vanguard, John Rekenthaler of Morningstar and Read More

  • US:  Dow: 12969.10 (0.36%), S&P 500: 1371.40 (0.04%), NASDAQ: 2983.66 (-0.15%)
  • Europe: CAC: 3490.06 (0.07%), DAX: 6901.35 (0.31%), FTSE: 5892.75 (0.09%).
  • Asia-Pacific:Australia: 4212.00 (0.98%),China: 2439.46 (0.79%),Hong Kong: 21086.00 (0.88%),India: 5333.55 (2.17%), Japan: 9929.74 (1.62%).
  • Metals: Gold: 1700.50 (0.04%), Silver: 33.60 (0.54%), Copper: 3.84 (0.07%)
  • Energy: Crude Oil: 106.37 (-0.96%), Natural Gas: 2.26 (-2.62%)
  • Commodities: Corn: 6.60 (2.33%), Soya Bean: 13.34 (-0.26%), Wheat: 6.51 (1.28%)
  • Currency: EUR/USD: 1.3150 (0.1987%), GBP/USD: 1.5639 (-0.2278%), USD/JPY: 82.2690 (-0.2341%)
  • 10 year US Treasury: 2.028% (0.040)


Market News Update


U.S. markets mixed after negative Chinese data: U.S. stocks traded flat afterChina’s trade balance plunged $31.5 billion in February and raised concern about growth in the world’s second-largest economy. As of3:00 p.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.36%, the S&P 500 edged higher by 0.04%and the NASDAQ Composite slid 0.15%.

Oil down 1 percent: Easing of fears of immediate supply disruption because of tensions with Iran and growing concerns about slowing growth in China led to oil slip by about 1 percent. Crude for April delivery declined $1.16, or 1.1 percent, to $106.24 a barrel at 1:10 p.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Dollar drops: A day before a Federal Reserve policy meeting, dollar dropped against the euro and yen on Monday. The euro was up 0.3 percent at $1.3148. There are wide-spread expectations that the central bank will refrain from further policy easing given signs of a recovering jobs market.

Gold falls below $1700: Gold dropped below $1,700 an ounce owing to fears that a slowdown in China will impact the demand for raw materials. Gold futures for April delivery declined 0.7 percent at 1:45 p.m. on the Comex in New York.

Company News Update


  • Oracle Corp. (ORCL) slipped 1.2 percent after the software giant was cut to hold from buy by Jefferies Group Inc.
  • Newmont Mining Corp. (NEM) and Schlumberger Ltd. (SLB) fell about 2.1 percent on concern about global demand slowdown for commodities.
  • CNN, a unit of Time Warner, is in advanced talks to acquire social news Web site Mashable.
  • Clothing retailer Urban Outfitters (URBN) will report its quarterly results after the closing bell.
  • The biggest U.S.motorcycle maker, Harley-Davidson Inc. (HOG) jumped 2.9 percent after Citigroup Inc. increased its share-price target from $46 to $50.
  • Consumer-credit information provider Equifax Inc. (EFX) added 4.1 percent after SunTrust Robinson Humphrey Inc. increased it from neutral to buy.
  • The rising cost of insuring against default on European sovereign bonds led to Regions Financial Corp. (RF) falling 2.8 percent.
  • Despite posting a quarterly loss on Friday, cruise line Carnival (CCL) edged higher on Monday. This might be attributed to the rise in bookings the company has reported.
  • Molycorp Inc. (MCP) gained 1 percent after the company agreed to buy Neo Material Technologies Inc (NEM) in a $1.3 billion cash-and-share deal.
  • Clean Diesel Tech (CDTI) jumped after it reported earnings that beat expectations.


Hedge Fund News Update


  • New York-based hedge fund Octavian Advisors LP said that its to oust the supervisory board of German medical and electronics products maker Balda AG attempt last month fell apart because of a clerical error.
  • Hedge funds cut their long positions in oil as concern eased about risks tied to Iran. According to the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission, net-long positions onNew York crude, in futures and options, combined fell by 7.3 percent in the week ended March 6. Money managers also reduced their r by the most in two months. Commodities fell 1.5 percent in the week ended March 6, the lowest since 2004.
  • Billionaire hedge fund manager John Paulson, whose Paulson & Co owns a 8.51 percent stake in Hartford Financial Services Group Inc, said that his advice of breaking up the insurance provider would unlock significant value, and help boost its share price by 62 percent.
  • George Soros backed Crystal Financial would extend an $80 million credit line to American Apparel. The stock rallied after the news broke out.
  • Director of the Singapore-based Pangolin Investment Management James Hay said the fund has been able to achieve a strong year-to-date performance of 14 percent, and recorded gains of about 7 percent in January.
  • Swiss-based investment management firm, Worldview Capital Management, has launched a new emerging markets fund. To be headed by Angelo Moskov, the investment team pre-dominantly consists of former members of US hedge fund QVT.
  • According to a regulatory filing, Skylands Capital recently raised a combined $295.5 million for three of its funds. Skylands Special Investment raised $190.2 million, while the Skylands Quest fund raised $68 million. The Skylands Special Investment II fund raised $40.3 million over and above the $85.3 million it previously raised.