Apr 17 2014 | 6:05 PM
U.S. stock indices finished mixed and relatively flat on Thursday as investors weighed another round of earnings, better-than-expected jobless claims and an upbeat Philly Fed index. Energy and Industrials led gains on the S&P 500, while Utilities and Tech topped declines. Gold is lower and Oil is higher amid a flat dollar.
In US economic news, the Labor Department said Initial claims for state unemployment benefits ticked up 2K to a seasonally adjusted 304K for the week ended April 12, but stayed close to a 6-1/2 year low touched the prior week. The reading beat economists forecast of a 315K rise. The four-week moving average for new claims, which irons out week-to-week volatility, hit its lowest level since October 2007.
In a separate report, the Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank said its business activity index increased to 16.6 this month from 9.0 in March. April's...
Specialist, Market Watch
Apr 17 2014 | 10:23 AM
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Vice President, Strategic Analysis
Apr 17 2014 | 8:24 AM
Ahead of the Bell: Dow futures are trading down 13 points and S&P futures are trading down 2 points. The threat of a civil war in Ukraine and disappointing quarterly results from IBM and Google might unnerve investors already shaken by a strong recent selloff in tech stocks. Since early March, the tech-heavy sector has declined over 6%, underscoring the challenges internet and IT companies face as corporate results are due this week. IBM blamed lower than expected earnings on weak demand from emerging markets, while Google reported margins narrowed on declining advertising. Reports indicate pro-Russian forces attacked a Ukrainian national guard base overnight and Kiev said three separatists were killed. Fed Chair, Janet Yellen said achieving the central bank's economic goals "will likely require low real interest rates for some time."
Director, Market Watch & Corporate Actions
Apr 16 2014 | 4:33 PM
US equities pressed higher for a third straight day, with the Dow rising 162 points on Wednesday as improved sentiment surrounding Q1 earnings helped boost the broader markets. Also in focus was a slew of macro data out of China, mixed US economic data, and comments from Fed chair Yellen. All major S&P 500 sectors rose, with Materials and Industrials topping gains. Utilities and Healthcare somewhat lagged. Gold and Oil are fractionally higher while the greenback is relatively unchanged.
Similar to a speech earlier this month, Fed Chair Yellen highlighted the considerable slack in the labor market and heightened concerns about inflation discussed in both the March FOMC statement and minutes. She noted that she sees the chances of inflation rising substantially above 2% as significantly below the chances of it persisting below 2%. Overall takeaways seemed fairly dovish.
Specialist, Market Watch
Apr 16 2014 | 2:46 PM
U.S. equity markets rebounded after a weak performance last week and appear to be holding support levels set back in November 2013. Some positive results from financial bellwethers and solid economic data have fueled the positive sentiment. Here are three things that have driven the market this week:
Quite a few high profile names announced results this week, particularly in the financial sector. Citigroup shares rallied on Monday after the bank reported better than expected quarterly results which topped estimates on both lines. On Tuesday, Charles Schwab also saw their shares trade higher after beating estimates on both EPS and revenues. Wednesday results painted a different picture, with both Bank of America and Credit Suisse shares trading lower after disappointing EPS misses. Next week we will expect results from a wide range of companies including Halliburton, Travelers, AT&T, and Juniper Networks.
Managing Director, Global Corporate Client Group