Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


While you were sleeping: Housing, jobs data boost stocks

While you were sleeping: Housing, jobs data boost stocks

Jan 18 (BusinessDesk) – Equities on both sides of the Atlantic rose as buoyant data on the US housing and labour markets as well as better-than-expected earnings from eBay bolstered hopes the economy is in better shape than feared.

Initial claims for state unemployment benefits last week dropped 37,000 to a seasonally adjusted 335,000, the lowest level since January 2008, according to the Labor Department.

Housing starts increased 12.1 percent in December to their highest level since June 2008, according to the Commerce Department.

“The economy is entering the year maybe not with a running start, but certainly a head start,” Jack Ablin, who helps oversee about US$66 billion as chief investment officer of BMO Private Bank in Chicago, told Bloomberg News. “It helps build a nice story for 2013.”

In afternoon trading in New York, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.69 percent, while the Standard & Poor's 500 Index rose 0.64 percent to 1,482.06, and the Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 0.62 percent. Earlier, the S&P 500 touched a five-year high of 1,482.38.

So far corporate results are beating the modest expectations for the fourth quarter. Of the 52 companies in the S&P 500 to have reported results since January 8, 71 percent beat analysts’ earnings estimates, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Shares of eBay climbed, last up 3.1 percent, after fourth-quarter sales surpassed expectations, underpinning optimism about the company's outlook.

"The legacy marketplaces business -- it’s kind of carried into mobile,” Bill Smead, who helps oversee 340,378 EBay shares as chief investment officer of Seattle-based Smead Capital Management, told Bloomberg. “You get involved with bidding or selling something on EBay, and it’s nice to carry around the device where you’re doing that with you."

However, the latest bank earnings disappointed. Shares of Citigroup and Bank of America fell, last down 3 percent and 3.9 percent respectively, after reporting results that failed to please investors.

Shares of Boeing took another beating, last down 0.5 percent, amid increasing concern about problems with its 787s that prompted a worldwide grounding of the company's newest commercial airliner.

"While it is entirely possible that the current battery issue is resolved in short order, it is also equally possible that the 787s current certification could be called into question," BB&T Capital Markets analyst Carter Leake wrote Thursday, cutting his rating on the stock to "underweight," according to Reuters.

Meanwhile, Republicans may be open to a "short-term debt limit extension," Reuters reported, a move that would eliminate - for now - one key risk to further market advances.

In Europe, the Stoxx 600 Index ended the day with a gain of 0.5 percent from the previous close. The FTSE 100 advanced 0.5 percent, Germany’s DAX rose 0.6 percent, and France's CAC 40 climbed 1 percent.

(BusinessDesk)

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Interest Rates: RBNZ Hikes OCR To 3.5%, ‘Period Of Assessment’ Now Needed

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler raised the official cash rate as expected, while signalling a pause in rate hikes to assess the impact of moves so far this year. The kiwi dollar sank after Wheeler said its strength was “unjustified” and that the currency could have “a significant fall.” More>>

ALSO:

Fonterra: Canpac Site 'Resize' To Focus More On Paediatrics

Fonterra is looking at realigning its packing operations at Canpac, in the Waikato, to focus more on paediatric nutritionals... The proposed changes could mean around 110 roles may not be required at the site which currently employs 330. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Postie Plus Brand Gets 2nd Chance With Well-Funded Pepkor

The Postie Plus brand is getting a new lease of life after South Africa’s Pepkor bought the failed retailer’s assets out of administration and said it will use its purchasing power to reduce costs of stock and fatten margins. More>>

ALSO:

Warming: Warming Signs From State Of Climate Report

Climate data from air, land, sea and ice in 2013 'reflect trends of a warming planet' -- says the latest State of the Climate report, launched by U.S. and New Zealand scientists. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Embrace Falling Home Affordability, Says NZIER

Despair over the inability to afford a house is misplaced and should be embraced as an opportunity to invest in more wealth-creating activity, says the principal economist at the New Zealand Institute of Economic Research, Shamubeel Eaqub. More>>

Productivity Commission: NZ Regulation Not Keeping Pace

New Zealand regulators often have to work with out-of-date legislation, quality checks are under strain, and regulatory workers need better training and development. More>>

ALSO:

Callaghan Innovation: Investment To Help Deepen Innovation Reporting

Callaghan Innovation, the government’s high tech HQ for Kiwi business, is to help deepen New Zealand media coverage of the commercialisation of innovation through an arms-length partnership with independent business news service BusinessDesk. More>>

ALSO:

Tax Credits, Grants: Greens $1Bn R&D Plan

In the Party’s headline economic announcement, the Greens have launched their plan to build a smarter, more innovative economy which has as its centrepiece an additional $1 billion of government investment in research and development (R&D) above current spend, including tax breaks for business. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
Computer Power Plus

Standards New Zealand

Standards New Zealand
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news