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

 


While you were sleeping: Pfizer, US consumer surprise

While you were sleeping: Pfizer, US consumer surprise

Jan 29 (BusinessDesk) – Better-than-expected corporate earnings including from Pfizer and stronger-than-expected US consumer confidence helped propel equities on both sides of the Atlantic.

In afternoon trading in New York, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.49 percent, the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index gained 0.47 percent. The Nasdaq Composite Index edged 0.05 percent lower.

Gains in shares of Pfizer, last up 2.7 percent, and those of Visa, last 1.8 percent stronger, propelled the Dow higher.

Shares of Comcast also rose, last up 0.9 percent, after reporting results that surpassed expectations. The cable company is near a deal to buy assets from Charter Communications, Bloomberg News reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

The latest economic data were positive too.

The S&P/Case-Shiller index of property prices in 20 cities jumped 13.7 percent in November from a year ago, making it the largest 12-month gain since February 2006. It was a welcome reminder of industry strength following the disappointing December new homes sales data, a 7 percent slide reported yesterday by the Commerce Department.

Separately, the Conference Board’s index of consumer attitudes increased to 80.7 in January, up from 77.5 in December and the highest reading in five months.

"Things have continued to look good at the end of 2013 and beginning of 2014," Gus Faucher, a senior economist at PNC Financial Services Group in Pittsburgh, told Reuters. "I would expect that we are going to continue to see growth this year that's above what we observed in 2014."

Some reports failed to meet the mark. Durable goods orders dropped more than expected, sliding 4.3 percent in December.

Also falling short was Apple. Its shares took a beating, last down 7.3 percent to US$510.33 after the company reported iPhone sales of 51 million in the latest quarter, which failed to meet expectations for 55 million.

"There were a lot of reasons to believe iPhone sales would grow double-digit in units in 2014 even as the market matured, but 1Q results and the March guide pretty much put that thesis to rest," Raymond James analyst Tavis McCourt wrote in a note, according to Reuters. McCourt downgraded Apple’s stock to "outperform" from "strong buy" and slashed his price target to US$550 from US$700.

In Europe, the Stoxx 600 Index finished the day with a 0.7 percent gain from the previous close. Germany’s DAX added 0.6 percent, while France’s CAC 40 climbed 1 percent.

There is increased optimism about the outlook for corporate profits in the euro zone.

“We will start to see positive earnings surprises increase in Europe in the next few quarters,” Didier Duret, chief investment officer at ABN Amro Private Banking in Amsterdam, told Bloomberg News.

The UK’s FTSE 100 rose 0.3 percent. A report showed the country’s gross domestic product grew 0.7 percent in the initial estimate for the final quarter, making 2013 the best year since 2007.

“We have now seen four successive quarters of significant growth and the economy does seem to be improving more consistently,” Joe Grice, chief economic adviser at the UK Office for National Statistics, said in a statement. “Today's estimate suggests over four fifths of the fall in GDP during the recession has been recovered, although it still remains 1.3 percent below the pre-recession peak.”

(BusinessDesk)


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Half Empty: Fonterra's 2017 Opening Forecast Below Expectations

Fonterra Cooperative Group raised its forecast farmgate milk payout for next season by less than expected as the world's largest dairy exporter predicts lower prices will crimp production and supply will pick up. The New Zealand dollar fell. More>>

ALSO:

Pest Control: Mouse Blitz Team Leaves For Antipodes

The Million Dollar Mouse project to rid Antipodes Island of mice is underway with the departure of a rodent eradication team to the remote nature reserve and World Heritage Area. More>>

Gongs Got: Canon Media Awards & NZ Radio Awards Happen

Radio NZ: RNZ website The Wireless, which is co-funded by NZ On Air, was named best website, while Toby Manhire and Toby Morris won the best opinion general writing section for their weekly column on rnz.co.nz and Tess McClure won the best junior feature writer section. More>>

ALSO:

Pre-Budget: Debt Focus Risks Losing Opportunity To Stoke Economy

The Treasury is likely to upgrade its forecasts for economic growth in Budget 2016 next week but Finance Minister Bill English has already signalled that more of his focus is on debt repayment than on fiscal stimulus or tax cuts... More>>

ALSO:

Fulton Hogan's Heroes: Managing Director Nick Miller Resigns

Fulton Hogan managing director Nick Miller will leave the privately owned construction company after seven years in charge. The Dunedin-based company has kicked off a search for a replacement, and Miller will stay on at the helm until March next year, or until a successor has been appointed and a transition period completed. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Electricity, Executions, And Bob Dylan

The Electricity Authority has unveiled the final version of its pricing plan for electricity transmission. This will change the way transmission prices (which comprise about 10% of the average power bill) are computed, and will add hundreds of dollars a year to power bills for many ordinary consumers. More>>

ALSO:

Half Empty: Fonterra NZ, Australia Milk Collection Drops In Season

Fonterra Cooperative Group says milk collection is down in New Zealand and Australia, its two largest markets, in the first 11 months of the season during a period of weak dairy prices. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news