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

 


While you were sleeping: Solid US eco data

While you were sleeping: Solid US eco data

May 2 (BusinessDesk) – Wall Street was mixed, with the Dow Jones slipping from the previous day’s record-high close, as investors awaited the government’s monthly employment data due Friday.

In afternoon trading in New York, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.24 percent, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index inched 0.04 percent lower. The Nasdaq Composite Index rose 0.24 percent. On Wednesday, the Dow closed at a record high 16,580.84.

Declines in shares of IBM and Microsoft, down 1.6 percent and 1 percent respectively, outweighed gains in shares of Merck and Verizon, up 1.4 percent and 0.6 percent respectively, and dragging the Dow lower.

Some of the momentum stocks hammered in recent weeks – Facebook, Netflix and Yelp – rebounded.

The latest data underpinned the US Federal Reserve’s comments, made yesterday in a statement at the end of a two-day meeting, that “growth in economic activity has picked up recently.” It also helped lower concern about the latest GDP data which had shown earlier this week that the world’s largest economy barely grew in the first three months of this year.

US consumer spending rose 0.9 percent in March, the largest increase in more than for years, following a 0.5 percent increase in February, according to the Commerce Department. The Institute for Supply Management’s index of national factory activity advanced to 54.9 in April, from 53.7 in March.

“The weakness in growth we saw in the first quarter is not indicative of what is going on in the economy,” Gus Faucher, senior economist at PNC Financial Services Group, told Reuters. “The fundamentals continue to look pretty good, the economy has momentum.”

Indeed, Scott Brown, chief economist at Raymond James & Associates in St. Petersburg, Florida, told Bloomberg News, “the second quarter is going to be much stronger than the first.”

To be sure, initial claims for state unemployment benefits unexpectedly rose, climbing 14,000 to a seasonally adjusted 344,000 though the caveat in assessing the numbers is that normal business operations were slowed by the Easter and Passover breaks.

A report on Wednesday had shown US private employers added a better-than-expected 220,000 workers in April, the highest number since November.

Friday’s report is expected to show nonfarm payrolls increased by 210,000 last month, according to a Reuters survey, following a gain of 192,000 in March. A Bloomberg News poll predicts an increase of 215,000. The jobless rate is forecast to fall to 6.6 percent.

Shares of Yelp jumped, last up 9.2 percent, after reporting solid results, which also helped bolster the appeal of other internet stocks had been beaten down recently.

“When you have a group that has been beaten up over the past month, along with a market that is setting new highs, that's a cue for momentum players to come back into the market," Michael Matousek, head trader at US Global Investors in San Antonio, told Reuters. "Internet is the place to be today."

In Europe, many markets were closed for the May 1 holiday. The UK’s FTSE 100 ended with a gain of 0.4 percent from the previous close.

(BusinessDesk)

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Media: Fairfax Moves To Create Modern Newsroom

Fairfax Media New Zealand continues its newsroom transformation this week, with a proposal to further organise its editorial operations into focused, local teams and specialist national topic areas. More>>

ALSO:

Dairy: Fonterra Forecast For 2015/16 Season

Fonterra Co-operative Group Limited has today reduced its forecast Farmgate Milk Price for the 2014/15 season to $4.40 per kgMS. Along with its previously announced forecast dividend range of 20-30 cents per share, the change amounts to a forecast ... More>>

ALSO:

BusinessDesk: SkyCity Lifts Minimum Convention Centre Investment To $430M

SkyCity Entertainment Group, the casino operator, has lifted the minimum it will invest in the Auckland International Convention Centre to $430 million and said total costs including land may be $450 million to $470 million. More>>

Statistics: Drop In Dairy Prices Leads Fall In Exports

Total goods exports fell $240 million (5.5 percent) to $4.2 billion in April 2015 compared with April 2014, Statistics New Zealand said today. More>>

BusinessDesk: APN's NZME Sees Future In Paywalls, Growth In Digital Sales

APN News & Media has touted a single newsroom concept for its NZME unit in New Zealand, similar to what Germany's Die Welt uses, saying an 'integrated sales proposition' is helping it win market share, including ... More>>

Labour Party: Global Milk Prices Now Lowest In 6 Years

The latest fall in the global dairy price has brought it to the lowest level in six years and shows there must be meaningful action in tomorrow’s Budget to diversify the economy, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Dairy prices ... More>>


BusinessDesk: NZ Inflation Expectations Creep Higher In June Survey

May 19 (BusinessDesk) - New Zealand businesses lifted their expectations for inflation over the next two years, sapping any immediate pressure on the Reserve Bank to cut interest rates, and prompting the kiwi dollar to jump higher. More>>

BusinessDesk: Lower Fuel Costs Drive Down NZ Producer Input, Output Prices

May 19 - Producer input and output prices fell in the first quarter, mainly reflecting lower fuel costs and weakness in prices of meat and dairy products. More>>

Media: Fairfax Media NZ Announces Senior Editorial Team

Fairfax Media New Zealand has today confirmed its new editorial leadership team, as part of a transformation of its newsrooms aimed at enhancing local and national journalism across digital and print. More>>

Science: Flavonoids Reduce Cold And Cough Risk

Flavonoids reduce cold and cough risk Research from the University of Auckland shows eating flavonoids – found in green tea, apples, blueberries, cocoa, red wine and onions – can significantly reduce the risk of catching colds and coughs. The research, ... More>>

BusinessDesk: RBNZ House Alert Speech The Catalyst For Government Action

Prime Minister John Key all but conceded that pressure from the Reserve Bank of New Zealand for concerted action on rampant Auckland house prices was one of the main catalysts for the government's weekend announcements about tightly ... More>>

BusinessDesk: How To Fall Foul Of The New Housing Tax Rules: Tips From IRD

Just because you rented out your investment property doesn't absolve you from paying tax, says the Inland Revenue Department in a summary of commonly made mistakes by non-professional property investors when it comes to their tax liability.More>>

Legal: Superdiversity Law, Policy And Business Stocktake Announced

Mai Chen, Managing Partner at Chen Palmer New Zealand Public and Employment Law Specialists and Adjunct Professor of Law at the University of Auckland, today announced the establishment ... More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news