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

 

Balance Of Trade: NZ Posts Trade Deficit In October On Falling Dairy Exports

New Zealand’s posted its largest monthly trade deficit for October in six years, while narrowing the shortfall from September, led by a fall in dairy exports to China while all main imports into the country rose. More>>

ALSO:

Gigatown Winner: Plenty Of Positives For Dunedin

Although the city has taken the Gigatown title, along with new ultrafast 1Gbps broadband and funding for $700,000 worth of UFB-related initiatives across the community, Mr Cull says Dunedin has gained so much more through its involvement. More>>

ALSO:

R18: The Warehouse Group Praised For Removing Games

The decision by New Zealand’s largest retailer The Warehouse Group (TW Group), to withdraw stocks of the latest version of Grand Theft Auto V (GTA V) and other R18 games, has been praised by advocacy group Stop Demand Foundation. More>>

ALSO:

Air NZ Wine Awards: Victory For Villa Maria As Pinot Noir Thrills

It was a night to remember as Villa Maria Estate picked up one of the highest accolades of the evening, the O-I New Zealand Reserve Wine of the Show Trophy, at the 28th Air New Zealand Wine Awards. The Villa Maria Single Vineyard Southern Clays Marlborough ... More>>

ALSO:

Future Brighter Money: RBNZ Releases New Bank Note Designs

New Zealand’s banknotes are getting brighter and better, with the Reserve Bank today unveiling more vibrant and secure banknote designs which will progressively enter circulation later next year. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
Standards New Zealand

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