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

 


While you were sleeping: Yet another record

While you were sleeping: Yet another record

May 30 (BusinessDesk) – The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index crept to a fresh intraday record as a second estimate showing the US economy contracted in the first quarter failed to deter expectations that the recovery is gathering steam.

The world’s largest economy shrank at a 1.0 percent annual rate in the first three months of 2014, according to a second estimate by the Commerce Department.

“The headline figure was weaker than expected, but it was mainly due to slower inventory growth, which bodes well for future growth, future orders, new orders," Jeffrey Saut, chief investment strategist at Raymond James Financial in St Petersburg, Florida, told Reuters.

Economists are forecasting a strong rebound in the current quarter with some estimates seeing growth near a 4 percent rate.

In the final hour of trading in New York, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.27 percent, the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite Index each added 0.40 percent. Earlier in the day, the S&P 500 climbed to a record high of 1,917.69.

Gains in shares of Merck, up 2 percent, and United Health, up 0.9 percent, helped propel the Dow higher.

The US dollar however fell as the GDP data also underlined expectations that the US Federal Reserve will not raise interest rates any time soon.

Separately, Labor Department data showed the number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits declined more than expected last week, falling 27,000 to a seasonally adjusted 300,000.

And US pending home sales rose 0.4 percent in April, after a 3.4 percent increase in March, according to a National Association of Realtors report.

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said he expects home sales to rise.

“Higher inventory levels are giving buyers more choices, and a slight decline in mortgage interest rates this spring is raising prospective home buyers’ confidence,” Yun said in a statement. “An uptrend in closed sales is expected, although some months will encounter a modest setback.”

In Europe, the Stoxx 600 Index edged higher from the previous close to finish the day at 344.51. The UK’s FTSE 100 rose 0.3 percent. Germany’s DAX finished the session little changed from the previous close, as did France’s CAC 40.

Shares of Man Group climbed 5 percent, after the UK hedge fund manager said it is in talks to buy Numeric Holdings, a Boston-based fund manager.

Euro-zone bonds climbed, pushing yields to record lows in some countries including Austria, Belgium and France amid rising expectations that the European Central Bank will announce fresh stimulus measures next week.

Italy sold 7.5 billion euros (US$10.2 billion) of bonds maturing in five and 10 years. The Rome-based Treasury allotted 3 billion euros of debt due in September 2024 at an average yield of 3.01 percent, the lowest for similar-maturity securities since Bloomberg started compiling the data in 1991.

(BusinessDesk)

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Scoop Business: Wheeler Downplays Scope For ‘Large’ Rates Fall

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler says some market commentators are predicting further declines in interest rates that would only make sense for an economy in recession, although some easing is likely to be needed to maintain New Zealand’s economic growth. More>>

ALSO:

Ruataniwha Dam: Consent Conditions Could Mean Reduced Intensity

Legal advice sought by the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council on the Ruataniwha Dam consent conditions has confirmed that farmers who sign up to take water from the dam could be required to reduce the intensity of their farming operation to meet the catchment’s strict nitrogen limit. More>>

Health And Safety: Bill Now Sees Rules Relaxed For Small Businesses

Health and safety law reform sparked by the Pike River coalmine disaster has been reported back from the industrial relations select committee with weakened requirements on small businesses to appoint health and safety representatives and committees. More>>

ALSO:

Bearing Fruit: Annual Fruit Exports Hit $2 Billion For First Time

The value of fruit exported rose 20 percent (up $330 million) for the June 2015 year when compared with the year ended June 2014. Both higher prices and a greater quantity of exports (up 9.0 percent) contributed to the overall rise. More>>

ALSO:

Interest Rates: NZ Dollar Jumps After RBNZ Trims OCR

The New Zealand dollar jumped more than half a US cent after Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler cut the official cash rate by a quarter-point and said the currency needs to be lower, while dropping a reference to criteria that justified intervention. More>>

ALSO:

Drones: New 'World-Class' Framework For UAVs

The rules, which come into effect on 1 August, recognise the changing environment and create a world-class framework that accommodates ongoing development while still ensuring the safety of the public, property and other airspace users. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news