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

 

While you were sleeping: Caution prevails

While you were sleeping: Caution prevails

July 30 (BusinessDesk) - Wall Street was flat in cautious trading, with sentiment bolstered by corporate earnings including from Merck and news that Windstream can spin off its telecommunications assets into a tax-lowering real estate investment trust.

Shares of Windstream soared, last up 11.6 percent, after the company announced its tax-free spinoff plans. Shares of rivals AT&T and Verizon also advanced, last up 2.8 percent and 1.6 percent respectively, amid expectations they can benefit from the same.

“The REIT will have geographically diverse, high-quality assets and sustainable cash flows with the ability to grow and diversify over time,” Jeff Gardner, CEO of Windstream, said in a statement.

In late afternoon trading in New York, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was 0.09 percent lower, the Standard & Poor’s 500 index dipped 0.14 percent, while the Nasdaq Composite Index added 0.18 percent. Stocks have ebbed and flowed between negative and positive in narrow trade through the session.

In the Dow, declines in shares of UnitedHealth and United Technologies, last down 1.7 percent and 1.1 percent respectively, outweighed gains in shares of AT&T and DuPont.

Shares of Merck climbed, last up 2 percent, after the drug maker reported second-quarter earnings that exceeded expectations. Rival Pfizer also posted results that beat expectations but its shares were last down 0.7 percent.

Shares of UPS fell, last down 3.1 percent, after the company downgraded its full-year outlook, flagging plans to spend more to prepare for the peak shipping season.

While UPS said it was encouraged by the outlook, analysts and investors were less so.

“What’s clear is the market is very competitive, and UPS is appropriately responding to it,” Ben Hartford of Robert W Baird & Co in Milwaukee told Bloomberg News. “But from an investor’s point of view, will the changes being made result in additional profit?”

Today there was another disappointing report on the state of the US housing industry. The S&P/Case Shiller composite index of 20 metropolitan areas posted a surprise drop in May, sliding 0.3 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis.

“While we are not particularly alarmed by the surprising drop in home prices, this report adds to a growing list of housing indicators that are beginning to point in the wrong direction, which could be a early warning signal that all may not be well in this crucial segment of the economy," Millan Mulraine, deputy chief economist at TD Securities in New York, told Reuters.

The Federal Open Market Committee started its two-day meeting on Tuesday. The Fed is expected to continue to pare its monthly asset purchases as it seeks to wind down its stimulus efforts.

In Europe, the Stoxx 600 Index ended the day with a 0.3 percent gain from the previous close, as did the UK’s FTSE 100 Index. France’s CAC 40 rose 0.3 percent, while Germany’s DAX increased 0.6 percent.

Shares in oil major BP fell 2.5 percent in London after the company said its future earnings could be hit by the increasing level of sanctions against Russia. The European Union has approved a range of new restrictions on trade with Russia including on some equipment used by the oil sector.

(BusinessDesk)

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Superu Report: Land Regulation Drives Auckland House Prices

Land use regulation is responsible for up to 56 per cent of the cost of an average house in Auckland according to a new research report quantifying the impact of land use regulations, Finance Minister Steven Joyce says. More>>

ALSO:

Fletcher Whittled: Fletcher Dumps Adamson In Face Of Dissatisfaction

Fletcher Building has taken the unusual step of dumping its chief executive, Mark Adamson, as the company slashed its full-year earnings guidance and flagged an impairment against Australian assets. More>>

ALSO:

No More Dog Docking: New Animal Welfare Regulations Progressed

“These 46 regulations include stock transport, farm husbandry, companion and working animals, pigs, layer hens and the way animals are accounted for in research, testing and teaching.” More>>

ALSO:

Employment: Most Kiwifruit Contractors Breaking Law

A Labour Inspectorate operation targeting the kiwifruit industry in Bay of Plenty has found the majority of labour hire contractors are breaching their obligations as employers. More>>

ALSO:

'Work Experience': Welfare Group Opposes The Warehouse Workfare

“This programme is about exploiting unemployed youth, not teaching them skills. The government are subsidising the Warehouse in the name of reducing benefit dependency,” says Vanessa Cole, spokesperson for Auckland Action Against Poverty. More>>

ALSO:

Internet Taxes: Labour To Target $600M In Unpaid Taxes From Multinationals

The Labour Party would target multinationals operating in New Zealand to ensure they don't avoid paying tax if it wins power and is targeting $600 million over three years through a "diverted profits tax," says leader Andrew Little. More>>

ALSO: