Stocks decline as Fed stimulus hopes lose clout

Jobless claims jump to a one month high. Eurozone manufacturing and service output decline for the seventh straight month. China's manufacturing purchasing managers' index falls to a nine-month low.

By TheStreet Staff Aug 23, 2012 9:03AM
Updated at 9:03 a.m. ET


By Andrea Tse


Stock futures were giving up earlier gains Thursday as optimism about the potential for more accommodation from the Federal Reserve succumbed to growing concerns about global growth and a jump in jobless claims numbers.

 

Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average ($INDU) were down by 14 points at 13,142. S&P 500 ($INX) futures were down by 2.3 points at 1,410. Futures for the Nasdaq ($COMPX) 100 were falling by 4.25 points to 2,777.

 

The Labor Department reported that jobless claims for the week ended Aug. 18 rose 4,000 to 372,000, spiking to a one month high, from the previous week's upwardly revised figure of 368,000. Economists on average thought that claims would total 365,000. The four-week moving average was 368,000, an increase of 3,750 from the previous week's average of 364,250.

 

Continuing claims for the week ended Aug. 11 rose 4,000 to 3.317 million, compared with the expected 3.298 million.

 

The read on the Federal Housing Finance Agency house price index for June is also slated for 10 a.m.

 

The FTSE in London was paring gains, up 0.21%, and the DAX in Germany was retreating from positive territory, lower by 0.43%. Markit Economics said Thursday that output declined in both the manufacturing and service sectors of the eurozone for the seventh straight month in August.           

 

Meanwhile, Markit and HSBC said that the flash read on China's manufacturing purchasing managers' index fell to a nine-month low in August.

 

Earlier, the Hong Kong Hang Seng index finished up by 1.23% and the Nikkei in Japan closed up by 0.51% with the help of global stimulus optimism.   

 

Stocks got a boost late Wednesday after the minutes of the latest Federal Reserve policy meeting showed growing support for additional stimulus "fairly soon."

 

October crude oil futures were rising 76 cents at $98.02 a barrel and December gold futures were surging $24.20 at $1,664.70 an ounce.

 

The benchmark 10-year Treasury was up 1/32, diluting the yield to 1.692%. The greenback down 0.13%, according to the dollar index.

 

In corporate news, HP's (HPQ) revenue trailed Wall Street analysts' consensus forecast in the third quarter, weighed down by declining PC and printing sales.

 

HP lowered its guidance. For fiscal 2012, the company now expects earnings of $4.05 to $4.07 a share, at the low end of its previously provided outlook.

 

Rambus (RMBS), the Sunnyvale, Calif.-based technology licensing company, said after Wednesday's close that it plans to lay off 15% of its workforce as part of a restructuring.

 

Hain Celestial Group (HAIN), the Melville, New York-based natural and organic food and personal care products company, said its British subsidiary has reached a deal to buy Premier Foods' portfolio of grocery brands and a manufacturing base in the U.K.

 

Los Angeles-based Guess (GES) posted weaker quarterly results and cut its guidance.


 

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9Comments
Aug 23, 2012 9:26AM
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Have no fear, another round of QE is right around the corner.  I've been saying it for a couple months now and we are right on schedule.  Barring any "spectacular" data like +250k jobs in August, or a UE rate less than 8% or Q3 GDP growing at a whopping 2.5%, we'll get more QE.   Sad that these pathetic economic levels are still out of reach, even after all the dollars that have been printed, borrowed and spent.
Aug 23, 2012 9:53AM
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in the past 2 months i transfered an old company 401K account into the current company account.  the cash value went from $22k to $17k in the same time span......

 

basic 401K mutual fund accounts.  hardly a rock of security.  the masses of people only have this available for their "retirement savings".

 

so think about it, let's add 20, 30 years to this picture.  what's the future looking like? 

 

 

>>>>>Dark pools, High speed Traders, High Frequency Trading=Fraud Street= Do you TRUST these Criminal investment Firms with your Hard Earned Money ? If you do, I have some real estate on MARS that I would like to sell you !  TAKE YOUR MONEY AND RUN !!<<<<<<<

Aug 23, 2012 9:08AM
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Market Addicts are finally saying to Bernanke and the Fed "SHOW ME THE MONEY!!!!" on all of this stimulus talk.  Either do something or don't..... but eventually the addicts will gut you if you keep messin with them and don't come through with the goods.

Either way we're screwed......

Aug 23, 2012 9:13AM
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Angela Merkel and Francois Hollande will present a united front towards Greece at talks on Thursday, telling Athens not to expect any leeway on its bailout agreement unless it sticks to its terms.

 

Like saying if you don't clean your room we won't let you make a mess of it. The world has gone nuts.

Aug 23, 2012 9:39AM
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On that topic, Brutus......

Check this out:

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304840904577422553286744174.html?mod=googlenews_wsj

Aug 23, 2012 9:38AM
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Dark pools, High speed Traders, High Frequency Trading=Fraud Street= Do you TRUST these Criminal investment Firms with your Hard Earned Money ? If you do, I have some real estate on MARS that I would like to sell you !  TAKE YOUR MONEY AND RUN !!
Aug 23, 2012 3:33PM
avatar

Only thing that makes 401Ks attractive, usually are the "matching contributions."

 

Still many Americans, do not contribute; Other options, are same deductions to an outside IRA or a ROTH if possible?

Back in the late 80s, even with some matching, only about 30-35% of employees got in.

Those numbers have risen substancially today...And may be the only pension in the workplace a few years  out.

Times are a changing on all benefits, and all those benefits are going to the MAN.....

Aug 23, 2012 3:23PM
avatar

mENTIONED IT MORE THEN A COUPLE TIMES...Steve (found it)

 

Usually better to roll those "old 401s" out to an IRA...or rollover-IRA (no matter how small)

 

Gives you thousands of more choices..And you can invest in the same or "anything".

 

Most FAs would advise that scenario...

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