Dow falls 139 despite improved jobs picture
A rising dollar, weak Chevron earnings and stress on Apple shares slam stocks. The national unemployment rate ticks up to 7.9% as more people look for work. Oil and gold sag. Starbucks jumps nearly 10%. Restoration Hardware soars after its IPO.
Employers added 171,000 jobs in October, but the unemployment rate ticked up slightly to 7.9%, the Labor Department announced today.
While the jobs report was basically good, stocks slumped this afternoon on weakness in Chevron (CVX), Apple (AAPL) and IBM (IBM) and a host of property-casualty companies that face big claims from Superstorm Sandy.
In addition, the dollar moved higher on the jobs report, as traders worried that the Federal Reserve might pull back on its low-interest rate policy. Energy and materials stocks were lower. Gold (-GC) fell below $1,700 for the first time since early September.
The losses wiped out weekly gains for the Dow Jones industrials ($INDU) and the Nasdaq Composite Index ($COMPX).
The Dow closed down 139 points to 13,093. The blue chips had been up as many as 57 points early in the session. Today's decline more than undid Thursday's 136-point gain. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index ($INX) was off 13 points to 1,414. The Nasdaq dropped 38 points to 2,982.
Article continues below.The Nasdaq-100 Index ($NDX) was off 31 points to 2,656.
Apple was off $19.74 to $576.80. The new iPad Mini went on sale today. The selling in the shares accelerated after they fell below $588, their 200-day moving average. Apple is down 18% since peaking in mid-September at $702.10, though it is still up 42.4% for the year.
About 77 points of the Dow's loss was concentrated in four stocks: IBM, Chevron, Caterpillar (CAT) and Exxon Mobil (XOM). Only four of the 30 Dow stock were higher: Bank of America (BAC), Walt Disney (DIS), Merck (MRK) and McDonald's (MCD).
In addition, Verizon Communications (VZ) fell 62 cents to $44.52 after it said in a regulatory filing that it expects the costs of restoring service and making extensive repairs to its land and mobile networks after Superstorm Sandy will have a "significant" impact on fourth-quarter results.
For the week, the Dow was off 0.1%, its third loss in the last four weeks. The S&P 500 added 0.2%. The Nasdaq dropped 0.2%, its fourth straight weekly decline. For the year, the Dow is up 7.1%, with the S&P 500 up 9.6% and the Nasdaq up 14.5%.
|Markets for the week|
|11/2/2012||10/26/2012||% chg.||YTD chg.|
|U.S. Dollar Index||80.68||80.16||0.66%||0.20%|
A solid jobs report
The jobs report was solid, if not spectacular. It is the last big economic report before Tuesday's presidential election.
Most pollsters say the result is too close to call, although Intrade, the online betting site, put the odds of a win for President Barack Obama at roughly 66.8%, up slightly from Thursday. Mitt Romney's odds were 33.3%, down from 34% on Thursday.
In addition to the 171,000 overall gain in jobs, the Labor Department revised estimates for overall job gains in August and September higher by 84,000.
The payroll gains came from the private sector, which added 184,000 jobs, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said. That was the biggest gain since February. Government employment fell by 13,000.
The unemployment rate ticked up to 7.9% from September's 7.8% because more people were looking for work.
Private service providing jobs were up 163,000, with retail trade adding 36,400 jobs.
Temporary-help services, often a harbinger of future full-time hiring, added 13,600 jobs, more than reversing the previous month's decline.
The construction sector saw an increase of 17,000 jobs, the largest rise since January. But residential construction fell back by 2,000 jobs to 560,000. That reflects the struggles of the housing industry.
Despite the current uptick in job creation, the U.S. economy faces a real threat of a renewed recession next year.
Without action by lawmakers, existing legislation will raise taxes and cut spending to the tune of about $600 billion in 2013. That scenario -- known in Washington as the fiscal cliff -- could easily cause the economy to contract.
Crude oil, gold take a tumble
Crude oil (-CL) in New York settled down $2.23 to $84.86 a barrel, the lowest close since July 10. Wholesale gasoline futures (-RB) were down 2.3% to $2.5736 a gallon. Brent crude dropped $2.49 to $105.68. .
The national average price of gasoline was at $3.496 a gallon, according to AAA's Daily Fuel Gauge Report, down from Thursday's $3.507. That's the lowest average price since July 30, when it was $3.486.
Gold tumbled $1,675.20 an ounce in New York, down $40.30. It was the biggest one-day drop for the metal since June 21 and the lowest close since Aug. 30.
|Energy prices -- New York close|
|Fri.||Thur.||Month chg.||YTD chg.|
|Crude oil (-CL)||$84.86||$87.09||-1.60%||-14.14%|
|Heating oil (-HO)||$2.9474||$3.0332||-3.75%||1.14%|
|Natural gas (-NG)||$3.5540||$3.6990||-3.74%||18.90%|
|(per mil. BTU)|
|Unleaded gasoline (-RB)||$2.5736||$2.6336||-2.16%||-3.15%|
|(per gallon; AAA)|
Restoration Hardware has a strong IPO
Despite the slump, home-furnishings retailer Restoration Hardware (RH) went public at $24 late Thursday and closed at $31.10, up $7.10. It reached as high as $33.15.
Starbucks (SBUX) shares jumped $4.22 to $50.84 after reporting strong earnings late Thursday and boosting its dividend to 21 cents a share, up from 17 cents.
The market's response today was a disappointment after Thursday's rally, which saw the Dow jump 136 points in the market's best performance since September.
Why Chevron missed
The oil giant missed Street estimates on earnings and revenues, blaming lower crude prices and a heavy period of planned oilfield maintenance. Shares were down $3.09 to $108.37.
Worldwide daily production was 2.52 million barrels of oil equivalent, down from 2. 6 million a day a year ago. Plus, the average sales price of crude oil and natural gas liquids was $91 vs. $97 a year ago.
Downstream operations earned $456 million, down from $704 million a year ago.
Starbucks' strong report
Starbucks shares jumped because global comparable-store sales rose 6%, with a 5% increase in traffic and a 1% increase in average ticket contributing.
The company saw 10% growth in its China/Asia Pacific business. Europe lagged. The company grew its operating margin by 210 basis points (one basis is one one-hundredth of a percentage point) to 21.4% from 21.19%.
|Short hits from the markets -- New York close|
|Fri.||Thur.||Month chg.||YTD chg.|
|13-week Treasury bill||0.0900%||0.090%||-18.18%||800.00%|
|5-year Treasury note||0.728%||0.728%||1.82%||-12.29%|
|10-year Treasury note||1.726%||1.715%||2.37%||-7.75%|
|30-year Treasury bond||2.917%||2.897%||2.31%||0.97%|
|U.S. Dollar Index||80.683||80.136||0.87%||0.20%|
|(in U.S. $)|
|U.S. $ in pounds||£0.624||£0.620||0.68%||-3.06%|
|Euro in dollars||$1.28||$1.29||-0.98%||-0.94%|
|(in U.S. $)|
|U.S. $ in euros||€ 0.779||€ 0.773||0.99%||0.95%|
|U.S. $ in yen||80.58||80.15||0.98%||4.51%|
|U.S. $ in Chinese||6.27||6.24||0.52%||-0.95%|
|(in U.S. $)|
|(in Canadian $)|
|(per troy ounce)|
|(per troy ounce)|
|Crude oil (-CL)||$84.86||$87.090||-1.60%||-14.14%|
Less than a week before the presidential election, Christie will host Obama in New Jersey to survey Sandy damage. The governor created a buzz after saying this week that he had no intention of bringing the GOP nominee to the Garden State to survey storm damage first-hand.Folks don’t know the situation here following the storm,” a Christie adviser told POLITICO when asked if the governor is unhappy with the GOP nominee
Christie has been a frequent campaigner and fundraiser for Romney, appearing with him most recently in Ohio. Christie cancelled campaign appearances for Romney in Nevada that had been slated to occur on Tuesday after it was clear the storm was headed to his state.
The governor told Fox News that he has bigger things to worry about than the campaign.
“I have no idea, nor am I the least bit concerned or interested,” he said when asked if Romney would visit. “I’ve got a job to do here in New Jersey that’s much bigger than presidential politics, and I could care less about any of that stuff.”
Team Romney Admits “Relief” Event Was Staged for Political Reasons
I also found this part of the story fascinating. The Romney campaign admits that the intent behind the rally was swing state election visibility, not hurricane relief:
But Boston wasn’t quite ready to lose a full day of swing state visibility with a week left in the race. So, after some deliberation, the campaign decided to use their existing venue in Ohio to stage a makeshift, and nonpartisan, humanitarian project. It would be a way for Romney to show leadership — and get on the local news — without looking craven or opportunistic.
They weren’t willing to lose a day’s visibility in a swing state, so they came up with the event and crafted it in a way that would still get them political benefit, but would camouflage the intent. So, as I predicted, Team Romney saw Hurricane Sandy – saw the imminent peril of tens of millions of Americans – as a political "opportunity" to exploit.
To funny as Chris Christie is being interviewed by fox. The question was asked would you allow Romney to tour NJ with you. Just before Christie could answer you could see just under Christie the announcement that Romney would be touring Sandy with Christie.
The funny part is Christe answered by saying
I have no idea, nor am I the least bit concerned or interested,” he said. “I’ve got a job to do here in New Jersey that’s much bigger than Presidential politics, and I could care less about any of that stuff.”
I heard today that after Obama left the photo-op with the traitor Chris Crisco, he flew to Lost Vegas and was a Whale on the tables.
When asked how he could justify betting billions of taxpayers dollars, he stated that he was planning for a early retirement...yuk yuk.
Bloomberg Endorses Obama, Citing Climate Change
Mr. Bloomberg, a political independent in his third term leading New York City, has been sharply critical of both Mr. Obama, a Democrat, and Mitt Romney, the president’s Republican rival, saying that both men have failed to candidly confront the problems afflicting the nation. But he said he had decided over the past several days that Mr. Obama was the best candidate to tackle the global climate change that the mayor believes contributed to the violent storm, which took the lives of at least 38 New Yorkers and caused billions of dollars in damage.
But you forgot to report that 172,000 more jobless claims were (un)reported, hence, the spike in unemployment. Great reporting on your behalf sir.
I guess you are voting for O. Good luck with that.
"A punk- is a person who has a bone to pick with the profit driven world"
Ya got that right...i means to do anything possible to sink the corporate thieves (Madoff, Hedge Funds, Broker houses, Bush, Paulsen etc.) and slimeballs who pilfered this once great country.
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[BRIEFING.COM] The stock market finished an upbeat week on a mixed note. The S&P 500 added just over a point, holding its weekly gain at 1.0% while the Nasdaq lost 0.4%.
The major averages began the day on an upbeat note, but relinquished their opening gains during the first 90 minutes of action. The early sentiment was boosted by a better-than-expected nonfarm payrolls report for February (175K versus Briefing.com consensus 163K), but a closer look into the report suggested that ... More
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