Dow off 80; Fed will keep rate rates steady
The central bank sees depressed real estate and supply disruptions from the Japanese earthquake hampering the recovery. But inflationary pressures should ease. Jabil Circuit shares jump on decent earnings. Oil and gold rise.
Updated: 8:57 p.m. ET
Stocks fell back in late-day trading after four days of gains as the Federal Reserve said it would not be raising rates any time soon. The central bank said the economy is growing, but not as fast as expected, and job growth has been weak.
The economy has been hurt by supply disruptions resulting from the Japanese earthquake in March. Plus, consumer spending has been constrained by higher food and energy prices. The commercial and residential real-estate markets are weak.
The market was flat ahead of the Fed decision. It moved lower after Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke said the central bank doesn't envision another program of buying in Treasury securities. Also, the Fed released new growth projections showing the central bank sees slower growth for 2011 and 2012.
The Dow Jones industrials ($INDU) closed down 80 points to 12,110. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index ($INX) was down 8 points at 1,287, and the Nasdaq Composite Index ($COMPX) was down 18 points at 2,669.
Article continues below.The major averages had rallied for each of the past four sessions, with the Dow up 293 points, or 2.5%, in that time.
Thursday includes the weekly jobless claims report from the Labor Department and the May report on new-home sales from the Commerce Department. In addition, earnings are due from Oracle (ORCL), Conagra (CAG) and Rite Aid (RAD).
Futures trading suggests a weak open for U.S. stocks.
Fed to end QE2
The Fed decision on rates also contained an acknowledgement that QE2 is ending on June 30. QE2 is the moniker for Quantitative Easing, part 2. That's the Fed's program of buying in Treasury securities to help boost the economy. The program started in November, and the New York Federal Reserve Bank said it would be halting its purchases of securities nest week.
The program was controversial from the start. Critics said it would prove inflationary and wouldn't help the economy. As soon as Bernanke floated the idea last summer, stock prices started to move higher and the dollar moved lower. It came as commodity prices moved sharply higher. Whether or not it succeeded is hotly debated. Joblessness is modestly improved at best. The housing market is a mess because of overbuilding and record-high foreclosures.
One piece of the current program will be extended. The Fed will use principal repayments on the securities it owns to buy more Treasury securities.
There was a hint in the Fed's statement today that it might try another buying program. But only if the economy show signs of accelerating weakness.
|Energy prices -- New York close|
|Wed.||Tues.||Month chg.||YTD chg.|
|Crude oil (-CL)||$95.41||$94.17||-7.10%||4.41%|
|Heating oil (-HO)||$2.95||$2.89||-3.21%||16.17%|
|Natural gas (-NG)||$4.32||$4.39||-7.48%||-2.00%|
|(per mil. BTU)|
|Unleaded gasoline (-RB)||$2.97||$2.88||-5.62%||21.20%|
|(per gallon; AAA)|
FedEx cheers Wall Street
FedEx (FDX) shares were up 2.6% to $91.44 after the package shipper forecast full-year earnings that may top analysts’ estimates as global shipping demand climbs. Earnings for the 2012 fiscal year will climb to $6.35 to $6.85 a share, the company said today. The consensus Street estimate is $6.50 a share. Rival United Parcel Service (UPS) was 0.7% higher to $71.11.
Commodity prices were higher, with crude oil (-CL) in New York settling up $1.24 to $95.41 a barrel on a report showing smaller-than-expected domestic oil supplies. AAA's Daily Fuel Gauge Report showed the national average retail price of gasoline at $3.626 a gallon, down from Tuesday's $3.637.
Gold (-GC) settled up $7 to $1,553.40 an ounce on worries about the euro and Greece. Silver (-SI) settled up 36 cents to $36.739 an ounce. Copper moved down slightly to $4.088 a pound.
The dollar was higher against major currencies; the U.S. Dollar Index settled up 0.257 to 75.19. The index measures the greenback against a basket of currencies, with the euro the biggest weight.
Interest rates were mixed. The 10-year Treasury yield finished at 2.993%, up from Tuesday's 2.985%.
Adobe down, Jabil Circuit up
Adobe Systems (ADBE) shares were down 6.3% to $30.01. The stock was the biggest decliner among S&P 500 stocks. The largest maker of graphic-design software said third-quarter profit may be as low as 50 cents a share. The Street has been estimating 54 cents.
Jabil Circuit (JBL) was up up 3.2% to $19.45, third-best among S&P 500 stocks. The maker of printed circuit boards and other products may buy back as much as $200 million of its shares. In addition. Jabil's third-quarter earnings and revenue beat Street estimates.
In the day's big deal, Dentsply International (XRAY) shares were up 1.9% to $38.32. The company agreed to pay $1.8 billion for AstraZeneca's (AZN) Astra Tech unit, a Swedish manufacturer of dental prosthetics and medical devices. With the deal, Dentsply will become the world’s third-biggest maker of teeth implants.
There was an initial public offering that began trading today. Vanguard Health Systems (VHS), up 0.3% to $18.05. The hospital operator controlled by Blackstone Group (BX) sold 25 million shares at $18 each, raising $450 million, in its initial public offering.
Boeing (BA), down 2.5% to $72.12, was the laggard. One reason: American Airlines, the operating arm of AMR (AMR), was reportedly looking at buying at least 100 narrow-body planes from Airbus. The Airbus 320s would replace MD-80s and Boeing 757s.
Airbus is owned by European Aeronautic Defence And Space (EADSY), whose U.S. shares rose 1.2% to $31.60.
Apple (AAPL) was off 0.8% to $322.61, despite news reports that the company plans to introduce a new iPhone in September that boasts a stronger chip for processing data and a more advanced camera. In addition, the index was held back by weakness in Google (GOOG), Oracle, Adobe, Intel (INTC) and Amazon.com (AMZN).
Leaders and laggards
Aerovironment (AVAV), up 20.6% to $34.51, tops among stocks in the Russell 2000 Index (RUT.X). The maker of low-flying drones for U.S. military forces said 2012 earnings will be at least $1.28 a share. Analysts have been projecting $1.23.
CarMax (KMX), up 7% to $32.66, the biggest gainer among S&P 500 stocks. The largest U.S. seller of used cars reported first-quarter revenue of $2.68 billion, beating the Street estimate of $2.53 billion.
Pilgrim’s Pride (PPC), up 15.6% to $5.40. BB&T Capital Markets analyst Heather Jones raised the chicken producer to "buy" from "hold" and set the 12-month share-price estimate at $7.50.
Royal Philips Electronics (PHG) slumped 10.3% to $23.36. The world’s biggest maker of light bulbs said it needs to deepen a cost-cutting program to combat deteriorating demand for lighting and consumer electronics. Cree (CREE), a maker of energy-efficient lighting, slipped 1.3% to $33.56.
Western Refining (WNR), up 10.8% to $17.52. Deutsche Bank raised the refineries operator to “buy” from “hold” and increased the 12-month share-price estimate to $24 from $15, citing renegotiated debt terms.
|Short hits from the markets -- New York close|
|Wed.||Tues.||Month chg.||YTD chg.|
|13-week Treasury bill||0.01%||0.03%||-80.00%||-91.67%|
|5-year Treasury note||1.54%||1.55%||-8.47%||-23.36%|
|10-year Treasury note||2.99%||2.99%||-1.87%||-9.44%|
|30-year Treasury bond||4.22%||4.22%||-0.02%||-3.37%|
|U.S. Dollar Index||75.188||74.931||0.66%||-5.17%|
|(in U.S. $)|
|U.S. $ in pounds||£0.62||£0.62||2.44%||-2.93%|
|Euro in dollars||$1.44||$1.44||-0.50%||7.34%|
|(in U.S. $)|
|U.S. $ in euros||€ 0.70||€ 0.69||0.51%||-6.84%|
|U.S. $ in yen||80.52||80.23||-1.37%||-1.05%|
|U.S. $ in Chinese||6.49||6.46||-0.25%||-1.96%|
|(in U.S. $)|
|(in Canadian $)|
|(per troy ounce)|
|(per troy ounce)|
|Crude oil (-CL)||$95.41||$94.17||-7.10%||4.41%|
Does anyone else think that possibly a big part of our economic woes might be the price of oil? That it's quite possible that people can't afford to go out & spend money because all of their money is going back into their fuel tanks just so they can get to work. I know my business profits have been ransacked by the fuel bill. I know it's a big reason as to why I can't invest in new equipment or hire additional personal.
Pretty much Bernanke is admitting that the US economy is still dead and has been in ICU since the crash by keeping rates at zero.
Get ready for twenty years of going down down down like Japan folks.
Until manufacturing comes back in a big way to America we are doomed.
The government is running huge deficits as nobody is working and paying taxes. And those who are getting income the super rich are not paying any taxes at all.
The baby boomers have started to retire in the millions each year now and between them and the jobless and the smart ones will be raiding their 401k pension plans to live on.
State and local governments are going to have dump all their pension funds as more and more of their employees leave befopre their benefits are cut. Another reason teh stock market is going to go down down down.
Pretty much there is no good news out there.
Japan is in a recession and broke
Europe is in a recession and broke trying to bail out other broke economies
Africa well Africa is Africa.
South America -- well the drug lords are the only ones making money.
Australia is in a recession
Middle east is about to explode in all out war. We are going to attack Syria soon which will mean they will attack Israel which means Israel will attack all the Arab states and then things will go into a nuclear war.
China is starving to death due to no crops last year , this year from drought and now floods and their workers are rebelling now.
N. Korea is building more atomic bombs to use on South Korea.
Vietnam is about ready to go to war with China over who owns the South China Sea.
Rest of Aisa is a basket case. India is over crowded and can not feed it's people like China.
Pretty much there is no one out there to buy US T-bills.
Doesn't matter if Congress raises the debt ceiling as no one but Bernanke is buying US T-bills.
The US has been in default of it's national debt for about five years now.
Pretty much the Wall Street bankers are about ready to pull the plug on everyone and bankrupt us all.
Have a Great Day
FED SEES WEAK ECONOMY AND KEEPS LOW INTEREST RATES
.............because those low rates have saved the economy so well for these last 6 or so years!
I guess this is where I should remind the Fed of the definition of insanity!
Here is a good one..............MSN home page questions: DECLARE A WIN IN AFGANISTAN?
What exactly is the prize of a win in afganistan..........to get to pay for the evolution from 5th century society to a 10th century with our lives and our money?????????
Get out ..........yesterday!
Was anyone a dumba** enough to think they would? The US is a veritable financial train wreck and the last thing the FED needs to do is raise interested rates. Tant amount to poring gasoline on an electrical fire.
What they need to do is change their measure of core inflation rates and get a real handle on what is compounding the financial disaster in this country. Food up 4.9%, Clothing 6.25% petrol products or anything even closely related to petrol up zillion%, medical costs 9.8% higher education 4.9%. You take these basic necessity items compound them with a REAL unemployment rate of about 21% my estimate and then throw in, for good measure those that are underemployed.......who knows how many and you have one hell of a mess.
I did not vote for Mr. Obama but became a supporter later. However I have begun to wonder if he and his team of financial experts really have a handle on what is happening out here OR if Mr. Obama has in his own mind determined that the cycle of economic change just did not happen on his watch and he has resigned himself to being a one term president?
Not that anything that has or is intending on running for the position has anything better to offer or any real idea of what is wrong either.
What other industry has seen no inflation in their input costs? If it wasn't for the quest of putting a bank branch on every corner, what would they even have for costs?
More of the government trying to control our economy.
Was the Fed originally intended just as an emergency back stop for the banks?
Because now they try to manage the economy with monetary policy and interest rates.
We should probably end the Fed period, but if we allow it to exist, going forward it should be a rarely seen and rarely used emergency usage only bank. Emergencies would not include corporations about to go under, including major banks. Let those who fail in the market, fail.
The US economy had the finished cars it needed and could not sell enough. The US had the shelves stocked in the stores of all of the electronics and could not sell enough. The US had homes for sale and could not sell enough. The US had available bodies to employ but did not need them.
March, April, and May were what they were on the merits of the economy that preceded it the past years.
The market is only an indicator of were investments are being stored on any given day; stocks, commodities, currencies, etc.
Right now it is a tough economy. Choose wisely.
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[BRIEFING.COM] At midday, the S&P 500 trades with a gain of 0.5%.
Equities jumped to session highs as Ben Bernanke's testimony before the Joint Economic Committee assured investors of the Fed's intent to maintain its current policy course.
During his remarks, Chairman Bernanke said premature tightening of monetary policy could stall the pace of recovery. This followed weeks of conflicting remarks from FOMC members, which sparked speculation regarding possible changes to ... More
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