OVERNIGHT MARKETS AND NEWS
March E-mini S&Ps (ESH14 +0.07%) this morning are up +0.11% and European stocks are down -0.34% ahead of U.S. Feb payroll data later this morning. Losses in European stocks were muted after German Jan industrial production rose for a third month. Asian stocks closed mixed: Japan +0.92%, Hong Kong -0.19%, China -0.24%, Taiwan closed for holiday, Australia +0.30%, Singapore +0.23%, South Korea -0.11%, India +1.89%. India's S&P Sensex Stock Index rose to a record after the India Q4 current-account deficit fell to a 4-year low, while Chinese stocks closed lower when a Chinese company defaulted after it failed to pay full interest on its bonds. Commodity prices are mixed. Apr crude oil (CLJ14 +0.55%) is up +0.33%. Apr gasoline (RBJ14 unch) is down -0.13%. Apr gold (GCJ14 -0.09%) is down -0.23%. May copper (HGK14 -2.25%) is down -2.03% at a 15-week low on Chinese demand concerns after weekly Shanghai copper inventories rose +9,034 MT to a 10-1/4 month high of 207,320 MT. Agriculture and livestock prices are mostly higher. The dollar index (DXY00 -0.25%) is down -0.22% at a 4-1/4 month low. EUR/USD (^EURUSD) is up +0.30% at a 2-1/3 year high after the ECB on Thursday quashed expectations they will expand their stimulus measures. USD/JPY (^USDJPY) is down -0.13%. June T-note prices (ZNM14 +0.08%) are up +3.5 ticks.
China's Shanghai Chaori Solar Energy Science & Technology Company failed to pay full interest due today on its bonds, China's first onshore corporate bond default. Chaori's default, which occurred during the annual session of China's legislature, signals the government is willing to tolerate such failures and will back off its practice of bailing out companies with bad debt.
German Jan industrial production rose +0.8% m/m, right on expectations, and on an annual basis rose +5.0% y/y, greater than expectations of +3.9% y/y and the most in 2-1/3 years. Dec was revised upward to +0.1% m/m and +3.4% y/y from the originally reported -0.6% m/m and +2.6% y/y.
The German Jan wholesale price index fell -0.1% m/m and -1.7% y/y. Dec was revised to +0.3% m/m and -1.3% y/y from the originally reported +0.4% m/m and -1.8% y/y.
The Japan Jan leading index CI rose +0.5 to 112.2, less than expectations of +0.7 to 112.4, but still the highest in 7-years. The Jan coincident index climbed +2.5 from an upward revised 112.3 in Dec to 114.8, better than expectations of +2.9 to 114.6 and the highest in 5-3/4 years.
U.S. STOCK PREVIEW
The market consensus for today’s payroll report is +150,000, which would be relatively weak but would at least be an improvement from +113,000 in January. Meanwhile, today’s Feb unemployment rate is expected to be unchanged from January’s 5-1/2 year low of 6.6%. Today’s Jan U.S. trade deficit is expected to widen mildly to -$38.5 billion from -$38.7 billion in December. There are 2 of the Russell 1000 companies that report earnings today: Foot Locker (consensus $0.76), Big Lots (1.38). There are no equity conferences today.
OVERNIGHT U.S. STOCK MOVERS
Staples (SPLS -15.30%) was downgraded to 'Hold' from 'Buy' at Argus.
Citigroup lowered its Q3 earnings estimate for FedEx (FDX +0.28%) to $1.45 from $1.55, below the consensus of $1.54, to reflect the impact from severe winter weather.
Foot Locker (FL +0.85%) reported Q4 adjusted EPS of 82 cents, better than consensus of 76 cents.
Alon USA Energy (ALJ +2.02%) reported a Q4 EPS ex-items loss of -12 cents, a smaller loss than consensus of -15 cents.
Safeway (SWY -0.03%) fell 5% in after-hours trading after Albertsons said it will acquire the company for $40 a share.
The Fresh Market (TFM -2.13%) reported Q4 adjusted EPS of 39 cents, weaker than consensus of 42 cents, and then lowered guidance on fiscal 2014 adjusted EPS to $1.56-$1.66, below consensus of $1.67.
Piedmont Natural Gas (PNY -0.91%) reported Q1 EPS of $1.26, stronger than consensus of $1.19, and then raised guidance on fiscal 2014 EPS view to $1.80-$1.90 from $1.73-$1.83, higher than consensus of $1.80.
Lehigh Gas (LGP -0.26%) reported Q4 EPS of 25 cents, weaker than consensus of 31 cents.
Gogo (GOGO -0.25%) rose 2% in after-hours trading after SAC Capital reported a 5.1% passive stake in the company.
Thor Industries (THO +1.54%) reported Q2 continuing operations EPS of 32 cents, below consensus of 36 cents.
Cooper Companies (COO -0.60%) reported Q1 EPS of $1.47, better than consensus of $1.46.
The Gap (GPS -0.75%) fell over 5% in after-hours trading after it reported comparable same-store-sales sales for February were down 7% versus a 3% increase last year.
Mar E-mini S&Ps (ESH14 +0.07%) this morning are up +2.00 points (+0.11%). The S&P 500 on Thursday posted a new record high and closed higher. Supportive factors included (1) the -26,000 drop in U.S. weekly jobless claims to a 3-month low of 323,000, a bigger decline than expectations of -12,000, (2) signs of strength in Europe after German Jan factory orders rose +1.2% m/m (vs expectations of +0.9% m/m) and the ECB raised its Eurozone 2014 GDP forecast to +1.2% from +1.1% projected in Dec. Closes: S&P 500 +0.17%, Dow Jones +0.38%, Nasdaq 100 -0.17%.
Jun 10-year T-notes (ZNM14 +0.08%) this morning are up +3.5 ticks. Jun 10-year T-note futures prices on Thursday dropped to a 1-1/2 week low and closed lower. Bearish factors included (1) the larger-than-expected fall in weekly jobless claims to a 3-month low and (2) reduced safe-haven demand after the S&P 500 posted a record high. Closes: TYM4 -10.00, FVM4 -5.00.
The dollar index (DXY00 -0.25%) this morning is down -0.177 (-0.22%) at a 4-1/4 month low. EUR/USD (^EURUSD) is up +0.0041 (+0.30%) at a 2-1/3 year high. USD/JPY (^USDJPY) is down -0.13 (-0.13%). The dollar index on Thursday slumped to a 4-1/4 month low and closed lower. EUR/USD rose to a 2-1/4 month high after the ECB refrained from expanding stimulus and raised its Eurozone 2014 GDP forecast to +1.2% from +1.1% projected in Dec. USD/JPY rose to a 1-1/4 month high after a Japanese government advisory panel said Japan’s Government Pension Investment Fund, the world’s largest pension fund, should shift its investment focus away from Japanese bonds, which clobbered the yen: Dollar index -0.446 (-0.56%), EUR/USD +0.01278 (+0.93%), USD/JPY +0.767 (+0.75%).
Apr WTI crude oil (CLJ14 +0.55%) this morning is up +34 cents (+0.33%) and Apr gasoline (RBJ14 unch) is down -0.0038 (-0.13%). Apr crude and gasoline prices on Thursday closed higher. Apr crude recovered from a 2-week low and Apr gasoline rebounded from a 3-week low on bullish factors that included (1) the slide in the dollar index to a 4-1/4 month low, (2) the fall in U.S. weekly jobless claims to a 3-month low, and (3) the rally in the S&P 500 to a record high. Bearish factors included (1) expectations that tension between Ukraine and Russia won’t disrupt crude supplies and (2) the weaker than expected U.S Jan factory orders, a sign of weaker energy demand. Closes: CLJ4 +0.11 (+0.11%), RBJ4 +0.0052 (+0.18%).
GLOBAL EVENT CALENDAR03/07/2014
U.S. STOCK CALENDAR03/07/2014
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