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posted on 03 February 2017

Investing,com Weekly Wrap-up 03 February 2017

Written by , Investing.com

U.S. stocks higher at close of trade; Dow Jones Industrial Average up 0.94%

U.S. stocks were higher after the close on Friday, as gains in the Financials, Oil & Gas and Industrials sectors led shares higher.

At the close in NYSE, the Dow Jones Industrial Average added 0.94%, while the S&P 500 ndex climbed 0.73%, and the NASDAQ Composite index gained 0.54%.

The best performers of the session on the Dow Jones Industrial Average were Visa Inc (NYSE:V), which rose 4.59% or 3.78 points to trade at 86.08 at the close. Meanwhile, Goldman Sachs Group Inc (NYSE:GS) added 4.57% or 10.54 points to end at 240.95 and JPMorgan Chase & Co (NYSE:JPM) was up 3.06% or 2.59 points to 87.18 in late trade.

The worst performers of the session were Nike Inc (NYSE:NKE), which fell 0.83% or 0.44 points to trade at 52.36 at the close. Caterpillar Inc (NYSE:CAT) declined 0.52% or 0.49 points to end at 93.28 and Procter & Gamble Company (NYSE:PG) was down 0.40% or 0.35 points to 87.41.

The top performers on the S&P 500 were Mettler-Toledo International Inc (NYSE:MTD) which rose 6.69% to 462.67, Macy’s Inc (NYSE:M) which was up 6.41% to settle at 32.69 and Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) which gained 5.46% to close at 44.43.

The worst performers were Hanesbrands Inc (NYSE:HBI) which was down 16.42% to 18.98 in late trade, Freeport-McMoran Copper & Gold Inc (NYSE:FCX) which lost 5.83% to settle at 15.83 and Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc (NYSE:CMG) which was down 4.54% to 404.08 at the close.

The top performers on the NASDAQ Composite were Sevcon Inc (NASDAQ:SEV) which rose 48.46% to 13.51, Zais Group Holdings Inc (NASDAQ:ZAIS) which was up 42.53% to settle at 2.480 and Cerulean Ph (NASDAQ:CERU) which gained 39.63% to close at 1.300.

The worst performers were Power Solutions International Inc (NASDAQ:PSIX) which was down 62.42% to 2.80 in late trade, Benitec Biopharma Ltd (NASDAQ:BNTC) which lost 28.80% to settle at 2.6700 and Interpace Diagnostics Group Inc (NASDAQ:IDXG) which was down 26.85% to 3.1600 at the close.

Rising stocks outnumbered declining ones on the New York Stock Exchange by 2458 to 766 and 36 ended unchanged; on the Nasdaq Stock Exchange, 1820 rose and 709 declined, while 97 ended unchanged.

Shares in Mettler-Toledo International Inc (NYSE:MTD) rose to all time highs; gaining 6.69% or 29.03 to 462.67. Shares in Hanesbrands Inc (NYSE:HBI) fell to 52-week lows; falling 16.42% or 3.73 to 18.98. Shares in Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) rose to 5-year highs; rising 5.46% or 2.30 to 44.43. Shares in Visa Inc (NYSE:V) rose to all time highs; gaining 4.59% or 3.78 to 86.08. Shares in Sevcon Inc (NASDAQ:SEV) rose to 52-week highs; gaining 48.46% or 4.41 to 13.51. Shares in Power Solutions International Inc (NASDAQ:PSIX) fell to all time lows; losing 62.42% or 4.65 to 2.80.

The CBOE Volatility Index, which measures the implied volatility of S&P 500 options, was down 8.72% to 10.89.

Gold Futures for April delivery was up 0.14% or 1.65 to $1221.05 a troy ounce. Elsewhere in commodities trading, Crude oil for delivery in March rose 0.54% or 0.29 to hit $53.83 a barrel, while the April Brent oil contract rose 0.42% or 0.24 to trade at $56.80 a barrel.

EUR/USD was up 0.21% to 1.0782, while USD/JPY fell 0.16% to 112.62.

Read additional news from Reuters at Investing.com.

Forex

The dollar dropped on Friday in the U.S. as fresh sanction by Washington on Iran led to safe-haven demand for the Japanese yen and gold.

The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, fell 0.11% to 99.72. USD/JPY changed hands at 112.61, down 0.17% on safe-haven demand, while AUD/USD traded at 0.7684, up 0.35% and GBP/USD dipped 0.34% to 1.2481.

The U.S. Treasury Department sanctioned more than two dozen Iranian, Chinese, and Emirati businesses and persons for supporting Iran’s ballistic missile program and named officers and business executives tied to Iran’s elite military unit, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, for their suspected role in aiding the Lebanese militia, Hezbollah, and Tehran’s defense industries.

U.S. officials said the sanctions, the first issued against Iran in more than a year, didn’t violate the landmark nuclear agreement Tehran reached with the U.S. and other world powers in 2015. President Donald Trump issued a cryptic tweet after the sanctions:

"Iran is playing with fire - they don't appreciate how "kind" President Obama was to them. Not me!"

Overnight, the dollar turned lower against other major currencies on Friday, re-approaching a two-and-a-half month low after a string of U.S. data painted a mixed picture of the economy.

The Institute of Supply Management said its non-manufacturing purchasing managers’ index ticked down to 56.5 in January from 56.6 the previous month. Analysts had expected the index to rise to 57.0 last month.

A separate report showed that U.S. factory orders increased by 1.3% in December, beating expectations for a 1.0% rise. The data came after the U.S. Department of Labor said the economy added 227,000 jobs in January, exceeding expectations for an increase of 175,000, The economy added 157,000 jobs in December, whose figure was revised from a previously estimated gain of 156,000.

However, the report also showed that the U.S. unemployment rate ticked up to 4.8% last month from 4.7% in December. Analysts had expected for an unchanged reading in January.

Data also showed that U.S. average hourly earnings rose 0.1% in January, disappointing expectations for an increase of 0.3%.

Sentiment on the greenback has been under pressure in recent weeks as U.S. President Donald Trump’s protectionist policies and immigration bans spur uncertainty in global markets.

CTFC Commitment of Traders

This week speculators were less bearish on on euro and yen; Crude Oil Net Longs reached yet another at All-Time. Bullishness on the S&P 500 was steady, while gold increased bullish sentiment.

Note: This data is for the week ending on Tuesday so the last three days of trading are not reflected.

cot.2017.jan.31

Gold

Gold prices rose in the U.S. on Friday as fresh U.S. sanctions on Iran added to geopolitical concerns and a soft U.S. jobs report clouded the outlook for as many as three rate hikes this year forecast by the Fed.

Gold Futures for April delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange rose 0.11% to $1,220.75 a troy ounce. Copper futures slumped 2.55% on the Comex to $2.617 as BHP Billiton (LON:BLT)'s Escondida mine in Chile, the world's biggest copperoperation, has resumed work as the company has requested government mediation to avoid a looming strike.

The U.S. Treasury Department sanctioned more than two dozen Iranian, Chinese, and Emirati businesses and persons for supporting Iran’s ballistic missile program and named officers and business executives tied to Iran’s elite military unit, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, for their suspected role in aiding the Lebanese militia, Hezbollah, and Tehran’s defense industries.

U.S. officials said the sanctions, the first issued against Iran in more than a year, didn’t violate the landmark nuclear agreement Tehran reached with the U.S. and other world powers in 2015. President Donald Trump issued a cryptic tweet after the sanctions:

"Iran is playing with fire - they don't appreciate how "kind" President Obama was to them. Not me!"

Friday's report showed that January non-farm payrolls rose by 227,000 jobs, the largest gain in four months. But the unemployment rate rose one-tenth of a percentage point to 4.8 percent and wages increased modestly, suggesting there was still some slack in the labor market that would keep inflation in check.

On Wednesday, the Federal Reserve held its fire on interest rates as widely expected on Wednesday, but was optimistic on the outlook for the economy in keeping its benchmark overnight lending rate target at 0.5% to 0.75% following a 25 basis point hike in December.

the committee said in its statement, using new language that jibes with voices on Wall Street following the election of Donald Trump as president:

“Measures of consumer and business sentiment have improved of late. Job gains remained solid and the unemployment rate stayed near its recent low."

The statement was reflecting just a minor tweak from language at the December meeting.

Oil

Oil prices settled higher in the U.S. on Friday as fresh sanctions on Iran imposed by the U.S. Treasury were seen as a first salvo in a wider split, while an increase in oil drilling in the U.S. held gains in check.

Rising tension between Iran and the U.S. over a ballistic missile test by Tehran this week has led to some sharp words from the White House on Thursday.

In response, the U.S. Treasury Department sanctioned more than two dozen Iranian, Chinese, and Emirati businesses and persons for supporting Iran’s ballistic missile program and named officers and business executives tied to Iran’s elite military unit, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, for their suspected role in aiding the Lebanese militia, Hezbollah, and Tehran’s defense industries.

U.S. officials said the sanctions, the first issued against Iran in more than a year, didn’t violate the landmark nuclear agreement Tehran reached with the U.S. and other world powers in 2015. President Donald Trump issued a cryptic tweet after the sanctions:

"Iran is playing with fire - they don't appreciate how "kind" President Obama was to them. Not me!"

Meanwhile, oil rigs in the U.s. rose by 17 to 583 at the end of last week, oilfield services firm Baker Hughes said on Friday, reaching the most since the week of Oct. 23, 2015.

The number of gas-only rigs held steady at 145. This brings the total number of active oil and gas rigs to 729, an increase of 17. The total count is now higher by 158 from a year-ago, while the oil-only is in positive territory over the same time period by 144 rigs.

Last week the oil-rig count rose by 15 to 566, while the total rig count increased by 18 to 712.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, crude oil for delivery in March rose 0.54% to $53.83 a barrel, while on the Intercontinental Exchange in London, Brent oil for March delivery gained 0.44% to 56.81 a barrel. Markets in China reopened on Friday after a week-long break and a private survey released in the day showed a slip dip in manufacturing activity.

The China Caixin manufacturing purchasing managers' index (PMI) for January slowed from December, missing a Reuters poll forecast, but continued to show the mainland's economy was recovering. The reading on Thursday came in at 51.0 in January, down from December's 47-month record of 51.9 and below a Reuters' poll forecast for 51.8. A reading above 50 indicates expansion, while a reading below signals contraction.

On Tuesday, the official manufacturing PMI came in at 51.3 for January, down a smidgen from 51.4 in December, but still better than a Reuters poll forecast of 51.2. The official figures tend to focus on larger companies, while the private China Caixin PMI focuses on smaller and medium-sized firms.

On Thursday, Russia's energy ministry said January output fell by 100,000 bpd, less than hoped for but in the right direction, and Iraq has also moved to trim output at least in spirit. Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak however said that overall OPEC and non-OPEC nations have trimmed 1.4 million barrels-per-day (bpd) of crude supplies to the market in January under a coordinated effort to cut nearly 1.8 million bpd on verages in the first half of 2017.

As well, the gains came even after crude oil inventories in the U.S. showed a higher than expected 6.5 million barrels build at the end of last week, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) said on Thursday, well above the 2.6 million barrels build seen while stocks at the Cushing, Oklahoma, hub rose by 530,000 barrels.

Gasoline stocks rose by 3.87 million barrels and distillate supplies rose by 1.57 million barrels. The American Petroleum Institute (API) said late Tuesday that crude inventories jumped 5.8 million barrels at the end of last week, while distillate stocks rose 2.3 million barrels and gasoline supplies by 2.9 million barrels and stocks at Cushing fell by 900,000 barrels.

Natural gas for March delivery on the New York Mercantile Exchange fell 3.98% to $3.060 per million British thermal units. See next section for yesterday's weekly report.

Natural Gas (Thursday Report)

U.S. natural gas futures were lower on Thursday, holding on to losses after data showed that natural gas supplies in storage in the U.S. fell broadly in line with expectations last week.

Natural gas for March delivery on the New York Mercantile Exchange dipped 4.3 cents, or about 1.4%, to $3.129 per million British thermal units by 10:33AM ET (15:33GMT). Futures were at around $3.130 prior to the release of the supply data.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration said in its weekly report that natural gas storage in the U.S. declined by 87 billion cubic feet in the week ended January 27, compared to market expectations for a drop of 88 billion cubic feet.

That compares with a withdrawal of 119 billion cubic feet in the preceding week, 152 billion a year earlier and a five-year average drop of 166 billion cubic feet.

Total natural gas in storage currently stands at 2.711 trillion cubic feet, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, 9.8% lower than levels at this time a year ago and within the five-year average for this time of year.

Meanwhile, forecasts for warmer weather in key regions across the U.S. during the next few weeks weighed on heating demand expectations.

Natural gas markets have been volatile in recent weeks, changing course rapidly in response to shifting outlooks in short-term weather patterns.

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