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posted on 23 June 2017

Investing.com Weekly Wrap-Up 23 June 2017

Written by , Investing.com

U.S. stocks mixed at close of trade; Dow Jones Industrial Average down 0.01%

U.S. stocks were mixed after the close on Friday, as gains in the Oil & Gas, Technology and Industrials sectors led shares higher while losses in the Utilities, Telecomsand Financials sectors led shares lower.

At the close in NYSE, the Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 0.01%, while the S&P 500 index added 0.16%, and the NASDAQ Composite index gained 0.46%.


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The best performers of the session on the Dow Jones Industrial Average were Visa Inc (NYSE:V), which rose 1.73% or 1.62 points to trade at 95.58 at the close. Meanwhile, Boeing Co (NYSE:BA) added 1.40% or 2.79 points to end at 202.23 and Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) was up 1.35% or 0.95 points to 71.21 in late trade.

The worst performers of the session were Home Depot Inc (NYSE:HD), which fell 2.68% or 4.17 points to trade at 151.31 at the close. Goldman Sachs Group Inc (NYSE:GS) declined 1.17% or 2.58 points to end at 217.19 and Wal-Mart Stores Inc (NYSE:WMT) was down 0.90% or 0.68 points to 74.84.

The top performers on the S&P 500 were Frontier Communications Corporation (NASDAQ:FTR) which rose 8.93% to 1.22, EQT Corporation (NYSE:EQT) which was up 8.00% to settle at 56.19 and Southwestern Energy Company (NYSE:SWN) which gained 4.23% to close at 5.79.

The worst performers were Bed Bath & Beyond Inc (NASDAQ:BBBY) which was down 12.12% to 29.65 in late trade, Sysco Corporation (NYSE:SYY) which lost 5.42% to settle at 49.92 and Whirlpool Corporation (NYSE:WHR) which was down 3.32% to 188.68 at the close.

The top performers on the NASDAQ Composite were AVEO Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:AVEO) which rose 71.75% to 1.2500, Marathon Patent Group Inc (NASDAQ:MARA) which was up 52.27% to settle at 0.335 and Portola Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:PTLA) which gained 46.75% to close at 56.13.

The worst performers were Top Ships Inc (NASDAQ:TOPS) which was down 66.67% to 0.8000 in late trade, Sphere 3D Corp (NASDAQ:ANY) which lost 33.31% to settle at 0.171 and Delcath Systems Inc (NASDAQ:DCTH) which was down 32.26% to 0.1600 at the close.

Rising stocks outnumbered declining ones on the New York Stock Exchange by 2146 to 1064 and 35 ended unchanged; on the Nasdaq Stock Exchange, 1623 rose and 912 declined, while 81 ended unchanged.

Shares in Bed Bath & Beyond Inc (NASDAQ:BBBY) fell to 5-year lows; falling 12.12% or 4.09 to 29.65. Shares in Boeing Co (NYSE:BA) rose to all time highs; rising 1.40% or 2.79 to 202.23. Shares in AVEO Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:AVEO) rose to 52-week highs; up 71.75% or 0.5222 to 1.2500. Shares in Portola Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:PTLA) rose to 52-week highs; rising 46.75% or 17.88 to 56.13.

The CBOE Volatility Index, which measures the implied volatility of S&P 500 options, was down 3.91% to 10.07.

Gold Futures for August delivery was up 0.66% or 8.21 to $1257.61 a troy ounce. Elsewhere in commodities trading, Crude oil for delivery in August rose 0.89% or 0.38 to hit $43.12 a barrel, while the August Brent oil contract rose 1.02% or 0.46 to trade at $45.68 a barrel.

EUR/USD was up 0.40% to 1.1197, while USD/JPY fell 0.03% to 111.30.

The US Dollar Index Futures was down 0.31% at 96.96.

See also:

Read more news from Reuters at Investing.com: Tech shares boost Nasdaq; energy stocks rebound.

Forex

The dollar fell against a basket of global currencies despite upbeat housing data on Friday easing worries about a slowdown in the housing market while investors awaited a flurry of comments from Fed officials.

The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, fell by 0.31% to 96.96

New home sales, which make up about 10% of all U.S. home sales, increased 2.9% to a seasonally adjusted rate of 610,000 units last month, The Commerce Department said on Friday. April's sales pace was also revised sharply higher to 593,000 units from 569,000 units.

Analysts had forecast U.S. existing home sales rising 5.4% to a pace of 597,000 units last month.

The dollar struggled, however, to pair losses as investors shifted attention to monetary policy with several Federal Reserve officials slated for a public appearance.

Earlier during the session, St. Louis Fed President James Bullard said that the Fed can afford to stop raising short-term interest rates and wait and see how the economy develops.

Speeches from FOMC Members Loretta Mester and Jorome Powell are slated for later in the session.

The euro and sterling were the main beneficiaries of the slump in the greenback.

GBP/USD rose by 0.37% to $1.2729, as investor optimism grew that the Bank of England could raise rates soon in the wake of comments from BoE chief Andy Haldane earlier in the week suggesting that UK central bank should consider raising rates.

EUR/USD tacked on 0.39% to $1.1195, while EUR/GBP added 0.05% to $0.8797.

USD/CAD traded at C$1.3265, up 0.23%, as oil prices remained on track to end the week in negative weighing on the oil-linked Canadian dollar.

The dollar traded roughly flat against its Japanese counterpart, with USD/JPY at Y111.30.

Commitments of Traders

This week bullishness lessened on gold, euro, crude oil, and the S&P500.

Note: This data is for the week ending on Tuesday so the last three days (this week two because markets were closed Friday) of trading are not reflected.

cot.2017.jun.21

Gold

Gold prices rose to their highest level this week, buoyed by renewed investor demand for safe havens, after geopolitical tension resurfaced while a fed official downplayed rate hike expectations.

Gold futures for August delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange rose by $7.89 or 0.63%, to $1,257.27 a troy ounce.

Better than expected housing data eased concerns about a slowdown in the housing market, but failed to offset demand for safe-haven gold as North Korea stoked geopolitical tension, after the Kim Jong-uh led nation tested a rocket engine.

New home sales, which make up about 10% of all U.S. home sales, increased 2.9% to a seasonally adjusted rate of 610,000 units last month, The Commerce Department said on Friday. April's sales pace was also revised sharply higher to 593,000 units from 569,000 units.

Analysts had forecast U.S. existing home sales rising 5.4% to a pace of 597,000 units last month.

According to U.S. officials North Korea carried out another test of a rocket engine that could be part of its program to develop an intercontinental ballistic missile.

The return of demand for safe-haven gold comes amid earlier comments by St. Louis Fed President James Bullard, who said that the Fed can afford to stop raising short-term interest rates and wait and see how the economy develops.

Gold is sensitive to moves in U.S. rates, which lift the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding assets such as bullion.

In other precious metal trading, silver futures rose 0.87% to $16.653, a troy ounce while platinum futures rose by 0.45% to $929.60.

Copper added 1.00% to $2.625, while natural gas, gained 1.28% to $2.931.

Oil

Oil futures edged higher on Friday with a lift from a weaker dollar, but finished a fifth straight week lower as OPEC-led production cuts have failed to substantially reduce a global crude glut.

Brent futures (LCOc1) settled up 32 cents, or 0.7 percent, to $45.54 a barrel. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude (WTI) (CLc1) ended up 27 cents, or 0.6 percent, at $43.01 per barrel.

For the week, both benchmarks lost 3.9 percent, and oil currently sits just off 10-month lows, beset by ongoing worries about rising production. The five-week slide represents the longest stretch of weekly declines for the front-month contracts since August 2015.

Prices pared earlier gains after oil services firm Baker Hughes (N:BHI) showed U.S. drillers added 11 oil rigs this week, the biggest increase in three weeks.

"The higher rig count this week reflects decisions made a couple of months ago when oil prices were higher," said James Williams, president of WTRG Economics in Arkansas. He said he expects the current low prices to cause the count to fall in some weeks over the next month or two.

The U.S. dollar (DXY) was down 0.3 percent against a basket of currencies, on track for its biggest daily percentage decline since early June after weaker-than-expected U.S. economic data. This boosted greenback-denominated oil.

Still, oil prices remain down about 20 percent this year despite an effort led by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries to cut production 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd).

It puts the market on course for its biggest first-half percentage fall since the late 1990s, when rising output and the Asian financial crisis led to sharp losses.

"We doubt that demand growth will accelerate sufficiently to break the current downward price momentum," analysts at Bank of America Merrill Lynch (NYSE:BAC) said in a note on Friday, citing surprisingly weak recent economic data in the United States, China and Asia.

OPEC-led efforts to reduce production and end the oil glut have been frustrated by soaring output from the United States and OPEC members Libya and Nigeria, which are exempt from the cuts.

Thanks to shale drillers, U.S. oil production has risen more than 10 percent in the past year to 9.35 million bpd, close to the level of top exporter Saudi Arabia.

Analysts at Cenkos Securities wrote:

"Rising U.S. output continues to stress markets, with increasing evidence that improved efficiency and technology makes many of the shale plays profitable below $40 a barrel."

Natural Gas (Thursday Report)

U.S. natural gas futures were higher on Thursday, but came off the strongest levels of the session after data showed that domestic supplies in storage rose more than anticipated last week.

U.S. natural gas for July delivery was at $2.898 per million British thermal units by 10:40AM ET (1440GMT), up 0.5 cents, or around 0.2%. Futures were at around $2.918 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. rose by 61 billion cubic feet in the week ended June 16, above forecasts for a build of 58 billion.

That compared with a gain of 78 billion cubic feet in the preceding week, an increase of 62 billion a year earlier and a five-year average rise of 82 billion cubic feet.

Total natural gas in storage currently stands at 2.770 trillion cubic feet, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, 10.4% lower than levels at this time a year ago but 7.4% above the five-year average for this time of year.

Meanwhile, warm to hot conditions will return over the Great Lakes and East with highs back into the 80s to lower 90s in the next three-to-five days.

Natural gas prices have closely tracked weather forecasts in recent weeks, as traders try to gauge the impact of shifting outlooks on summer heating demand.

Gas use typically hits a seasonal low with spring's mild temperatures, before warmer weather increases demand for gas-fired electricity generation to power air conditioning.

Nearly 50% of all U.S. households use gas for heating.

Traders also watched for any disruptions to energy production in the Gulf of Mexico from tropical storm Cindy. The storm prompted the shut in of 17.2% of oil production and 0.3% of natural-gas output in the Gulf Wednesday, according to the U.S. Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement.

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