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28Jan2016 Market Close: US Markets Close Higher, DOW Up Triple Digits, SP500 Up 0.6%, Crude Trending Up, Fed Admits Slowing US Economy

Written by Gary

Quiet day on Wall Street this afternoon. Markets opened higher and volatility pushed stocks this way and that way, until the averages settled higher and traded sideways. Crude has trended up from yesterday mostly on oil production increasing rumors, but the fact of a worldwide glut still remains and is getting larger.

Todays S&P 500 Chart

The Market in Perspective

Here are the headlines moving the markets.

Fix stock market rules before admitting IEX: Nasdaq CEO

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Regulators should overhaul decade-old rules that govern the U.S. stock market before allowing upstart venue IEX Group to become a fully-fledged exchange, Bob Greifeld, head of Nasdaq Inc , said on Thursday.

Exclusive: Brookfield mulls buying mall operator General Growth - sources

(Reuters) - Brookfield Asset Management Inc has been exploring an acquisition in recent months of General Growth Properties Inc (GGP) , the U.S. mall operator with a market value of $24 billion, according to people familiar with the matter.

Facebook 'likes' push Wall Street higher

(Reuters) - Wall Street gained on Thursday as a blockbuster quarterly report from Facebook drove tech shares higher and a bounce in oil prices propped up the beleaguered energy sector.

Ford Motor earnings beat forecast, stock off after margin warning

DEARBORN, Mich. (Reuters) - Ford Motor Co's fourth-quarter earnings beat Wall Street expectations and the company reiterated a forecast that 2016 pre-tax profit would be equal to or higher than last year.

Fed owns up to global risks in statement shift

SAN FRANCISCO/WASHINGTON (Reuters) - In the U.S. Federal Reserve's arsenal of tools the characterization of economic risks is heavy artillery, used to flag the moments when major events like the 2003 Iraq war or the near crack-up of the euro zone in 2011 make forecasting even trickier than usual.

Here comes the sun - and with it, U.S. earnings excuses

NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. companies are singing the warm weather blues this corporate earnings season.

Facebook's market value surges $38 billion as mobile ad sales soar

(Reuters) - Facebook Inc's market value soared by $38 billion in morning trading on Thursday, vaulting the company ahead of Inc , after the social networking service's quarterly results blew away expectations on every key measure.

JD Power, LMC forecast 4.5 percent drop in Jan U.S. auto sales

DETROIT (Reuters) - January U.S. auto sales will fall 4.5 percent because of the recent snow storm on the East Coast and two fewer selling days than a year ago, JD Power and LMC Automotive said on Thursday.

Russia says Saudis proposing global oil production cut

ST PETERSBURG, Russia/DUBAI (Reuters) - Russia said on Thursday that OPEC's largest producer Saudi Arabia, had proposed oil production cuts of up to 5 percent in what would be the first global deal in over a decade to help clear a glut of crude and prop up sinking prices.

9 Billion Barrels Of Crude At Risk In Massive Nigerian Oil Shakeup

Submitted by Julianne Geiger via,

Supermajors Shell and Italian Eni could be facing the loss of one of the biggest offshore oil exploration blocks in Nigeria, putting an estimated 9 billion barrels of crude oil at risk.

As the new Nigerian government launches a rampaging anticorruption campaign, local media are reporting government recommendations to reclaim block OPL 245 from oil giants Shell and Eni.

Nigerian Justice Minister and Attorney General Abubakar Malami is behind the recommendation, and is a key figure advising the government on the case.

At issue is how Shell and Eni landed the block in the first place—a controversial deal that is now being investigated in the UK, Italy and Nigeria.

If newly elected Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari agrees with Malami's recommendation, not only could Shell and Eni lose the block, but they could also face billions of dollars in fines for allegedly bribing corrupt public officials and private citizens.

According to Global Witness, Shell's and Eni's Nigerian subsidiaries had agreed to pay the government $1.1 billion to acquire the offshore block. The watchdog also said that an investigation revealed that at the same time, the ...

Damn It, Janet!

Speaking of policy errors...

h/t @Not_Jim_Cramer

HSBC Halts Mortgage Options To Chinese Nationals Buying U.S. Real Estate

Submitted by Mike Krieger via Liberty Blitzkrieg blog,

Two days ago, I published a post explaining how the super high end real estate bubble had popped, and how signs of this reality have emerged across America. Here's an excerpt from that post, The Luxury Housing Bubble Pops - Overseas Investors Struggle to Sell Overpriced Mansions:

The six-bedroom mansion in the shadow of Southern California's Sierra Madre Mountains has lime trees and a swimming pool, tennis courts and a sauna — the kind of place that would have sold quickly just a year ago, according to real estate agent Kanney Zhang.

Not now.

Zhang is shopping it for a discounted $3.68 million, but nobody's biting. Her clients, a couple from China, are getting anxious. They're the kind of well-heeled international investors who fueled a four-year luxury real estate boom that helped pull America out of its worst housing slump since the 1930s. Now the couple is reeling from the selloff in the Chinese stock market and looking to raise cash to shore up finances.

In the Los Angeles suburb of Arcadia, where Zhang is struggling to sell the six-bedroom home, dozens of aging ranch houses were demolished to make way for 38 mansions built with Chinese buyers in mind.&nbs ...

This $250,000 Caterpillar Bulldozer Can Be Yours For The Low, Low Price Of $55

After today's CAT earnings, in which the company not only announced a steep drop in revenues, profits and cash flow but also obliterated its guidance, cutting the midpoint of the 2016 revenue range (set just three months ago) from $45.5 billion to $42 bilion, it should have become clear to everyone just how bad the company's income statement is.

But what about its balance sheet and specifically that $10 billion in inventory? We got a glimpse back in November when we showed how at an auction in Australia, CAT loaders, excavators and tractors, with MSRPs in the millions, were selling for sub-pennies on the dollar, or as low as $15,000 for a machine that was originally sold for $2.9 million.

The post quickly went viral and while many readers were impressed by the collapse in demand (as reflected by the auction prices) for CAT equipment, some wished they too could participate in the bidding process: after all, what better way to make an impression on one's neighbors than to take a leisurely stroll down the street in a bulldozer, especially if its costs virtually nothing.

To all readers who wrote us complaining about this, you are in luck.

Below we present a Caterpillar D6T Bulldozer, a machine which has a "new" MSRP of over a million dollars, and which with over 5,000 hours of use, sells through reputable dealer channels, for around $250,000 each.

Or, as the case may be, does not

Oil Prices Climb on Hopes for Output Cutback

Oil prices rose to a three-week high on hopes that Russia and the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries would cooperate on production cuts.

U.S. Stocks Climb, Along With Oil

U.S. stocks rebounded Thursday as oil prices climbed, but a selloff in health-care stocks and a mixed bag of earnings reports kept gains in check.

This is how to diversify your investments as hedge funds do

Managed futures mutual funds enable you to bet for and against stocks, bonds, currencies and commodities.

California decision boosts SolarCity, SunRun stocks

SolarCity, SunRun shares jump on a decision by the California Public Utilities Commission that favors solar power.

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