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22Apr2016 Market Close: US Averages Closed Mixed, WTI Crude Down Fractionally, US Dollar Poised To Pierce Resistance, Short-Term Indicators Bearish

Written by Gary

US averages closed mixed, mostly flat, after what was first thought to be a continuing negative session this morning as disappointing quarterly reports from Microsoft and Alphabet slammed tech stocks and weighed against a surge in oil prices that lifted energy shares. Several analysts have warned to close out long positions by Monday.

Todays S&P 500 Chart

The Market in Perspective

Here are the headlines moving the markets.

Volkswagen takes $18 billion hit over emissions scandal

WOLFSBURG/FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Volkswagen (VW) said on Friday it would take a 16.2-billion-euro ($18.2 billion) hit to its 2015 results and slash its dividend to help pay for its emissions-test cheating scandal.

Wall Street ends flat as tech shares weigh

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Wall Street ended near flat on Friday after disappointing quarterly reports from Microsoft and Alphabet slammed tech stocks and offset a surge in oil prices that lifted energy shares.

Fed to hold rates in April but raise again in June: Reuters poll

(Reuters) - The U.S. Federal Reserve will keep interest rates steady at its policy meeting next week but economists held firm to their expectations for a rate hike in June and then another by the end of this year, a Reuters poll showed on Friday.

Fiat Chrysler recalls 1.1 million cars, SUVs for rollaway issue

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV said on Friday it is recalling more than 1.1 million cars and SUVs worldwide because the vehicles may roll away after drivers exit.

Wall Street inspects new pay proposal, wondering who will get dinged

(Reuters) - Wall Street bankers and traders are scrutinizing a new regulatory proposal that could restrict their pay for longer periods of time and require them to give back bonus money if deals, loans or trades they work on go bust.

GM CEO Barra's compensation $28 million for 2015, up 72 percent

DETROIT (Reuters) - General Motors Co Chief Executive Mary Barra's compensation for 2015 rose 72 percent from the prior year to $28 million as she guided the company to record profits, the company said on Friday.

GE underlying revenue falls, but company sticks to target

NEW YORK (Reuters) - General Electric Co reported lower first-quarter underlying revenue, citing weak sales of oil and gas drilling equipment, but it forecast a second-half upturn for power generation products that should help it meet its full-year target.

SunEdison plans to keep investments in Latam solar market

SAO PAULO (Reuters) - U.S. renewable energy company SunEdison Inc hopes to maintain its investments in Latin America's solar energy market despite filing for bankruptcy on Thursday, a senior executive said on Friday.

Citigroup, U.S. Bancorp exit money-losing Brazil card venture

SAO PAULO (Reuters) - Citigroup Inc and U.S. Bancorp have agreed to sell Brazilian card payment processing joint venture Elavon do Brasil to a local rival for an undisclosed sum, ending months of negotiations to exit the money-losing company.

Illegal Immigration Soars 130% At Southern U.S. Border

New Border Patrol statistics show that 32,117 family units and 27,754 unaccompanied children have been apprehended trying to come across the Southern border and into the United States this year through March. While both numbers are concerning, as both are up y/y, it's noteworthy that the number of families that are trying to get across the border illegally is up a staggering 131% in the first three months of 2016 compared to the same period one year ago.

As the Washington Times adds, as Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson added more manpower to the border two years ago, the number trying to cross the border did tick down from late 2015 and early 2015.

However, as can be seen from the table above, as new relaxed rules for detaining illegal immigrants were announced last summer, the pace of attempts at crossing the border picked up significantly.

These are statistics that we're sure The Donald will pick up and run with immediately, as its one of the key policy pieces that he is running on for President.

Albert Edwards Finally Blows Up: "I'm Not Really Sure How Much More Of This I Can Take"

Earlier this week we described the personal come to non-GAAP Jesus moment of trading commentator Richard Breslow, who confessed in no uncertain terms that he has had it with endless central banking intervention: "a portfolio built to only withstand stress thanks to central bank intervention is one destined to blow-up spectacularly. The embedded flaw in this new logic is that central banks give investors perfect foresight. And nothing can go wrong... You don't need to be a Taleb or Mandelbrot to calculate that we have been having once in a hundred year events on a regular basis for the last thirty years."

Today it is another famous skeptic, SocGen's Albert Edwards who has had enough and says he feels "utterly depressed" because he has not "one scintilla of doubt that these central bankers will destroy the enfeebled world economy with their clumsy interventions and that political chaos will be the ugly result. The only people who will benefit are not investors, but anarchists who will embrace with delight the resulting chaos these policies will bring!"

As he openly warns his readers :

"I have long recognised my own contrariness (or is it bloody-mindedness) and hopefully put it to good use in my chosen profession. If you want the consensus bull-market cheerleading nonsense, readers know it is amply available elsewhere."

With that warning in place, here is why the man who popularized the deflationary "Ice Age" blows up.

I am neither monetarist nor Keynesian. I see merit and demerit in both sides of a very fractious argument. But what I do know is when in the last f ...

Lithium Stocks Soar After "Epic Launch" Of Tesla Model 3

Shares of Lithium companies have surged after Tesla boosted its outlook for electric vehicles powered by batteries that use the element, sending the Solactive Global Lithium Index up by about a third since the middle of February.

And it does not look set to slowdown, as OilPrice.com's James Stafford notes, the unveiling of Tesla's Model 3 electric car was no less than the lifting of the final curtain on a game-changing energy revolution. And if we follow that revolution to its core, we arrive at lithium - our new gasoline for which the feeding frenzy has only just begun.

Unveiled just on 31 March and already with 325,000 orders, it seems that the market, too, understands that the Model 3 is more than just another electric vehicle. In one week alone, Tesla has racked up around $14 billion in implied future sales, making it the "biggest one-week launch of any product ever." (And if you think the "implied future sales" negates the news, think again: Each order requires a $1,000 refundable deposit.)

It will change the world because it is the first hard indication that the tech-driven energy revolution is not only pending, it's arrived. The Model 3 and its stunning one-week sales success—apparently achieved without advertising or paid endorsements--brings the electric car defi ...

IEA Warns "Saudis, Russians To Pump As Much Oil As Possible"

While the IEA has been urgently pushing an agenda of the oil market "rebalancing" in coming months in order to validate rising oil prices, the reality is that there are two parts to the equation: demand and supply. We will have to say more on demand shortly, because as it turns out most of it may have come from none other than China where commodities are merely the latest speculative bubble while China has been furiously stockpiling oil in what is merely pulling future demand to the present, however on the far more important supply side, where the key variable has become shale production over the coming year, earlier today the head of the Oil Industry and Markets Division at the International Energy Agency, Neil Atkinson, told CNBC that he believed both producers will continue to "pump as much oil as possible."

This is what he said:

"In the post-Doha world, when we're still in what is essentially a free market for oil, the Russians will pump as much oil out as the market will absorb and the Saudis have said much the same thing."

Which incidentally is also what we have been saying for weeks heading into Doha, a meeting which was doomed from the beginning and which saw record oil supply from not only Russia but also Iraq in the last few weeks. This record production is set to continue.

Neil Atkinson painted an even bleaker picture saying that "we're back to where we were before Doha where people produce what they can, sell what they can for whatever price they can achieve and the market takes care of the surpluses in time."

Atkinson added something else known to regular ZH readers, namely that "as far as the Russians are concerned, even in the run-up to Doha when they were going to be party to ...

Valeant's Makeover Is Just Beginning

Valeant's big move to replace outgoing CEO Michael Pearson has won the stock a well-deserved rally. The road won't get easier.

Google's Earnings Missed: Why You Shouldn't Worry

Google parent Alphabet has a history of falling short of Wall Street expectations. What is happening with the business is more important

Everyone Wants a Raise -- Except Investors

The price for strong bond and stock markets may be anemic wage growth.

Deep Dive: Why Under Armour is a better investment than Nike

Much faster sales growth has driven outsized stock performance at Under Armour, says Phil van Doorn.

Deep Dive: Yield to these 23 dividend stocks if you're looking for high income

The dividend yields are as high as 6.5%, and the companies generate enough cash to increase payouts, says Phil van Doorn.

Market Extra: It's time for the Bank of Japan to put up or shut up

After weeks of mostly ineffective jawboning by several of the country's top economic policy makers, investors are wondering if the Bank of Japan is finally ready to make good.

Summary of Economic Releases this Week

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Earnings Summary for Today

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To contact me with questions, comments or constructive criticism is always encouraged and appreciated:

gary@econintersect.com

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