US markets are down fractionally (-0.5%) after a series of financial reports this morning have disturbed analysts an investors alike. Consumer sentiment from the University of Michigan declined to 89, USD Baker Hughes U.S. Rig Count declined from 431 to 420 and the Dow component Chevron reported a 1Q loss of $0.39 per share, greater than the estimate for a loss of $0.20.
Here is the current market situation from CNN Money
North and South American markets are mixed. The IPC is higher by 0.24%, while the S&P 500 is leading the Bovespa lower. They are down 0.79% and 0.74% respectively.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. inflation barely rose in March as consumer spending remained tepid, making it less likely that the Federal Reserve will be able to follow through on its projected two interest rate increases this year.
HOUSTON (Reuters) - Exxon Mobil Corp and Chevron Corp posted sharp drops in quarterly results on Friday as an oversupplied fuel market shrank profits from their refining units, which until now had provided healthy margins that helped insulate them from a 60 percent slide in oil prices since mid-2014.
PARIS (Reuters) - Sanofi and its takeover target Medivation dug in for trench warfare on Friday, with the French drugmaker confident of winning over investors and the U.S. cancer firm insisting it was better off staying independent.
(Reuters) - Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc on Friday issued a 2015 financial report that met an important deadline for creditors, revealing new details on a range of financial and legal issues, and it also announced changes to its board.
BRUSSELS - Google is likely to face its first European Union antitrust sanction this year, with little prospect of it settling a test case with the bloc's regulator over its shopping service, people familiar with the matter said.
ATLANTA (Reuters) - Delta Air Lines Inc said on Friday it has ordered 37 current-generation A321 aircraft from Airbus Group SE worth $4.25 billion at list prices, a move that will help it replace aging aircraft.
In an interesting interview with Finanz und Wirtschaft, Bianco Research president Jim Bianco discusses a variety of topics such as negative interest rates turning the entire credit process upside down, bank balance sheets being even more complex and concentrated than before the financial crisis, energy loans being an accident waiting to happen, the markets having veto power over the Fed, and gold having more room to run.
* * *
Mr. Bianco, negative interest are causing a lot of stir at the financial markets. It looks like even the Bank of Japan is having some doubts now, since it didn't launch more monetary stimulus this week. What's your take on negative interest rates?
Even if you go back to the Egyptian pharaohs and the Fertile Crescent in Mesopotamia we have never consistently seen negative interest rates in the reported human history until two years ago. That's why investors are worried that negative rates are going to create distortions and what you see out of Japan are some of those distortions. The Bank of Japan is not getting the market reaction that it expected. So if negative yields are not a mistake then central bankers have to do a better job in explaining to the world why this is going to work out just fine.
Why are many investors so skeptical about negative interest rates?
People are still staring at negative interest rates and still not comprehending them. When the ECB introduced negative interest rates two years ago the world viewed it just as a temporary gimmick. But then, on January 29th, the Bank of Japan comes in and they go negative as well. Afte ...
After its earlier pump and rapid dump, WTI crude is unable to bounce for now despite the biggest rig count decline in 6 weeks. The oil rig count declined by 11 to 332 - the lowest since October 2009 - tracking lagged crude prices. If the co-dependence continues we would expect to see rig counts begin to rise (or stop declining) very soon. Total US rig count dropped to 420 - a new all-time record low.
*U.S. TOTAL RIG COUNT DOWN 11 TO 420 , BAKER HUGHES SAYS
*U.S. OIL RIG COUNT DOWN 11 TO 332, BAKER HUGHES SAYS
Will we see rig counts stabilize here - tracking the legged price of crude?
What until now was mostly effete jawboning over US complaints surrounding China's territorial expansion ambitions in the South China Sea, including the occasional sailing of a US ship deep inside the disputed territorial waters (with zero impact especially now that China may soon start building maritime nuclear power plants in the area), changed dramatically earlier today when China officially denied a U.S. carrier strike group's request for a port visit to Hong Kong next week.
The Stennis strike group
As Stripes writes, the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs notified the United States Thursday of its decision to deny the USS John C. Stennis and its escort ships access to the former British colony, Darragh Paradiso, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Consulate General in Hong Kong, said by phone. The ministry provided no explanation for the move.
While U.S. warships frequently visit Hong Kong, port calls have been canceled at times of diplomatic strain between the two Asia-Pacific powers. In 2007, China denied access to the city's port by the aircraft carrier USS Kitty Hawk.
The decision follows weeks of increasing diplomatic sparring between China and the U.S. over Beijing's claims to more than 80 percent of the South China Sea. The nuclear-powered Stennis has played a central role in U.S. efforts to demonstrate its continued security presence in the disputed waters, with Defense Secretary Ashton Carter visiting the warship on patrol there in April.
Never is a long time. The dictionary definition is, "at no time in the past or future; on no occasion; not ever." In the volatile oil and gas industry, those who try to look that far into the future and predict anything with certainty are invariably wrong. Here's hoping.
But it's not all bad, oil prices are gradually rising because of market physics and investor sentiment. Federal and provincial politicians are softening their opposition to, and have even publicly declared support for, pipelines to tidewater. The worst is over.
However, it is increasingly certain that the future will not be like the past. Previous downturns have been equally devastating but the primary causes eventually reversed themselves; low commodity prices recovered and damaging government policies were rescinded.
This recovery will be different for a variety of reasons which will combine to cap growth, opportunity and profits, even if oil and gas prices spike. The following major changes appear permanent.
Oil Is Destroying the World
"New research shows that the fossil-fuel era could be over in as little as 10 years, if governments commit to the right policy measures... If you think workers are suffering in Alberta now, wait until you see what Canada's economy looks like if we miss the huge opportunities for jobs and prosperity offered in renewable energy and a truly climate-friendly economy."
Written by a climate and energy campaigner for the Sierra Club, this appeared on top of page 13 in the April 23 edition of Victoria's Times Columnist, under the headline, "Pipelines not the pathway to Paris sol ...
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