US markets ended mostly in the red and flat. The DOW, during the last minute of trading, edged up into the green, closing 9 points up. U.S. stocks started sinking this afternoon as the rally in crude futures lost steam while a stronger dollar, weak economic data and disappointing earnings soured investors' appetite for risk. The relationship between black gold and the currencies remains as high as any time in recent memory, signaling crude is about to slip further in the coming month.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits rose more than expected last week, posting the biggest gain in more than a year, but the underlying trend continued to point to a strengthening labor market.
(Reuters) - Alibaba Group Holding Ltd, China's biggest e-commerce company, said fourth-quarter sales rose 39 percent after its core online shopping business grew, but profit fell for the first time as it spent on ventures like food delivery.
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Oil prices surged on Thursday after a raging wildfire near Canada's oil sands region curbed output that mainly flows to the United States, before settling off their highs as a rebounding dollar and a huge U.S. stockpile build cut into gains.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A majority of the five-member U.S. Federal Communications Commission has voted to approve Charter Communications Inc's acquisitions of Time Warner Cable Inc and Bright House Networks, two sources briefed on the matter said on Thursday.
SAN FRANCISCO/LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Sumner Redstone's much-discussed mental state will be dissected in public during a trial set to start on Friday, as an ex-girlfriend tries to convince a Los Angeles judge that the 92-year-old media mogul is incompetent in the culmination of a salacious, months-long legal drama.
JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South Africa's competition watchdog was on Thursday granted an extra five days to study Anheuser-Busch InBev's planned $106 billion takeover of SABMiller - a fifth extension that could delay the consumer industry's biggest ever deal.
LONDON/DUBAI (Reuters) - As OPEC officials gathered this week to formulate a long-term strategy, few in the room expected the discussions would end without a clash. But even the most jaded delegates got more than they had bargained with.
SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Even if a jury orders Alphabet Inc's Google to pay the full $8.8 billion sought by Oracle Corp in an upcoming San Francisco copyright trial over the Android operating system, shareholders and analysts say it will likely have little impact on the search giant's bottom line.
Submitted by Lance Roberts via RealInvestmentAdvice.com,
Housing Recovery - Not So Much
"Everyone wants a house, and that's a big problem.
We've noted in the past that there is a substantial issue in the housing market right now. Too few homes are being built for the number of people that want to move into them, thus driving up prices and keeping some lower-end or first-time buyers out of the market."
It is quite amazing that amount of optimism surrounding the housing market which has yet to recover substantially from post-financial crisis lows given the exorbitant amount of monetary stimulants injected into it.
The chart below shows the Total Housing Market Activity Index which is a composite of new and existing home sales, permits and starts. Yes, housing has recovered, but remains well below levels seen in 1999.
But let's not let a trivial matter of data get in the way of a good story.
"Meanwhile, according to the Conference Board, although the share of ...
The U.S. dollar stretches gains against its main rivals into a third day ahead of remarks from a host of Federal Reserve officials later Thursday as well as a widely watched report on April job gains due Friday.
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