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14Jul2017 Market Update: Wall Street At Record Highs As Morning Financial Data Dulls Rate Hike Chances, Baker Hughes Oil Rig Count Up Two, Crude Volatile In The 46 Handle, US Dollar Exhibiting Increasing Weakness Sliding Into The 94 Area

Written by Gary

US market having a great day (SPY +0.4%) in spite of 'not-so-good' financial news this morning. The SP500 DOW and Nasdaq . . .

Here is the current market situation from CNN Money

North and South American markets are mixed today. The S&P 500 is up 0.39% while the Bovespa gains 0.33%. The IPC is off 0.10%.

. . . all set new historic highs and were still climbing in late afternoon trading, as weak economic data dimmed chances of another rate hike this year and tech stocks gained.

What Is Moving the Markets

Here are the headlines moving the markets.

Wall St. at record as data dulls rate hike chances

(Reuters) - U.S. stocks were trading at record levels in early afternoon trading on Friday, as weak economic data dimmed chances of another rate hike this year and tech stocks gained.

Loan growth, better spreads fail to impress U.S. bank investors

NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. banks are starting to see some long-awaited benefits of higher interest rates, with four of the largest lenders beating analysts' quarterly profit expectations on Friday by raising loan prices without paying much more for deposits.

JPMorgan posts higher profit; shares dip on net interest income view

(Reuters) - JPMorgan Chase & Co reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit on Friday due to strong loan growth and higher interest rates, but said net interest income for the year would be lower than expected, sending its shares down about 2 percent.

U.S. lawmaker calls for hearing on Amazon's Whole Foods deal

WASHINGTON/NEW YORK (Reuters) - The top Democrat on the U.S. House of Representatives' antitrust subcommittee has voiced concerns about Inc's $13.7 billion plan to buy Whole Foods Market Inc and is pushing for a hearing to look into the deal's potential impact on consumers.

Weak U.S. inflation, retail sales data dim rate hike prospects

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. consumer prices were unchanged in June and retail sales fell for a second straight month, pointing to tame inflation and soft domestic demand that diminished prospects of a third interest rate increase from the Federal Reserve this year.

AT&T to run wireless, media as separate units - source

(Reuters) - AT&T Inc will run its wireless and DirecTV satellite television businesses separately from Time Warner Inc's media assets following its $85.4 billion acquisition of the entertainment group, a source told Reuters on Friday.

Exclusive: Toyota made UK investment decision after Brexit reassurances - sources

LONDON (Reuters) - The British government helped to secure a more than 240-million ($310 million) pound investment from Toyota in its English plant with a letter reassuring the Japanese carmaker over post-Brexit trading arrangements, two sources told Reuters.

Mercedes cars to face more emissions tests in Germany

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Germany has found no signs so far that Mercedes-Benz used illegal software to manipulate diesel emissions but a new round of tests is being conducted, the transport ministry said on Friday.

Honda recalls 2.1 million vehicles worldwide over fire risk

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Honda Motor Co said on Friday it would recall about 2.1 million vehicles worldwide to replace battery sensors due to the risk of fire.

Environmental Nightmare! Dozens Of Highly Toxic Substances Have Been Found In Tap Water All Over America

Authored by Michael Snyder via The Economic Collapse blog,

After reading this article, you will never look at tap water the same way again.

Most Americans have generally assumed that the water coming out of our taps is perfectly safe, but the Flint water crisis and other similar incidents are starting to help people to understand that there are some very dangerous substances in our water. In particular, I am talking about things like arsenic, lead, atrazine, perchlorate and a whole host of pharmaceutical drugs. According to an absolutely stunning NRDC report, close to 77 million Americans received their water from systems "that violated federal protections" in 2015. And even if you get your water from a system that meets federal standards, that still does not mean that it is safe.

Let's start by talking about arsenic. Earlier today I came across an article that talked about how levels of arsenic in the water at some schools in the San Joaquin Valley "exceed the maximum federal safety levels by as muc ...

Rig Count Rises To April 2015 Highs As Analysts Warn "Oil Market Rebalancing Hasn't Even Started Yet"

After falling for the first time this year two weeks ago, Baker Hughes reports US oil rig count rose once again (up 2 to 765) for the 24th week in the last 25, to the highest since April 2015.

"The so-called re-balancing is likely to happen later than earlier," Michael Poulsen, an analyst at Global Risk Management Ltd, said on Friday.

It does appear we have reached an inflection point in the rig count numbers (if the historical relationship with crude holds)...

While EIA cut its 2018 production outlook, this week saw the effect of field maintenance in Alaska and Tropical Storm Cindy in the Gulf of Mexico fall away and production surged once again this week - to new cycle highs...

And the lagged rig count trend suggests crude production has further to rise yet...

Crude prices have been active today with macro headlines hurting and machines helping ramp any dip... the rig count create iunstant selling which was instantly bid back upo,,,

BofA Lashes Out At The Fed: "Take That Punch Bowl Away" Or Face A Crash

In a dramatic appeal for rationality at the Fed, Bank of America's global FX strategy team today released a note titled "take that punch bowl away", which laments that while central banks backtracked from their hawkish recent rhetoric this week, it warns that "they will be sorry if they allow bubbles" and predicts that vol will increase this fall adding that the bank remains "cautious and selective in EM FX, despite the Fed-triggered rally this week."

The note comes 24 hours after BofA's chief strategist Michael Hartnett warned that "the most dangerous moment for markets" will likely come when "rising rates combine in three or four months' time with an inflection point in corporate profits. In anticipation of this, we would use the next couple of months to buy volatility, and within fixed income slowly reduce exposure to IG, HY, and EM bonds."

Of course, Hartnett's report is based on the assumption that the Fed will do what Yellen has threatened to do and hike at least once more in 2017, i.e. the "right thing."

But what if the Fed once again backs away from its plans to burst the asset bubble as all of the top FOMC members were loudly warning they would do just three weeks ago? Well, things will get much worse, as BofA's unexpec ...

Of Russia Baiters And Putin Haters

Authored by Patrick Buchanan via,

"Is Russia an enemy of the United States?" NBC's Kasie Hunt demanded of Ted Cruz. Replied the runner-up for the GOP nomination, "Russia is a significant adversary. Putin is a KGB thug."

To Hillary Clinton running mate Tim Kaine, the revelation that Donald Trump Jr., entertained an offer from the Russians for dirt on Clinton could be considered "treason."

Treason is giving aid and comfort to an enemy in a time of war.

Are we really at war with Russia? Is Russia really our enemy?

"Why Russia is a Hostile Power" is the title of today's editorial in The Washington Post that seeks to explain why Middle America should embrace the Russophobia of our capital city:

"Vladimir Putin adheres to a set of values that are antithetical to bedrock American values. He favors spheres of influence over self-determination; corruption over transparency; and repression over democracy."

Yet, accommodating a sphere of influence for a great power is exactly what FDR and Churchill did with Stalin, and every president from Truman to George H. W. Bush did with the Soviet Union.

When East Germans, Hungarians, Czechs, Poles rose up against Communist regimes, no U.S. president intervened. For those nations were on the other side of the Yalta line agreed to in 1945.

Bush I and James Baker even accused Ukrainians of "suicidal nationalism" for contemplating independence from Russia.

When did support for spheres of influence become u ...

How to Prepare When Central Banks All Row in the Same Direction

The risk to markets is that investors get too comfortable with the idea that by moving gradually central banks won't create much disturbance.

Intel: Lonely At The Top

Intel's dominance in key chip makers has created a unique vulnerability. As challengers emerge in PCs and servers, Intel seems to have nowhere to go but down.

You Can't Build a Low-Cost Airline Without Low Costs

Norwegian Air wants to upend the market for travel between the U.S. and Europe. But rapid expansion has come at a cost.

Market Extra: Time running out for active managers, who must 'adapt or die'

Even with fund managers showing better performance this year, the slaughter of the active management industry looks set to continue.

Earnings Outlook: UnitedHealth Group earnings: After major Obamacare exit, expect a strong quarter

Amid health care chaos, the company's fundamentals will be key, an analyst said.

In One Chart: Saudi Arabia's worst-case oil scenario might surprise you

Timing is everything, even in the oil market.

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