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02Aug2017 Market Close: Wall Street Closed In The Green, DOW Up 52 Points, Nasdaq Unchanged, WTI Crude Settles In The High 49 Handle

Written by Gary

US stock markets closed mostly in the green with the Nasdaq even with the unchanged line (SPY +0.05%).

Todays S&P 500 Chart

The Market in Perspective

Here are the headlines moving the markets.

Dow ends above 22,000 but joy doesn't spread

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The Dow Jones Industrial Average peaked above the 22,000 mark for the first time on Wednesday, powered by Apple's rally after its quarterly iPhone sales, while weakness in other tech stocks kept the Nasdaq Composite and S&P 500 flat.

Exclusive: N.Y. regulator subpoenas Wells Fargo over unwanted auto insurance

NEW YORK (Reuters) - New York state's banking and insurance regulator issued subpoenas on Tuesday to two Wells Fargo & Co units after the bank said it had sold auto insurance to hundreds of thousands of customers who did not need it.

Exclusive: Sanctions gap lets Western firms tap Russian frontier oil

OSLO/MOSCOW (Reuters) - A gap in U.S. sanctions allows Western companies to help Russia develop some of its most technically challenging oil reserves, and risks undermining the broad aim of the measures, a Reuters review of company results and media releases has found.

Exclusive: Blackstone in talks to sell stake in camera maker Leica - sources

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Buyout group Blackstone is in talks with potential buyers for its 45 percent stake in iconic high-end camera and sport optics maker Leica, people close to the matter said.

Dow pole vaults 22,000, but beware the landing

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The blue chip Dow Jones Industrial Average vaulted over the 22,000 mark for the first time on Wednesday, but investor fears about the sustainability of the gains took the shine off the round number milestone.

Exclusive: Hasbro ends talks to buy Lions Gate Entertainment - sources

(Reuters) - Hasbro Inc, the maker of games ranging from Monopoly to foam Nerf balls, has ended talks to acquire U.S. movie studio and entertainment company Lions Gate Entertainment Corp, people familiar with the matter said on Wednesday.

Snap short sellers take winnings off table as stock sinks

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Shares of Snap Inc slumped to new lows on Wednesday while short sellers closed out their bets following paper profits of half a billion dollars since the Snapchat owner's market debut in March.

Corporate profits to take more hits from Ukraine cyber attack

TORONTO/FRANKFURT (Reuters) - The cyber attack that crippled Ukraine businesses and spread worldwide to shut down shipping ports, factories and businesses has taken a costly toll on the results of major U.S. and European companies in the latest quarter, with more to come.

Perks? No! U.S. flyers prefer the cheap seats: Reuters/Ipsos poll

NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. airlines striving to boost profitability are up against an army of penny-pinching customers who would rather sit in a dreaded middle seat than pay more to fly, says a Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll released on Wednesday.

It's Official, Obamacare Rate Hikes Are Trump's Fault

Obamacare premiums have been exploding higher ever since the controversial legislation took over health insurance markets. And while many would say that another year of premium increases is a logical extrapolation of a predictable, multi-year trend resulting from a failed policy, others would like for you to believe that the massive (yet consistent) premium increases being proposed for the 2018 plan year are unique because they're Trump's fault.

As the Wall Street Journal notes this morning, insurers across the country are once again seeking massive premium increases in 2018.

Major health insurers in some states are seeking increases as high as 30% or more for premiums on 2018 Affordable Care Act plans, according to new federal data that provide the broadest view so far of the turmoil across exchanges as companies try to anticipate Trump administration policies.

Big insurers in Idaho, West Virginia, South Carolina, Iowa and Wyoming are seeking to raise premiums by averages close to 30% or more, according to preliminary rate requests published Tuesday by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Major marketplace players in New Mexico, Tennessee, North Dakota and Hawaii indicated they were looking for average increases of 20% or more.

In other cases, insurers are looking for more limited premium increases for the suites of products they offer in individual states, reflecting the variety of situations in different markets. Health Care Service Corp., a huge exchange player in five states, filed for average increases including 8.3% in Oklahoma, 23.6% in Texas, and 16% in Illinois.

Seymour Hersh: "RussiaGate Is A CIA-Planted Lie, Revenge Against Trump"

Submitted by Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They're Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of CHRIST'S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.

During the latter portion of a phone-call by investigative journalist, Seymour Hersh, Hersh has now presented "a narrative [from his investigation] of how that whole fucking thing began," including who actually is behind the 'RussiaGate' lies, and why they are spreading these lies.

In a youtube video upload-dated August 1st, he reveals from his inside FBI and Washington DC Police Department sources — now, long before the Justice Department's Special Counsel Robert Mueller will be presenting his official 'findings' to the nation — that the charges that Russia had anything to do with the leaks from the DNC and Hillary Clinton's campaign to Wikileaks, that those charges spread by the press, were a CIA-planted lie, and that what Wikileaks had gotten was only leaks (including at least from the murdered DNC-staffer Seth Rich), and were not from any outsider (including 'the Russians'), but that Rich didn't get killed for that, but was instead shot in the back during a brutal robbery, which occurred in the high-crime DC neighborhood where he lived. Here i ...

Russian PM: "The U.S. Just Declared Full-Scale Trade War On Russia"

Several hours after President Trump officially signed the new Russian sanctions into law - despite his reservations and his statement that while he favors "tough measures to punish and deter aggressive and destabilizing behavior by Iran, North Korea, and Russia, this legislation is significantly flawed" - Russia responded when moments ago Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said on his FaceBook page that any hopes of improving Russian relations with the new US administration are dead, that the Trump administration demonstrated complete impotence by transferring executive power to Congress "in the most humiliating manner", and most notably, that the US just declared a full-scale trade war on Russia.

From Medvedev's facebook page:

The signing of new sanctions against Russia into law by the US president leads to several consequences. First, any hope of improving our relations with the new US administration is over. Second, the US just declared a full-scale trade war on Russia. Third, the Trump administration demonstrated it is utterly powerless, and in the most humiliating manner transferred executive powers to Congress. This shifts the alignment of forces in US political circles.

What does this mean for the U.S.? The American establishment completely outplayed Trump. The president is not happy with the new sanctions, but he could not avoid signing the new law. The purpose of the new sanctions was to put Trump in his place. Their ultimate goal is to remove Trump from power. An incompetent player must be eliminated. At the same time, the interests of American businesses were almost ignored. Politics rose ...

Bitcoin Cash Is Now The 3rd-Largest Digital Currency After 100% Junp

Bitcoin cash has existed for barely 24 hours. Yet its price has doubled as an increasing number of digital currency exchanges have enabled trading in the bitcoin twin, making it the new third-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization (supplanting Ripple).

Bitcoin cash, which started trading yesterday on the Chinese exchange OkCoin at $270 a coin peaked above $900 early Wednesday before retreating to $660 in recent trade. Bitcoin cash's performance shows that torrid demand for digital currencies hasn't been affected by the SEC's ruling that ICOs must now register as securities. Bitcoin cash was created after a small group of bitcoin users who rejected a competing proposal to update the bitcoin software opted to "fork" bitcoin into two separate digital currencies with slightly different features.

Bitcoin Cash

Bitcoin

But some analysts are saying that relatively thin trading volumes are distorting bitcoin cash's price. Bitcoin users received free bitcoin cash as part of the split, but are ...

Thank the Foreigners for Dow 22000

Americans cheering the U.S. stock market's latest milestone should pause to thank the rest of the world for making it possible.

Airline Dealmaking Won't Cure Europe's Profit Problem

Restructuring at Alitalia and Air Berlin and a revamped trans-Atlantic alliance are helpful but not transformative for the European airline industry.

Rio Tinto Can't Just Mine The Current Rich Vein Forever

Rio Tinto's results were impressive, but the current favorable environment won't last forever.

Earnings Outlook: Kraft Heinz earnings: Have revenue estimates fallen enough to be beatable?

History suggests Kraft Heinz will probably beat profit expectations, but the real question is whether revenue forecasts have fallen enough so the company can beat them.

Why the middle-aged 'dad bod' could be deadly instead of sexy

There are serious health hazards to being overweight at a certain age.

After a short stint on top, Jeff Bezos drops another spot on the rich list

Amazon Chief Executive Jeff Bezos rode a rally in his company's stock to the top of the Forbes billionaire list last week, but he didn't hold the crown for long. Later that day, shares of the online retailing giant reversed course and opened the door for Microsoft's Bill Gates to take back the title. Now, Bezos has dropped another spot.

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gary@econintersect.com

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