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14Aug2017 Market Close: Wall Street Back In The Trump Bull Saddle, WTI Crude Settles In The Mid 47 Handle, US Dollar Off Session Lows And Showing Strength

Written by Gary

US stock markets recovered today from last week's minor selloff, with the SP 500 closing higher at 1 percent (SPY +1.0%) as worries eased about NOKO's threats ease.

Todays S&P 500 Chart

The Market in Perspective

Here are the headlines moving the markets.

Merck CEO resigns from Trump council over Charlottesville

(Reuters) - Merck & Co Inc Chief Executive Kenneth Frazier resigned from U.S. President Donald Trump's American Manufacturing Council on Monday, saying he was taking a stand against intolerance and extremism.

Wall Street rebounds as North Korea tensions wane

(Reuters) - U.S. stocks recovered further on Monday from last week's selloff, with the S&P 500 rising about 1 percent as worries eased about a conflict between the United States and North Korea.

Uber investor gave Kalanick a month before suing to force him off board

(Reuters) - Venture capital firm Benchmark Capital said on Monday it gave Uber and its ousted chief executive, Travis Kalanick, a month to review its recommendations before filing a lawsuit last week to force him off the board and rescind his ability to fill three seats.

Qualcomm outlines impact of dispute with Apple after SEC request

(Reuters) - Chipmaker Qualcomm Inc on Monday disclosed further details about the impact of an ongoing dispute with Apple Inc, responding to questions from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Dudley tells skeptical markets he sees Fed rate hike: AP

WASHINGTON/NEW YORK (Reuters) - One of the Federal Reserve's most influential members expects to raise interest rates once more this year, and to soon begin shedding some of the Fed's bond holdings, according to comments on Monday that pushed back on doubts in financial markets.

Snap shares bounce off record low in busy day for stock

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Snap Inc stock rebounded on Monday from a record low hit earlier in a choppy trading session as big investors report their latest stakes in the beleaguered social media company and as a wave of employees became eligible to sell their shares.

Target appoints Walmart, General Mills executives to shore up grocery business

CHICAGO (Reuters) - Target Corp said on Monday it has hired two former executives from Wal-Mart Inc and General Mills Inc to join its food and beverage business, as the retailer seeks to revamp its grocery aisles.

Big-name U.S. hedge funds shed healthcare stocks during the rally in second-quarter

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Several big-name hedge fund investors trimmed their stakes in healthcare companies in the second quarter as the sector led the broad U.S. stock market higher, rallying amid a Republican effort to repeal and replace President Obama's signature healthcare law.

Corvex warns of proxy fight with Energen after raising stake

(Reuters) - Corvex Management threatened a proxy battle against Energen Corp if the U.S. oil and gas producer did not agree to add the activist investor's nominees to its board.

Man Arrested In Plot To Blow Up Oklahoma Bank, Had Considered Federal Reserve Building

An Oklahoma man was arrested by the FBI this Saturday on charges that he tried to detonate what he thought was a 1,000-pound bomb, acting "out of a hatred for the U.S. government" and an admiration for Oklahoma City bomber Timothy Mc­Veigh, according to court papers. Jerry Drake Varnell, of Sayre, Oklahoma, was arrested shortly after an early Saturday morning attempt to detonate a fake bomb packed into what he believed was a stolen cargo van outside a bank in Oklahoma City, according to a criminal complaint filed in federal court the Washington Post reports. Varnell was charged with attempted destruction of a building by means of an explosive.

"This arrest is the culmination of a long-term domestic terrorism investigation involving an undercover operation, during which Varnell had been monitored closely for months as the alleged bomb plot developed," federal prosecutors said in a statement. "The device was actually inert, and the public was not in danger.

Prosecutors said that during the investigation an undercover agent had posed as a co-conspirator and agreed to help Varnell build what he believed was a 1,000-pound (454 kg) explosive.

What is notable is that Varnell, 23, discussed a number of potential targets, including the Marriner Eccles building also known as the home of Federal Reserve in Washington, D.C., an IRS building in Maryland and a Bank of America data center in Texas.

Eventually, he settled on attacking a BancFirst building in Oklahoma City which is located a few blocks from where the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building stood. A truck loaded with explosives was detonated in front of the Murrah building in 1995 in what was called an act of domestic terrorism.

The complaint filed in the federal cou ...

"The Real Flippening" - Bitcoin's Now Bigger Than Paypal

Thanks to this weekend's dramatic surge to new record highs in Bitcoin ($4,251), the market cap of the largest cryptocurrency has now surpassed that of PayPal.

Bitcoin total market cap topped $70 billion for the first time...

Surpassing that of PayPal... in what Colu's Udi Wertheimer called the "real Flippening."

As CoinTelegraph reports, the symbolic reversal of values would continue Bitcoin's further unprecedented growth in August following the lock-in of SegWit. Sunday saw an all-time high set again of around $4251, which attracted continued attention from mainstream media sources.

Dudley Warns "Market's Rate Hike Expectations Are Unreasonable" Sending Yields, Dec. Odds Higher

One day after the 5th consecutive miss in US CPI, NY Fed President William Dudley threw currency and eurodollar traders for another loop when he said on Monday that it was not "unreasonable" to think that the central bank would begin trimming its balance sheet in September and sees another rate hike this year - supposedly in December - should economic data hold up, ignoring the message sent from monthly inflation reports.

In an interview with the AP, Dudely warned that "the expectations of market participants are unreasonable," when asked if the expectation of the Fed reducing its bond holdings in September was accurate. The news sent the dollar and yields higher, pushing the 10Y from 2.2050% briefly to 2.2230%, although the move was subsequently faded. The news also sent December rate hike odds modestly higher on the day, up to 33% from 25% earlier, after Dudley said that he expects another rate rise as long as economic data meets his expectations. "I would expect — I would be in favor of doing another rate hike later this year."

Despite the lack of inflation, Dudley expanded "my outlook for the economy hasn't changed materially since the beginning of the year. Continue to look for growths around 2%, slightly above trend, growth sufficient to continue to tighten the labor market. I did not raise my growth forecast after the Election because of the prospect of fiscal stimulus because I felt that there was a lot of uncertainty about how big it would be, what its composition would be, and when it would actually take effect. So, I always viewed it as a risk to the forecast. In other words, an upside risk to the forecast, but I never put it into my baseline forecast."

Pressed on inflation, the NY Fed president said "the reason why inflation won't get up to 2% very quickly on a year-ove ...

Trump Launches Trade War With China By Signing Memorandum On Chinese IP Laws

Today at 3pm, President Trump signed a memo addressing "China's laws, policies, practices, and actions related to intellectual property, innovation, and technology" effectively firing the first shot in what many predict will blossom into an all-out trade war with China.

As discussed over the weekend, administration officials said Saturday that memo will direct U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer to consider investigating China over its IP policies, especially the practice of forcing U.S. companies operating in China to transfer technological know-how.

And sure enough, during the signing ceremony, Trump said he is directing USTR to examine China's actions on theft of American intellectual property. He said the U.S. will enforce the rules of fair and reciprocal trade.

As reported earlier, China is not happy and in an editorial published in the China Daily, the government lashed out at Trump, warning him that by "politicizing" trade, he risks "exacerbating" the US's "economic woes," and "poisoning" the relationship between the world's two largest economies. China also said that the crackdown on trade was seen as an attempt to distract attention away from Trump's domestic problems. "Bashing China cannot solve U.S. economic problems, experts say," the state-run Xinhua news agency proclai ...

Garmin's Smartwatches Tick the Right Boxes

Smartwatches have been a turbulent business, but Garmin has mapped out a profitable and growing niche despite strong competition from companies like Apple and Fitbit.

The China Growth Slowdown Has Arrived

After surprisingly strong second-quarter growth, July data contained clear signals of slowing investment and weaker consumption.

The Market Is Right: Car Stocks Are Cheap for a Reason

In an expensive stock market, car makers are sensationally cheap. Sadly, though, this looks like a rational response.

July 2017 Import Sea Containers Suggest Improving Economy

Written by Steven Hansen

The July month-over-month import and export container counts are suggesting an improving USA economy, and a sluggish global economy - and likely a worsening trade balance.

Market Extra: Stock rally is occurring against a backdrop of falling profit forecasts

Despite the strength in the quarter, results in the first half of the year "have not been strong enough to warrant positive S&P 500 [earnings per share] revisions," Goldman Sachs wrote in a note to clients.

Earnings Outlook: Wal-Mart earnings: Some analysts say traffic has fallen, others say it has grown

Two traffic reports from different sets of analysts come to differing conclusions about Wal-Mart's second-quarter traffic, once saying it grew, and another saying it slipped.

Earnings Outlook: Target earnings: Private labels are working, but food is still a weak spot

Target's private labels, like Cat & Jack, are a boost to the retailer, but it still has issues with food and competition with Amazon.

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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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