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09Oct2017 Market Update: Wall Street Little Changed In Early Afternoon Trading, Crude And The US Dollar Remain Fractionally Down, Investors Looking Towards Earnings Season

Written by Gary

US markets opened moderately higher with the DOW and Nasdaq setting new historic highs earlier (SPY -0.04%) with the three major indexes now trading down near the unchanged line.


Here is the current market situation from CNN Money

North and South American markets are lower today with shares in Brazil off the most. The Bovespa is down 0.72% while Mexico's IPC is off 0.41% and U.S.'s S&P 500 is lower by 0.08%.

What Is Moving the Markets

Here are the headlines moving the markets.

Wall Street little changed, with earnings in sight

(Reuters) - Wall Street was little changed in early afternoon trading on Monday as losses in healthcare stocks were offset by gains in technology shares, with the third-quarter earnings season looming.

Google uncovered Russia-backed ads on YouTube, Gmail, source says

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Google has discovered Russian operatives spent tens of thousands of dollars on ads on its YouTube, Gmail and Google Search products in an effort to meddle in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, a person briefed on the company's probe told Reuters on Monday.

Weinstein Co board ousts Harvey Weinstein after harassment allegations

(Reuters) - The Weinstein Co has fired co-Chairman Harvey Weinstein, effective immediately, following reports of sexual harassment allegations against the executive, who was one of Hollywood's biggest power brokers, the film production company said on Sunday.

Qualcomm offers EU concessions over $38 billion NXP takeover bid

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - U.S. smartphone chipmaker Qualcomm has offered concessions in an attempt to allay EU antitrust concerns over its $38-billion bid for NXP Semiconductors, the largest ever in the semiconductor industry.

Wal-Mart speeds up in-store returns of online purchases

(Reuters) - Wal-Mart Stores Inc said on Monday it would speed up the process for in-store returns of items bought on its website, just ahead of the busy holiday season, as it looks to steal a march on e-commerce giant Amazon.com.

Auf Wiedersehen Air Berlin: flights to cease this month

BERLIN (Reuters) - Flights operated by insolvent German carrier Air Berlin will end by Oct. 28 at the latest, it said on Monday, urging staff to seek jobs elsewhere while it works toward a carve-up of its assets.

Apple praises French iPhone work before meeting tough-talking Macron

PARIS (Reuters) - Apple boss Tim Cook went out of his way on Monday to single out a small French firm behind innovative features in the latest iPhones ahead of meeting with President Emmanuel Macron, who has called for a tougher line on technology company taxes.

GM to buy sensor-tech firm Strobe to speed up self-driving car push

DETROIT (Reuters) - No. 1 U.S. automaker General Motors Co said on Monday it would buy Strobe Inc, which uses LIDAR technology to help self-driving cars identify objects at a distance, to speed up development of autonomous vehicles and slash sensor costs.

Fiat Chrysler pushes back on consolidation with China's Great Wall

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Chief Executive Officer Sergio Marchionne said on Monday he was not sure consolidation with China's Great Wall Motor Co Ltd was the answer, pushing back against the Chinese automaker's earlier expressed interest in his company.

"Investing Is Not A Competition... It's A Game Of Long-Term Survival"

Authored by Lance Roberts via RealInvestmentAdvice.com,

Melt-Up Gains Traction

Back in November, just following the election of President Trump, I wrote about the market entering into potentially the final "melt-up" phase of the cyclical bull market.

However, while economic and fundamental realities HAVE NOT changed since the election, markets are pricing in expected impacts of changes to fiscal policy expecting a massive boost to earnings from tax rate reductions and repatriated offshore cash to be used directly for stock buybacks.

To wit:

"We expect tax reform legislation under the Trump administration will encourage firms to repatriate $200 billion of overseas cash next year. A significant portion of returning funds will be directed to buybacks based on the pattern of the tax holiday in 2004." - Goldman Sachs

share-buybacks-112116

"But i ...

ESPN's Jamele Hill Urges Fans To Boycott Anti-Kneeling NFL Advertisers

Having been reprimanded by her boss (and President Trump) for her previous divisive remarks, ESPN's Jamele Hill called on football fans to boycott advertisers who are aligned with teams pushing back against 'kneeling'.

As a reminder, after her last outburst, here is what ESPN president John Skipper said in a memo to staffers:

"ESPN is about sports... It is not a political organization."

So much for that...

As Fox News reports, the ESPN anchor who called President Trump a "white supremacist" on Twitter last month is now calling for a boycott of advertisers aligned with "America's Team."

If you strongly reject what Jerry Jones said, the key is his advertisers. Don't place the burden squarely on the players. https://t.co/Gc48kchkuv

— Jemele Hill (@jemelehill)

Iran Vows "Decisive, Crushing" Response If Trump Designates Its Elite Guards As Terrorists

On Sunday, in its most explicit warning to Donald Trump not to revise the terms of the Nuclear Deal - something the US president is expected to do over the coming days - Iran warned the United States that U.S. regional military bases "would be at risk" if further sanctions were passed. "The Americans should know that the Trump government's stupid behavior with the nuclear deal will be used by the Islamic Republic as an opportunity to move ahead with its missile, regional and conventional defense program," Iran Revolutionary Guards' commander Mohammad Ali Jafari said, quoted by Reuters. He then threatened US presence in the region, warning that "if America's new law for sanctions is passed, this country will have to move their regional bases outside the 2,000 km range of Iran's missiles."

Then, one day later, Iran vowed on Monday to give a "firm and crushing" response should Washington decide to also include the elite wing of its army, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), on its list of terrorist organizations, according to the country's foreign ministry.

"We are hopeful that the United States does not make this strategic mistake," Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qasemi stated during a news conference according to Reuters. "If they do, Iran's reaction would be firm, decisive and crushing and the United States should bear all its consequences."

EPA To Repeal Obama-Era "Clean Power Plan"

In another policy move that is sure to 'trigger' liberals and climate-change advocates, the New York Times is reporting that EPA Chief Scott Pruitt will on Tuesday announce that the agency is taking formal steps to repeal an Obama-era policy meant to curb greenhouse gas emissions from power plants.

Pruitt justified dismantling the policy - known as the Clean Power Plan - by arguing that his predecessors had departed from regulatory norms in crafting the plan, which was finalized in 2015 and would have pushed states to move away from coal - an industry that President Trump has championed - in favor of sources of electricity that produce fewer carbon emissions.

"The war on coal is over," Mr. Pruitt told the Times.

"Tomorrow in Washington D.C., I will be signing a proposed rule to roll back the Clean Power Plan. No better place to make that announcement than Hazard, Kentucky."

The repeal proposal will be filed in the Federal Register Tuesday, fulfilling a promise that President Trump made to dismantle his predecessors' efforts to curb fossil fuel emmissions.

Eliminating the CPP will make it effecti ...

Why Deutsche Bank Should Keep John Cryan

Deutsche Bank still has a long journey to good returns and it won't get there quicker by changing its chief executive.

Why Investors Should Care About Trump Tax Cuts' Fairness

Whether the rich would be the biggest beneficiaries of tax-reform efforts is a matter of fierce political debate. But they would likely be among its first beneficiaries, and for investors that alone would matter.

Time to Reconsider India's Hot Run

India has been among the best-performing stock markets in the world this year, yet faces backtracking in the kinds of government reforms investors tend to like.

Market Extra: Columbus Day: Which markets are closed?

U.S. stock markets are open for trade on Monday, but bond markets are closed in observance of Columbus Day.

Project Syndicate: Price of bitcoin will collapse, says economist who wrote the book on currencies

The technology of cryptocurrencies will thrive, but the price of bitcoin will collapse under pressure from the state, writes Kenneth Rogoff.

Trump Today: Trump Today: President says North Korea policy 'didn't work' for 25 years

President Donald Trump had no public events scheduled Monday, but he tweeted again about what he calls the U.S.'s failed policy on North Korea and said Vice President Mike Pence was getting "great praise" for walking out of an NFL game after some players kneeled in protest during the national anthem.

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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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