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28Dec2017 Pre-Market Commentary: Wall Street To Open Higher, New Highs Possible, WTI Crude Remain In The High59 Handle, Jobless Claims Higher

Written by Gary

US stock market index futures are trending modestly upwards (SPY +0.2%), helped by a rally in commodities and a weaker dollar.


Here is the current market situation from CNN Money

European markets are mixed. The FTSE 100 is higher by 0.10%, while the CAC 40 is leading the DAX lower. They are down 0.18% and 0.15% respectively.

What Is Moving the Markets

Here are the headlines moving the markets.

Stock futures point to positive session on Wall Street

(Reuters) - U.S. stock futures pointed to a higher open for Wall Street on Thursday, helped by a rally in commodities and a weaker dollar.

One bidder remains in takeover talks for Niki, Lauda pulls out

VIENNA (Reuters) - One bidder is left in what was a four-party competition to take over Air Berlin's insolvent Austrian airline Niki, its administrator said in an emailed statement on Thursday, adding the deal should be completed within days.

Exclusive: Apple and Amazon in talks to set up in Saudi Arabia - sources

RIYADH (Reuters) - Apple and Amazon are in licensing discussions with Riyadh on investing in Saudi Arabia, two sources told Reuters, part of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's push to give the conservative kingdom a high-tech look.

Ex-lawyer for pharma executive Shkreli convicted of aiding fraud scheme

(Reuters) - A New York lawyer who once advised Martin Shkreli was convicted on Wednesday of helping him defraud a pharmaceutical company, a charge a different jury cleared the drug executive of when it found him guilty of securities fraud earlier this year.

Apple faces lawsuits after saying it slows down aging iPhones

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Apple Inc defrauded iPhone users by slowing devices without warning to compensate for poor battery performance, according to eight lawsuits filed in various federal courts in the week since the company opened up about the year-old software change.

South Korea prosecutors seek 12 years jail for Samsung heir Lee in corruption case

SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korean prosecutors sought a 12-year jail term on Wednesday for Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Jay Y. Lee, in a corruption case that led to the ouster of the nation's president earlier this year.

Oil near mid-2015 highs on strong China data, tighter 2018 outlook

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Oil prices rose on Thursday, lifted by strong data from top importer China amid thin trading activity ahead of the New Year weekend.

Goldman Sachs picks Dublin for asset management unit post-Brexit: source

LONDON (Reuters) - Goldman Sachs has picked Dublin as a center for administrative staff in its asset management business following Britain's vote to leave the European Union, a source familiar with the matter said.

Japan's Nomura poised to start China retail brokerage business: CEO

TOKYO (Reuters) - Nomura Holdings Inc is ready to serve wealthy Chinese as soon as the world's second-largest economy allows foreign financial institutions to open securities brokerages, the chief executive of Japan's biggest brokerage and investment bank said.

China Beige Book Warns Economic Slowdown Has Begun

When it comes to the global economy, few things matter as much as China, the trajectory of its economy and especially the pace and impulse of its credit creation, which is ironic because virtually all data coming out of China is fabricated and manipulated, and thoroughly untrustworthy, either on purpose or "by accident."

The latest example of the former was highlighted over the weekend, when we discussed that a nationwide Chinese audit found some local governments inflated revenue levels and raised debt illegally, once again making a mockery of China's credibility on the global stage. As Bloomberg reported ten cities, counties or districts in the Yunnan, Hunan and Jilin provinces, as well as the southwestern city of Chongqing, inflated fiscal revenues by 1.55 billion yuan, the National Audit Office said in a statement on its website dated Dec. 8.

An even more blatant example of the former was highlighted in October ahead of China's Communist Party Congress, when the local securities watchdog literally "advised" some loss-making companies to avoid publishing quarterly results ahead of the Congress as authorities sought to ensure stock-market stability during the critical gathering of China's political elite. As a result, at least 17 Shenzhen-listed companies announced delays to their earnings reports from Oct. 20 to Oct. 24, up from three during the same period last year.

However, now that the Party Congress is long over, China's recent economic data offer a ...

Lacy Hunt On The Unintended Consequences Of Federal Reserve Policies

Authored by Mike Shedlock via www.themaven.net/mishtalk,

The Financial Repression Authority interviewed Lacy Hunt, Chief Economist at Hoisington Management on Fed policies.

The interview below first appeared on the FRA website along with a video.

The emphasis in italics is mine.

FRA: Hi, welcome to FRA's Roundtable Insight. Today, we have Dr. Lacy Hunt. He's an internationally recognized economist and the Executive V.P. and Chief Economist of Hoisington Investment Management Company, a firm that manages over $4.5 billion USD and specializing in the management of fixed income accounts for large institutional clients. He also served in the past as Senior Economist for the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, where he was a member of the Federal Reserve System Committee on Financial Analysis. Welcome. Dr. Hunt.

Dr. Lacy Hunt: Nice to be with you, Richard.

FRA: Great. I thought we'd have a discussion on a variety of topics relating to the economy and the financial markets. You recently mentioned that you thought this was the worst economic expansion recovery in U.S. history since 1790. Wow. Can you elaborate?

Dr. Lacy Hunt: If you calculate the average growth rate in the expansions since 1790, this is a long-running expansion, b ...

Vanity Fair Editors Relentlessly Attacked Over "Don't-Run-Again-Hillary" Satirical Video

It appears the McResistance is on the warpath once again, and this time they're going after Vanity Fair, which to the surprise of many published a satirical video about Hillary Clinton's future prospects in the days just before Christmas with the caption, "Maybe it's time for Hillary Clinton to take up a new hobby in 2018" as part of a broader series on New Year's resolutions.

"Take up a new hobby in the new year," suggested Vanity Fair writer Maya Kosoff. "Volunteer work, knitting, improv comedy - literally anything that will keep you from running again."

Editor John Kelly, meanwhile, suggested that Clinton "finally put away your James Comey voodoo doll." And added further with cheerful snark, "We all know you think James Comey cost you the election and he might have, but so did a handful of other things. It's a year later and time to move on."

Maybe it's time for Hillary Clinton to take up a new hobby in 2018 pic.twitter.com/sbE78rA5At

— VANITY FAIR (@VanityFair) December 23, 2017

Editors from the magazine's politics and business section, Hive, published the one-minute video entitled "Six New Year's Resolutions for Hillary Clinton" featuring themselves holding Champagne flutes while giving New Year's advice, which includes telling the former secretary of state and failed presidential candidate to give up and retire in 2018.

Though the ...

Hannity Promises To Expose CNN & NBC News In "EpicFail"

"Tick tock."

In a mysterious tweet yesterday evening to his 3.19 million followers, Fox News' Sean Hannity offered a preview of what is to come from his show next week, warning that he "will expose" CNN and NBC News for what he calls a "#EpicFail."

He followed up last night's tweet...

One week from tonight i will expose @CNN and @NBCNews news for #EpicFail. Happy New Year to all irredeemable deplorables. 2018, cling to God Faith Bibles religion.

— Sean Hannity (@seanhannity) December 27, 2017

With another tonight, highlighting the "fake news" being spewed forth from various media entities...

So @CNN fake news, HRC's campaign PAID for the RUSSIAN lies in the dossier. That sounds like COLLUSION!! Lies paid for, to RIG an election. https://t.co/b9G6k41LMT

— Sean Hannity (@seanhannity) December 27, 2017

We will just have to be patient to di ...

Why Volvo Cars' Chinese Owner Is Betting Big on Volvo Trucks

Do cars and trucks belong in the same corporate garage? By bringing the two Volvos closer together again, Chinese car giant Geely is betting they do.

What's Good for Reliance Could Be Good for India

A high-profile debt resolution at one of India's most storied companies, Reliance Communications, could signal a big change for India's corporate-debt problem.

Emerging Markets: Growing in Maturity?

The MSCI Emerging Markets stock index is turning 30. Huge political shifts and globalization have changed the face of the index over time.

Economic Report: Jobless claims flat at 245,000 ahead of Christmas, but 2017 great year for labor

The number of Americans who applied for unemployment benefits the week before Christmas was unchanged at 245,000, but initial claims in 2017 were on track to be the fewest in 44 years.

Time magazine names 'The Silence Breakers' 2017 person of the year

Time magazine named "The Silence Breakers" as its 2017 person of the year on Wednesday, referring to the many individuals who helped expose the prevalence of sexual harassment and gender discrimination in the world of entertainment, technology, the media and other sectors this year.

Bond Report: Treasury yields push slightly higher day after big drop

Treasury yields tick up on Thursday with less than 48 hours left in the regular trading session for 2017, after yields for the 10-year U.S. government saw its biggest one-day drop in about 3 months.

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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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