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11Jan2018 Pre-Market Commentary: Wall Street Opens Higher, Initial Unemployment Claims Rolling Again Worsens, WTI Crude Trends Higher Into The 64 Handle, US Dollar Waterfalls Lower

Written by Gary

US equities markets opend fractionally higher this morning (SPY +0.2%) as bond market worries ease. Initial Jobless Claims Unexpectedly Surge, Continuing Claims Lowest In 45 Years.


Here is the current market situation from CNN Money

European markets are lower today with shares in Germany off the most. The DAX is down 0.53% while France's CAC 40 is off 0.21% and London's FTSE 100 is lower by 0.04%.

What Is Moving the Markets

Here are the headlines moving the markets.

South Korea plans to ban cryptocurrency trading, rattles market

SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korea's government said on Thursday it plans to ban cryptocurrency trading, sending bitcoin prices plummeting and throwing the virtual coin market into turmoil as the nation's police and tax authorities raided local exchanges on alleged tax evasion.

Bonds bounce, stocks struggle, Bitcoin battered

LONDON (Reuters) - Worries about a U.S.-led trade war put world stocks at risk of their first two day loss of the year on Thursday, while bond markets bounced as China poured cold water on reports that it might stop buying U.S. debt.

Walmart uses lower U.S. tax bill to raise minimum wage to $11 an hour

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Walmart Stores Inc said on Thursday it would raise entry-level wages for hourly employees to $11 an hour as it benefits from the biggest overhaul of the U.S. tax code in 30 years.

Delta sees unit revenue rising, shares jump

(Reuters) - Delta Air Lines Inc reported better-than-expected profit for the fourth quarter on Thursday, helped by a busy holiday travel season, and forecast even better performance in the current quarter, sending its shares up almost 3 percent in premarket trading.

Lagging industry, Ford puts auto emergency brakes on two 2019 models

(Reuters) - Ford Motor Co said on Thursday it will make automatic emergency brakes standard on two key 2019 models, an effort by the No. 2 U.S. automaker to catch up with rivals in offering the new technology designed to help vehicles avoid collisions.

Exclusive: Lufthansa CEO calls for 'significant' Alitalia cuts - letter

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Lufthansa sees a need for "significant" restructuring at Italy's Alitalia before the German airline can make a deal to buy the carrier, according to a letter by Lufthansa Chief Executive Carsten Spohr seen by Reuters on Thursday.

So close yet so far: China deal elusive for France's Areva

SHANGHAI/PARIS (Reuters) - A deal long sought by French company Areva to build a $12-billion nuclear waste reprocessing plant in China looks increasingly unlikely to go ahead despite a visit to Beijing by President Emmanuel Macron meant to drum up business.

Rocket Internet CEO says ready to pounce with cash pile

BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany's Rocket Internet needs to hold on to its mountain of cash so it can compete with rivals from the United States and China and pounce when investment opportunities arise, the chief executive said in an interview.

Futures pick up as bond market worries ease

(Reuters) - U.S. stock futures were slightly higher on Thursday, a day after Wall Street closed lower for the first time this year following a spike in U.S. Treasury yields and concerns over the United States pulling out of a key trade agreement.

Initial Jobless Claims Unexpectedly Surge, Continuing Claims Lowest In 45 Years

2016 ended with a 13% YoY decline in initial jobless claims. However, thanks to a late-year surge (which we are sure will be excused away with 'weather' of some sort), 2017 saw initial claims rise 6.5% YoY.

Initial claims rose 11k to 260k (against expectations of a decline to 245k)...

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180111_claims.png

However, continuing claims continue to fall, breaking down this week to the lowest level since 1973...

Continuing claims fell 35k to 1.867mm (beating expectations of 1.92mm)...

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180111_claims1.png

As good as it gets?

Deflation Re-Emerges - Producer Prices Plunge In December

Following the deflationary core import price index print, producer prices dropped 0.1% in December, missing expectations dramatically and 'deflating' the most since Aug 2016.



Final demand ex food, energy fell 0.1% m/m vs est. up 0.2%

Final demand rose 2.6% y/y vs est. up 3%

Final demand ex food, energy rose 2.3% y/y vs est. up 2.5%

Final demand ex food, energy and trade services rose 0.1% m/m

Final demand personal consumption fell 0.2% m/m

Final demand personal consumption rose 2.6% y/y

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180111_PPI1.png

Under the headlines:

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180111_PPI.png

The index for final demand services moved down 0.2 percent in December following nine consecutive increase ...

Feinstein Admits She Was Mentally Unstable When Releasing Fusion GPS Transcript

Amid all the 25th Amendment malarkey being thrown at the president, it is ironic that Democratic California Sen. Dianne Feinstein admitted a "bad cold" may have impaired her mental faculties and caused her to release Fusion GPS founder Glenn Simpson's testimony.

sd

This is the second excuse from Feinstein for her actions that so enraged Sen. Grassley. Earlier, as we detailed here, she admitted (then retracted) being "pressured" to release the transcripts.

And now, as The Daily Caller's Peter Hasson notes, Feinstein, 84, expressed regret on Wednesday for keeping Sen. Grassley in the dark, and suggested it was because of a "bad cold."

"The one regret I have is that I should have spoke with Senator Grassley before," she told NBC News.

"And I don't make an excuse but I've had a bad cold and maybe that slowed down my mental facilities [sic] a little bit."

Grassley

Bill Gross: "Bonds, Like Men, Are In A Bear Market"

After announcing the end of the 25-year bond bull market this week, and being told that he is early by Jeffrey Gundlach, Janus Henderson's Bill Gross put digital pen to digital paper to explain that for both men and bonds... #TimesUp.

Oprah Winfrey's Golden Globe Awards pronouncement that "Time is up" for men who oppress women also goes for the bond market that's been buoyed by repressed interest rates, according to Bill Gross.

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180111_times%20up.png

"Bonds, like men, are in a bear market," Gross, manager of the $2.2 billion Janus Henderson Global Unconstrained Bond Fund, wrote in an investment outlook released Thursday. "Oprah shouted, 'Their time has come.' The bear bond market's time has come as well. Many would say, including yours truly -- 'It's about time.' "

The end of a 25-year bond bull market may have been July 2016, when yields on 10-year Treasury bonds hit an all-time low in a "double-bottomed" pattern, although it wasn't apparent at the time, according to Gross. The bear market was confirmed this week as rates on the ...

Chinese Dragon Still Needs U.S. Treasurys for Its Hoard

Conflicting media reports over the past 24 hours imply China may be considering buying fewer U.S. Treasurys. That matters less than the bond market seems to think.

Bond Markets Have Picked Up the Wrong Signal From Japan

Investors should revisit the theory behind the Bank of Japan's yield-curve-control policy before assuming it has changed track.

Xerox Should Look to Copy Fujifilm's Success

The venerable U.S. company Xerox could find a tie-up with its longtime joint-venture partner Fujifilm helps it to reinvent itself.

December 2017 Producer Price Final Demand Year-over-Year Inflation Moderated

Written by Steven Hansen

The Producer Price Index year-over-year inflation declined from 3.1 % to 2.6 %.

Capitol Report: Trump expected to extend sanctions relief for Iran | What the IRS paid to collect tax debts

President Donald Trump is expected to extend relief from economic sanctions to Iran; how much the IRS paid to collect tax debts in the last fiscal year; ex-Sheriff Joe Arpaio calls former President Barack Obama's birth certificate 'phony'; and more.

Kodak's monster gains show there's a killing to be made by trading blockchain news

Remember, it's about trading, not investing, so you need a proven method, says Nigam Arora.

Economic Outlook: Bank earnings will be 'moderate,' 'mixed,' 'messy,' and 'muddied.' But there's some good news

The big banks that report their fourth-quarter earnings in mid-January will have several headwinds baked into their results that may - or may not - turn into tailwinds in the coming year, analysts believe.

Earnings Summary for Today

Earnings Calendar provided by Investing.com.

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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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