Stock Market News 11-25-09
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(Tickers: Nasdaq: JRJC, CONN, GDOCF.PK, TTPA, ASYS, BCSI, TIVO, NYSE: DE, TIF, NZ, LSE.L, DIA, SPY, QQQQ, NYX, DOG, SDS, QLD)
Traditionally one of the busiest travel days of the year, the day before Thanksgiving will have most of you focused on other things today. However, the stock market news day is a busy one for Wall Street. Many of the week's economic reports that might have otherwise been published Thursday or Friday have been pushed to today's stock market news flow so that bankers can avoid indigestion Friday. That means we have to swallow eight reports the day before we digest an enormous quantity of turkey. The data has offered a decidedly positive flavor though, with Jobless Claims coming in well below 500K and Personal Outlays riding much higher than forecasts.
Stock Market News 11-25-09Mortgage Applications
The now highly anticipated Weekly Applications Survey produced by the Mortgage Bankers Association was reported in the premarket stock market news. Over recent weeks, this regular report has provided interesting insight into the effects of the First-Time Homebuyer Tax Credit on the real estate market. See our research on this topic in the linked to article above.
For the week ended November 20, the Market Composite Index of mortgage activity decreased 4.5%. While the Refinance Index declined 9.5%, despite relatively stable mortgage rates, the Purchase Index went against recent trend and rose 9.6% from a historical low point that had not been seen since 1997. The rates on contracted 30-year and 15-year fixed rate mortgages stood stable at 4.82% and 4.32%, respectively.
Durable Goods Orders
In the day's early stock market news, Durable Goods Orders were reported lower. New Orders declined by 0.6% in October (+2.0% in September - revised), well below economists' expectations for improvement of 0.5%. Excluding transportation, orders fell by 1.3% (+1.8% in September. October's decline was attributed to machinery (-8.0%) and computers and electronics (-2.1%). Defense orders were also reported lower.
Personal Income & Outlays
Also in the early stock market news flow, Personal Income and Outlays were noted for October. Bloomberg's consensus of economists was looking for a 0.2% increase for October and got it. Economists had a clear precursor, as average weekly earnings had already been reported up 0.3% in October.
Consumer Outlays declined 0.5% in September following "Cash for Clunkers" cut-off. Economists were looking for an increase of 0.5% for October, as the month's retail sales and motor vehicle sales both improved. October's consumer outlays actually came in better than expected, rising 0.9%. This is an important stock market news driver today, a positive for stocks.
The Core PCE Price Index was expected to rise 0.2% in October, versus the 0.1% increase in September, and it did. The previously reported Core Consumer Price Index (CPI) was also up 0.2% for the month.
The final premarket stock market news bit for Wednesday was the Weekly Initial Jobless Claims data. Economists were looking for an important dip in initial benefits filings this time around, to 495K, versus 505K last week. What they got was even better, as jobless claims fell to 466K. The four-week moving average fell for the 12th straight week, to 496.5. This is more uplifting stock market news.
Consumer Sentiment Index
The second of the week's consumer confidence measures came due today at 9:55 AM ET. The Reuters/University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index dropped a significant 4.6 points in early November on renewed economic concerns. Economists were looking for this latest reading today to place the index slightly higher, at 67.0, versus 66.0 at last check. The actual reading came in slightly higher, at 67.4.
New Home Sales
Just reported, Existing Home Sales came in strong for October, running at an annual pace of 6.1 million, up 10.1%. New Home Sales were reported this morning at 10:00 AM, and economists were forecasting improvement there as well. Based on Bloomberg's survey, economists expected the annual pace of New Home Sales to improve to a pace of 410,000 for October, up slightly from 402K in September. Actual sales ran at a much higher rate, to 430K for the month. This is good news, but not something bank on, and we'll explain why in a forthcoming article.
EIA Oil & Gas Reports
The EIA will report on both Petroleum Status and Natural Gas today, due to the holiday. Last week's oil report showed crude stocks decreased by 0.9 million barrels in the week ended November 13. Total motor gasoline stores fell by 1.7 million barrels. Natural gas inventory increased by 20 Bcf. Look for this week's oil data at 10:30 AM ET and the natural gas report at noon.
Corporate News Drivers
The day's earnings schedule includes China Finance Online (Nasdaq: JRJC), Conn's (Nasdaq: CONN), Deere & Co. (NYSE: DE), London Stock Exchange (LSE: LSE.L), Golden Ocean Group (Nasdaq: GDOCF.PK), Tiffany & Co. (NYSE: TIF) and Trintech (Nasdaq: TTPA). Reported last evening: Amtech (Nasdaq: ASYS), Blue Coat Systems (Nasdaq: BCSI), Netezza (NYSE: NZ), TIVO (Nasdaq: TIVO), .
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