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Reports US

US stock market, economy and companies update (March 22, 2013)

March 22, 2013, Friday, 15:46 GMT | 11:46 EST | 20:16 IST | 22:46 SGT
Contributed by Trade The News

- Hope is triumphing over experience this morning as Cyprus legislators work to pass a new package of reforms to save themselves from disaster. European indices traded up off steep session losses in the early US morning on optimism Cyprus would come up with something workable, and US equities are presently at session highs. EUR/USD has soared from 1.2890 to around 1.3010 presently. The DJIA is up 0.65%, the S&P500 is up 0.68% and the Nasdaq is up 0.51%.

- The Cyprus parliament is struggling to pass a new package of measures, including a total banking sector restructuring and a revised bank levy, although depositors holding €100K or less are said to be protected this time around. Analysts warn that the Troika may or may not accept whatever the parliament adopts, and officials from eurozone have not seen the new package. The EU more or less rejected the solidarity fund idea and the Russians do not seem interested in handing Cyprus a new loan. Former Cyprus Central Bank Chief (and ECB governor) Athanasios Orphanides warned that the events in Cyprus show "the European project is crashing to earth. This is a fundamental change in the dynamics of Europe towards disintegration and I don't see how it can be reversed."

- Shares of Nike are up nearly 12% this morning after the firm saw better profits and better margins in its Q3. Margins have been sliding lower for approximately two years and this was the first quarter of improvement. Note that Nike's China business is still contracting and the firm left its FY13 outlook unchanged. Shares of FL and UA are up more than 3% in sympathy.

- Micron also showed excellent margin improvements in its quarterly report, and its revenue topped expectations. After acquisition-related items, the firm did report a loss in its Q2. On the conf call, executives were enthusiastic about the big improvements in supply dynamics thanks to lower DRAM wafer seen this year and next. MU is up 11%.

- High-end retailer New York & Company is down nearly 12% after the firm warned that its revenue would decline in the current quarter. Its Q4 numbers out last night topped expectations.

- Key trucking firm Old Dominion is up more than 5% after raising its Q1 tonnage growth rate outlook.

***Looking Ahead***
- (PT) Portugal releases Year-to-Date Budget Report
- (CO) Colombia Central Bank Interest Rate Decision: Expected to cut Overnight Lending Rate by 25bps to 3.50%
- 11:00 (MX) Mexico Central Bank Monetary Policy Minutes
- 15:00 (AR) Argentina Jan Economic Activity Index M/M: No est v 0.4% prior; Y/Y: 2.1%e v 1.1% prior
- 15:00 (AR) Argentina Feb Industrial Production M/M: -0.7%e v +0.2% prior; Y/Y: No est v 0.6% prior
- 15:00 (AR) Argentina Q4 Current Account Balance: -$500Me v $1.1B prior
- 17:00 (CO) Colombia Jan Retail Sales Y/Y: 2.8%e v 3.3% prior
- 17:00 (CO) Colombia Jan Industrial Production Y/Y: -0.7%e v -3.0% prior

***Economic Data***
- (BR) Brazil Mar IBGE CPI IPCA-15 M/M: 0.5% v 0.5%e
- (CL) Chile Feb PPI M/M: 0.3% v 0.8% prior
- (TR) Turkey Mar Industrial Confidence: 112.1 v 107.5 prior; Capacity Utilization: 72.7% v 72.2% prior
- (BR) Brazil Feb Current Account: -$6.6B v -$6.0Be; Foreign Direct Investment (FDI): $3.8B v $3.5Be
- (BR) Brazil Feb Tax Collections (BRL): 76.1B v 80.0Be
- (BE) Belgium Mar Business Confidence Level: -15 v -10.4e
- (MX) Mexico Feb Unemployment Rate: 4.85% v 5.3%e