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Reports US

US stock market, economy and companies update (May 23, 2014)

May 23, 2014, Friday, 15:18 GMT | 10:18 EST | 18:48 IST | 21:18 SGT
Contributed by Trade The News


- The S&P500 is making a run at all-time highs this morning as a confident tone prevails in US markets. As of writing, the DJIA is up 0.32%, the S&P500 is up 0.31% and the Nasdaq is up 0.28%.

- The euro is softer again this morning after the Germany May IFO Survey came in weaker than expected. EUR/USD hit a three-month low of 1.3620 and traded below its 200-day moving average of 1.3636 for the first time since September 2013. The voting for EU elections began on Thursday; earlier in the week there had been a more defensive tone in eurozone markets on fears euroskeptic parties would make dramatic gains, however exit polls are suggesting they will not do quite as well as expected.

- Last week's April housing starts and permits data indicated an improving tone in US housing markets after a hard winter. Today's April New Home Sales helps confirm the trend, rising 6.4% y/y, beating estimates. The March figures were revised higher as well. Also note that the median price declined even as months of supply contracted. Housing names are gaining another one or two percent this morning on the news.

- Russia President Putin spoke and took questions at the St. Petersburg business forum. Putin said his government would respect the will of the Ukrainian people in Sunday's presidential vote and work with the duly elected president, even while reiterating that former president Viktor Yanukovych was removed in a "coup d'etat." The price of WTI crude remains elevated for the third consecutive session without much change, around $104.

- There is pressure on solar names this morning after India imposed anti-dumping duties on solar cells from the US, China and Malaysia. Chinese firms are the hardest hit, with duties equal to $0.64-0.81/watt, while duties on US firms only around $0.11-0.48/watt. Earlier in the month, India had alleged US and Chinese firms were dumping solar products on its market, while back in February the US filed a WTO action regarding India's subsidies for domestic solar programs. Note that China Sunergy is down 8% after filing a mixed shelf equal to nearly 80% of its market cap.

- Shares of Aeropostale are down nearly 20% this morning after the firm published a very weak first quarter report. Quarterly losses were slightly less than expected, however revenue shrank, comps declined 13% and second-quarter guidance was much worse than expected. On the upside, GameStop is among the big retail winners this morning, up 5% on decent first quarter results and strong guidance.

- Biotech firms developing treatments for Duchenne muscular dystrophy have seen massive moves this morning after the European Medicines Agency gave a green light to PTC Therapeutics' marketing application for Translarna. Shares of PTCT rose around 80% after the news dropped, but have slid to about a +50% gain in the early going. Sarepta and Prosensa are both developing competing (and controversial) drugs. Shares of SRPT are up about 28% on the news, while RNA is up 8% or so.

***Looking Ahead***
- (UK) UK Sovereign Debt Rating May Be Published by Moody's
- (FR) France Sovereign Debt Rating May Be Published by Moody's
- (SI) Slovenia Sovereign Debt Rating May Be Published by Moody's
- 15:00 (AR) Argentina Apr Industrial Production M/M: No est v -1.8% prior; Y/Y: -6.1%e v -5.9% prior
- 17:00 (CO) Colombia Mar Trade Balance: -$322.0Me v -$505.6M prior; Total Imports: $4.9Be v $5.0B prior

***Weekend***
- (UR) Ukraine Presidential elections
- (EU) EU Parliamentary elections


***Economic Data***
- (EU) ECB: 9 banks to repay total €7.0B in 3-Year LTRO Funds vs. €4.8Be
- (BR) Brazil May FGV Consumer Confidence: 102.8 v 106.3 prior
- (TR) Turkey May Capacity Utilization: 74.4% v 74.4% prior; Real Sector Confidence: 113.3 v 112.7 prior
- (IN) India Forex Reserves w/e May 16th: $315.0B v $313.8B prior
- (CA) Canada Apr CPI M/M: 0.3% v 0.4%e; Y/Y: 2.0% v 2.0%e (largest annual rise since Apr 2012)
- (CA) Canada Apr CPI Core M/M: 0.2% v 0.2%e; Y/Y: 1.4% v 1.4%e
- (CA) Canada Apr CPI Seasonal Adj M/M: 0.2% v 0.2%e; CPI Core Seasonally Adj M/M: 0.2% v 0.1% prior
- (BE) Belgium May Business Confidence: -6.8 v -4.8e
- (MX) Mexico Mar Economic Activity Index Y/Y: 3.0% v 3.6%e
- (MX) Mexico Q1 GDP Q/Q: 0.3% v 0.5%e; Y/Y: 1.8% v 2.1%e
- (CL) Chile Apr PPI M/M: 0.0% v -2.9% prior
- (BR) Brazil Apr Current Account Balance: -$8.3B v -$6.6Be; Foreign Direct Investment (FDI): $5.2B v $5.4Be
- (US) Apr New Home Sales: 433K v 425Ke
- (MX) Mexico Q1 Current Account Balance: -$4.5B v -$5.5Be