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ozymandius Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 06:38 AM
Original message
STOCK MARKET WATCH, Friday 11 February
Friday February 11, 2005

Number of Enron Execs in handcuffs = 19
Other Arrests of Execs = 54

NASDAQ FUTURES-----------------------------S&P FUTURES

AT THE CLOSING BELL ON February 10, 2005

Dow... 10,749.61 +85.50 (+0.80%)
Nasdaq... 2,053.10 +0.55 (+0.03%)
S&P 500... 1,197.01 +5.02 (+0.42%)
10-Yr Bond... 4.07% +0.10 (+2.41%)
Gold future... 418.70 +4.20 (+1.00%)

GOLD, EURO, YEN, Dollars and Loonie


Heads Up!
Preliminary info on appearances by Bush & Co. throughout the country. Details & links are added as they become available so check back. And if you know more, are organizing something, or would like to, contact

For information on protests and other actions Citizens For Legitimate Government

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UL_Approved Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 06:49 AM
Response to Original message
1. Any great thoughts about 11000/2200?
Is there any indication of the DJIA and NASDAQ going above those figures? I'm curious about how the market hasn't been above that level in a long time.
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 09:25 AM
Response to Reply #1
5. Sorry, but I haven't got a clue. Maybe someone else would be willing to
take a stab at it. Based on P/E ratios I'd say no way, we shouldn't even be where we are. But, with all the lever pulling going on these days, who knows it's quite possible though it wouldn't be sustainable. :shrug:
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jswordy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 09:26 AM
Response to Reply #1
6. I have been a skeptic and on the sidelines mostly, but... does indeed look like a firm floor is finally being established from which the market can spring forward. I do not make that statement lightly, and I want to note strongly here that recent advances seem predicated on a positive bounce in world economic affairs resulting from the "austere" Bush budget proposal.

That should wane as it becomes apparent nothing even remotely like Bush's smoke and mirrors budget will eventually be passed, and as the realization of even higher deficits this year sinks in.

However, there is enough good news from companies (like Dell) and on the jobs situation that 11,000 seems at least achievable, whereas before it seemed the market would remain in a fixed position between 10,450-10,800.

I'm cautious but flexible at present. Still mostly sidelined, though.
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 09:11 AM
Response to Original message
2. Morning Ozy and all. Nice toon. Is that a new sig line you have, or
have I just not been paying attention again? Either way, it's great!
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ozymandius Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 12:37 PM
Response to Reply #2
33. Thanks 54anickel!
I've had the sig for a couple of months. It just seemed to have a "ring" of relevance in view of the times we live in, have been living in, for the past four years.
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 09:17 AM
Response to Original message

Earnings season finally comes to a close this week. Retailing companies are about the only group that is left to report fourth quarter earnings. Overall, fourth quarter earnings have been extremely strong. First Call estimates that fourth quarter earnings will increase by 19.8%. This is quite a bit higher than the 15.2% at the beginning of the year and quite impressive considering earnings during the fourth quarter last year increase 28.3%. Additionally, earnings of each of the ten S&P sectors have increased more then were forecasted on January 1. Unfortunately, the outlook for earnings growth for this year, and especially this quarter, is much more muted. There have been 95 companies in the S&P 500 that have issued guidance for the first quarter of 2005, and 60% of these were negative pre-announcements while only 28% were positive. This 2:1 ratio is the highest since the third quarter of 2003, and the percent of companies guiding down earnings is the highest in at least eight quarters.

Digging a little deeper into the earnings acceleration, the rise in oil has had a dramatic effect on earnings growth for the S&P 500. Energy companies only comprise 9% of the S&P 500 earnings, but since earnings for the energy companies have doubled from last year, they account for nine percentage points of the 19.8% growth rate. Exxon Mobile earned $1.5 billion more than analysts were forecasting and just its surprise accounts for an extra one percentage point of growth. Materials companies account for only 3% of the index earnings, but combined with its 88% earnings growth, this sector accounts for about 2.6 percentage points of growth. In other words, the soaring commodity costs account for about half the earnings growth of the S&P 500 during the fourth quarter.

Cisco Systems reported fiscal second quarter earnings that met Wall Street expectations, but the networking company said that first quarter revenue would advance only 8%-10% with the midpoint representing sales of $6.13 billion. This is about $100 million less than the $6.23 billion analysts were forecasting. This would also represent the slowest year-over-year growth rate in the past six quarters. Wall Street is currently forecasting that third quarter earnings will increase only 15.8% from year ago levels. This would be the slowest growth rate since the quarter that ended July 2003.

Taubman Centers, which owns and operates shopping malls, announced fourth quarter results that were better than analysts estimates. Funds from operations benefited from an 8.2% increase in sales per square foot and a 270 basis point increase in occupancy. These results might predicate good earnings from retailers, which report results later this month. During the conference call the company commented on what areas were performing best:


Retailers are the last group to report fourth quarter earnings. While sales were lackluster during the first part of the quarter, sales were much stronger during the week prior to Christmas and for the few weeks following the holiday season. Sears was one of the first retailers to report earnings and its gross margins fell by 200 basis points, however, results were better than analysts forecasts. Investors already have low expectations for retailers fourth quarter earnings. Earnings at Wal-Mart are expected to increase only 11.8%, which is the slowest growth since the quarter end that ended January 2002. With lowered expectations, it will be more difficult for retailers to disappoint investors.

That's the ticket! Set expectations low enough and you can beat them everytime! Ah, but can this really be considered growth? I can hear the sheep callers already.
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 09:20 AM
Response to Original message
4. Oil Traders Increasingly Expect a Rally, Survey Says

Feb. 11 (Bloomberg) -- Crude oil traders increasingly expect prices will rise because of higher demand and declining inventories, a Bloomberg survey found.

The proportion predicting higher prices doubled from a week ago to 34 percent in yesterday's poll. The percentage of traders anticipating lower prices fell to 34 percent, and the proportion expecting little change also declined, leaving participants divided on the market's likely direction. Last week, 17 percent of traders anticipated a rise in prices and 58 percent a drop.

World oil use may rise 1.8 percent to 84 million barrels a day this year, the International Energy Agency said yesterday. That's 120,000 barrels more than the Paris-based agency predicted last month. Led by gains in China, consumption increased 3.4 percent last year, the fastest growth since 1976.

``I still think we can see $50 broken and very well broken, I would say by end-March or mid-April,'' said Fred Lackman, an independent oil trader in Toronto. ``The demand will be there. The Chinese economy is in a growth mode.''

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 09:34 AM
Response to Original message
7. Dell Net Falls on Tax Costs; Sales Rise on PC Demand (Update4)
:wtf: What tax cost? Nothing in the article that I can see, other than the statement profit fell 11 percent because of tax costs.

Feb. 10 (Bloomberg) -- Dell Inc., the world's largest personal-computer maker, said profit fell 11 percent because of tax costs. The company said first-quarter sales may not meet analysts' estimates.

Fourth-quarter net income fell to $667 million, or 26 cents a share, from $749 million, or 29 cents, a year earlier, the Round Rock, Texas-based company said in a statement today. Sales rose 17 percent to $13.46 billion, short of Dell's $13.5 billion forecast and disappointing investors.

``They're good but not great,'' Jason Maxwell, an analyst at Los Angeles-based TCW Group Inc., said of the results. TCW manages $100 billion and held 31.5 million Dell shares as of September. ``The revenue growth was a bit light.''

Consumer demand was ``slower'' than the company anticipated in January and that weighed on revenue, Chief Executive Officer Kevin Rollins said. Shipments rose 19 percent, less than the 20 percent Dell predicted. Dell sliced prices, helping the company win sales and take market share from International Business Machines Corp. and Hewlett-Packard Co., which yesterday ousted CEO Carly Fiorina.

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 09:39 AM
Response to Reply #7
9. U.S. Technology Stocks Fall in Europe; Dell and Intel Decline

Feb. 11 (Bloomberg) -- U.S. technology stocks fell in Europe, paced by Dell Inc. after the world's biggest computer maker reported sales that missed estimates. Stock-index futures were little changed.

Dow Jones Industrial Average futures slipped 2 to 10,744 at 10:18 a.m. in London, as 18 of 28 Dow stocks declined in European trading. Standard & Poor's 500 Index futures expiring in March added 0.2 to 1196.8. Nasdaq 100 Index futures rose 1 to 1507.5.

The Nasdaq Composite Index has dropped 5.6 percent this year amid concern that technology companies' growth may slow.

``There's a slowdown'' in the economy that will hurt sales at computer-related companies, said Bertrand Lamielle, a fund manager at B*Capital in Paris, which manages $3.35 billion in stocks and bonds. Lamielle said he doesn't own Dell shares because they're too sensitive to sales and earnings disappointments.


Dell's report is ``very pessimistic,'' said Peter Kaye, a fund manager at Dalton Strategic Partnership in London with $1 billion, including Dell shares.

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MARALE Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 09:36 AM
Response to Original message
8. Stock Futures Barely Changed


Dow Jones futures were trading down 2.0 points recently, while Nasdaq futures were unchanged and S&P futures were up 0.4 points.


After the bell Thursday, Dell Inc. posted an 11 percent drop in its fiscal fourth-quarter profit as a charge to repatriate foreign earnings weighed down results.

Sharper Image Corp. offered a first-quarter outlook considerably lower than Wall Street's expectations. Separately, Consumers Union said Sharper Image paid $525,000 to settle a product disparagement lawsuit that Sharper Image brought against Consumers Union.

Analog Devices Inc.'s fiscal first-quarter earnings declined 8 percent, despite improving order patterns, as sales slid 4.1 percent. The semiconductor company also forecast second-quarter per-share earnings below year-ago levels, but sequential revenue growth for the period.


I think it will go down today, too enthusiastic that last couple of days
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 09:41 AM
Response to Original message
10. China's Choice (Roach)

Chinese currency policy has now become a cause clbre in world financial markets. To peg or not to peg -- and against what and when -- are choices only China can and should make. But given Chinas increasingly important role in the world economy, there are important global consequences of these choices. The outcome could well bear importantly on world financial markets, the politics of trade liberalization, and ultimately the rebalancing of a lopsided world. To paraphrase a famous quip about the dollar uttered by former US Treasury Secretary John Connally in the early 1970s, The renminbi may be Chinas currency, but it is our problem.

Dr. Zhou Xiaochuan, Governor of the Peoples Bank of China and the one of the nations leading macro thinkers, has put the Chinese currency issue to rest for the time being. Now is not the time, he said in an interview on the eve of the 5 February G-7 meeting in London when queried about Chinas plans to adopt a more flexible foreign exchange regime. That puts an end to speculation of an imminent move and even draws into question my view that China is actively preparing to modify the decade-long peg between the renminbi and the dollar (see my 31 January dispatch, An Unprepared World). Governor Zhou qualified the concept of preparation for full RMB convertibility as one that may take years to achieve.

China takes the currency issue very seriously -- and rightfully so. As it weighs the pluses and minuses of alternative foreign exchange regimes, the over-arching considerations of stability appear to be dwarfing all other aspects of the internal debate. For an economy in the midst of extraordinary transition, the currency peg is thought to provide a financial anchor that an otherwise fragile financial system is lacking. Chinas decision on the currency question is yet another reminder that it does not want to gamble in any way whatsoever when it comes to stability.

Yet the context is changing. Chinas outward-looking development model is now increasingly intertwined with the rest of the world through trade, capital, and information flows. As such, Chinas decision on the currency front -- which basically sets the relative price of the Chinese economy vis vis the rest of the world -- has profound implications for the rest of us. Thats especially the case with respect to the so-called dollar adjustment -- a realignment that many, myself included, believe is an important ingredient of global rebalancing. The problem is that the burden of the adjustment has been highly uneven. To date, the broad trade-weighted dollar has dropped by about 16% in real terms over the past three years. The euro has borne the brunt of the correction, with its trade-weighted currency up some 25% in real terms over that period. By contrast, currencies in the Asian bloc have not budged. Thats obviously true of the dollar-pegged RMB but its equally apparent with respect to the yen. Japans broad trade-weighted currency has been basically unchanged over the past three years.

The problem comes with the next downleg of the dollar -- that is, if there ever is one. But under the presumption that Americas gaping current-account deficit elicits further dollar weakness, the burden of adjustment needs to change. Europe can no longer be expected to play a disproportionate role in facilitating a further shift in the worlds relative price structure. The math is pretty compelling that the next bout of dollar depreciation simply wont occur unless Asia adjusts.

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 09:43 AM
Response to Original message
11. Fed Officials Don't See China Dropping Peg Soon
Feb. 11 (Bloomberg) -- Federal Reserve officials aren't optimistic that China will drop its currency peg against the dollar anytime soon because that decision is in the hands of a State Council focused primarily on political stability rather than financial issues.

The State Council apparently believes that China's political stability hinges on continued strong economic growth that will provide the tens of millions of new jobs needed by workers moving out of agriculture and into the industrial economy. And that growth in turn is seen as dependent on keeping the yuan pegged tightly to the dollar.

Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan has said that keeping the yuan pegged to the dollar means that the People's Bank of China, the country's central bank, can't control the nation's money supply. As a result, mounting inflationary pressures eventually will force a revaluation of the yuan, he has said.

At the same time, keeping the peg has forced the central bank to accumulate well over half a trillion dollars worth of foreign exchange reserves, mostly U.S. dollars.

And the exploding U.S. trade deficit with China is generating increasing protectionist pressure in this country. The Commerce Department said yesterday that the trade deficit with China was $162 billion last year. That's more than double the $75 billion deficit with Japan or the $72 billion deficit with the members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries.

Two Risks

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 09:52 AM
Response to Original message
12. Russia bars foreign-owned firms from key assets

Russia will bar foreign-owned companies from bidding for the country's most lucrative natural resources this year in the most explicit and sweeping manifestation of a nationalistic state policy developed under the presidency of Vladimir Putin.

The Ministry for Natural Resources said companies would have to be at least 51 per cent Russian-owned to take part in this year's tenders for strategic oil and metals deposits. The rule may prevent oil companies such as ExxonMobil and ChevronTexaco from developing new Russian oil reserves, and also stymie TNK-BP, a pioneering 50-50 owned Anglo-Russian oil company.

The ban is part of an increasingly clear trend by the Russian government to reassert control over strategic areas of the country's economy and keep foreigners out of the most lucrative assets. It comes days after Russian officials suggested that Siemens should not be allowed to buy Russia's engineering company Power Machines, which is also considered a strategic asset.

The Russian move comes after an extended period of high oil prices. This may signal that a 20-year stretch of oil surpluses has come to an end and that power in the energy markets has once again shifted back to those countries with large reserves. The tender list for this year's oil and gas projects includes Sakhalin 3, a giant offshore oil field in Russia's far east, which Exxon was hoping to develop as well as ready-to-produce onshore fields in the north of Russia with reserves of 250m tonnes of oil, which TNK-BP, Chevron and Total are believed to be interested in.

The exclusion also includes one of Russia's biggest gold deposits, which Fleming Family and Partners, in London, wanted to develop, and copper mines that interested Chinese companies. Analysts said that if new rules were applied to other fields in future years it could deal a heavy blow to BP, which paid $7.5bn for a 50 per cent stake of TNK-BP.

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 10:15 AM
Response to Original message
13. Dollar watch (more Fed jaw-boning today - Yellen and Ben on deck)

Last trade 84.58 Change +0.04 (+0.05%)

Settle 84.54 Settle Time 23:34

Open 84.59 Previous Close 84.54

High 84.75 Low 84.48

The March Dollar was slightly higher overnight as it consolidates some of Thursday's decline, which marked a key reversal down. Stochastics and the RSI are overbought and have turned bearish signaling that a short-term top is in or is near. Closes below the 10-day moving average crossing at 84.36 would confirm that a short-term top has been posted. If March renews this year's short covering rally, the reaction high crossing at 85.75 then the 50% retracement level of last year's decline crossing at 86.93 are the next upside targets. Overnight action sets the stage for a steady to firmer tone in early-day session trading.

The March Euro was slightly lower overnight as it consolidates some of Thursday's short covering rally. Stochastics and the RSI are oversold, diverging and have turned bullish signaling that a short-term low is in or is near. Multiple closes above the 10-day moving average crossing at 129.104 would signal that a short-term low has been posted. If March extends this year's decline, the 62% retracement level of the April- December rally crossing at 125.037 is the next downside target. Overnight action sets the stage for a steady to weaker tone in early-day session trading.


The March Japanese Yen was slightly higher overnight as consolidates below the 38% retracement level of last year's rally crossing at .9494. Stochastics and the RSI are oversold and are turning neutral to bullish hinting that a low is in or is near. If March extends this winter's decline, the 62% retracement level of last year's rally crossing at .9254 is the next downside target. Closes above the 10-day moving average crossing at .9572 would signal that a short-term low has been posted. Overnight action sets the stage for a steady to firmer tone in early-day session trading
Quiet Trading Dominates FX

At 2:50 PM US San Francisco Feds Yellen Speaks At 3:45 PM US Fed Board Governor Bernanke Speaks

Currencies traded with range overnight, with the dollar remaining weak following yesterdays US trade data. Although Decembers US trade deficit improved from Novembers record figure, it was still short of consensus forecasts. As a result, the greenback reversed some of its recent bullishness, relinquishing its foothold on multi-month highs against the euro and the yen.

With no economic data slated for release today, currencies may continue to trade within range. Meanwhile, todays events consist of speeches from Fed members Yellen and Bernanke.

Euro Rangebound

ECB Chief Economist Issing said the drivers of Eurozone growth is expected to shift to the domestic side in 2005. Issing acknowledged confidence had recovered, but still remains mired at low levels. He said the increase in the Eurozone business sector profits have been quite remarkable. Moreover, Issing does not see a consumption boom, with the recovery in line with disposable income. Any real rate rise must be driven by stronger growth, and lower or flat inflation expectations.

Falling Oil Stabilizes Deficitfor now


As we mentioned in the December note Falling oil expected to kick in December trade figures, the improvement in the December trade gap was due to a 12% drop in crude oil imports to $11.76 billion, posting the biggest percentage decline since November 2002. Imports for overall petroleum products fell 9.8% to $17.6 billion, the biggest percentage decline since April. These declines were largely the result of the 27% drop in oil prices from their late October peak to end of December, which offered ample time for the price drop to be reflected into a retreat in US imports for December. We have already seen this pattern in June and August when oil prices fell 6% and 5% respectively, causing the trade deficit in the subsequent months (July & September) to stabilize by 8% and 7% respectively.

Considering the oil bounce in January to as high as $49.75, we expect oil imports to revert towards the $18-19 billion range, which is an ominous prospect especially that oil imports are already making up 13% of total imports. In addition, with OPEC expected to agree on cutting output ahead of next months meeting, a renewed rise in oil remains in the pipeline.

But Exports Also Recovered


Dollar Ignores Trade Figures

The dollars slide following the trade report rested on the rationalization that the improvement was mainly the work of a temporary oil drop. Dollar bears could be wrong in their assessment in the event that the December pick up in exports carries through subsequent months and help offset high oil prices. Yet such a development should also depend upon the import capacity of US trading partners.

The improving December trade gap may have stabilized fears of an uncontrollable deterioration and should contribute to upward revisions in Q4 GDP. The figures could reduce the drag on Q4 GDP growth from 1.73% to as low 1.5%. But currency traders have already shown they are unimpressed with trodays figures and are already speculating about next weeks December TICS report on capital flows. Recall that capital flows soared 68% to $81 billion in November mainly as a result of a post-election surge in equity flows cheering the continuation of the Bush tax cuts. We see US bound equity flows retreating towards the $1-2 billion level, which could pull back the capital flow figure towards the high $60 billion.

Todays admission from North Korea's indicating that it has nuclear weapons was mainly surprising because its the first time the government made such a public remark of a well known fact. But Pyong Yangs admission renders the US pursuit of Irans nuclear possibilities in new perspective and could suggest more interventionism in US foreign policy, which is a high risk prospect for the dollar.

Dollar Steadies After Whipsaw Trade

LONDON (Reuters) - The dollar steered a steady course against other major currencies on Friday after falling sharply in the previous session as U.S. trade data failed to dispel concerns about structural problems in the U.S. economy.

The dollar initially gained ground after Thursday's data showed the U.S. trade deficit narrowed to $56.4 billion in December from a revised $59.3 billion in November.

But the currency quickly gave up gains and fell deeper as the numbers showed the trade deficit for 2004 as a whole surged 24 percent to a record $617.7 billion.

"We were cautiously positive on the dollar for a few weeks and then there was a lot of talk that the trade numbers were not good enough. The dollar fell, inspired also by technicals and profit-taking," said Peter Wuyts, market analyst at KBC in Brussels.



No major U.S. economic releases are scheduled for Friday, though the market will pay close attention to speeches from Federal Reserve Board Governor Ben Bernanke, San Francisco Fed President Janet Yellen and U.S. Treasury Under Secretary John Taylor.

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 10:17 AM
Response to Original message
14. 10:15 numbers and blather
Dow 10,711.18 -38.43 (-0.36%)
Nasdaq 2,042.76 -10.34 (-0.50%)
S&P 500 1,193.82 -3.19 (-0.27%)
10-yr Bond 4.089% +0.02
30-yr Bond 4.504% +0.04

NYSE Volume 236,159,000
Nasdaq Volume 391,648,000

10:00AM : Major indices still under modest pressure early on as sector leadership remains split... Homebuilding has paced the way to the downside while airline, retail, utility, consumer discretionary, materials and energy have also traded lower... Technology has been weak across the board with semiconductor and hardware offsetting modest gains in disk drive... Health care has found some early buying interest while brokerage stocks have caught enough of a bid to recently inch financial into positive territory... NYSE Adv/Dec 1158/1289, Nasdaq Adv/Dec 826/1583

9:40AM : Stocks open with little fanfare, in line with futures indications, as sentiment remains cautious following Dell's mixed report... While Dell (DELL 39.78 -1.79) reported Q4 (Jan) earnings of $0.37, a penny better than forecasts, but lower-than-expected Q1 sales guidance has created more of a sell-the-news reaction and given investors a reason to book profits... Dell cited strong business demand throughout the quarter, but "notably weaker than expected" consumer demand in Jan has prompted a downgrade from Smith Barney, which has also added pressure to the stock...

9:17AM : S&P futures vs fair value: -1.4. Nasdaq futures vs fair value: -2.5. Stage remains set for a uninspiring open for equities as the futures market continues to trade slightly below fair value and investors struggle to find few catalysts to sway the indices in either direction in the early going

9:00AM : S&P futures vs fair value: -0.9. Nasdaq futures vs fair value: -2.0. Expectations for a modestly flat start for the cash market remain intact... Apple Computer (AAPL) has announced a 2-for-1 split, Ann Taylor (ANN) has lowered Q4 guidance but guided Q1 EPS in-line and Goodrich (GR) has inked a deal with Airbus valued at about $6 bln over 20 years... Companies in focus following some notable ratings changes include upgrades on T, NVLS, MAY, MRO and several REITs while DELL, ERICY and several homebuilders have been downgraded

8:30AM : S&P futures vs fair value: -1.3. Nasdaq futures vs fair value: -3.0. Still shaping up to be a relatively lackluster open for the indices as there are no notable economic data and earnings reports (aside from Dell's) to digest... Pixar Animation (PIXR), however, could be in focus after beating estimates last night by $0.14... Meanwhile, European markets have traded modestly higher in early trading but major Asian are closed for a holiday

8:00AM : S&P futures vs fair value: -0.5. Nasdaq futures vs fair value: -1.5. Futures market suggesting a relatively neutral start for the cash market following Dell's disappointing results and guidance... DELL's Q4 earnings and Q1 profit guidance came in better than expected, but revenues were a bit light and sales guidance missed forecasts, raising concerns of a slowdown in tech spending... Separately, reports suggest Pfizer (PFE) plans to cut about $2 bln in costs, Citigroup (C) plans to merge its banking units and Walt Disney (DIS) will host its annual shareholder meeting today

6:24AM : FTSE...5017.80...+17.80...+0.4%. DAX...4364.74...+22.73...+0.5%.

6:24AM : S&P futures vs fair value: -1.2. Nasdaq futures vs fair value: -4.5.

6:24AM : Nikkei...Holiday......... Hang Seng...Holiday.........

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 10:20 AM
Response to Original message
15. Consumer confidence drops on Social Security news

WASHINGTON Consumers' confidence has fallen dramatically over the past month, reaching a 16-month low, and economists say the political debate over revamping Social Security probably is a major factor in the decline.

The AP-Ipsos consumer confidence index sank to 79.1 in February, down sharply from 92.5 in January. February's showing was the worst since October 2003.

The latest reading on consumer confidence was taken after the State of the Union address, where President Bush made clear his desire to overhaul the retirement program that pays out benefits to millions of Americans; the Federal Reserve raised interest rates for a sixth time since June and signaled higher rates in the future; and a government report that showed sluggish job gains.

The president's 2006 budget, which proposed numerous spending cuts but still would chalk up another annual deficit, came out as people were surveyed for the confidence index.

Each of those developments probably influenced consumers' psyches, economists said, but the debate over Social Security seemed to be central to February's decline in confidence.

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 10:31 AM
Response to Original message
16. No Prison Time for Qwest Convictions


Former senior vice president Thomas Hall, who this week became the first person sentenced in the case, received probation and will pay a $5,000 fine, according to the Associated Press. Hall pleaded guilty last year to a single misdemeanor count of falsifying documents, according to the wire service.

"I accept full responsibility for my actions," Hall reportedly said in court. "I did not mean to harm anybody, but people were harmed."

Hall, as well as three other former Qwest executives Grant Graham, former chief financial officer for Qwest's global business unit; Bryan Treadway, a former assistant controller; and John Walker, a former vice president had faced 11 charges each, including conspiracy, securities fraud, wire fraud, and making false statements to auditors.

The defendants had been accused of improperly booking $34 million in revenue in the second quarter of 2001, for an Internet equipment sale to Arizona schools, to help meet earnings projections and revenue expectations. According to the prosecution, the defendants artificially accelerated Qwest's revenue recognition by fraudulently mischaracterizing two equipment-sale transactions.

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 10:34 AM
Response to Original message

February 11, 2005 -- Investors are protesting some financial sleight of hand by City Hall and Merrill Lynch that yanked the rug from under some super-safe bonds.
The move wiped out tens of millions of dollars that many elderly retirees and other small investors had been expecting to collect in future years from their tax-free bonds which were paying as much as 8 percent annual returns.

Cautious investors historically embrace New York City top-rated bonds, which are triple tax-free and backed by U.S. Treasury bonds that are held in escrow to cover any losses.

However in a surprise move that even the city acknowledged was "unusual" Merrill Lynch found a way to strip out the valuable U.S. Treasury bonds, collapse the old bonds and substitute them with new bonds that pay as low as 3 percent returns but also are subject to being taxed.

"It's wrecking my life savings," said one senior citizen who asked to remain anonymous. "This is all being done with such subterfuge. I invested in them because they were safe and we really weren't gambling. But I'll never invest in New York City bonds again."

more... :grr:
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 10:37 AM
Response to Original message
18. SEC looks for hedge fund's lost cash

Report says up to $90M, or 90% of the fund's assets, has simply disappeared from Ardent Capital.
February 8, 2005: 9:49 AM EST

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating what happened to the assets of Ardent Capital Management, a New York-based hedge fund, the Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday.

The newspaper said the fund was founded by Francis Saldutti, a former stock analyst at L.F. Rothschild & Co. The article said Saldutti sold the fund, with more than $100 million in assets, to Chicago investment company NorthShore Asset Management in April 2003, but he continued to run the fund.

According to the article, Saldutti had at least 80 percent of the fund's holdings in cash. But some investors trying to get their money out of the fund heard otherwise, the newspaper said, with one investor saying Saldutti told him the money was stolen.

The article said it is unclear exactly what occurred and how much money is missing, with estimates ranging from a few million dollars to $90 million.

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MARALE Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 10:39 AM
Response to Original message
19. U.S. economy gauge rises in latest week - report
A leading index of the U.S. economy rose in the latest week on a variety of factors, including lower jobless claims, a rise in mortgage applications, lower interest rates and higher stock prices, a report showed on Friday.

The Economic Cycle Research Institute, an independent forecasting group, said its weekly leading index (WLI) rose to to 134.4 in the week ended Feb. 4 compared with 133.7 in the previous week.

The current index level is the highest since the week of May 7, 2004, a 40 week high.
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 10:48 AM
Response to Reply #19
21. HA! For months now, UIA would find a tiny blurb on this number and
nothing more, of course then it was going down, down, down. Now that it's up it makes the headlines. :eyes:
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 10:45 AM
Response to Original message
20. Just Like Old Times as Joe Granville Yells `Sell'


Notice a recurring theme? As it turned out, big declines did occur within a few years of Granville's mid-1980s and late-1990s alarums -- the Crash of 1987, which was concentrated in the last four months of that year, and the 2000-02 bear market, which took about 2 years to run its course.

Why, then, doesn't a bearish bulletin from Granville in early 2005 set off a selling stampede the way it once did? The '87 break occurred, we now see with the aid of hindsight, as a mere whirlpool in the midst of an even more powerful, positive current.

On Aug. 12, 1982, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 776.92, having made no net progress over the preceding 18 years. In the next 18 years, it soared more than 1,400 percent, climbing as high as 11,750.28 on Jan. 14, 2000.

Sea Changes

Though it wasn't easy to discern in the early 1980s, the stock market was transforming itself from a trading environment conducive to Granville's in-and-out style to a buy-and-holder's paradise.

While analysts like Granville strained to discern interim tops and bottoms in the market, there was big money to be made if you had the nerve simply to buy and hang on.

Since 2000, the market may possibly have undergone another sea change, back to a trading range. The Dow, recently under 10,700, stands more than 1,000 points below its early-2000 high five years later. But who can be sure?

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 10:57 AM
Response to Original message
22. CNBC Redefines the Word "Sacrifice"

One of the more amusing spectacles in the ongoing circus on Wall Street occurs monthly as economic contortionists attempt to twist horrific trade reports into positive news for the American economy. Such was the case today on CNBC, as Steve Leisman and a guest described American consumption as being "a sacrifice," and American consumers as "bearing the brunt of world consumption," and of having an "obligation to consume."

First of all, the word "sacrifice" implies some form of self-denial or restraint. What exactly do Americans sacrifice by indulging their every whim (other then their long-term solvency)? How is borrowing to consume a sacrifice? Actually it is "savings," the deliberate act of under-consumption that is truly a sacrifice. It is foreign consumers who are sacrificing so that Americans don't have to.

Similarly, how can one bear the "burden of consumption?" A "burden" implies suffering, something difficult to tolerate. "Consumption" on the other hand is fun, satisfying, and pleasurable. How can enjoying something desirable be described as burdensome? Production is the true burden. Consumption is its reward. Again, it is foreigners who are bearing America's burden.

Lastly, stating that "Americans have a duty to consume" implies that the rest of the world has "an obligation to produce." This reminds me of the old saying, "nice work if you can get it." It seems to me that foreigners are getting the short end of the economic stick. In fact, described in this manner, it is as if Americans regard the rest of the world as slaves in their global plantation. Would a dinner guest, after the hosts have bought the food, set the table, prepared the meal and washed the dishes, be able to assert with a straight face that the whole enterprise would have been impossible without the his own heroic ability to eat?

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 11:04 AM
Response to Original message
23. ACK! 20 Billion in repos issued yesterday
Makes me wonder how those Treasury auctions went yesterday. :shrug:

The Outstanding Public Debt as of 11 Feb 2005 at 04:01:00 PM GMT is:

The estimated population of the United States is 295,561,979
so each citizen's share of this debt is $25,812.34.

The National Debt has continued to increase an average of
$1.86 billion per day since September 30, 2004! /
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 11:17 AM
Response to Reply #23

All Talk No News for the Dollar

With Japan closed for National Foundation Day and only a smattering of Euro-zone data on the calendar the FX markets have settled into a narrow price range as dealing in the majors is listless. As many commentators have already pointed out yesterday's reversal in the EUR/USD from a low of 1.2740 to a high of 1.2900 was a function of too much expectation and too little substance. With sentiment becoming more and more skewed towards dollar bulls as the week progressed, the US Trade Balance needed to print a material reduction in the deficit to justify further dollar gains. Instead, a large portion of the decrease ($1 Billion) was the result of lower oil prices indicating to the market that US Balance Sheet problems are likely to persist for the foreseeable future.

Next week the market will focus intensely on Tuesday's TICS report, as traders will need to be reassured that US is attracting enough capital flows to offset the record trade deficits. Last month's number of $81 Billion was slanted to the upside due to seasonal and technical factors. Therefore, the December TICS report will take on an even greater importance as market players will try to asses if the uptrend remains in place.

Wednesday's Treasury auction of 5 year notes produced decidedly mixed results with bid to cover ratio slipping to 2.05 from 2.68 and indirect bidders comprising 28.5% of the pool which as Brian Edmonds, head U.S. Treasury trader at Banc of America Securities LLC in New York stated was "a bit of a disappointment, but it wasn't disastrous". It is too early to tell if the Treasury auction data reveals a concerted shift in attitude on the part of foreign Central Banks and can serve as a precursor to next Tuesday's TICS data. Nevertheless, we find it worth of note.

Since the US economic calendar is empty today, the most probable event risk comes from the speeches from Fed's Yellen and Bernake, neither one of whom is likely to utter any dollar negative comments. Therefore, in absence of any additional news the pair may consolidate yesterday's move as everyone positions for next week.
Treasurys diverge amid data vacuum
Bond market looking to next week's Greenspan testimony


For the final leg of its trio of quarterly auctions to refinance debt and raise cash, the U.S. Treasury Department sold $14 billion in 10-year notes on Thursday.

The bid-to-cover ratio was 2.05, meaning $2.05 in bids were received for every $1 in securities sold. That matched demand at the last auction of 10-year notes, in November, but was shy of the 2.30 average of 2004.

Indirect bidders, a closely tracked category that includes foreign central banks, took 28.5 percent of the notes, slightly below the 31.9 percent average in 2004.

The 3-year and 5-year note offerings earlier this week drew stronger demand, particularly from foreign central banks, than had been expected.

Shorter-maturity notes fared better in Friday trading.


Most bond traders said the market was consolidating by slightly the yield-curve flattening trade that has dominated the bond market over the past several weeks.

The yield curve, a graph that plots the range of returns from shortest to longest maturity, is at its flattest in several years. That is, short-term notes have been falling in price and gaining in yield amid expectations the Federal Reserve will continue to gradually lift its interest-rate target. Longer-maturity notes have gained in price and fallen in yield because of expectations the Fed's rate hikes will contain inflation.

RPT - US Treasurys close sharply lower after weak auction


Indirect bidders snatched up 45.4 pct of Wednesday's 5-year offering, the second highest since last June. This is the group, including foreign central banks, that falls outside the large Wall Street bond firms required to participate in Treasury auctions

The turnout for those auctions had offered some bond market optimism for the 10-year auction. But that outlook was tempered by the fact that foreign central banks have preferred shorter maturities, buying far fewer of 10-year notes in the past

Bond traders said that given the 10-year note's run up in price and drop in yield, a weaker turnout should have been expected


"The overbought long end of the curve saw the greatest selling pressure," he said. The curve plots the range of returns on securities from shortest to longest maturity. Short-maturity notes have been falling in price and gaining in yield while longer-term yields are drifting lower

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 11:25 AM
Response to Original message
25. 11:19 numbers - somethin' doesn't smell right
Edited on Fri Feb-11-05 11:44 AM by 54anickel
We've got rising stock vs rising interest. Then we have rising interest and gold at the same time with a flat dollar. This is nuts. :crazy: Which one is being buoyed? :shrug:

Dow 10,777.61 +28.00 (+0.26%)
Nasdaq 2,067.87 +14.77 (+0.72%)
S&P 500 1,202.92 +5.91 (+0.49%)
10-yr Bond 4.081% +0.01
30-yr Bond 4.483% +0.02

NYSE Volume 513,614,000
Nasdaq Volume 830,049,000

11:00AM: Stocks improve their stance as the indices now trade in split fashion... Technology has been the influential leader pushing the Nasdaq to the upside as every group has turned positive in the last half hour... Semiconductor has led the charge, embracing CSFB's upgrade on Novellus Systems (NVLS 28.94 +1.42) to Outperform from Neutral, citing significantly improving addressable markets, better customer leverage, a deeper management team and improving market share... The SOX (+1.8%) has held relatively steady well above support levels and is currently testing resistance near the 430 mark... NYSE Adv/Dec 1376/1591, Nasdaq Adv/Dec 1141/1614

10:30AM: Sellers remain in control of the action as the market averages still trade near intra-day lows... Contributing to the overall negative tone has been a downgrade on several homebuilders at Smith Barney... The broker has lowered its rating to Hold from Buy on industry leaders like BZH (-3.0%), HOV (-5.8%), KBH (-3.5%), PHM (-3.3%), RYL (-4.1%), and TOL (-3.5%)... While the firm's long-term bias of owning the group remains favorable, valuations in the low to mid-teens appear more reasonable following a recent rally that has lifted several stocks to 52-week highs...NYSE Adv/Dec 1017/1818, Nasdaq Adv/Dec 875/1780

Advances & Declines
NYSE Nasdaq
Advances 1548 (48%) 1434 (48%)
Declines 1480 (46%) 1383 (46%)
Unchanged 165 (5%) 165 (5%)


Up Vol* 252 (59%) 444 (60%)
Down Vol* 170 (39%) 270 (36%)
Unch. Vol* 4 (0%) 21 (2%)


New Hi's 135 50
New Lo's 15 51

And the buck

Last trade 84.54 Change 0.00 (0.00%)

Settle 84.54 Settle Time 23:34

Open 84.59 Previous Close 84.54

High 84.75 Low 84.48
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 11:49 AM
Response to Reply #25
26. Is 99N back at it again? Check out the 11:30 blather
11:30AM: Renewed wave of buying interest pushes the market to its best levels of the session... Contributing to the recent recovery effort has been an arguably large S&P futures related buy in and follow-through from yesterday's technical bounce... Meanwhile, market internals have recently turned positive and now hold a modestly bullish bias... Advancers on the NYSE now hold a 17 to 12 edge over decliners while advancing issues on the Nasdaq hold a 15 to 12 margin over declining issues...
Even more impressive, however, has been the ratio of up to down volumes, as up volumes hold a more than 2 to 1 advantage on both the Big Board and the Composite...NYSE Adv/Dec 1771/1260, Nasdaq Adv/Dec 1584/1243

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MARALE Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 11:57 AM
Response to Original message
27. Total Mulls $5B Venezuela Oil Project
Holy Cow Batman, I go away for a while and the market has a party!

:beer: :wow: :party: :beer: :wow: :party: :beer: :wow: :party: :beer: :wow: :party: :beer: :wow: :party:
Demarest, speaking after talks with Vice President Jose Vicente Rangel, said Total would invest $5 billion (euro3.9 billion) over seven years.

The Sincor II project, which would involve further development of the existing Sincor heavy crude venture in Venezuela's so-called Orinoco oil belt, will include three partners: Total, Norway's Statoil and Petroleos de Venezuela, or PDVSA.

"We have the intention to (keep) the three companies together for Sincor II," said Demarest, adding that "it should be achievable" to reach a preliminary agreement with PDVSA on the project before the end of the first half of 2005.

Venezuela is the world's fifth largest oil exporter and a major supplier of fuel to the United States.
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 12:03 PM
Response to Reply #27
29. Marale, did you read this article that was linked to yesterdays Wrap up?

Chavez sets off energy worries
Citgo sale talk could be politics, or be forerunner of nationalization


"They could sell Citgo, but it would be a crazy move," said Guisti, who is now a consultant for Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Crazy or not, there could be method to the madness.

In the back of energy executives' minds is the dark worry that a Citgo sale could set the stage for an even bigger move renationalization of Venezuela's energy industry.

Confiscation designs?

If Chavez has designs on confiscating billions of dollars worth of assets in his country from companies like ConocoPhillips, ChevronTexaco and Harvest Natural Resources, he would first need to cash out in the United States.

Without a Citgo sale, U.S.-based companies could tie up Venezuelan assets here and litigate PDVSA to the ends of the earth. Chavez is bound to have learned that lesson from close ally Fidel Castro, who was forced to abandon cash in American banks when he nationalized Cuba's industries more than 40 years ago.


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MARALE Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 12:29 PM
Response to Reply #29
32. I did not read it
Thanks for reposting. It is interesting how Venezuela is the new Cuba and how they are trying to get away from American companies.
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 12:39 PM
Response to Reply #32
35. Yes, and it makes the Russian announcement up in post 12 all that
much more interesting. Seems countries are attempting to "protect" their natural resources from certain foreign "looters".
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 11:57 AM
Response to Original message
28. Bush's Class-War Budget (Krugman)

t may sound shrill to describe President Bush as someone who takes food from the mouths of babes and gives the proceeds to his millionaire friends. Yet his latest budget proposal is top-down class warfare in action. And it offers the Democrats an opportunity, if they're willing to take it.

First, the facts: the budget proposal really does take food from the mouths of babes. One of the proposed spending cuts would make it harder for working families with children to receive food stamps, terminating aid for about 300,000 people. Another would deny child care assistance to about 300,000 children, again in low-income working families.

And the budget really does shower largesse on millionaires even as it punishes the needy. For example, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities informs us that even as the administration demands spending cuts, it will proceed with the phaseout of two little-known tax provisions - originally put in place under the first President George Bush - that limit deductions and exemptions for high-income households.

More than half of the benefits from this backdoor tax cut would go to people with incomes of more than a million dollars; 97 percent would go to people with incomes exceeding $200,000.

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Maeve Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 12:04 PM
Response to Reply #28
30. Just about the time I totally despair, Krugman writes another column!
I swear, if you actually read the news anymore you either laugh at the absurdity or cry at the stupidity of our fellow citizens.

Krugman gives me a shred of hope.
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 12:49 PM
Response to Reply #30
38. I hope his voice can be heard over the propaganda chatter...n/t
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 12:07 PM
Response to Original message
31. U.S. stocks trade higher as chip sector rallies (Rumor about N Korea?)


Ritholtz said he was not surprised by the rally in semiconductor stocks because the demand for chips is likely to remain solid in the coming months.

The strategist points to demand in the automobile industry which has become the third largest consumer of chips. Strong sales of digital music players and solid demand for cellphones are also propping up sales.

"Lastly, the global semiconductor has become far less dependent on the United States and PCs," said Ritholtz.

Ritholtz points to the booming Asian economies where demand for chips is "on fire" notably in countries such as South Korea and China and India.

Stocks appeared to get a further boost as rumors circulated on trading room floors that the North Korean leader Kim Jong-il had been been overthrown.

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MARALE Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 12:38 PM
Response to Reply #31
34. Rumors???
I googled on this and did not see anything. They seem to be blaming the rise on anything since it does not make that much sense i think.
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 12:42 PM
Response to Reply #34
36. Yep, haven't seen this for a while though. They're back!!! Scanning
the headlines and rumor mills to come up with some explanation for the inexplicable. B-)

I wondered why Mogambo mentioned 99N yesterday after not hearing anything on it for quite a long time.
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MARALE Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 12:55 PM
Response to Reply #36
39. What is 99N
I am assuming that it is a mysterious entity that starts buying when all indicators point to the markets falling. Is is real? I am still learning stuff and this is a new one for me.
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ozymandius Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 01:04 PM
Response to Reply #39
40. 990N
Edited on Fri Feb-11-05 01:08 PM by ozymandius
is a mysterious trading entity that operates through Gelber Trading at the NYSE. The rumor mill says that it is the Fed propping things up when things look weak. It is the latest addition in a grab-bag of terms synonymous with the machinations of the Plunge Protection Team.

EDIT: did a google and found nothing for 99N - but plenty on 990N
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 01:10 PM
Response to Reply #40
42. Thanks Ozy, I was trying to do the same. It's been so long ago - yes
it WAS 990N not 99N. I was getting even more freaked out when I couldn't come up with any links.
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ozymandius Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 01:30 PM
Response to Reply #42
43. interesting bit here

Account 990N

Much has been made of a very unusual account on the S&P 500. There appears to be a single account that is keeping this particular exchange afloat. That is account 990N. Traders reportedly are quite annoyed at this most mysterious account that comes in a props up the market. This account reportedly clears through Gelber Trading and is hated by traders because they see it as being nothing more that a market manipulator.

"All the traders I have talked to view the market as being rigged." A CME trader

Something really stinks here, and I urge all of you to give this audio file a listen.

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Maeve Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 01:38 PM
Response to Reply #43
44. The problem with rigging the game
Is that you can't go on indefinitely. If it's just breaking a plunge cycle, yes, it works. If you're trying to create a "buzz", that works, too. But if the market is unsound, all they can do is plug part of the leak--the boat will sink slower, but it's still going down.

But the game goes on---to switch metaphors, when will the people start to realize they are watching a bit of three-card monte and the queen is never where she was?
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 01:57 PM
Response to Reply #43
47. It's the section after the 990N entry that's more interesting to look at
Edited on Fri Feb-11-05 01:58 PM by 54anickel
with hindsight.


Geopolitical Instability

There are many, many things happening on the world stage that will play an important role in the future of the Global Economy. This being an election year there is a lot of heated debate between the opposing wings of the Republicratic (both Democrat and Republican) Party. Moore's film 911 is causing a firestorm of controversy. Could it be that people are really waking up to the fact that we have a group of hardened criminals in charge of our government? Well if you listen to folks on the right, Bush is a godsend, and stealing is a Christian virtue and the divine right of Skull and Bonesmen. This man, who has trouble completing a simple sentence, who has promised to bring us endless war (he and Cheney both have made this solemn vow), they are akin to the arrival of the Messiah...if you listen to the GOP spin-meisters. Take note here 'endless war', is a codeword to defense contractors, (who know who buys their guns and moldy-butter to feed to our troops) that Bush-Cheney will keep those hard earned tax dollars flowing into the coffers of these Merchants of Death. Defense dollars make up a sizable portion of the total US budget. This war has a very real effect on the US economy. The President is constantly asking Congress for more money to 'fight our war on terror' but the real problem is that most of this money does not go to any war effort but to sweetheart, no-bid contracts to Bush donors. These donors then take some of their 'earnings' (read Bush's gift) and channel it back into his campaign. How sweet it is! Legalized graft wrapped up in a tax-free 'Christian' mantle and paid for in human blood. This is how the world really works and yes, it really stinks to the rest of the world even if American's plan on once again, closing their eyes and holding their noses and voting for the same kleptocracy all over again. The biggest problem that I see with continuing this charade, beyond its moral, ethical and spiritual repugnance, is that from an economic perspective, this pure unadulterated insanity; with the huge deficits we are running, the rest of the world shunning our treasury paper and the Fed, in all likelihood having to monetize debt to keep this rickety ship of state afloat. These are not the actions of sane people. These are the actions of men and women who are either certifiably insane or who really have a deep-seated contempt for the American people and laugh at them as they rob them blind and then get their votes. Perhaps Americans deserve the hell these men are creating for them, something within me says they do, many times over. Perhaps this is God's way of dealing with our myriad, repetitive and unrepentant national sins, because there is nothing more frightening than truly evil men with real power.

No. I will not apologize for digressing here. The economic problems this nation faces are enormous and insurmountable. They will not be solved until there is economic devastation on a scale never before seen by Americans, and I do not see that day very far off. Each day a new abomination emanates from our Supreme Court, who now says Bush can put you in a concentration camp forever and there is not much you can do about it, other than complain about your treatment to a court, whose ultimate rulings can be overturned by those who issued this abominable ruling in the first place. Look, many of you can laugh if you want, but these guys know something is up and are preparing the legal framework for a horror we have yet to experience. I believe it will be rooted in an economic collapse of biblical proportions but a cover story or distracter (fake terror) event may hide this from the everyday Joe. Remember the Anthrax scare in Congress on the very day Congress was reviewing the Patriot act? The spores came from Ft. Detrick in Maryland. They never caught the perpetrators, and I have news for you, they never will because they have no intention of finding them. Only someone with the highest access can get hold of that stuff. And only insiders knew when and where congress was meeting on that piece of legislation. Say what you will, laugh if you want, but the real terrorist threat is not hiding in caves in Afghanistan, it is much, much closer to home and has enormous political power..

Take heed and think twice when you vote in November, I strongly suspect that it will be that last time we will be able to in a semi-free society.

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MARALE Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 02:03 PM
Response to Reply #47
49. Wow
That is very scary. I have a feeling that he is right though. That is why this electrical engineer is learning how to garden, can, raise cows, and other means to fall back on!
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MARALE Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 01:58 PM
Response to Reply #43
48. Thanks!
To both of you. I tried to google 99N yesterday, but ended up with nothing. This is very interesting, and I too have thought that the market is rigged as well. May explain why the admin is not really afraid of a crash. I think there is only so much rigging that can be done though.
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 02:24 PM
Response to Reply #48
51. You're welcome. I should have caught that mistake with the missing
zero yesterday. I also tend to forget that many folks are new here and wouldn't have any clue to what 99N (990N) was in reference too. Thanks to Ozy for straightening that little mess up.

Yes, if it would come to a real "crash" their efforts would be futile. It does work pretty well for buoying the markets to buy time for the sheep callers to make some progress though. JMHO, they are putting off the inevitable, hoping for some sort of miracle I suppose. As Maeve said, "the longer the game goes on..."
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ozymandius Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 12:47 PM
Response to Original message
37. WrapUp by Martin Goldberg
Nasdaq 100 Now a Laggard
Trends Suggest Weakness for the Stock Market

If the bull market is to continue, recent trends indicate that it will have to do so without the leadership of the Nasdaq 100. While history doesnt repeat exactly, there are many parallels between the Bull Market which topped in March of 2000, and todays. At the March 2000 top the Nasdaq 100s performance topped in comparison to the S&P 500 as well as Johnson and Johnson (JNJ). Today it appears that similar relationships are occurring and this could spell trouble for the Nasdaqs performance in the immediate and longer term future. Following Ciscos reported quarterly results it appears that large technology companies perform and grow like non-technology companies. May be there are a few on Wall Street who are whispering that technology companies deserve similar P/Es to non-technology companies while they quietly are selling. If this is what the technical charts are starting to illustrate, then the Nasdaq has a long way down to go. As a result, soon it might be time to say hello to the second phase of the Bear Market a bear so fierce, that it contains an entire bull market within it. Tonight I will illustrate these technical relationships that suggest weakness in the Nasdaq 100.


There are several items that I would like to highlight. The drop off of the New Year's top has produced a fibonacci retracement of only about 32% so far. If there is not a recovery beyond this level, it would both confirm the downtrend as well as its strength. Note that the relative price strength (compared to the S&P 500) reached a low not seen since September 2004. The gap produced about 3 weeks ago was surgically filled before the Nasdaq 100 turned tail and headed down throughout the day on Wednesday. The 20-day exponential moving average was decisively broken to the downside on Wednesday. The preponderance of technical evidence is all bearish for the Nasdaq.


Todays Market Somethings Starting to Happen

Todays stock market was a microcosm of what appears to be going on in the intermediate term that is, defensive stocks are leading and speculative names are lagging. The Dow was up over 85 today while the more speculative Nasdaq, S&P Mid Caps, and Small Cap Russell 2000 went nowhere on heavy volume. Volume was particularly heavy in the Nasdaq, where over 2.1 billion shares were traded today. After the close, Dell computer reported results which disappointed the Street and it is trading down about 2% in after hours trading. While in the case of Dell, it appears that the drop can be absorbed within its generally bullish technical chart, the waves it produces in the Nasdaq may inflict some technical damage in other important companies. On that score, only tomorrow will know. After hours Cisco, which finished the day challenging its bearish neckline, is trading at 17.47. If the Nasdaq opens strongly negative, it could result in the cracking wide open of the important and widely traded household name - Cisco. Ciscos bearish behavior could bring the news of the New Years Nasdaq swoon from Wall Street to Main Street where one phone call gets the highly leveraged John Q. Public out of the stock market. But again, perhaps Im getting ahead of myself. On this important day in the stock market, it is notable that the Janus Funds recently reinstated the same exact advertising campaign (apparently with no significant changes) as they had in 1999. Following the bursting of the first technology bubble, and late trading scandals, this is astounding to me. I mean, its good for fund companies to save on expenses, but this is too much!

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 01:09 PM
Response to Original message
41. Of fires & deficits

One of the things about human psychology is the desire of wanting to fit in. It's not easy to go against the crowd or herd mentality. We like to feel cozy with our friends and colleagues and family. And so it goes with journalists and analysts and Dollar watchers. After President Bush came out and announced his grand plan to cut the US budget deficit to a "manageable" number, all the pundits fell down on their knees in amazement as though a holy entity had been seen on high or, in fact, the holy chalice itself had been found.


Now let me get this straight : What Bush said needed to be said. The Markets, big M, were getting very nervous about the US Dollar situation. Too much negativity was snowballing against the USD and thus needed to be dealt with. Talking the talk. Check. As I said, this talk promptly strengthened the USD and drove gold down. Oil is also down. USD is back up to 4 month highs against the Yen and Euro. Suddenly a tide of US positive news while just a month or two ago, one couldn't have pried such a statement out of anybody. My, my, how quick we are to forget. Remember, this is all just planning and talking by Bush, NOTHING has actually happened yet. Congress still has a big say in all this and so do the foreign investors, bond markets, etc. This whole story is now just beginning, not ending.


The biggest problem continues to be : How to avoid the pain of this imbalance to the US consumer and economy?

I honestly think the US budget deficits will increase until exhaustion. Why? I believe neither the US politicians nor the US people have the ability to take that pain. The medicine of fiscal tightening should have taken place directly after the 2000 bubble broke. It was avoided.

What the world would look like with a USD whose inherent value is zero I cannot fully imagine. I believe the next years will bring so much unforeseen happenings to the forefront that possibly historical data will play no major role in contemplating or predicting how financial markets should be functioning, after all, models of chaos are not the standard models by which institutions model. Nevertheless, nature does at time purge itself just as economic markets do. I feel we may be in the upsurge of that purge cycle.

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 01:39 PM
Response to Original message
45. Tighter Bankruptcy Law Favored (Great timing)

Republican leaders in Congress began clearing the way yesterday for swift passage of legislation backed by the credit card industry and opposed by consumer groups that would make it harder for consumers to wipe out debt through bankruptcy.

Congress has tried repeatedly in recent years to pass similar legislation in what would be the most significant change in bankruptcy law in more than a quarter of a century. Twice in the last seven years, bankruptcy bills have passed both the House and Senate, only to face ultimate defeat. In one case, President Bill Clinton refused to sign the legislation, saying it was unfair to consumers. In 2002, House Republicans initially backed the bill but then voted it down after an amendment was attached that sought to prevent individuals from using bankruptcy to shield them from fines imposed for illegal antiabortion protests.


Consumer advocates say it would allow some rich debtors to continue to hide wealth through homeownership while bankruptcy relief would be denied to many people with low or moderate incomes who have fallen on hard times because of illness, job loss or divorce. They say credit card companies must share the blame for increased bankruptcies because they aggressively market products and inadequately disclose how interest rates and penalty fees mount up. For example, eliminating a $1,000 credit card balance paid off at a rate of 2 percent a month and carrying an interest rate of 17 percent would take 88 months, or more than seven years.

"Our overall concern is that this isn't a balanced bill," said Travis Plunkett, spokesman for the Consumer Federation of America, a nonprofit consumer research and advocacy group. "There isn't a single curb on abusive lending practices by credit card companies in these bills."

He said he finds the industry's claim it needs bankruptcy reform puzzling because credit card issuers "continue to offer credit to Americans in record amounts" and have reported, as a group, one of their most profitable years in more than a decade.

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 01:52 PM
Response to Original message
46. 1:50 update
Dow 10,803.77 +54.16 (+0.50%)
Nasdaq 2,076.84 +23.74 (+1.16%)
S&P 500 1,206.80 +9.79 (+0.82%)
10-yr Bond 4.1% +0.03
30-yr Bond 4.494% +0.03
NYSE Volume 1,011,117,000
Nasdaq Volume 1,490,240,000

1:30PM : Stocks show little vigor, having moved little in the past hour, but buyers remain an active bunch as the indices still trade near intra-day highs... Technology remains the influential leader, taking note of Apple's (AAPL 80.97 +2.61) first stock split (2-for-1) since June of 2000... Analog Devices (ADI 38.62 +1.79), despite missing Q1 earnings by a penny on lighter than expected revenues has also surged while Pixar Animation (PIXR 87.34 -2.54), despite handily beating forecasts, has fallen as Q4 earnings were off 34% from a year ago...NYSE Adv/Dec 2180/1012, Nasdaq Adv/Dec 1868/1138

1:00PM : More of the same as the major averages continue to vacillate in roughly the same ranges... On the Dow, only five components have traded lower... Citigroup (C 49.53 +0.55) has surged after announcing plans to cut 2-3% of its investment banking workforce while Verizon (VZ 36.36 +0.32) has climbed after reports suggested merger talks with MCI could be finalized in a few days... Also trading higher are Pfizer (PFE 25.37 +0.32), which plans to slash $2 bln in costs, and General Motors (GM 36.81 +0.13), which has dropped Walgreens as a prescription drug provider...

United Technologies (UTX 101.77 -0.89), which hit a new two week high yesterday, and Hewlett-Packard (HPQ 21.30 -0.18), under pressure following Dell's comments about weaker than expected consumer demand, have been the only blue chips posting notable losses... NYSE Adv/Dec 2160/1008, Nasdaq Adv/Dec 1850/1132

12:30PM : Little changed since the last update but the broader averages still sport respectable gains... One area catching some attention today, following ongoing M&A activity in the telecom services sector, has been telecom equipment (+1.4%)... Advanced talks between Verizon (VZ 36.49 +0.45) and MCI (MCIP 20.82 +0.36), that could result in a formal deal over the next few days, has renewed the possibility of potential gear maker mergers... Notable movers to the upside include LU (+3.4%), NT (+2.3%), JSDU (+2.3%), GLW (+1.5%) and SFA (+1.9%)...

Even Cisco Systems (CSCO 17.72 +0.14), despite worries about industry demand surfacing from a disappointing quarterly report on Tuesday, has gained ground... NYSE Adv/Dec 2164/972, Nasdaq Adv/Dec 1780/1164

12:00PM : Market abandons lackluster start, spurred by Dell's disappointment, as a surge in technology helps lift the indices to new highs midday... While Dell's (DELL 40.07 -1.50) lower than expected Q1 sales outlook provided some early incentive to take some money off the table, a large S&P buyer and technical follow-through have provided the momentum that has created widespread buying, pushed virtually every sector into the green, turned market breadth more bullish and lifted the Dow into positive territory for the year...

Technology has paced the way, spurred by a rally in semiconductor (+2.8%) based on expectations of an improving outlook for chip stocks, while gains of more than 1.0% have been seen in software, networking, health care, transportation, biotech and brokerage... Materials, retail, energy and consumer staples have also posted modest gains... Homebuilding (-1.6%) remains the only holdout following several downgrades at Smith Barney... Meanwhile, crude oil futures ($47.10/bbl) have been relatively unchanged as have treasuries, as traders have had no economic data to more aggressively sway bonds in either direction... The 10-year note is unchanged yielding 4.06%...NYSE Adv/Dec 2186/967, Nasdaq Adv/Dec 1784/1106

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MARALE Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 02:17 PM
Response to Original message
50. Citigroup to cut 1,000
"We are making limited staff reductions consistent with two fundamental objectives: keeping expenses low while continuing to invest in areas where we see growth opportunities," a Citi spokeswoman said declining further comment.

The cuts come after a strong fourth-quarter for the bank in which earnings rose 12 percent on stronger consumer and investment banking results. However, compensation costs edged up to 36.1 percent of revenues for the quarter, from 35.9 percent during the same period in 2003.

The move is not related to the bank's earlier announcement that it it is merging its two intermediate bank holding companies, Citigroup Holdings Company Inc. and Citicorp, into Citigroup Inc. See full story.
:crazy: :eyes: :crazy:
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 02:37 PM
Response to Original message
52. U.S. Firms Losing Health Care Battle, GM Chairman Says

American manufacturers are losing their ability to compete in the global marketplace in large measure because of the crushing burden of health care costs, General Motors Corp. chairman and chief executive G. Richard Wagoner Jr. said yesterday as he called on corporate and government leaders to find "some serious medicine" for the nation's ailing health system.

In a speech at the Economic Club of Chicago, the auto executive, who is responsible for providing health insurance for more people than any other private employer in the nation, graphically detailed how rising medical bills are eating into his company's bottom line and ultimately threatening the viability of most U.S. firms.

"Failing to address the health care crisis would be the worst kind of procrastination," Wagoner said, "the kind that places our children and our grandchildren at risk and threatens the health and global competitiveness of our nation's economy."

After spending several years on the health policy sidelines, Wagoner is launching a mini media blitz, hoping the competitiveness argument will be the one that finally prompts lawmakers to take on an increasingly expensive system rife with inefficiencies and inequities. Wagoner said he intends to press his case personally in Washington and with the nation's governors.


Yesterday, Wagoner broke his silence on an idea proposed by Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.) in the 2004 presidential campaign, saying he supports some type of national catastrophic reinsurance program. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) has also endorsed the concept of a separate government-backed insurance pool to cover the most expensive medical cases.

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 02:47 PM
Response to Original message
53. Gold, silver extend impressive rally

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) -- Capping off a strong rally in metals futures, gold cleared $422 an ounce and silver chalked up additional impressive gains Friday.

With the U.S. dollar's four-week rally showing signs of waning, gold turned higher late Wednesday and rallied through Thursday's trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Gold for April delivery added $3.50 to close the week at $422.20 an ounce.

The benchmark gold contract touched an intraday low of $411 on Wednesday before turning higher late in the session. And on Thursday, April gold added 1 percent, putting it back at about where it ended trading a week earlier.


Metals analysts were encouraged by the snapback in gold, which came in spite of listless trading in the U.S. dollar.

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 03:09 PM
Response to Original message
54. US Stocks in Euros


All American investors today have grown up since World War II, in a peculiar era where the US dollar utterly dominated global commerce. As such, it is really hard for us Americans to think in terms outside of the mental dollar box we are locked in from childhood. Thinking in multiple currencies is challenging for Americans, but nevertheless this important skill can certainly be learned.

Since the war rally erupted in March 2003, the US dollar has fallen rather dramatically, 21% in US Dollar Index terms. Thus a given pile of dollars saved over the past two years is worth a frightening 1/5th less in terms of what it can actually buy on the global markets. Thanks to the Fed's monumentally negligent mismanagement of the US dollar, it is rapidly inflating away into oblivion.

Unfortunately most Americans don't perceive this huge loss in dollar purchasing power, primarily for one big reason. I suspect that the majority of Americans buy most of their necessities from giant discounters like WalMart. The giant discounters help keep their prices low by sourcing their goods largely from China, which has a decade-old artificial peg with the US dollar.


This ongoing secular dollar bear is even more important in stock-market terms. We Americans look at the US markets and assume that a dollar we invested two years ago is worth the same as a dollar today. That is absolutely not true of course. Today's cheapened US dollars, at best, are only worth about 4/5ths of the international purchasing power of an early 2003 US dollar.

The only way we can analyze this effectively, especially as myopic Americans, is to somehow render the US stock markets in constant-dollar terms. My favorite approach to this analytical puzzle is to express the US markets in euros, the dollar's primary competitor and the fiat currency most likely to achieve global dominance as the dollar's international value continues to relentlessly erode.

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 03:14 PM
Response to Original message
55. Analysis: at What Price Fame for CEOs?

Analysis: Celebrity CEOs, Like Carly Fiorina, Often No Bargain for Shareholders

NEW YORK (AP) -- Superstar chief executives such as Hewlett-Packard Co.'s now ex-CEO Carly Fiorina may earn mega pay, grace business magazine covers and hobnob with world leaders-- but they may not be the best leaders for their companies.

Academics who study successful CEOs say companies are better off with a little known CEOs who disdain fame and mind the business.

Consider some superstars for whom ubiquity didn't equal success: Donald Trump is the master of the universe on his TV show, but that didn't prevent his casino and hotel business from filing for bankruptcy a second time in November.

L. Dennis Kozlowski of Tyco International graced the cover of "BusinessWeek" as "The Most Aggressive CEO" and was held up as a model -- until his company-sponsored lavish living triggered a government investigation. And don't forget superagent Michael Ovitz, who was supposed to save The Walt Disney Co. from a leaderless future but only lasted 14 months before walking away with a $140 million severance package.

They make Fiorina's fall look mild. Fiorina was pushed out by the board this week after almost six years of keynote speeches, pep rally-leading and flights on the the corporate jet, for both personal and professional trips.

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 03:17 PM
Response to Original message
56. 3:14 update
Dow 10,813.16 +63.55 (+0.59%)
Nasdaq 2,077.80 +24.70 (+1.20%)
S&P 500 1,207.33 +10.32 (+0.86%)
10-yr Bond 4.097% +0.02
30-yr Bond 4.486% +0.02

NYSE Volume 1,275,547,000
Nasdaq Volume 1,842,421,000

3:00PM : Holding steady at sharply higher levels, as stocks remain strong heading into the last hour of trading... Interest-rate sensitive groups, however, have bucked today's firmly bullish bias, but not because bond yields have soared... Treasuries have been quiet most of the day, with no economic data to ruffle the market, as yields on the 10-year note remain near 4.09%... Weakness in homebuilding has been widely known following several downgrades from Smith Barney while utility has posted modest losses...
But upgrades from Banc of America on companies like Centerpoint Property (CNT 45.06 +1.14) and Mack-Cali Realty (CLI 44.46 +0.64), as well as O, SKT and PKY, has fueled a buying frenzy for many REITs... The broker, however, remains cautious on the group, particularly following five consecutive years of market outperformance... NYSE Adv/Dec 2326/960, Nasdaq Adv/Dec 2010/1067

2:30PM : Equities remain on the offensive as the bulk of sector leadership remains positive... Pacing the way higher have been semiconductor equipment (+4.0%), semiconductor (+3.4%) and electronic manufacturing services (+2.4%) while insurance brokers (+2.3%) and oil & gas drillers (+2.1%) have also surged... Homebuilders (-2.7%) still lead the list of laggards while home furnishing (-0.8%) and drug retail (-0.6%) have also lost ground...NYSE Adv/Dec 2290/966, Nasdaq Adv/Dec 2008/1044

2:00PM : Onward and upward remains a driving mantra this afternoon as the indices hit new highs and retail enjoys gains in excess of 1.0% for the first time today... Erasing yesterday's losses has been May Department Stores (MAY 31.62 +0.84) after Bear Stearns upgraded the retailer to Outperform citing potential upside on either a takeover by Federated (FD 57.70 +0.60) or a turnaround driven by a new CEO... Even Ann Taylor (ANN 23.02 +0.62), despite lowering its Q4 guidance, has surged after guiding Q1 EPS in-line with forecasts...

Under pressure, however, have been shares of Sharper Image (SHRP 14.85 -2.09) after it guided a larger than expected loss for Q1 and lower earnings in FY05...NYSE Adv/Dec 2203/1002, Nasdaq Adv/Dec 1942/1101

Advances & Declines
NYSE Nasdaq
Advances 2320 (67%) 1987 (61%)
Declines 968 (28%) 1084 (33%)
Unchanged 141 (4%) 148 (4%)


Up Vol* 985 (81%) 1376 (77%)
Down Vol* 215 (17%) 372 (20%)
Unch. Vol* 12 (0%) 28 (1%)


New Hi's 277 90
New Lo's 17 62

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MARALE Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 03:50 PM
Response to Original message
57. Buying is expected to be discriminating, analysts say
The stock market this week is likely to continue edging its way higher, supported by selective buying, as new congressional testimony by Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan and earnings from Hewlett-Packard and Coca-Cola and other top corporate names provide focus.
On Wednesday and Thursday, Greenspan is scheduled to give semiannual congressional testimony.

The Fed chairman should stick to a dovish message on monetary policy, and is likely to turn his attention again to the current account and federal budget deficits, according to CIBC World Markets.

As the market has become accustomed to the Federal Open Market Committee's preference for small and gradual interest-rate hikes, Greenspan's testimony may not jolt the market.
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 03:58 PM
Response to Reply #57
58. Hmmm is that more of the complacency we've beein hearing about in that

Noting that investors last week managed to look past disappointing forecasts from Cisco Systems (CSCO: news, chart, profile) and Dell Inc. (DELL: news, chart, profile) , the portfolio manager said the market "seems to have a path of least resistance that is higher."

Yet with a word of caution

Robert Pavlik, portfolio manager at Oaktree Asset Management predicted a continued, mildly positive trend for the coming week, but said buyers should be discriminating.

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MARALE Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 04:13 PM
Response to Reply #58
59. I liked this part.
As the market has become accustomed to the Federal Open Market Committee's preference for small and gradual interest-rate hikes, Greenspan's testimony may not jolt the market.
I don't know why, but it tickled me

Plus I wonder what news HP has, I doubt it will be good!

On Wednesday, investors will absorb earnings news from Hewlett-Packard (HPQ: news, chart, profile) , which sent shock waves through the market last week with the sudden ouster of Chief Executive Carly Fiorina.

Look, the market could not hold it above 10800, I was wondering about that.
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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 04:17 PM
Response to Original message
60. Stocks Surge Despite Dell Disappointment (Institutional investors)

Surge in Buying Propels Stocks Substantially Higher, Pushing the Dow Industrials Ahead for the Year

NEW YORK (AP) -- A sharp surge in buying propelled stocks substantially higher Friday, building on the previous session's gains and pushing the Dow Jones industrial average into positive territory for the year.

After opening lower on disappointment over Dell Inc.'s failure to meet its sales targets for the fourth quarter, the markets made a strong move higher toward midday. Analysts and traders said a number of institutional investors put in large buy orders, apparently convinced that the markets' current prices were sustainable.

"I admit, the market's acting better than I thought it would," said Ken Tower, chief market strategist for Schwab's CyberTrader. "The market was quite oversold over the past few days, and I think we're bouncing off of that. It remains to be seen, however, whether this can be maintained."

In late afternoon trading, the Dow Jones industrial average rose 58.82, or 0.6 percent, to 10,808.43, after gaining 85.50 on Thursday. The Dow was up above 10,800 for the first time since Dec. 30.

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54anickel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-11-05 04:38 PM
Response to Original message
61. Closin' time and a whole lot of sheep calling goin' on in the blather
Edited on Fri Feb-11-05 04:39 PM by 54anickel
Dow 10,796.01 +46.40 (+0.43%)
Nasdaq 2,076.66 +23.56 (+1.15%)
S&P 500 1,205.30 +8.29 (+0.69%)
10-yr Bond 4.095% +0.02
30-yr Bond 4.487% +0.02

NYSE Volume 1,560,985,000
Nasdaq Volume 2,166,635,000

Close: The market shrugged off early weakness and held broad-based gains into the close as a rising tide lifted most boats... Much like Wednesday's S&P futures-related sell off assigned the Nasdaq its second lowest daily performance in 2005, large S&P futures-relating buying, coupled with a unsubstantiated rumor that Kim Jong-Il was deposed in North Korea, helped light a fire under equities before noon and quickly reversed a modestly bearish bias, as all the major indices closed higher for the third week in a row...
The Dow closed at its highest level in 2005 and just 72 points from a 52-week high while the S&P inched closer to breakeven for the year and the Nasdaq finished just 100 points shy of its 2004 close... Stocks were under modest pressure out of the gate, however, in the wake of Dell's (DELL 39.97 -1.60) lower than expected Q1 sales outlook; but the news became arguably more company-specific as widespread buying returned and closed virtually every sector in positive territory...

Technology led the charge, spurred by a rally in semiconductor (+3.6%) based on expectations of an improving outlook for chip stocks, while news of Apple Computer's (AAPL 81.29 +2.93) first stock split (2-for-1) since June of 2000 also underpinned interest in tech... Advanced talks between Verizon (VZ 36.31 +0.27) and MCI (MCIP 20.75 +0.29), that could result in a formal deal by next week, renewed potential M&A activity among makers of telecom equipment (+1.4%)... Biotech (+2.0%) surged after an FDA official testified before Congress that Chiron (CHIR 35.50 +1.56) was "making progress" with flu-shot compliance while an upgrade on May Dept. Stores (MAY 32.06 +1.28) gave a boost to retail...

Also posting gains of around 1.0% were software, disk drive, health care and transportation while strength in the online brokerage space and insurance helped financial post solid gains... Energy closed modestly higher, despite crude oil prices ($47.16 +0.06) finishing relatively unchanged, as several leading oil & gas stocks again reached historic highs... Homebuilding (-1.1%) was the only major holdout after Smith Barney downgraded several leading names due to valuation concerns... Meanwhile, with no economic data to aggressively influence bonds in either direction, treasuries were rather quiet all day as the benchmark 10-year note closed unchanged yielding 4.09%...DJTA +1.3, DJUA -0.1, DOT +1.4, Nasdaq 100 +1.6, Russell 2000 +1.2, SOX +3.6, S&P Midcap 400 +1.0, XOI +0.8, NYSE Adv/Dec 2336/995, Nasdaq Adv/Dec 2067/1060

Advances & Declines
NYSE Nasdaq
Advances 2326 (66%) 2050 (62%)
Declines 1006 (28%) 1055 (32%)
Unchanged 142 (4%) 154 (4%)


Up Vol* 1178 (75%) 1600 (73%)
Down Vol* 342 (21%) 527 (24%)
Unch. Vol* 42 (2%) 37 (1%)


New Hi's 294 101
New Lo's 18 65

and a quick last check on the buck:

Last trade 84.57 Change +0.06 (+0.07%)

Settle 84.57 Settle Time 15:39

Open 84.59 Previous Close 84.54

High 84.75 Low 84.42

edit to add:

Have a great weekend everyone! :hi:
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UL_Approved Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Feb-12-05 04:22 AM
Response to Original message
62. Citigroup Is Said to Be Planning 1,000 Job Cuts
The New York Times
February 12, 2005
Citigroup Is Said to Be Planning 1,000 Job Cuts

Citigroup plans to eliminate about 1,000 jobs at its corporate and investment bank, according to a person close to the company, the latest signal that the company is placing a renewed emphasis on cutting costs and bolstering shareholder returns.

The cuts underscore what seems to be a recurring theme at the big money-center banks: their investment banking departments are overstaffed relative to the profits they are generating.


The job cuts come in the aftermath of regulatory investigations in Europe over a series of controversial bond trades carried out within the investment bank. While the job cuts were unrelated to the trading fiasco, Sallie L. Krawcheck, the bank's chief financial officer, said yesterday in a conference call with investors that corporate banking profits in Europe had fallen 29 percent in the fourth quarter last year. Although she did not directly link the profit setback to the bond trading problems, she acknowledged that the negative fallout over the trades did not help the bank's business in the region.

NYT Link:

DU Link:
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