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 Post subject: September 10th Thursday 2009 Emini ES ($ES_F) points +42.00
PostPosted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 4:21 pm 
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Today's trades that were posted in real-time in #FuturesTrades chat room via my IRC user name wrbtrader. You can review each trade from entry to exit along with commentary and an occasional trading tip because its all archived @ http://www.thestrategylab.com/ftchat/forum/viewtopic.php?f=61&t=299

This may have been the best trading day in Emini ES ($ES_F) via being prepared to trade by 0930am est in comparison to any other trading day of 2009 mainly due to the fact I didn't have the usual family obligations (getting kids ready for school et cetera).

The key change in supply/demand that caught my attention today was via the 2min chart interval @ 0956am est that produced a great WRB S/R Zone to help send the price action higher...a price action that would not retest that zone after 1030am est. Simply, if you missed that zone...you were playing the pullbacks for the rest of the trading day along with needing patience to do such.

I was able to exploit the zone in one particular trade of the $ES_F for +2 points.

FYI - You can ask me questions here at the forum or you can tweet me on twitter about anything related to today's trading or related to your own trading.

Image@ http://twitter.com/wrbtrader

In addition, posted below are direct links about my trade methodology or trading approach that enables me to identify key trading areas in the price action that represent changes in supply/demand along with being able to exploit the changes in supply/demand.


http://www.thestrategylab.com/WRBAnalysisTutorials.htm

http://www.thestrategylab.com/TradeStrategies.htm

Also, I strongly believe that profitable trading involves more than just trade signals and that's why most traders fail because they put all their interest in trade signals while ignoring the impact of their trading habits/routine or personal lifestyle. If you don't understand this perspective...please ask questions here at the forum for more info or you can tweet me on twitter @wrbtrader.

My Trading Performance: +42.00 Emini ES ($ES_F) points

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Stocks End At 2009 Highs
Wall Street cheers as strong debt auction, P&G forecast, Geithner comments and drop in jobless claims draw investors.
By Alexandra Twin, CNNMoney.com senior writer
Last Updated: September 10, 2009: 5:56 PM ET

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Stocks surged Thursday, with the major gauges ending at the highest point in nearly a year, having responded strongly to a debt auction and Procter & Gamble's improved forecast.

The Dow Jones industrial average (INDU) gained 80 points, or 0.8%, closing at the highest point since last Oct. 6.

The S&P 500 (SPX) index rose 11 points, or 1%, closing at the highest point since Oct. 6. The Nasdaq composite (COMP) added 24 points, or 1.2%, closing at the highest point since Sept. 26.

All three major indexes have now risen for five consecutive sessions, extending the six-month old stock market advance. Since bottoming March 9 at a 12-year low, the S&P 500 has risen 54% as investors have gone from pricing in a depression to a recession to a recovery.

A combination of a weaker dollar, rising commodity prices and old-fashioned skepticism has fueled the latest leg of the advance, said Paul Brigandi, vice president of trading at Direxion Funds.

"The train of thought through the end of August was that the advance was not justified by the fundamentals, the fall is typically weak and so stocks will sell off," Brigandi said. "But the stock market has a tendency to do the opposite of what everyone is thinking."

He said this skepticism is likely to keep fueling gains.

While the gains so far in September have pushed the S&P 500, Nasdaq and Dow to fresh highs, the advance has been pretty tepid, suggesting investors are taking baby steps.

More than a reaction to any specific news of the day, the rallying of late has been momentum driven, said Joe Saluzzi, co-head of equity trading at Themis Trading.

"All the problems that got us into this mess haven't disappeared, but from a day-to-day standpoint, that doesn't matter," he said. "The path of least resistance is still up."

Stocks got an extra jolt after Treasury's auction of $12 billion in reopened 30-year bonds generated better-than-expected demand. The U.S. is relying on debt auctions to help offset the deficit.

Friday brings the September consumer sentiment index from the University of Michigan, the July wholesale inventories report from the Commerce Department and August import and export prices. The August Treasury budget is due in the afternoon.

Economy: The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment fell by 26,000 last week to 550,000, according to a Labor Department report released Thursday. That surprised economists who expected 560,000 new claims, according to Briefing.com.

Continuing claims, which measure the number of Americans who have been receiving benefits for a week or more, showed a surprise drop to 6,080,000 from 6,234,000 in the previous week.

The U.S. trade gap widened to $32 billion in July from $27.5 in June, according to a Commerce Department report. Economists thought it would narrow to $27.3 billion.

Foreclosure filings in August dropped 0.5% from July, according to RealtyTrac, an online marketer of foreclosed properties. The number of homes repossessed from borrowers fell by 12.7% in August.

Also helping: Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, speaking before the Congressional Oversight Panel, said that the focus is shifting from rescuing the economy to preparing for growth. He also said it isn't likely that more bank bailout money will be needed.

Health care: President Obama outlined his health care plan before a joint session of Congress Wednesday night. The plan, which could cost as much as $1 trillion over a ten-year period, includes requiring all Americans to have health care.

Company news: Dow component Procter & Gamble (PG, Fortune 500) said that it expects sales to improve in the next quarter, sending shares 4.2% higher.

The maker of Tide, Crest and other consumer products said sales in the fiscal second quarter should rise 1% to 4%. Current-quarter sales are expected to be flat to down 3%. Also, in the current quarter, P&G said it still expects earnings per share of 95 cents to $1. Analysts are expecting a profit of 97 cents per share.

Chip maker Texas Instruments (TXN, Fortune 500) said it expects to report a bigger profit in the third quarter than it previously forecast. TI said it will earn between 37 cents and 41 cents per share versus its earlier forecast of 29 cents to 39 cents per share. The company expects sales in a range of $2.73 billion to $2.87 billion, versus its earlier forecast of $2.5 billion to $2.8 billion.

Shares were barely changed.

Monsanto (MON, Fortune 500) said it expects 2010 earnings in a range that is well below analysts' estimates, due in part to an excess of herbicide supply. The world's leading seed maker said it expects fiscal 2010 earnings per share of $3.10 to $3.30. Analysts currently expect earnings of $4.10. Shares fell 5%.

General Motors is selling a major stake in its European Opel division to a consortium led by Canadian auto supplied Magna. Opel is GM's biggest-selling brand in Europe.

Currency: The dollar resumed its slide against other major currencies, falling to a fresh seven-month low against the yen and a nearly 12-month low versus the euro.

Oil and gold: The weak dollar has boosted oil, gold and other dollar-traded commodity prices. Those prices have also been on the rise on bets of a global economy recovery.

U.S. light crude oil for October delivery rose 63 cents to settle at $71.94 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, seesawing after the government's weekly oil inventories report.

COMEX gold for December delivery fell 30 cents to $996.80 an ounce, after topping the key $1,000 level during the day for the third session in a row.

Bonds: Treasury prices rallied, lowering the yield on the benchmark 10-year note to 3.35% from 3.47% late Wednesday, following the results of the auction.

Wednesday's auction of $20 billion of ten-year notes saw solid demand as well.

World markets: Global markets were mixed. In Europe, London's FTSE 100 and France's CAC 40 both slipped, while the German DAX managed a gain. Asian markets ended higher, with the Japanese Nikkei rising almost 2%.

Market breadth was positive. On the New York Stock Exchange, winners topped losers by over three to one on volume of 1.49 billion shares. On the Nasdaq, advancers topped decliners two to one on volume of 2.49 billion shares.

Image

Yahoo! Finance

4:35 pm : Continued interest among buyers helped stocks overcome a sluggish start, but it took results from the latest Treasury auction and comments from Treasury Secretary Geithner to lift stocks to fresh highs for 2009. The bullish bias remained intact into the close and helped stocks settle at session highs.

News that the latest batch of initial jobless claims and continuing claims fell more than expected to 550,000 and 6.09 million, respectively, and that the trade deficit deepened more than expected to $32.0 billion in July was followed by a slight improvement in the mood of participants. Yet that wasn't enough to keep Monsanto's (MON 79.30, -4.18) disappointing earnings outlook from inducing enough weakness in the materials sector to undercut the broader market in the first few minutes of trade. An upside forecast from semiconductor outfit Texas Instruments (TXN 25.00, -0.14) also had little positive impact.

However, buyers quickly stepped in to bid stocks back into the green, but gains in the broader market were relatively limited until the results from a $12 billion auction of 30-year Treasuries showed a high yield of 4.24% and an above average bid-to-cover ratio of 2.54. The results showed that investors remain interested in the government's long-term debt and helped drive the 30-year Bond up more than two points and the benchmark 10-year Note up roughly one point.

Stocks were also helped along by Treasury Secretary Geithner's indication in his testimony before Congress that policymakers are in a position to evolve their strategy with the goal of repairing and rebuilding the economy's foundation for future growth. Geithner also said that it is unlikely more bank bailout money will be needed, so its contingency provision can be removed from the budget.

In a separate speech, President Obama said last evening in his latest step toward health care reform that a health insurance plan of $900 billion over 10 years will be funded with spending cuts and tax increases. Managed care stocks responded by making a 2.8% gain this session.

Energy stocks made some of the best gains this session. They settled with a 1.5% gain as natural gas prices and crude oil prices advanced. Even though natural gas saw a smaller-than-expected draw in inventories, the commodity rallied to close pit trade with a 15% gain at $3.25 per contract. Oil prices oscillated despite a larger-than-expected inventory draw, but still finished 0.8% higher at $71.91 per barrel. Oil prices received help from news that OPEC left its production targets unchanged, as expected, and the IEA expects global demand to strengthen.

Telecom stocks closed 2.1% higher, the best gains of any major sector, but even their advance didn't match those of airline stocks, which helped the Amex Airline Index ascend 6.7%. Some of that strength was owed to an upgrade of UAL Corp (UAUA 7.60, +1.15) by analysts at JPMorgan.

Still, the broad-based gains helped the stock market register its fifth straight gain and reach levels not seen in 11 months. What's more, trading volume on the NYSE eclipsed its 50-day and 200-day moving average.DJ30 +80.26 NASDAQ +23.63 NQ100 +1.0% R2K +1.5% SP400 +1.2% SP500 +10.77 NASDAQ Adv/Vol/Dec 1781/2.48 bln/868 NYSE Adv/Vol/Dec 2309/1.49 bln/723

3:30 pm : The market continues to hold onto its gains. Energy has been strong this session, it is currently up 1.3%.

Natural gas futures were the big story in the pit trade this session. The futures surged this morning following a slightly smaller-than-expected draw in inventories. The October futures rallied throughout the session and closed up over 15% at $3.25 per contract. Today's impressive gain sent natural gas prices to levels not seen since mid-August. However, they are still down almost 20% since Aug. 5.

Crude oil futures sold-off from session highs at $72.44 per barrel following a larger-than-expected draw in crude oil inventories. The October futures recovered, however, and finished at $71.91 per barrel, up 0.8%.

Precious metals traded in opposition to the dollar this session. Both silver and gold futures hit session lows early in the morning as the dollar index was at session highs and hit then rallied to session highs as the dollar index sold off. December gold futures broke the $1000 level for a moment but closed at $997.00 per ounce, down just a dime. December silver futures closed 1.0% higher at $16.67 per ounce; the less talked about precious metal is now up over 30% over the last two months.DJ30 +45.65 NASDAQ +14.85 SP500 +6.75 NASDAQ Adv/Vol/Dec 1544/2.03 bln/1106 NYSE Adv/Vol/Dec 2139/895 mln/860

3:00 pm : The major indices are drifting sideways in a tight range, steadily holding recent gains.

Treasuries are also holding strong, especially at the long end of the yield curve. The 10-year Note is currently up more than one point, 35 ticks to be exact, but the 30-year Bond is up more than two points, 85 ticks to be exact. The strong interest among Treasuries comes after an auction of 30-year Bonds produced strong results midday.DJ30 +56.00 NASDAQ +16.20 SP500 +7.73 NASDAQ Adv/Vol/Dec 1566/1.88 bln/1051 NYSE Adv/Vol/Dec 2137/811 mln/837

2:30 pm : The stock market is taking a breather after marching to fresh highs for the year. The S&P 500 now faces additional technical resistance in the 1042 to 1044 range.

Despite the run up by stocks, Treasuries continue to look strong. As such, the benchmark 10-year Note is up nearly one full point, which has taken its yield down near 3.36%. That puts the spread between the yields of the 2-year and the 10-year at roughly 247 basis points.DJ30 +68.70 NASDAQ +19.90 SP500 +8.42 NASDAQ Adv/Vol/Dec 1616/1.73 bln/1001 NYSE Adv/Vol/Dec 2172/738 mln/807

2:00 pm : The S&P 500 recently took its gains another notch higher. In doing so, it has registered a fresh high for 2009.

The upward move has been broad-based, so that all 10 major sectors are now in the green. Telecom stocks continue to sport the best gains of any major sector. Their 1.9% advance is their best single-session performance in more than one month.

The broad-based buying effort has taken the materials sector to a 0.3% gain. It had been down some 2% in the early going. With materials making a solid rebound, utilities stocks now make up the worst performing sector. Utilities are up just 0.1%.DJ30 +78.75 NASDAQ +20.12 SP500 +9.44 NASDAQ Adv/Vol/Dec 1593/1.58 bln/997 NYSE Adv/Vol/Dec 2145/670 mln/796

1:30 pm : In his speech before Congress, Treasury Secretary Geithner indicated that there is a shift in strategy from rescuing the economy to preparing for growth. Geithner also said that it is unlikely that more bank bailout money will be needed, so a contingency provision can be removed from the budget.

The comments from Geithner didn't have much of an impact on bank stocks. In turn, diversified bank shares are still down 0.2%. Meanwhile, regional bank stocks are down 1.0%. DJ30 +40.81 NASDAQ +11.64 SP500 +4.52 NASDAQ Adv/Vol/Dec 1480/1.46 bln/1107 NYSE Adv/Vol/Dec 1950/610 mln/978

1:05 pm : Stocks slipped in the first few minutes of trading, but buyers quickly responded, keeping the market's bullish bias intact and putting it on track for its fifth straight gain.

The mood among premarket participants was briefly lifted following news that weekly initial jobless claims weren't as bad as what had been expected and that continuing claims came down more than expected from the previous week. However, the morning's economic data wasn't entirely encouraging since the trade deficit deepened more than expected in July.

Following the open, stocks quickly moved lower amid weakness in the materials sector, which followed a disappointing forecast from Monsanto (MON 78.62, -4.86). Several other widely-held companies also issued updates. Dow component Procter & Gamble (PG 55.72, +1.96) made an in-line forecast, but Texas Instruments (TXN 25.11, -0.03) issued an upside forecast.

Participants quickly stepped in to buy the morning dip and pushed stocks back into the green. However, the S&P 500 has yet to make it back to August highs of roughly 1039.

Nonetheless, energy stocks are showing strength as they sport a 1.1% gain. That comes even though oil prices are oscillating. Crude oil futures had been up more than 1% following news that OPEC left its production targets unchanged, as expected, and the IEA expects global demand to strengthen. Oil prices were pressured by a mixed weekly inventory reading and slipped into negative territory, but they have since rebounded to trade with a 0.6% gain at $71.75 per barrel.

Managed care stocks (+1.7%) have garnered support as well. Their move comes after President Obama said in a speech last evening that a health insurance plan of $900 billion over 10 years will be funded with spending cuts and tax increases.

Participants await the latest results from another auction of Treasuries and a testimony from Treasury Secretary Geithner (1:00 PM ET). DJ30 +34.54 NASDAQ +9.88 SP500 +3.73 NASDAQ Adv/Vol/Dec 1402/1.32 bln/1149 NYSE Adv/Vol/Dec 1862/546 mln/1062

12:30 pm : Thanks to strength in large-cap tech stocks like Yahoo! (YHOO 15.43, +0.65), Cisco (CSCO 22.78, +0.55), and Microsoft (MSFT 24.94, +0.16), the Nasdaq Composite holds a slight lead over the other headline indices.

Fellow tech outfit Texas Instruments (TXN 25.11, -0.03) is trading in mixed fashion, even though the company issued last evening a better-than-expected earnings forecast in its midquarter update. However, the mixed performance by TXN hasn't slowed other semiconductor stocks, which are up 0.6% as a group.DJ30 +23.96 NASDAQ +7.85 SP500 +2.53 NASDAQ Adv/Vol/Dec 1358/1.20 bln/1195 NYSE Adv/Vol/Dec 1745/499 mln/1139

12:00 pm : The broader market continues to trade with modest gains, but telecom stocks have managed to extend their advance to 1.3%. Dow components and integrated telecom giants AT&T (T 26.32, +0.38) and Verizon (VZ 31.30, +0.41) are providing primary leadership to the telecom sector.DJ30 +18.14 NASDAQ +8.68 SP500 +2.21 NASDAQ Adv/Vol/Dec 1364/1.09 bln/1163 NYSE Adv/Vol/Dec 1734/453 mln/1115

11:30 am : Stocks have pulled back since reaching session highs not long ago. Gains remain modest with six of the 10 major sectors in the S&P 500 trading in positive ground.

Energy remains one of the best performing sectors, though telecom has matched its advance -- both sectors are sporting 0.8% gains. On the other side of things, materials stocks continue to make up the worst performing sector. Materials are down 0.6%, but that's not as bad as the 2% loss that the sector was contending with in the early going.DJ30 +22.52 NASDAQ +7.17 SP500 +2.22 NASDAQ Adv/Vol/Dec 1331/957 mln/1144 NYSE Adv/Vol/Dec 1676/393 mln/1135

11:00 am : The major indices have not only made their way back into positive ground, but buyers have pushed them to their best levels of the session. Energy stocks have benefited most from the recent buying effort; the sector was recently up more than 1%, but it has since pulled back a bit. Still it is up more than any other major sector.

Energy's ascent came as oil prices made their way to session highs in the minutes leading up to the latest weekly inventory report. According to the Department of Energy, stockpiles fell by 5.91 million barrels in the week ending September 4. Analysts, on average, had expected a draw of 1.85 million barrels. Given that distillate inventories and gasoline inventories had builds, oil prices have pulled back following the data's release. Still, they remain up 0.9% at $72.00 per barrel.DJ30 +22.60 NASDAQ +7.34 SP500 +2.72 NASDAQ Adv/Vol/Dec 1267/816 mln/1167 NYSE Adv/Vol/Dec 1634/328 mln/1145

10:35 am : Overnight OPEC announced it would leave crude output unchanged as expected, while the IEA raised its world oil demand for the third consecutive month. October crude oil traded higher overnight before falling into negative territory at the open to morning lows of $70.91 per barrel. Following this data, and ahead of weekly inventory data that will be released at 11:00am ET, crude is trading 0.8% higher at $71.90 per barrel.

Natural gas traded just above the unchanged line overnight, but fell into negative territory to fresh lows of $2.745 per MMBtu just ahead of the open of pit trading. Ahead of this morning's weekly inventory data, natural gas is trading 2.6% lower at $2.756 per MMBtu. Following the data, which showed a build of 69 bcf vs. consensus of a build of 72 bcf, natural gas spiked into positive territory, but pulled back and is currently 1% lower at $2.80 per MMBtu.

The US Dollar Index pushed off lows into positive territory, keeping pressure on precious metals this morning. December gold is currently trading 0.5% lower at $992.50 per ounce, while December silver is trading 0.3% lower at $16.415 per ounce.DJ30 -6.04 NASDAQ +1.66 SP500 -1.03 NASDAQ Adv/Vol/Dec 1070/640.4 mln/1313 NYSE Adv/Vol/Dec 1252/246.3 mln/1443

10:00 am : Financials (-1.1%) recently joined materials stocks (-1.6%) to lead the broader market lower, but the major indices have since stopped the downturn by making a modest rebound. Action among the major indices remains rather mixed, though.

Despite a mixed mood in the broader market, airline stocks up sharply. That has the Amex Airline Index up 6.2% to its best level since January. UAL Corp (UAUA 7.73, +1.28) is a primary leader in the index and is soaring after being upgraded by analysts at JPMorgan. Analysts at JPMorgan chose to downgrade shares of Jet Blue (JBLU 6.09, +0.03), however.

Early movers: Trading up -- DVAX +81.7%, NCS +25.4%, XRTX +25.3%, UAUA +13.6%, LCC +11.5%, TRGL +11%, DPTR +10.9%, HWAY +9.9%, SWHC +9.5%, OCLS +9.3%, CPE +8.6%, CAL +8.3%, RNWK +8.2%, DAL +8.1%, YONG +8%, AMR +7.7%, SWKS +7.5%; Trading down -- PLAB -12.5%, RODM -9.3%, JAG -7.6%, ISTA -7.2%, STEI -6.4%, BDD -5.8%, MW -5.7%, NAV -5.7%, MON -5.4%DJ30 -10.88 NASDAQ +1.75 SP500 -2.18 NASDAQ Adv/Vol/Dec 1111/368 mln/1143 NYSE Adv/Vol/Dec 1168/155 mln/1475

09:40 am : Following a disappointing outlook from agricultural seed and product developer Monsanto (MON 78.98, -4.50), materials stocks are down a considerable 1.1% in the first few minutes of trading. Though the materials sector's weakness has undercut the broader market, the S&P 500 has managed to limit its losses.

Treasuries are currently looking strong. The benchmark 10-year Note is currently up 15 ticks and yielding 3.42%, while the 2-year Note is up one tick and yielding nearly 0.90%.DJ30 -15.64 NASDAQ +2.32 SP500 -2.44 NASDAQ Adv/Vol/Dec 1051/160 mln/1051 NYSE Adv/Vol/Dec 1162/81 mln/1327

09:20 am : S&P futures vs fair value: -0.30. Nasdaq futures vs fair value: -0.50. Stock futures are flat amid a flurry of announcements, beginning with President Obama's speech last evening regarding health care reform. According to The Wall Street Journal, Obama set the size of a health insurance plan at $900 billion over 10 years and will fund it with spending cuts and tax increases. Large employers would face a requirement to offer health coverage to employees or pay a fine. The latest batch of weekly initial jobless claims was less than expected at 550,000 and was also down from the previous week. Continuing claims were down more than expected to 6.09 million, but that's largely the result of expired unemploymen benefits. In other economic news, the trade deficit expanded for the second straight month to a greater-than-expected $32.0 billion in July. Several widely-held companies are out with updated guidance. Dow component Procter & Gamble (PG) stated that it expects earnings for its first fiscal quarter to range from $0.95 to $1.00 per share, which brackets the $0.97 per share that Wall Street had come to expect. Monsanto (MON) said that it expects fiscal 2009 earnings to come in at the low end of its previously announced range of $4.40 to $4.50, but that remains in-line with the $4.41 per share that analysts had forecast. However, Monsanto expects earnings for fiscal 2010 to range from $3.10 to $3.30 per share, which falls well short of the consensus estimate of $4.12 per share. Last evening Texas Instruments (TXN) issued a midquarter update to forecast third quarter earnings from $0.37 to $0.41 per share, which is better than the current consensus estimate of $0.35 per share. Participants await the latest results from another auction of Treasuries and a testimony from Treasury Secretary Geithner (1:00 PM ET). Weekly natural gas inventory data (10:30 AM ET) and crude oil inventory data (11:00 AM ET) are also due today. That could bring added volatility to prices following news that OPEC left production unchanged, as expected, and the IEA has stepped out for the third consecutive month to say that it expects global demand to rise.

09:00 am : S&P futures vs fair value: +0.40. Nasdaq futures vs fair value: +1.00. Despite no immediate reaction to the latest batch of jobless claims or the July trade balance, U.S. stock futures have made their way higher. They still point to a relatively flat start, though. Meanwhile, European stocks have also managed to improve their positions after trading with weakness following the European Central Bank's decision to leave its benchmark lending rate unchanged at 0.5%, as expected. With sellers making a push against European stocks, Germany's DAX is up 0.4%. BASF is a primary laggard, followed by Bayer and Deutsche Telekom. In France, the CAC is off by 0.4%. Financial outfits BNP Paribas and Societe Generale are leading losses. France Telecom is also a laggard. The country's output at factories and utilities climbed 0.1% month-over-month, short of the expected 0.4% increase. Meanwhile, Britain's FTSE is flat as BP PLC (BP) and Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A) falter amid downgrades by analysts at HSBC. In economic news, Financial Times reported that UK house prices increased for the second straight month in August. In Asia, the MSCI Asia Pacific Index advanced 1.2% and Japan's Nikkei climbed 2.0%. Mitsubishi UFJ Financial (MTU), Mizuho Financial (MFG) and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial all spiked. FUJIFILM (FUJI) advanced amid reports that it has developed technology to increase the sensitivity of influenza testing devises. In economic news, July machinery orders fell 9.3% month-over-month, which was worse than the expected 3.5% monthly decline. In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng tacked on 1.1%, Shares in Industrial & Commercial Bank of China climbed following reports that the lender was showing the most interest in buying Wing Hang Bank. Bank of China also jumped, though it said it needs more capital to maintain its adequacy ratios. In mainland China, the Shanghai Composite slipped 0.7%.

08:30 am : S&P futures vs fair value: -0.40. Nasdaq futures vs fair value: -1.50. Stock futures have shown little reaction to the release of the latest batch of weekly jobless claims and the July trade balance. According to official statistics, initial jobless claims for the week ending September 5 totaled 550,000, which is less than the 560,000 initial claims that economists had come to expect. The latest tally was also less than the previous week's upwardly revised 576,000 initial claims. Continuing claims came in at 6.09 million, which is less than the consensus forecast of 6.20 million and less than the upwardly revised 6.25 million claims registered in the preceding week. Separately, the trade deficit expanded to $32.0 billion in July from a downwardly revised $27.5 billion deficit in June. The July deficit was expected to total $27.3 billion.

08:00 am : S&P futures vs fair value: -1.10. Nasdaq futures vs fair value: -1.50. Stock futures point to a flat start ahead of the latest batch of weekly jobless claims and the July trade balance, both of which are due at the bottom of the hour. Participants also await weekly natural gas inventory data (10:30 AM ET) and crude oil inventory data (11:00 AM ET). Oil prices continue to extend recent gains in electronic trading by climbing 0.6% to $71.75 per barrel following OPEC's decision to leave production unchanged, as expected. However, the IEA has stepped out for the third consecutive month to say that it expects global demand to rise, according to The Wall Street Journal. The rise in oil prices is expected to provide a boon to energy stocks. Select health care stocks are garnering support following President Obama's health care reform speech, which set the size of health insurance plan at $900 billion over 10 years.

06:22 am : S&P futures vs fair value: -2.60. Nasdaq futures vs fair value: -4.50.

06:22 am : Nikkei...10513.67...+201.50...+2.00%. Hang Seng...21069.56...+218.50...+1.10%.

06:22 am : FTSE...4985.28...-19.00...-0.40%. DAX...3694.57...-13.50...-0.40%.

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