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21.02.2013 08:52

Stocks: Wednesday’s review

Asian stocks rose for a third day, with the regional benchmark index extending an 18-month high, amid signs the global economy is recovering.

Nikkei 225 11,468.28 +95.94 +0.84%

Hang Seng 23,307.41 +163.50 +0.71%

S&P/ASX 200 5,098.71 +16.82 +0.33%

Shanghai Composite 2,397.18 +14.26 +0.60%

South Korea’s Kospi Index led benchmark gauges higher after Bank of Korea Governor Kim Choong Soo said the world economic outlook is improving.

Tokyo Electric Power Co. led Japanese utilities higher.

BHP Billiton Ltd., the world’s largest mining company, fell 0.9 percent in Sydney after reporting a 58 percent drop in first-half profit.

Woodside Petroleum Ltd., Australia’s second-biggest oil and gas producer, added 3.1 percent after full-year profit almost doubled.

European stocks retreated from a three-week high as commodity producers declined and companies from Deutsche Lufthansa AG to RSA Insurance Group Plc cut their payouts to shareholders.

Negative data was caused by volume of construction in the EU, as well as data on car sales, which were published yesterday. Sales of passenger cars in the European Union in January 2013 fell to a record low. European automakers association ACEA said on Tuesday, February 18, that the first month of sales decreased by 8.7 percent compared to the same period last year to 885,159 new cars. January is the lowest figure since 1990, when the ACEA began keeping such records.

Positive news came from Greece, where the current account deficit of the balance of payments for 2012. declined by 73% year on year and reached the lowest level since the country's accession to the eurozone. Influence it reduce imports and reduced rates on sovereign debt.

Germany's DAX was down on the record CPI and HICP Germany, which rose by 1.7% y / y (vs. 1.9% previously), in line with the forecast. PPI rose 1.5% to 1.7% falling to 1.2%, and on a monthly basis rose by 0.8% (+0.3% expected).

France's CAC 40 fell, despite the restoration of the French business climate index. French business climate index unexpectedly rose from 87 (revised from 86) to 90 in February, and the HICP fell 0.6% m / m and up 1.4% y / y (vs. 1.5%), not short of projections.

Britain's FTSE 100 rose protocol IFA. Bank of England voted to King expansion QE, but was in a minority (6-3).

National benchmark indexes gained in 10 of the 18 western- European markets. Germany’s DAX declined 0.3 percent, while France’s CAC 40 slid 0.7 percent. The U.K.’s FTSE 100 climbed 0.3 percent.

BHP Billiton slipped 2.4 percent to 2,183.5 pence after the world’s biggest mining company reported a 58 percent decline in first-half profit and appointed Andrew Mackenzie as its new chief executive officer. Mackenzie, who takes over on May 10, was head of its copper unit.

Lufthansa dropped 6.2 percent to 15 euros after Europe’s biggest airline by sales canceled its dividend for 2012. The company made a payout of 25 euro cents a share for 2011.

Lafarge jumped 5.5 percent to 49.27 euros. The world’s biggest cement maker said fourth-quarter earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization rose to 856 million euros ($1.1 billion), beating the average analyst estimate of 821.6 million euros.

Credit Agricole SA rose 3.9 percent to 7.61 euros after saying it plans to reduce costs by 650 million euros by 2016. France’s third-largest bank said in a web presentation it expects to cut costs by 650 million euros by 2016 through information-technology resources, real estate and procurement.

U.S. stocks fell, slipping from five-year highs, as minutes from the Federal Reserve’s last meeting showed a debate over further stimulus action.

Minutes of the Federal Open Market Committee’s Jan. 29-30 meeting released today showed policy makers were divided about the strategy behind Chairman Ben S. Bernanke’s program of buying bonds until there is “substantial” improvement in a U.S. labor market burdened with 7.9 percent unemployment.

Some said an earlier end to purchases might be needed, and others warned against a premature withdrawal of stimulus. Several policy makers said the central bank should be ready to vary the pace of their $85 billion in monthly bond purchases.

After the discovery of a negative impact on the dynamics of trading reflected data on the index of consumer confidence in the eurozone. The index value, though improved in February (from -23.9 to -23.6), but it turned out worse than expected (-23.1). After yesterday's data from the ZEW, many hoped that today's data will record a significant improvement in consumer sentiment.

Most of the components of the index DOW finished trading in the red (24 of 30). Lost more than 3% shares Bank of America Corporation (BAC, -3.20%) and Alcoa, Inc. (AA, -3.31%). Leader was led Merck & Co. Inc. (MRK, +1.04%).

All sectors of the S & P showed a negative trend. More than other basic materials sector declined (-2.2%).

Quotes biotechnology company Chelsea Therapeutics International soared 152% on news that U.S. regulators are allowed to reapply for permission to sell the drug Northera in the market.

Shares of American developer Toll Brothers fell by 9.1% after the publication of quarterly results - profit was below analysts' forecasts.

At the close:

S & P 500 1,511.95 -18.99 -1.24%

NASDAQ 3,164.41 -49.18 -1.53%

Dow 13,927.54 -108.13 -0.77%

Market Focus

  • The eurozone started the third quarter on a solid footing, according to PMI survey data
  • Earnings Season in U.S.: Major Reports of the Week
  • German private sector output growth slowed for the second month running in July
  • ECB's Mersch says as conditions normalise, it is unlikely that uncoventional policies will remain necessary
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