Daily Market Commentary for September 22, 2011
Global markets were sharply lower today amidst a massive, heavy selloff that left no market, untouched.
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The Labor Department reported new applications for unemployment compensation fell to 423,000 last week from 432,000. From two weeks ago, initial claims were revised up from an original reading of 428,000. Average first-time claims filed over the past four weeks climbed to 421,000 - the highest level seen in two months. The monthly average is seen as a more accurate gauge of labor trends because it smoothes out volatility in the week-to-week data. In week ended September 10, the number of Americans who continue to receive regular state unemployment checks fell by 28,000 to 3.73 million. For week of September 3, nearly 6.89 million people received some kind of state or federal benefit which was down 256,256 from previous week.
Per the Conference Board, the economy should exhibit "continued weak growth" through the fall and winter after reporting its index of leading economic indicators grew 0.3% in August. "There is growing risk that sustained weak confidence could put downward pressure on demand and business activity, causing the economy to potentially dip into recession," said Ken Goldstein, a Conference Board economist, in a statement. "While the chance of that happening remains below 50-50, the odds have certainly increased in recent months." The LEI is a weighted gauge of 10 indicators that are designed to signal business cycle peaks and troughs. Among the 10 indicators that make up the LEI, four made positive contributions in August, led by the real money supply. For July the LEI was revised to 0.6% from a previous estimate of 0.5%.
Apparently, even though NASA officials remain uncertain as to exactly where a 6.5-ton decommissioned satellite will fall to Earth on Friday, it will not be in North America, per NASA. The Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite or UARS, which ceased scientific operations in 2005, is now expected to fall from orbit during the afternoon of September 23 and will not be passing over North America, prior to its crash to Earth. NASA has said that the spacecraft could leave a trail of debris about 500 miles long. Nearly 26 pieces of UARS are capable of surviving re-entry through the atmosphere, with some pieces weighing nearly 300 lbs. So, its anticipated that all eyes will be on the skies tomorrow in anticipation of dodging potential debris, falling from the sky.
Netflix Inc. (NasdaqGS: NFLX) is rumored to be a potential buyout target of Amazon.com (NasdaqGS: AMZN). Amazon has always wanted to be in the streaming business and has been constrained from buying Netflix due to tax considerations.
After the market close on Wall Street today, Meg Whitman is expected to be named chief executive of Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ). While the board of HP has yet to officially vote on the move, sources say it is "nearly a done deal."
United Technologies (NYSE: UTX) has agreed to acquire Goodrich Corp. (NYSE: GR) for $127.50 a share cash or $16.5 billion.
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