Stocks erased most of Friday's early gains tied to upbeat
consumer spending data and hopes for global stimulus measures as
investors took profits ahead of next week's deluge of economic
data. That heavy line-up culminates in the pivotal non-farm
payrolls report on Friday. Developments in Ukraine, where Russian
troops are amassing on the eastern border, also spooked Dow
Industrials investors into giving back most of its triple-digit
gain. The Nasdaq, meanwhile, made a dramatic about-face as pressure
on momentum and biotech stocks contributed to the index's worst
weekly performance in 17 months. The broad S&P 500 ends up 0.5%
but logs a weekly loss.
The early rally was triggered by comments from Chinese Premier
Li Kequiang who acknowledged the need for economic stimulus as the
world's second largest economy continues to show signs of losing
momentum. While in Europe, the odds for the ECB to cut rates next
week improved following a larger-than-expected drop in Spanish CPI,
fueling more deflationary risks to the economy.
Opening gains were amplified by indications that consumer
spending is still intact despite a miserable winter. February
consumer spending increased 0.3%, followed by a slightly
greater-than-expected 0.3% gain in personal income.
The Reuters/Univ of Michigan index of consumer sentiment was
revised slightly higher, to 80.0 from 79.9 initially, at a
five-month low, the index deteriorated from 81.6 in February.
Here's where the markets stand at the close:
Dow Jones Industrial Index was up 58 points (+0.36%) at
S&P 500 was up 8 points (+0.46%) at 1,857
Nasdaq Composite Index was up 4 points (+0.1%) at 4,155
FTSE 100 was up 0.41%
Nikkei 225 was up 0.50%
Hang Seng Index was up 1.06%
Shanghai China Composite Index was down 0.24%
(+) ICLD (+22.58%) Maintains that allegations made against the
company are "wholly without merit"
(+) BLIN (+12.50%) Announced a multi-year contract with an
unidentified healthcare communications technology company.
(+) INPH (+11.25%) Reported sharply reduced 4Q losses and higher
(-) LPDX (-19.63%) Q1 revenue outlook cut after contract
(-) CNAT (-15.63%) Reported a Q4 net loss that was greater than
(-) EVDY (-3.57%) Stock price falls after 7.15 million share IPO
priced at $14 per share
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