It was another relatively uneventful market day on Friday as
stocks were little changed and volatility was contained in other
markets. Investors continue to focus on corporate earnings
reports while monitoring global economic news.
On Thursday, H.J. Heinz (NYSE:
) agreed to be acquired by Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK-B, BRK-A)
and private equity firm 3G Capital, showing that deal appetite
remains strong and may be getting stronger.
The overall direction of the market remains up and the S&P
has climbed better than 6 percent in 2013.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average added a little better than 8
points, or 0.06 percent, to 13,982.
The S&P 500 fell a little less than 2 points, or 0.10
percent, to 1,520.
The Nasdaq Composite closed the day down almost 7 points, or
0.21 percent, to 3,192.
Production and Capacity
Industrial production fell 0.1 percent in January after
increasing by 0.4 percent in December. This compared to
economists consensus expectations of an increase of 0.2
Capacity utilization rates fell from from 79.3 percent in
December to 79.1 percent in January. This compared to consensus
estimates for capacity utilization rates of 78.9 percent.
University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment
Consumer sentiment rose in February with the preliminary
reading of the University of Michigan Consumer Index increasing
to 76.3 from 73.8 in January. The consensus predicted a fall to
73.5. The February reading was the first improvement in sentiment
since the fiscal cliff scare.
Crude oil prices fell on Friday to close out the week. Near
the close of trade, NYMEX crude futures, the U.S. benchmark, had
lost 1.45 percent to $95.90. Brent futures were trading at
$117.84, a decline of 0.14 percent on the day.
Precious metals were also lower on Friday. At last check,
COMEX gold futures were down around 1.70 percent to $1,607.80
while silver futures had shed almost 2 percent to under $30.
Copper, on the other hand, was near the flatline.
In the grains complex, most contracts were higher and corn
rose around 0.60 percent while wheat added better than 1 percent.
In soft commodities, coca, coffee, and sugar were down moderately
while cotton prices rose less than 0.50 percent.
Near the close of trading, the iShares Barclays 20+ Year
Treasury Bond ETF (NYSE:
) was down around 0.30 percent to $116.48. The fall in bond
prices sent yields up.
While the 2-Year Note yield was unchanged, both the 5-Year and
10-Year yield rose one basis point to 0.86 percent and 2.00
percent, respectively. The yield on the 30-Year Bond also rose by
one basis point to 3.18 percent.
The U.S. dollar was slightly higher on the session. Near the
equity close, the PowerShares DB US Dollar Index Bullish ETF
), which tracks the performance of the greenback versus a basket
of foreign currencies, was up 0.14 percent to $21.97.
The closely watched EUR/USD pair rose 0.13 percent to $1.3378
at last check while the USD/JPY was down around 0.22 percent.
Volatility and Volume
The VIX lost less than 1 percent on Friday to 12.58 and
volatility expectations remain low. The 52-week range in the VIX
is 12.29 - 27.73, so the index is essentially sitting at 52-week
Volume was heavier than normal on Friday, a change from recent
trading sessions. Around 173 million SPDR S&P 500 ETF (NYSE:
) shares traded hands on the session compared to a 3-month daily
average of 131 million.
) surged around 59 percent on the session as the company
completed its IPO.
) fell almost 30 percent after the company released its Q4
results and provided disappointing guidance.
) opened sharply higher on Friday but fell throughout the
session. An SEC filing that came out after the close of trading
on Thursday showed that Carl Icahn had a 13 percent stake in the
company. The stock closed up around 2 percent.
Qlik Technologies (NASDAQ:
) surged almost 18 percent on Friday after the company released
bullish quarterly results.
IPG Photonics (NASDAQ:
) fell almost 10 percent after the company released its Q4
Kosmos Energy (NYSE:
) fell around 6 percent after the company announced a secondary
offering of around 30 million shares.
) popped on Friday after Nelson Pelz's Trian Fund Management
reported a stake in the company. The stock closed up almost 13
) continued to soar to end the week, adding another 16 percent.
The stock has been rallying since Wednesday after the company
released a bullish earnings report.
(c) 2013 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment
advice. All rights reserved.
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