Investors shrugged off weaker-than-expected retail sales on
Wednesday, as most believe that the nation's robust economic
growth will help boost spending activity in the future.
The Commerce Department said the nation's core retail sales
increased just 0.1 percent in July, the lowest reading since
January. Despite that, investors remained positive on the hopes
that job growth will continue and in turn boost consumer
In other news around the markets:
GDP figures out on Thursday from the eurozone were gloomy, as
expected, setting expectations for the bloc's report as a whole
quite low. France posted no growth from the first to the second
quarter while Germany, the bloc's steam engine, announced a 0.2
percent contraction. The figures suggest that the eurozone's
economy will have grown just 0.1 percent on the quarter. After
reviewing Iliad SA's $15 billion acquisition offer, T-Mobile CEO
Braxton Carter rejected the proposal, saying it was "inadequate."
However, Braxton didn't close the door on negotiations. Instead, he
hinted that T-Mobile might be open to the idea if the price is
right. Following the release of disappointing second quarter
earnings, Cisco Systems announced that it was planning to cut eight
percent of its workforce, or 6,000 employees, in the coming months.
This will be the company's second round of mass layoffs in as many
years; last year, it reduced its workforce by five percent by
eliminating 4,000 workers. After a U.S. military assessment team
visited Mount Sinjar in Northern Iraq on Wednesday, the Pentagon
released a statement saying there were far less people trapped than
originally expected, and that they were in a more stable condition
than U.S. officials had thought. With the situation on Mount Sinjar
looking less dire, a U.S. rescue mission is much less likely as the
White House is reluctant to send in more ground troops.
Asian markets were mixed; the NIKKEI was up 0.66 percent but the
Shanghai composite and Shenzhen composite were down 0.41 percent
and 0.75 percent respectively. The KOSPI rose 0.04 percent, while
the Hang Seng index fell 0.37 percent.
European markets began the day on a low note with disappointing
GDP data coming in slowly. The FTSE was down 0.15 percent, the
STOXX 600 fell 0.26 percent, the CAC 40 lost 0.49 percent and
Italy's MIB was down 0.68 percent.
Energy futures were lower with most believing that the market is
currently oversupplied. Brent futures lost 0.46 percent and WTI
futures were down 0.43 percent. Gold lost 0.06 percent, but silver
was up 0.15 percent, while industrial metals were mostly lower with
the exception of copper, which gained 0.06 percent. Aluminum was
down 1.15 percent, zinc lost 2.02 percent and tin fell 0.33
Currency markets were quiet; the euro was steady at $1.3364 and
gained 0.04 percent against the pound and 0.09 percent against the
yen. The dollar rose 0.10 percent against the yen and 0.04 percent
against the pound, but lost 0.02 percent against the franc.
Notable earnings released on Wednesday included:
Cisco Systems (NASDAQ:
) reported fourth quarter EPS of $0.55 on revenue of $12.40
billion, compared to last year's EPS of $0.52 on revenue of $12.42
billion. Deere & Company (NYSE:
) reported third quarter EPS of $2.33 on revenue of $8.72 billion,
compared to last year's EPS of $2.56 on revenue of $9.32 billion.
) reported second quarter EPS of $0.80 on revenue of $6.27 billion,
compared to last year's EPS of $0.72 on revenue of $6.07 billion.
Pinnacle Foods (NYSE:
) reported second quarter EPS of $0.33 on revenue of $617.80
million, compared to last year's EPS of $0.29 on revenue of $569.04
Stocks moving in the Premarket included:
United Technologies (NYSE:
) gained 1.27 percent in premarket trade after rising 1.71 percent
over the past week. Whole Foods Market (NASDAQ:
) was up 0.76 percent in premarket trade after losing 1.38 percent
over the past five days. Celgene (NASDAQ:
) was up 0.67 percent in premarket trade after rising 2.27 percent
on Wednesday. Freeport-McMoRan (NYSE:
) was down 0.66 percent in premarket trade after losing 1.33
percent on Wednesday.
Notable earnings releases expected on Thursday include:
Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:
) is expected to report second quarter EPS of $1.21 on revenue of
$118.98 billion, compared to last year's EPS of $1.24 on revenue of
$116.94 billion. Kohl's (NYSE:
) is expected to report second quarter EPS of $1.07 on revenue of
$4.28 billion, compared to last year's EPS of $1.04 on revenue of
$4.29 billion. Nordstrom (NYSE:
) is expected to report second quarter EPS of $0.95 on revenue of
$3.39 billion, compared to last year's EPS of $0.93 on revenue of
$3.20 billion. J.C. Penney Company (NYSE: ) is expected to
report a second quarter loss of $0.93 on revenue of $2.78 billion,
compared to last year's loss of $2.20 on revenue of $2.66 billion.
Eurozone GDP data will be the star of Thursday's economic
calendar as investors look for any indication that the bloc's
struggles are at an end. The US will also put out several important
economic indicators including consumer confidence, export prices
and initial and continuing jobless claims.
For a recap of Wednesday's market action, click .
Tune into Benzinga's pre-market info show with Fari Hamzei, Dave
Landry & JC Parets
© 2014 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment
advice. All rights reserved.
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