Stocks Rebound; Euro Concerns Ease While New Home Sales, Gold Slip

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Stocks are mostly higher as optimism rises about the European debt crisis following a meeting of world leaders this weekend in Washington. Still, new data showing a decline in new home sales in the U.S. tempered some bulls. Gold futures continue to tumble, while oil is up.

On the housing front, the sale of new U.S. homes fell 2.3% in August to an annual rate of 295,000, marking the fourth decline in a row, the Commerce Department said. Sales last month dropped to the lowest level since February. Economists had expected a rate of 292,000. In July, meanwhile, sales were revised up to 302,000 from 298,000 on a seasonally adjusted basis, Marketwatch reports.

Over the weekend, global economic policy makers, who gathered in Washington for the annual meeting of the International Monetary Fund, said Europe would do whatever is necessary to resolve the crisis. However, differences clearly remain. Many observers have expressed concern about the growing danger of a potential Greek debt default. Some speculation also centered on a possible ECB interest-rate cut.

In company news:

Apple ( AAPL ) shares have slipped under $400 a share following a Bloomberg report that the maker of the popular iPhone and iPad devices has reduced orders to its iPad suppliers. Several supply-chain vendors indicated in the past two weeks that Apple lowered Q4 iPad orders by 25%, which could reflect weakening demand.

Shares of Clorox Company ( CLX ) are down after it said late Friday that High River Limited Partnership, an affiliate of Icahn Enterprises L.P., withdrew its slate of nominees for CLX's board of directors. As a result, the company will not be engaged in a proxy contest this year.

In experimental drug news, shares of Ariad Pharmaceuticals ( ARIA ) are seeing moderate upside after the company announced long-term results of the Phase 1 study of its investigational pan-BCR-ABL inhibitor, ponatinib, in heavily pretreated patients with resistant and refractory chronic myeloid leukemia and Philadelphia-positive acute lymphoblastic leukemia. With the trial fully enrolled and all patients evaluable, 72% of chronic phase CML patients treated with ponatinib achieved a major cytogenetic response.

Shares of Netflix ( NFLX ) are higher after the company said that it inked a multi-year licensing agreement with and DreamWorks Animation ( DWA ) that will make Netflix the exclusive subscription television service for first-run DreamWorks feature films and select television specials.

Chevron (CVX) is up 1.11% to $91.01 a share after it says its Australian subsidiary will proceed with the construction of its Wheatstone Project in Western Australia. The foundation phase of the Wheatstone Project is estimated to cost US$29 billion and consists of two LNG processing trains with a combined capacity of 8.9 million tons per annum (MTPA), a domestic gas plant and associated offshore infrastructure including the processing platform, subsea equipment, drilling and an export trunkline. First gas is planned for 2016.9

Commodities are mixed. December gold contracts are down 1.49% to $1,614 an ounce while November crude oil contacts are up 0.40% to $80.19 a barrel.

In energy ETFs, the United States Oil Fund (USO) is up 0.1% to $31.12 and the United States Natural Gas fund (UNG) is up 2.06%, to $9.42.

In precious metal ETFs, the SPDR Gold Trust (GLD) is down 2.32% to $156.11. Market Vectors Gold Miners (GDX) is down 1.31% to $55.67. iShares Silver Trust (SLV) is down 2.87% to $29.12.



The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.

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This article appears in: Investing , Commodities

Referenced Stocks: AAPL , ARIA , CLX , DWA , NFLX

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