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