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Markets Snapshot: 34 Key Stories To Read About The Financial Markets Today

1. U.S. Stock Market:

 

“Wall Street kept losses on Wednesday after the U.S. Federal Reserve held interest rates unchanged following its two-day policy meeting. The Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI fell 14.89 points, or 0.07 percent, to 20,935, the S&P 500 .SPX lost 6.74 points, or 0.28 percent, to 2,384.43 and the Nasdaq Composite .IXIC dropped 32.64 points, or 0.54 percent, to 6,062.73.”

(Reuters)

 

“Stock benchmarks remained in negative territory Wednesday after the Federal Reserve left interest rates unchanged, as widely expected, and deemed a recent patch of economic weakness as temporary. The S&P 500 index SPX, -0.18% shed 6 points, or 0.3%, to 2,384. The largest component on the index, Apple AAPL, -0.11%  was down 0.2%, recovering from more than a 1% decline earlier. The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, +0.01%  slid 17 points, or 0.1%, to 20,933. The Nasdaq Composite COMP, -0.48% retreated from its record close on Tuesday to fall 27 points, or 0.5%, to 6,068.”

(Market Watch)

 

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2. U.S. Bond Market:

“Treasury yields edged up Wednesday ahead of the conclusion of a two-day meeting of Federal Reserve policy makers that’s expected to see rates left unchanged. The yield for the 10-year note TMUBMUSD10Y, +0.24% gained a 1.6 basis point to 2.297%. Bond prices move in the opposite direction of yields. The Treasury yields for the 2-year note TMUBMUSD02Y, +1.27% rose 2.0 basis points to 1.274%, while the 30-year bond TMUBMUSD30Y, -0.82% edged off a 0.1 basis point 2.969%.”

(Market Watch)

“U.S. government debt prices were lower on Wednesday as traders digested key economic data while waiting for the Treasury’s refunding announcement ahead of the Federal Reserve’s policy decision. The Treasury is set to announce next week’s auctions, with the possibility of an extra $2 billion each of 10-year and 30-year bonds, and is expected to address the possibility of issuing ultra-long bonds, according to Reuters. The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury notes was lower at around 2.28 percent, while the yield on the 30-year Treasury bond was also lower at 2.971 percent. The yield on 2-year paper was flat at 1.27 percent, as was the 5-year bond at 1.816 percent. Yields move inversely to prices.”

(CNBC)

 

“The yield on benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasuries has tumbled from its post-election high even as equity markets dance to a bullish beat — sparking fears that the global market rally could be on thin ice if the bearish growth prognostications implied by government bonds come to pass. In other words, long-dated U.S. Treasuries are stuck in a rut thanks in large part to a glut of global savings and depressed core price pressures across the euro-area and Japan, according to the London-based analyst, who warned in mid-March that such global forces would help spur a decline in the 10-year Treasury note from 2.6 percent by as much as 100 basis points. Since then the benchmark bond has unwound about half its post-election advance to yield 2.3 percent.”

(Bloomberg Quint)

 

3. FX Markets:

“The dollar held onto gains against other major currencies on Wednesday, after the release of upbeat U.S. employment data, although investors remained cautious ahead of the Federal Reserve’s monthly policy decision due later in the day. EUR/USD slipped 0.12% to 1.0917. GBP/USD edged down 0.11% to 1.2925 even as research group Markit said its U.K. construction purchasing managers’ index rose to 53.1 last month from March’s reading of 52.2. Economists had expected the index to slip to 52.0 in April. USD/JPY added 0.12% to 112.13, while USD/CHF edged down 0.16% to 0.9901.”

(Investing.com)

“The dollar inched up against most major currencies on Wednesday, as investors eyed a U.S. Federal Reserve statement later in the day for guidance on whether bets for a June interest rate hike are justified. The dollar index, which measures the greenback against six major currencies but the majority of whose weighting is against the euro, edged up 0.2 percent to 99.094. DXY, close to a 5-1/2-month low of 98.695 hit last week. The euro edged down 0.2 percent against the broadly stronger dollar to $1.0911 EUR=, close to last week’s peak of $1.09515. Against the yen, the dollar was up 0.2 percent at 112.22, close to a six-week high of 112.33 yen set on Tuesday =JPY.”

(Reuters)

“Pound has been flat against the Euro today, owing to continued concerns about the cost of the UK leaving the EU. Described by some as a ‘divorce bill’, the cost of the UK exiting the EU has been estimated to range from 50bn to 100bn Euros. Brexit Secretary David Davis has intensified the situation, declaring that the UK ‘will not be paying €100bn’. Preventing a Pound collapse has been the UK construction PMI for April. This has risen from 52.2 to 53.1, boosting optimism that the UK housing market will be relieved from some of the present pressures.”

(ExchangeRates.org.uk)

4. Commodities:

Crude oil prices plunged to $47.47 low on Tuesday, adding additional losses for this week with -$1.80, almost 3%, and on Wednesday, crude scored $47,80 low, currently trading 48.18 intraday. Crude bearish forces were the result of two factors. 1- U.S. production increased by more than 450,000 barrels per day (bpd) in the past five months ending in Feb, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). Total U.S. crude production has increased from a recent low of 8.567M bpd in Sep to 9.031M bpd in February (“Petroleum Supply Monthly”, EIA, April 28).”

(Investing.com)

“Gold prices traded slightly lower Wednesday as the dollar firmed, taking the yellow metal back near three-week lows hit early in the week. June gold GCM7, -0.54% fell $2.80, or 0.2%, to $1,254.20. That’s near a finish at $1,255.50 on Monday—then the lowest settlement since April 10 for a most-active contract, according to FactSet data. Prices had tipped higher on Tuesday.”

(Market Watch)

“Oil prices rebounded from near 2017 lows on Wednesday after preliminary data showed a much larger-than-expected fall in U.S. crude stocks, reviving bullish sentiment about easing oversupply. Benchmark Brent crude LCOc1 was up 21 cents at $50.67 a barrel at 1346 GMT. On Tuesday the futures had settled at their lowest since Nov. 30, when the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries decided to cut oil supply. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude CLc1 traded at $47.81 a barrel, up 15 cents. WTI had slid 2.4 percent on Tuesday on concerns about falling OPEC compliance with its production-curbing deal.”

(Reuters)

 

5. Market Movers:

 

Sprint Corp (NYSE:S) (S.N) shares slid as much as 10 percent on Wednesday after the No. 4 U.S. wireless carrier did not give specifics on deals it would pursue, even as its quarterly loss narrowed and it recorded strong subscriber growth. Investors had high hopes for specific details on merger discussions on the company’s post-earnings conference call from Sprint Chairman Masayoshi Son, who is chief executive of Japan’s SoftBank Group Corp (9984.T), Sprint’s controlling shareholder. Instead, he introduced a new tool that Sprint was launching for customers to extend their network coverage and said the company was generally interested in exploring opportunities for a deal.

(Reuters)

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Twilio Inc (NYSE:TWLO) TWLO 26.75% shares are sinking like a stone after the company lowered its 2017 guidance on Tuesday. The biggest blow to Twilio investors was the revelation that one of the company’s biggest clients, Uber, is branching out and shifting some of its business to competitors. The news sent Twilio shares down more than 27 percent, but Oppenheimer analyst Ittai Kidron urges investors not to read too much into declining Uber business. “While the change in the Uber relationship is disappointing and a major growth challenge in 2017, we believe Uber is the exception rather than the rule,” Kidron explains.

(Benzinga)

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It seems that FireEye Inc (NASDAQ:FEYE)’s (FEYE – Free Report) turnaround efforts such as product refreshes, acquisitions and cost optimization are paying off, as reflected from the company’s splendid first-quarter results, along with the overwhelming second-quarter and 2017 outlook, which were released yesterday. The cyber security solution provider’s first-quarter results not only fared better than our estimates, but also marked a significant year-over-year improvement.

(Zacks.com)

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First Solar, Inc. (NASDAQ:FSLR) shares are trading higher by $5.13 (17 percent) at $35.45 in Wednesday’s session.

There are a few different catalysts for the stock having one of its best days since its monster rally in late 2015. After Tuesday’s close, the company reported a Q1 adjusted EPS beat of $0.25 that may not compare with $(0.13) estimates and posted a $16 million beat for sales. The company significantly raised its FY 2017 adjusted EPS and nudged its sales guidance a bit higher. Long-term solar bear, Gordon Johnson of Axiom Capital, upgraded the stock from Sell to Hold.

(Benzinga)

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Oclaro, Inc. (NASDAQ:OCLR) shares are in the red in after-hours trading Tuesday after reporting third quarter earnings results that contained light guidance and lent credence to concerns of a slowdown in demand from China. I think, while these concerns are valid, Oclaro has a bright couple of years ahead. For Q3 2017, Oclaro reported revenue of $162 million, up 61% year-over-year (“YoY”) and a slight beat of consensus estimates, and EPS of $0.23, which beat estimates by 3 cents and is a 20 cent improvement over Q3 2016. As growth companies are usually judged based on their guidance, these results were solid but are not very meaningful in understanding why OCLR dropped.

(Seeking Alpha)

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Pieris Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:PIRS) shares are up 40% in heavy trading on the back of an announcement by the company of a strategic collaboration with AstraZeneca (AZN) to develop novel inhaled drugs, targeting respiratory diseases, that leverage Pieris’ Anticalin® platform, including its lead preclinical drug candidate, PRS-060. Shares closed yesterday at $2.40 and gapped up to open in the pre-market at $3.35 before hitting a high of $3.90. As of this writing, PIRS shares are trading around $3.36. Volumes are exceptionally heavy. The 30-day average daily volume for PIRS is 245,500 but already over 1.1 million shares have traded hands.

(Stock News Union)

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The share of Inphi Corporation (NYSE:IPHI) currently has a value of $40.54 while the company’s 52 week low is at $25.89, the shares dropped to the 52 week low on 06/27/16. While the company’s share hit the 52 week high on 02/22/17 stationing the value of $51.78. The difference of 52 week low value as well as 52 week high value and the current price of the stock suggests the next move of the shares. If the share price is currently hovering near the 52 week low and the value is achieved in the current past then it can suggest that the price of the shares is likely to go up.

(Top Chronicle)

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What happened: Shares of Akamai Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ:AKAM) fell as much as 16.8% on Wednesday, following Tuesday night’s release of the content distribution specialist’s first-quarter results. As of 2:08 p.m. EDT, the stock was down 15.2%. So what: In the first quarter, Akamai’s adjusted earnings rose 5% to $0.69 per share on a 7% year-over-year revenue boost to $609 million. Both figures were ahead of Wall Street’s consensus estimates and landed at the high end of management’s guidance.

(The Motley Fool)

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Shares of seeds, grains and fertilizer company Bunge Ltd (NYSE:BG) BG, -11.86% slid 12% Wednesday, after the company posted weaker-than-expected profit for the first quarter. Bunge said it had net income of $47 million, or 36 cents a share, in the quarter, down sharply from $235 million, or $1.60 a share, in the same period a year ago. Adjusted per-share earnings came to 35 cents, or half of the 70 cents consensus of analysts polled by FactSet. Sales rose to $11.1 billion from $8.9 billion, ahead of the FactSet consensus of $8.9 billion.

(Market Watch)

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What happened: Shares of Bridgepoint Education, Inc. (NYSE:BPI) were skyrocketing as the for-profit educator said first-quarter earnings flipped from a loss a year ago to a profit. As of 12:17 p.m. EDT, the stock was up 25.6%. So what: Bridgepoint, which operates the University of the Rockies and Ashford University, cruised past estimates on the top and bottom lines as revenue fell 3.4% to $129.5 million but still beat estimates at $124 million. Adjusted earnings per share, meanwhile, swung from a loss of $0.02 per share a year ago to a per-share profit of $0.23, crushing expectations at breakeven.

(The Motley Fool)

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Groupon Inc (NASDAQ:GRPN) stock was hit hard on Wednesday following the release of its earnings report for the first quarter of 2017. Groupon Inc reported revenue of $673.63 million during its first quarter of the year. This is a drop from its revenue of $698.44 million that was reported in the first quarter of 2017. It also failed to reach Wall Street’s revenue estimate of $724.36 million for the quarter. Earnings per share reported by Groupon Inc in the first quarter of 2017 was one penny. This is an increase over its losses per share of one penny that were reported during the same time last year. It also came in above analysts’ losses per share estimate of one penny for the first quarter of the year.

(Investor Place)

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Taking a closer look at some quality ratios for Freeport-McMoRan Inc. (NYSE:FCX), the firm has a Gross Margin (Marx) ratio of 0.124508. This number is based on the research by University of Rochester professor Robert Novy-Marx. Marx believed that a high gross income ratio was a sign of a quality company. Going a little further, Freeport-McMoRan Inc. has a Gross Margin score of 52. This score is based on the Gross Margin (Marx) calculation using a scale from 1 to 100 where a 1 would be considered positive, and a 100 would be seen as negative. Freeport-McMoRan Inc. (NYSE:FCX) currently has an EV (Enterprise Value) of 36950388). Enterprise Value measures the complete value of a specific company.

(Sherwood Daily)

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Weight Watchers International, Inc. (NYSE:WTW) shares are trading higher by $3.00 (14 percent) at $24.19 in Wednesday’s session. The catalyst for the rally is a substantial Q1 beat of $0.20 along with a $7.2 million beat for revenues. The company also raised its FY 2017 EPS guidance from $1.30-$1.40 to $1.40-$1.50. After a higher open, the stock continued in that direction until it finally peaked at $25.20 and reversed course. That high comes right in between a pair of highs from December 10, 2015 ($25.25) and December 11, 2015 ($25.15). After reaching that elevated level, profit-takers came into the stock, pushing it well beyond its opening price ($24.40) to $23.66. The sharp rebound off that low has been capped at $24.98.

(Benzinga)

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Session activity on VWR Corp (NASDAQ:VWR) stock is placing it on today’s most active list. After a recent spot-check, the stock has touched $33.91 which represents a change from the open of 19.11%. Company shares have been seen trading 6.80% off of the 52 week high and 38.86% away from the 52 week low. Narrowing in, the stock is at a distance of 17.95% from the 50 day high and 27.82% off of the 50 day low.Covering sell-side analysts have recently weighed in on shares of VWR CORP (NASDAQ:VWR). At the time of writing, the First Call consensus price target for the company is $30.00. The current consensus recommendation provided by covering analysts is 2.50.

(The Hiram Herald)

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Shares of R.R. Donnelley & Sons Company (NASDAQ:RRD) are climbing higher mid-day as the stock reaches today’s top winners list. At the time of writing, the stock had reached $14.69. This represents a change from the opening price of 8.09%. The year-to-date performance of the stock is -22.68%. The monthly stock performance comes in at 3.39%. For the quarter, shares are performing at -26.42%. Weekly performance analysis shows the equity at 0.81%.Covering Sell-Side analysts have offered recommendations and price target estimates on R.R. Donnelley & Sons Company (NASDAQ:RRD). According to First Call, the current consensus target price on shares is sitting at $23.50. Analysts have also given a consensus recommendation on the stock of 2.00.

(Aiken Advocate)

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6. Interesting Reads

 

“Summer is nearly here, and it’s bringing fears of a rare tick-borne disease called Powassan. This potentially life-threatening virus is carried and transmitted by three types of ticks, including the deer tick that transmits Lyme disease. Over the past decade, 75 cases have been reported in the northeastern states and the Great Lakes region, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Though no one can say how many infections will occur this year, warmer winters have led to an increased tick population, so experts predict rising tick-borne infections of many types.”

(CNN)

“Eating “gluten-free” when there’s no medical need to do so won’t boost your heart health — and might even harm it, a new study warns. Gluten-free diets have soared in popularity in recent years. But, shunning gluten has no heart benefits for people without celiac disease, and it may mean consuming a diet lacking heart-healthy whole grains, according to the quarter-century study. “For the vast majority of people who can tolerate it, restricting gluten to improve your overall health is likely not to be a beneficial strategy,” said study leader Dr. Andrew Chan.”

(Tucson.com)

“If you have a green thumb, or better yet, don’t have a green thumb, you’ll enjoy this list of 11 easiest garden vegetables to grow. Growing up in the south, I can definitely be a country girl when I need to. I enjoy the outdoors and every so often don’t mind getting my hands dirty with a little yard work. While I’d prefer to mow the grass more than anything, it’s also fun to get out on my aunt’s farm to do some planting, digging or harvesting. My mother and her siblings grew up on a farm, so gardening and farming are pretty much in our family’s genes. Gardening and farming, if you enjoy it, can also be very relaxing. While some people, like my aunt, have massive gardens to sell fruits and vegetables, others enjoy a smaller home garden to plant what they plan to eat.”

(Insider Monkey)

“We’re now five months into 2017, and Apple’s new iOS 11 platform is about one month away from being released as a beta. iOS 10, Apple’s most recent public software release, is currently installed on about 80% of active iPhones, iPads, and iPod touch devices. iPhone users, can you even imagine what life would be like if the majority of those active iOS devices were running iOS 8 from all the way back in 2014? Well guess what: that’s exactly what life is like for Android users. Android 7.0 Nougat was first released nearly a year ago and Android O, the next major Android release, has been available as a beta for more than a month now. Meanwhile, the most widely used version of Android as of yesterday is Android Lollipop, which was released to the public on November 12th, 2014. Ugh.

(BGR.com)

“There seems to be a constant push to always be upgrading your smartphone to the next latest and greatest model. That push comes from the smartphone manufacturers and the mobile networks, both of which want more of your cash. Smartphones are also getting bigger and can look quite ridiculous sticking out of a pocket. Then there’s Jelly. Jelly looks to be the opposite of everything companies including Apple, Samsung, and Google tell you is what a modern smartphone should be. It’s a tiny Android phone, using a 2.45-inch display, only costs $109, the battery is removable, there’s a microSD card slot, and it has dual SIM card support.”

(PC Mag)

“Are you interested in the easiest countries to find a wife? While singing the famous song ‘Are you lonesome tonight?’ you may be wondering about having a long-term relationship or marrying a girl. But whom? Are there lots of women in your town, city, country but they just don’t do it for you? You should consider looking for a bride in other countries as well! In our rushing but having-a-lot-of-possibilities world, you can use the internet for it, too! Now you have given the opportunity to investigate the ten easiest countries to find a wife with us! Why do men want girlfriends or wives from other countries? If we observe this phenomenon, we can get various answers.”

(Insider Monkey)

“Was our solar system once home to an advanced civilization other than our own — perhaps one that predated humanity by hundreds of millions of years before being wiped out by an asteroid impact or some other cataclysm? There’s no evidence for such a pre-human indigenous technological species, though people have been speculating about one since ancient times. But a respected space scientist points out in a provocative new paper that if the existence of home-grown intelligent space aliens has never been established, it’s never been ruled out either.”

(NBC News)

“Ride sharing company Uber is fighting to keep its self-driving program alive while it defends itself in a lawsuit launched by Google’s parent company Alphabet, which has accused the company of stealing trade secrets. On Wednesday, Uber and Waymo, Alphabet’s self-driving car unit, will face off in federal court in San Francisco over whether Uber should halt development of its self-driving program while the lawsuit winds through the courts. Alphabet has accused, Anthony Levandowski, a former Waymo engineer and now Uber executive of taking technical secrets from Waymo and using them to help Uber develop its self-driving car.”

(CNET.com)

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