Thursday, November 6, 2014

Markets advance on hopes jobless data will boost economic growth

Dow rose 69 to another new record, advancers ahead of decliners 5-4 & NAZ added 17.  The MLP index fell a fraction to the 494s & the REIT index lost 2+ to the 318s.  Junk bond funds were lower & Treasuries retreated.  Oil slid for a 5th time in 6 days after OPEC cut forecasts for the amount of oil it needs to supply & gold keeps losing ground as it heads for the lower 1100s.

AMJ (Alerian MLP Index tracking fund)

CLZ14.NYM....Crude Oil Dec 14....77.78 ...0.90  (1.1%)

Live 24 hours gold chart [Kitco Inc.]

Home-price increases moderated in much of the US in Q3 as more properties came to the market & investor purchases declined.  The median price of an existing single-family home rose from a year earlier in 73% of the 172 metropolitan areas measured by the National Association of Realtors.  16 areas had gains of 10% or more, compared with 54 areas in Q3-2013.  Prices declined in 47 regions.  Homebuyers are facing less competition from investors in a market with more supply.  About 2.3M previously owned houses were listed for sale at the end of Q3, up 6% from a year earlier.  Investors made up 14% of existing-home purchases in Sep, down from 19% a year earlier, the Realtors group said 2 weeks ago.  The number of markets with price gains was little changed from Q2, when 71% of areas had increases.  The median price for an existing single-family house in Q3 was $217K, up 4.9% from Q3-2013.  The best-performing area was Daytona Beach, where the median price jumped 26%.

Home Prices Rise in 73% of U.S. Metro Areas, Realtors Group Says

Whole Foods fiscal Q4 profit that topped estimates as the grocery-store chain slashed prices to win over bargain-hunting shoppers.  EPS rose to 35¢, topping the estimate of 32¢.  Revenue gained 9.4% to $3.26B, matching projections.  The company has focused on lowering produce prices & increasing advertising to boost revenue & draw more budget-conscious Americans.  Sales at stores open at least 53 weeks rose 3.1%, matching the estimate compiled by Consensus Metrix.  Comparable-store sales were up 4.6%.  WFM has been making progress cutting prices & shedding its “Whole Paycheck” image.  Its efforts to lower store prices are helping same-store sales, Co-CEO Walter Robb said.  The company said sales this fiscal year will increase by at least 9%.  That’s equivalent to about $15.5B, while analysts project $15.8B.  EPS will rise by at least 9% this year, which would be about $1.70, matching estimates.  WFM has about 400 stores in the US, Canada & the UK. & is focused on expanding into new areas.  The company opened 13 new locations in 7 new markets in Q3.  There’s the potential for 1200 stores in the US long term, the company said.  The stock jumped 4.84.  If you would like to learn more about WFM, click on this link:

Whole Foods Profit Tops Analysts’ Estimates as Lower Prices Draw Shoppers

Whole Foods (WFM)

Ukraine’s east lurched back toward open war as the gov in Kiev & pro-Russian rebels accused each other of starting major offensives in the region.  The Ukrainian gov said there were 26 outbreaks of fighting today in the east, while the rebels said Kiev gov troops had gone on the offensive.  The standoff is coming to a head after Ukraine & its allies accused separatists of undermining peace efforts with Nov 2 elections in Donetsk & Luhansk.  Russian pres Putin saidn that Ukraine’s “civil war” isn’t subsiding as cities continue to come under shelling and the civilian death toll rises.  Ukrainian troops are sticking to the cease-fire worked out 2 months ago & are “staying at their previous positions,” the military press office said.  It said 3 Ukrainian servicemen were killed today.  Russia's state news agency quoted Andrei Purgin, deputy premier of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic, as saying that Ukraine had begun a large-scale offensive against the separatists in the east.  Purgin said he sees “all-out war” & claimed Ukrainian forces had broken the Sep truce.  F-16s based in the Baltic region intercepted a Russian IL-20 surveillance plane near Latvia's territorial waters, Latvia’s army said.  Ukraine’s military said Russia’s air force had put some of its units on high alert. Out of the news reecently, but far from being over!

Ukraine Lurches Back Toward Open War on East Fighting

Tomorrow the Nov jobs report wil be reported before the markets open & hopes are high.  The Dow has run up a staggering 1.4K since mid Oct.  Earnings may have been good, but I don't think they were all that good.  The Reps will have a stonger presence in DC, but that will begin next year.  They should be able to limit gov expansion even further, but their effect is unclear.

Dow Jones Industrials

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