Thursday, April 26, 2018

Stock & Commodities Related News.

US STOCKS-Wall St set for gains as tech earnings impress, yields pull back - Reuters News

26-Apr-2018 09:15:59 PM

  • Facebook eyes best day in 2 yrs after Q1 results
  • Chipmakers boosted by strong Qualcomm, AMD results
  • General Motors slips on quarterly profit decline
  • Futures up: Dow 0.19 pct, S&P 0.28 pct, Nasdaq 0.76 pct

Adds comment, details, updates prices

By Sruthi Shankar

April 26 (Reuters) - Wall Street was set for a positive start on Thursday, driven by strong earnings from Facebook and a handful of chipmakers, coupled with a slight retreat in bond yields.

The tech-laden Nasdaq Composite index was set to open more than 80 points higher and break its five-day losing streak, its longest since November 2016.

Facebook jumped 7.5 percent in premarket trading after the social networking company reported a 63 percent surge in first-quarter profit and a rise in users. There was no sign that business was hurt by a scandal over the mishandling of personal data, which unfolded in mid-March.

Visa rose 2.7 percent after the world's largest payments network topped Wall Street targets for quarterly profit and raised its full-year earnings forecast.

Advanced Micro Devices and Qualcomm were up 10.3 percent and about 0.8 percent after the chipmakers posted quarterly results that beat Wall Street estimates, easing concerns about weak demand for smartphones after some Asian peers warned of slower growth.

Intel, set to report after market closes on Thursday, was up 2.0 percent.

"We are right in the thick of earnings season and some of them have been a bit of a surprise," said Randy Frederick, vice president of trading and derivatives for Charles Schwab in Austin, Texas.

Despite strong results from most U.S. firms that have reported so far, investors have been reacting to signs that rising inflation could take a toll on corporate profits.

The 10-year U.S. Treasury yield, the benchmark for global borrowing costs, crossed the 3 percent level on Tuesday for the first time in four years, on an increase in federal borrowing, inflation concerns and bets on further rate increases by the Federal Reserve.

But the 10-year yield retreated slightly from 3 percent before markets opened.

"A slight pullback in yields is likely to give investors a chance to focus on corporate results," said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Spartan Capital Securities in New York.

At 8:48 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis were up 46 points, or 0.19 percent. S&P 500 e-minis were up 7.5 points, or 0.28 percent and Nasdaq 100 e-minis were up 49.5 points, or 0.76 percent.

Of the 154 S&P 500 companies that reported first-quarter earnings as of Wednesday, 81.2 percent topped profit estimates. Analysts now expect earnings growth of 22 percent, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Shares of the No. 2 U.S. automaker Ford jumped 2.4 percent after it outlined a plan to cut costs and boost profit margins at a faster pace than previously announced.

General Motors fell about 0.6 percent after the company reported a lower quarterly profit.

AT&T fell 4.4 percent after the No. 2 U.S. wireless carrier reported a lower-than-expected profit as the company lost subscribers from its pay TV business.

Some of the other heavy-hitters reporting after market close include Amazon and Microsoft.


(Reporting by Sruthi Shankar in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta)




UPDATE 4-Oil rises as concern heats up over Iran sanctions, Venezuelan output - Reuters News

26-Apr-2018 08:11:21 PM

  • Price gains built on likely U.S. sanctions against Iran
  • Falling Venezuelan output further tightens markets
  • But soaring U.S. crude output, exports hold back market

Updates with comment, refreshes prices

By Amanda Cooper

LONDON, April 26 (Reuters) - Oil rose on Thursday, supported by expectations of renewed U.S. sanctions on Iran, declining output in Venezuela and continuing strong demand.

Brent crude oil futures were last up 90 cents at $74.90 a barrel at 1204 GMT, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures gained 66 cents to $68.71 per barrel.

The oil price has risen by 15 percent in the last four weeks thanks to expectations that the United States will reimpose sanctions on Iran, a major oil producer and member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).

French President Emmanuel Macron said on Wednesday he expected U.S. President Donald Trump to pull out of a deal with Iran reached in 2015 in which the Islamic Republic suspended its nuclear programme in return for Western powers lifting crippling sanctions.

Trump will decide by May 12 whether to restore U.S. sanctions on Tehran, which would probably result in a reduction of Iranian oil exports.

"Geopolitical concerns in the Middle East, together with Venezuela's deteriorating macroeconomic situation, are supporting oil prices. It is widely anticipated that President Trump will pull the U.S. out of the Iran nuclear deal, which is bullish for prices, said Abhishek Kumar, senior energy analyst at Interfax Energy's Global Gas Analytics.

"However, (the) full impact of the move will not materialise unless it is supported by European allies of the U.S."

Venezuela's crude production has fallen from almost 2.5 million barrels per day (bpd) in early 2016 to around 1.5 million bpd due to a political and economic crisis.

Plunging Venezuelan output and looming U.S. sanctions against Iran come against a backdrop of strong demand, above all in Asia, the world's biggest oil-consuming region.

However, not all market indicators point towards tighter supplies.

U.S. crude oil inventories rose by 2.2 million barrels in the week to April 20 to 429.74 million barrels.

U.S. crude production rose by 46,000 bpd on the previous week, to 10.59 bpd.

Soaring U.S. output has made WTI crude around $6 per barrel cheaper than Brent and drawn exports to record highs.

Dutch bank ING said "the wide discount for WTI to Brent saw exports rising 582,000 bpd week-on-week to a record high of 2.33 million bpd."

With U.S. output and exports surging, some analysts warn that the 20 percent climb in Brent prices since February is starting to look overdone.

"The market does look a little toppish," said Greg McKenna, chief market strategist at futures brokerage AxiTrader.

(Additional reporting by Henning Gloystein in Singapore; Editing by Mark Heinrich)




PRECIOUS-Stronger dollar traps gold near five-week lows - Reuters News

26-Apr-2018 08:25:31 PM

  • Dollar near 3-1/2 month high
  • U.S. 10-year Treasury yield above 3 pct
  • Market looks to ECB policy meeting, U.S. data

(Updates prices, adds polls)

By Peter Hobson

LONDON, April 26 (Reuters) - Gold prices hovered near five-week lows on Thursday as higher U.S. bond yields and a stronger dollar dampened interest in bullion.

Worries about growing supply of U.S. government debt and inflationary pressures from rising oil prices this week pushed U.S. 10-year bond yields above 3 percent for the first time in four years.

That has reduced the attraction of non-yielding gold and helped to thrust the dollar to its strongest since January, making bullion more expensive for users of other currencies.

Spot gold was up 0.1 percent at $1,324.12 an ounce by 1310 GMT. On Wednesday gold touched its lowest since March 21 at $1,318.51.

U.S. gold futures were up 0.2 percent at $1,325.10.

Interest from physical buyers and technical support at gold's 100-day moving average of $1,319.55 was helping to prevent further falls.

"At these low (price) levels, the market could now attract some physical buying interest," said Peter Fung, head of dealing at Wing Fung Precious Metals in Hong Kong.

"The market has a very good (physical) support at around $1,310-$1,315."

Gold has been stuck in a trading range between about $1,360 and $1,310 since hitting a 1-1/2 year high of $1,366.07 in January.

It is supported by geopolitical uncertainty, which has fuelled demand for gold as a safe haven, but prevented from moving higher by fears of rising U.S. interest rates that would push up bond yields and strengthen the dollar.

U.S. GDP and inflation data on Friday could give new direction to prices, said Mitsubishi analyst Jonathan Butler.

Stronger than expected economic growth or inflation would hurt gold by bolstering expectations of more rapid increases to interest rates.

Investors were also watching the European Central Bank on Thursday for clues on when it will signal an end-date for its 2.55 trillion euro ($3.2 trillion) asset-buying programme.

Analysts and traders polled by Reuters this month said that gold would average $1,334 an ounce this year and $1,352 an ounce next year, barely shifting from its current price.

They expected silver, which was up 0.2 percent at $16.55 an ounce on Thursday, to fare better, averaging $17.28 an ounce this year and $18 next year.

In other precious metals, platinum was up 0.3 percent at $906.30 and palladium slipped 0.3 percent to $973.97.

Analysts and traders polled by Reuters expected average prices of both metals to be higher this year and next.


(Additional reporting by Swati Verma in Bengaluru Editing by David Goodman)



CBOT Trends-Soy up 3-5 cents, wheat down 2-4 cents, corn steady-down 1 cent - Reuters News

26-Apr-2018 09:14:01 PM

CHICAGO, April 26 (Reuters) - Following are U.S. trade expectations for the resumption of grain and soy complex trading at the Chicago Board of Trade at 8:30 a.m. CDT (1330 GMT) on Thursday.

NOTE: Monday is the first notice day for CBOT May contracts.



WHEAT - Down 2 to 4 cents per bushel

  • Profit-taking setback expected for soft red winter wheat and hard red winter wheat contracts after most-active CBOT wheat contract rallied to highest in nearly seven weeks on Wednesday. Rainfall in the U.S. Plains also pressuring wheat market.
  • Spring wheat supported by cold soil temperatures that are delaying planting in northern Plains.
  • The U.S. Agriculture Department said weekly export sales of wheat totaled 577,900 tonnes, above the high end of market expectations.
  • CBOT July soft red winter wheat last traded down 3 cents at $4.96 per bushel. K.C. July hard red winter wheat was last down 3-1/4 cents at $5.23-1/4 and MGEX July spring wheat was 1-1/2 cents higher at $6.08 a bushel.

CORN - Steady to down 1 cent per bushel

  • Easing after hitting nine-month high on Wednesday but declines kept in check after benchmark CBOT July contract found technical support at 20-day moving average overnight. Concerns about slow pace of planting underpinning prices.
  • USDA reported weekly corn export sales of 620,500 tonnes. Analyst forecasts had ranged from 1 million to 1.6 million tonnes.
  • CBOT July corn last traded down 1/2 cent at $3.95-1/4 a bushel.

SOYBEANS - Up 3 to 5 cents per bushel

  • Technical buying expected after prices broke through weekly high overnight. Concerns about export demand limit buying in soybean futures. Resistance for CBOT July soybean futures noted at 30-day moving average.
  • USDA report showed weekly soybean export sales of 537,800 tonnes, well below forecasts that ranged from 800,000 to 1.4 million tonnes. A week ago, soybean export sales totaled 2.13 million tonnes.
  • CBOT July soybeans last traded up 4 cents at $10.43-1/4 per bushel.


(Reporting by Mark Weinraubd; editing by Jonathan Oatis)




VEGOILS-Palm oil drops to one-week low on slowing demand - Reuters News

26-Apr-2018 07:16:59 PM

  • Palm hits one-week low of 2,387 rgt/T
  • Lack of bullish news weighs on market - trader
  • Palm oil neutral in 2,392-2,415 rgt/T range

Updates with closing prices, quotes

By Emily Chow

KUALA LUMPUR, April 26 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures ended lower on Thursday evening, having slipped to the bottom of their recent trading range, as weakening demand kept the tone bearish.

The benchmark palm oil contract for July delivery on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange was down 0.3 percent at 2,389 ringgit ($610.22) a tonne at the close of trade. Earlier in the session, it dropped to 2,387 ringgit, its lowest since April 18.

Palm saw two consecutive sessions of losses before it ended flat on Wednesday, as it was range-trading on lacklustre export data.

Trading volumes stood at 19,019 lots of 25 tonnes each on Thursday evening.

"There are no bullish factors, hence the market is sluggish," said a Kuala Lumpur based trader, while another added that the market was down on "concerns with poor export demand."

Malaysian palm oil shipments for April 1-25 fell 0.8-2.5 percent compared with the corresponding period last month, according to data from independent inspection company AmSpec Agri Malaysia and cargo surveyor Societe Generale de Surveillance.

Palm oil looks neutral in a range of 2,392-2,415 ringgit per tonne, and an escape could suggest a direction, according to Wang Tao, a Reuters market analyst for commodities and energy technicals.

In other related oils, the Chicago July soybean oil contract was trading flat, while the September soybean oil on China's Dalian Commodity Exchange declined 0.6 percent.

The Dalian September palm oil contract dipped 0.1 percent.

Palm oil is impacted by movements in rival edible oils as they compete for a share in the global vegetable oils market.


 (Reporting by Emily Chow; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips and Elaine Hardcastle)




Euro rallies to day highs as Draghi shrugs aside slowdown, bond yields fall - Reuters News

26-Apr-2018 09:13:24 PM

- The euro rebounded to the day's highs on Thursday after ECB President Mario Draghi presented a relatively confident outlook of the eurozone economy, contrary to some expectations that he would take a more cautious stance after recent weak data.

But the currency's gains were largely marginal with core European bond yields dipping after Draghi acknowledged that measures of underlying inflation remained subdued.

After briefly falling to its lowest since mid-January at $1.2145 after the ECB's decision to keep policy unchanged, the single currency rebounded and was trading 0.3 percent up at the day's highs of $1.2210 after Draghi played down concern over recent softness in data.

Euro zone government bond yields dipped after Draghi said there had been an "unexpected decline" in some economic indicators, with Germany's 10-year bond yield down 3 basis points on the day at 0.607 percent.

Euro zone stocks gave back some of their earlier gains, to trade up 0.4 percent as the euro gained. Euro zone banks gave back all their earlier gains to trade flat.

(Reporting by the London Markets Team; Editing by Dhara Ranasinghe)

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