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Trade the News - U.S. Market Update
Dow +71 S&P +6 NASDAQ +26
- Indices post modest gains helped by better than expected January retail sales data. The best performance can be found in the tech sector. AMAT is trading up 6% after earnings, which is helping other semi stocks make headway. Then energy complex is also strong despite weekly inventory data that did little to affect commodity prices. March crude is holding near unchanged at $92.70. Financial stocks are again the laggard as rumors continue to drive trade there. Treasury yields backed off and equity futures retreated when chatter of possible problems regarding a Citigroup money market fund circulated. MS is down more than 1% after a pre-market downgrade while the XLF is off 1.5% led by weakness in the investment banking names. Managed care names are also under pressure after the NY AG announced that he was launching an industry wide investigation of health insurance companies. UNH -3.7% CI -2. 5% WLP -2.5% AET -2.8% HUM -4% WCG -8% Gold futures have been lower throughout the session as the Dollar firmed post retail sales data. The April contract has managed to stay above overnight lows helped by another new all time high for platinum. JPY has been notably weak after overnight the Japanese Financial Services Authority put Japanese bank subprime exposure at Â¥600B. Cable has remained firm supported by the BOE quarterly inflation report released early this morning. The 10-year note future is near session highs up a quarter of a point. Bonds opened for floor trade at their worst levels but have since slowly drifted higher. Some safe haven buying has been seen in the 2-year widening out the benchmark curve to more than 180 basis points, which are levels not seen since 2004.
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