***Economic Data*** - (BR) Brazil July FGV Inflation IGP-M M/M: 0.2% v 0.1%e; Y/Y: 5.8% v 5.7%e - (CA) Canada Jun Industrial Product Price M/M: -0.9% v 0.2%e; Raw Materials Price Index M/M: -0.3% v 1.0%e - (US) Initial Jobless Claims: 457K v 460Ke; Continuing Claims: 4.565M v 4.50Me - (BR) Brazil Jun Nominal Budget Balance (BRL): -13.6B v -11.3Be; Primary Budget Balance: 2.1B 3.9Be; Net Debt to GDP Ratio: 41.4% v 41.4%e - (US) EIA Nat Gas Inventories: +28 bcf vs. +30 to +35 bcf estimate range
- Positive earnings and in-line weekly jobless claims inspired buyers to in step during the premarket and bid up equities in the wake of yesterday afternoon's slide, but the major indices have traded straight down from the open as confidence wanes. Analysts searched for scraps of good news in the claims data, noting that initial jobless claims were slightly below the average level prior to the onset of the summer swings, with the four-week moving average at 453K v 467K at the end of June, and 460K in April and May. Front-month crude is still trading in a fairly tight range, although it is still above yesterday's levels, trading around $78. August gold is rolling over into the December contract, which is trading around yesterday's levels, at $1,165. US Treasury prices have rallied as stocks have sold off. The 10-year yield is back below 3% while sellers remain a little more stubborn at the very long end where the 30-year bond yield remains near 4.08%.
- Oil supermajors Exxon and Royal Dutch Shell reported varying quarterly results this morning. Exxon's profits beat expectations, although revenues were below consensus. Note that Exxon's EPS figure was approximately double the amount reported last July. Exxon's impressive earnings performance was driven by its downstream operation, which is bouncing back strongly from severe weakness in recent quarters. Shell's profit was in line with analysts' view, and its revenue grew sharply over last year's levels. Shell's results were driven by higher production and cost cutting; executives warned that while oil prices are very firm, refining margins, oil products demand and natural gas spot prices all remain under pressure. Shares of both firms rose more than one percent before the open and are off their best levels in mid morning trade. Downstream name Tesoro beat top- and bottom-line expectations. Oil services firm KBR was well ahead of earnings targets.
- Visa reported a higher-than-expected quarterly profit and offered a strong outlook for overall 2010 performance. However, executives warned that the regulatory changes unveiled by Congress over the last several months would impact the company's business. On the conference call Visa's CFO refused to quantify the possible impact, noting only that there would be a "modest impact" in 2011. Shares of Visa are down nearly 5%, while MA is down 2% in sympathy. Financial services name Ameriprise beat earnings and revenue expectations on profits that were nearly twice the amount reported last July. Moody's managed to beat expectations, but offered a cautious outlook in the backdrop of more regulatory changes and continued uncertainty in the credit markets. Mortgage insurer PMI Group's quarterly loss was much worse than expected, while revenue was well below the consensus view. Shares of PMI fell to lows around -12%, with competitors MTG and RDN down in sympathy.
- French drug maker Sanofi's results met expectations. Sanofi set off an acquisition guessing game earlier in the month when reports emerged that the firm was looking to make a major acquisition in the US, sending the shares of several prospective targets higher. Overnight it emerged that the target was Genzyme, with offers projected around $70-75/shr.CNBC reports that Sanofi will pursue a hostile offer for Genzyme. Shares of GENZ are up 3.5%, but off their best levels. Shares of Mylan are in the red after the firm met expectations in its Q2 report but narrowed its full-year outlook. Express Scripts is up 5% after the firm sharply increased its quarterly profit, although EPS was merely in line with expectations.
- Motorola met expectations in its second quarter and guided above par for Q3, and said revenues would be strong for the full year. Shares of MOT were up 3%, but off their best levels. Symantec was also largely in line, although the online security name's guidance for next quarter was quite soft, leading multiple analysts to cut the name overnight. SYMC is down around 8% in early trading. Consumer staples names Kellogg and Colgate are both down sharply after weak earnings reports. Both companies missed key expectations, and Kellogg cut its revenue and earnings guidance.
- The greenback fell further overnight against all the major pairs and commodity-related currencies, with little relief seen in the New York session. The initial general shift in sentiment began earlier today in Europe after Moody's scolded the US government about its lack of a plan to curb its deficit. S&P complemented Italy and noted that the spending consolidation plans among the PIIGs is supportive of sovereign ratings. EUR/USD tested above 1.31 for fresh 11-week highs to probe its best level since May 4th.
***Looking Ahead*** - 13:00 (US) Treasury to sell $29B in 7-year notes - 13:20 (US) Fed Fisher speaks on US economy - 15:00 (AR) Argentina Jun Supermarket Sales Y/Y: No est v 16.3% prior
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