US Markets End of Day Snapshot
- US stocks sold off, moving lower from open until the session closed; the risk-off sentiment that drove the sell-off is rooted in concerns over the health of the global economy
- The S&P500 closed today at a level last seen in April, it is down almost 3% year to date in price return
- The S&P 500 finished down 1.91%, Nasdaq Composite is down 2.26%, and Russell 2000 is down 1.53%
- According to analysis by Bank of America, US mutual funds have seen close to USD$2.72 billion in outflows since the start of the recent sell-off in the S&P 500 in October – the second biggest exit since this type of data started to be recorded
- Today, the Ifo-Institute, a premier German economic institute, projected lower growth of the German economy in 2019 with a projected GDP growth rate of 1.1%, the previous estimate was 1.9%
- European Central Bank head Mario Draghi reinforced negative sentiment with comments on a slow down in global growth and decelerating economic data in China
- Chinese retail sales growth of 8.1% in November is the lowest 15 years and industrial production of 5.4% in November is the lowest in 10 years
- European auto stocks are dropped following a report showing a sharp drop in new car registrations in November
- US retail sales rose 0.2% in November, above 0.1% expected
- US industrial production in November rose 0.6%, above 0.3% expected
- Real Estate (-0.21%), Utilities (-0.26%), and Materials (-0.82%) stocks were the top performers in the S&P 500 today
- Energy (-2.38%), Tech (-2.48%), and Healthcare (-3.37%) stocks were the worst performers in the S&P 500 today
- Investor sentiment for US stocks finished negative with the advance/decline ratio for the S&P 500 closing at 0.14x
- 24 stocks in the S&P 500 hit 4-week highs while 96 stocks reached 4-week lows
- 12 stocks in the S&P 500 closed overbought while 47 stocks closed oversold according to the 16-day RSI Measure
- 27 stocks in the Nasdaq Composite hit 4-week highs while 319 stocks reached 4-week lows
- 96 stocks in the Nasdaq Composite closed overbought while 655 stocks closed oversold according to the 16-day RSI Measure
- The VIX finished flat at 21.16 after closing at 20.65 yesterday
Stocks Trending in the News
Abbott Labs (ABT) increased its quarterly dividend today to 32 cents per share, a 14% hike to its payout. Abbott Labs has increased its dividend for 47 consecutive quarters. This is the 380th consecutive quarterly dividend paid by Abbott Labs. Abbott Labs is rated “Neutral” in our US Large-Cap Global Top Stock Ideas.
- Adobe Inc. (ADBE) reported sales guidance for the current quarter that pleased investors, although analysts are highlighting that M&A costs may cause short-term margin contraction. Adobe sees revenue for its current quarter, ending 2/28/2019, at USD$2.54bn while analysts’ consensus calls for USD$2.52bn. After Adobe’s guidance, Bernstein told investors, “Another strong Q,’ while pointing out, “slightly weaker,” margins due to the acquisition of Marketo, which, “should take some time to normalize.” Adobe is rated “Top Buy” in our US Large Cap Global Top Stock Ideas and “Neutral” in our US Information Technology Global Top Stock Ideas.
- Instacart will no longer make deliveries for Amazon’s (AMZN) Whole Foods starting yesterday. Instacart will not deliver any longer as Amazon uses its own delivery service. The separation will take months to complete. Amazon is slowly transitioning to its own delivery service as it no longer sees Instacart as the most efficient way to make the deliveries. Amazon is rated “Neutral” in our US Large-Cap Global Top Stock Ideas and “Attractive” in our US Consumer Discretionary Global Top Stock Ideas.
- Apple (AAPL) will push through a software update to its iPhones in China in an effort to satisfy a local court injunction granted to Qualcomm (QCOM). Apple said it was taking the action to assure its compliance with the court order there. Apple’s update will address the Qualcomm complaints over patents. Globally, Apple and Qualcomm are in a legal battle over the fees Apple pays Qualcomm pays for use of its chips. Apple presently is not using Qualcomm chips. Apple is rated “Top Buy” in our US Large-Cap Global Top Stock Ideas and “Top Buy” in our US Information Technology Global Top Stock Ideas. Qualcomm is rated “Unattractive” in our US Large-Cap Global Top Stock Ideas and “Neutral” in our US Information Technology Global Top Stock Ideas.
- Costco (COST) reported earnings that topped the highest estimates. Costco reported 1Q EPS of USD$1.73 while consensus was for USD$1.51-1.67. Costco 1Q revenue of USD$35.07 billion came above USD$34.8 billion expected. Total sales excluding fuel grew 7.5% in constant currency.
- Dominion Energy’s (D) USD$7.9 billion takeover of South Carolina utility Scana was approved by regulators. Dominion Energy agreed to rate cuts as part of the deal to compensate ratepayers for past rate hikes for a nuclear reactor that was never built. Scana spent USD$4.9 billion to build the reactor and then walked away in the middle of the project. Dominion Energy is rated “Attractive” in our US Large-Cap Global Top Stock Ideas.
- Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) shares are trading lower by double-digits after a Reuters report said that the company has known for decades that traces of asbestos could exist in its baby powder. In July, a court ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay USD$4.69bn to a woman who claimed that asbestos in their products resulted in her developing ovarian cancer. Johnson & Johnson is rated “Attractive” in our US Large-Cap Global Top Stock Ideas.
- LVMH (ENXTPA: MC) is acquiring luxury hotel operator Belmond Ltd. (BEL) in a USD$2.6 billion deal. The deal will push LVMH further into luxury services, with a chain where USD$2,000 per night rooms are common. LVMH is offering USD$25 per share, a 42% premium over last night’s close. LMH is looking to catch a portion of consumer’s spending on luxury services. LVMH is rated “Attractive” in our European Large-Cap Global Top Stock Ideas. Belmond is not rated in our Global Top Stock Ideas.
- Merck & Co. (MRK) has agreed to acquire Antelliq Group for 2.1bn euros (USD$2.4bn) in an effort to bolster its animal-health business. As a part of the acquisition, Merck will assume the debt of the privately held manufacturer of animal-monitoring tools. Merck is rated “Attractive” in our US Large-Cap Global Top Stock Ideas.
- Monster Beverage (MNST) is being downgraded at UBS from neutral to sell. UBS also pulled back its price target for Monster to USD$48/share, which implies a 16% decrease from yesterday’s closing price. Monster Beverage maintains an average price target of USD$61.47/share among 19 analysts. Monster Beverage is rated “Top Buy” in our US Large-Cap Global Top Stock Ideas and “Attractive” in our US Consumer Staples Global Top Stock Ideas.
- Pfizer (PFE) announced a new USD$10 billion share repurchase program that is in addition to its outstanding USD$4.9 billion in its present program. Pfizer also announced an increase of its dividend to 36 cents per share from 34 cents. Pfizer is rated “Attractive” in our US Large-Cap Global Top Stock Ideas.
- Sears Holdings (SHLD) only needed bankruptcy to boost sales-Sears saw same-store sales grow 4.3% in the last quarter amid liquidation sales at its stores. Sears recently closed 28 Kmart and 73 Sears stores, over the last 9 months 100 Kmart and 138 Sears stores have been closed. Sears’ largest shareholder ESL Investments has offered to buy 500 stores and keep them open. Sears Holdings is not rated in our Global Top Stock Ideas.
- Shopify (SHOP) shares are plunging after announcing plans to conduct its second equity capital raise this year. Shopify announced intentions to sell 2.6mm Class A subordinate voting shares after conducting a sale of 4.8mm shares earlier in 2018. Shopify is rated “Top Short” in our Canada All-Cap Global Top Stock Ideas.
- Southwest Airlines (LUV) saw a human heart left on one of its planes in Seattle. The heart was left on a Southwest plane by a courier who was delivering it to a tissue bank, its valves were being harvested for a donation. Despite the delay, the heart arrived within time to be used by a recipient. Southwest Airlines is rated “Unattractive” in our US Large-Cap Global Top Stock Ideas and “Neutral” in our US Industrials Global Top Stock Ideas.
- Starbucks Corporation’s (SBUX) CFO Patrick Grismer said that same-store sales growth in China could be as low as 1% over the long-term, a statement of concern for one of the coffee brewer’s most important markets. The 1% projected long-term same-store sales growth in China is much slower than the 3%-4% same-store sales growth observed by Starbucks in the US and the rest of the world. Additionally, Starbucks guided that it expects 6,000 total stores in China in 4 years. Starbucks is rated “Top Buy” in our US Large-Cap Global Top Stock Ideas and “Top Buy” in our US Consumer Discretionary Global Top Stock Ideas.
- Tesla (TSLA) employees at the company’s solar-panel factory in Buffalo, New York are launching a campaign to unionize. Tesla thwarted similar efforts made by the United Auto Workers at its only car plant in Freemont, California. More than 300 solar-panel factory employees are involved in this campaign. Tesla is rated “Top Short” in our US Large-Cap Global Top Stock Ideas and “Neutral” in our US Consumer Discretionary Global Top Stock Ideas.
- Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc (WBA) was downgraded by Goldman Sachs today to sell from neutral. Goldman Sachs cut the price target of Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc to USD$68 from USD$73. Goldman does not believe Walgreens’ initiatives to grow sales through better use of its retail footprint will deliver enough growth to offset declining core growth. Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc is rated “Attractive” in both our US Large-Cap and US Consumer Discretionary Global Top Stock Ideas.
- XPO Logistics (XPO) has announced a USD$1 billion share buyback program to be funded with existing cash. XPO Logistics dropped 32% yesterday after well-known hedge fund short-seller Spruce Point warned in a note of “dubious financials” at XPO Logistics. XPO Logistics is rated “Neutral” in our US Large-Cap Global Top Stock Ideas and “Attractive” in our US Industrials Global Top Stock Ideas.
- YRC Worldwide Inc. (YRCW) shares are spiraling after the US Department of Justice announced that they are suing the company, along with Roadway Express and Yellow Transportation, for allegedly overcharging the government organization by millions. According to the US Department of Justice, the weights they were charged to ship items were, in reality, lighter than for what they were charged. YRC Worldwide is rated “Unattractive” in our US SMID-Cap Global Top Stock Ideas and “Top Buy” in our US Industrials Global Top Stock Ideas.
- US 2-Year Treasury Notes are higher with yields down -3.1 basis points to 2.731%
- US 5-Year Treasury Bonds are higher with yields down -2.39 basis points to 2.7306%
- US 10-Year Treasury Bonds are higher with yields down -2.18 basis points to 2.8913%
- The US Treasury 2s-5s Spread has widened 0.71 basis points to 0%
- The US Treasury 2s-10s Spread has widened 0.92 basis points to 0.16%
- US Treasury 5s-10s Spread has widened 0.21 basis points to 0.16%
- EUR€ is down 0.493% against the USD$ in after hours to 1.1305
- GBP£ is down 0.49% against the USD$ in after hours to 1.2581
- CHF is down 0.437% against the USD$ in after hours to 1.0017
- JPY¥ is down 0.22% against the USD$ in after hours to 113.38
- WTI Crude is down -2.62% to USD$51.2/bbl with the Brent-WTI spread up USD$0.33 to USD$8.07/bbl
- Gold is down -0.28% to USD$1238.49/oz