Member access

4-Traders Homepage  >  News

News

Latest NewsCompaniesMarketsEconomy & ForexCommoditiesHot NewsMost Read NewsRecomm.Business LeadersVideosCalendar 

MARKET SNAPSHOT: U.S. Stocks Swing Up And Down In Cliff Watch

12/06/2012 | 02:12pm US/Eastern

By Kate Gibson, MarketWatch

NEW YORK (MarketWatch) -- U.S. stocks churned between modest gains and losses Thursday, with an optimistic forecast from Broadcom Corp. bolstering technology shares as investors watched fiscal-cliff negotiations.

"It feels like this is going to be a long afternoon. I'm sitting on the edge of my seat waiting for the next rumor, hint of compromise or anything else that comes out of Washington," commented Elliot Spar, market strategist at Stifel Nicolaus, in an emailed note.

"I think this will get resolved, if not by end of the year, by early 2013," Gus Faucher, senior economist at PNC Financial Services Group, said of the automatic steep spending cuts and tax increases slated to begin in January.

The standoff appears to be weighing on business confidence, but "on the other hand consumers don't appear terribly concerned," said Faucher of recent data illustrating consumer sentiment at multiyear highs.

Rising as much as 31 points and falling as far as 26 points, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) was lately up 11.44 points, or 0.1%, at 13,045.93, with computer-chip maker Intel Corp. (>> Intel Corporation) leading gains among its 30 components.

Intel CEO Paul Otellini, who is retiring in May, on Wednesday said his successor would likely be chosen from inside the company.

The S&P 500 index (SPX) rose 2.94 points, or 0.2%, to 1,412.22, with technology the best performing and industrials the worst of its 10 major industry groups.

Broadcom's (>> Broadcom Corporation) shares rose 1.9%, a day after the chip manufacturer projected fourth-quarter revenue at the upper end of its target range.

Akamai Technologies Inc. (>> Akamai Technologies, Inc.) rallied 9.2% on news that it would jointly sell services with AT&T Inc. (T).

Shares of Safeway Inc. (>> Safeway Inc.) jumped 3.7% after the food-and-drug retailer joined other companies in accelerating its quarterly cash dividend to December to bypass a potential hike in dividend taxes if the fiscal-cliff issue remains in play at the end of the year.

The Nasdaq Composite (RIXF) climbed 15.75 points, or 0.5%, to 2,989.45.

Apple Inc. (>> Apple Inc.) shares reversed higher, lately up 1.7%, a day after shares of the consumer-technology company took their biggest single-day percentage hit since December 2008.

Decliners were just ahead of advancers on the New York Stock Exchange, where 317 million shares traded by 1:50 p.m. Eastern.

Composite volume neared 2 billion.

Oil prices fell to a one-week low after the European Central Bank reduced its growth expectations. Crude for January delivery dropped $1.89 to $85.99 a barrel in New York.

ECB President Mario Draghi told a news conference "weak economic activity is expected to continue into next year."

Treasury prices gained with the benchmark 10-year note's yield falling to 1.566%.

The fiscal-cliff drama does not seem to have investors particularly shaken, at least by one measure of Wall Street uncertainty. The CBOE Market Volatility Index (VIX) fell 3.9% on Thursday to 16.46.

The VIX closed at 26.66 -- its highest finish this year -- on June 1, after an anemic monthly jobs report came in under the gloomiest of expectations, ratting investors. The index has not finished above 20 since late July.

Non-cliff notes

The Labor Department reported jobless claims fell by 25,000 to 370,000 last week to their lowest level in a month.

The weekly data is positive in that it shows the negative impact of the recent superstorm on the labor market to be a temporary one, said PNC's Faucher.

"Expectations were that this would happen, so it's in line with what markets were expecting," Faucher said of the market's muted reaction.

"It's certainly good news. After they rose about 90,000 in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, they are now back to where they were before, so it looks like there won't be any permanent impact from the storm," Faucher said.

The pattern is the same as during 2005's Hurricane Katrina, which was followed by a big spike in claims shortly after the storm hit, with the count of those filing for jobless benefits returning to pre-Katrina levels weeks later, Faucher said.

The weekly data come ahead of Friday's monthly nonfarm payrolls report, with the unemployment rate likely to hold at 7.9% for November.

On Wednesday, stocks mostly advanced, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) rising 82 points, after Bloomberg News reported of Republican defections to a bipartisan effort on Capitol Hill to break the budget impasse.

Subscribe to WSJ: http://online.wsj.com?mod=djnwires

React to this article
Latest news
Date Title
<1m ago FLEXPOINT SENSOR SYSTEMS : Provides Units to Haemoband Surgical, Ltd. For Clinical Trials
<1m ago Data on Ecology Research Detailed by Researchers at Finnish Forest Research Institute (Food resources and intestinal parasites as limiting factors...
<1m ago Reports from Cornell University Highlight Recent Findings in Ecology Research (Domesticated honey bees evolutionarily reduce flower nectar volume in...
1m ago SK HYNIX : "Image Sensor, Semiconductor Device and Image Sensor System" in Patent Application Approval Process
2m ago BIS UK DEPARTMENT FOR BUSINESS INNOVATIONS & SKI : Jo Swinson pledges support for a new ranking of companies’ human rights performance
2m ago WEIFA ASA : Aqualis Offshore signs Atwood deal
2m ago ABS AUSTRALIAN BUREAU OF STATISTICS : Sydney is our densest city, but we are lightweights internationally (Media Release)
2m ago UNITED NATIONS SECURITY COUNCIL : 17 December 2014 UN capacities 'pushed to the limit' in 2014, Ban says in year-end wrap-up
2m ago ABS AUSTRALIAN BUREAU OF STATISTICS : Slowing migration for half the states and territories (Media Release)
2m ago RENESAS ELECTRONICS : Patent Issued for Semiconductor Device with Flash Memory Cells Having Improved Arrangement for Floating Gate Electrodes and Control Gate Electrodes...
Latest news
Advertisement
Hot News 
DIXONS CARPHONE : Interim Results 2014-15
BERKELEY MINERAL RESOURCES : Obsidian IR
EKF DIAGNOSTICS : To Miss Consensus Expectations But Expects Strong 2015
VOLCANO : Philips to buy US medical imaging firm Volcano
HIGHTEX : Leaps As German Court Clears Chapter 11 Process For Main Unit
Most Read News
47m ago Wall St. rallies after Fed, energy gains; S&P 500 posts best day since 2013
1h ago BUSINESS MACHINES : Patent Issued for Methods and Systems for Automatically Determining Configuration Parameters
1h ago INSYDE SOFTWARE : "Method of Promptly Starting Windowed Applications Installed on a Mobile Operating System and Device Using the Same" in Patent Application Approval...
1h ago HONEYWELL : Patent Issued for System and Method for Reducing Errors in a Resonator Fiber Optic Gyroscope
1h ago SONY : Patent Issued for Capturing Playback Key Events in BD Players
Most recommended articles
3m ago AUD/USD TECHNICAL ANALYSIS : Aussie Drops Most in Six Weeks
3m ago NZD/USD TECHNICAL ANALYSIS : Support Below 0.77 in Focus
13m agoDJU.K. Car Production Slips in November
18m ago EUR/JPY TECHNICAL ANALYSIS : Support Found Near 145.00 Mark
18m ago GBP/JPY TECHNICAL ANALYSIS : Pound Attempts Bounce vs. Yen
Dynamic quotes  
ON
| OFF