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Jim Van Meerten is an advisor to Marketocracy Capital Management and writes on financial subjects here and on Barchart Portfolio Blogs and Seeking Alpha. He earned a BS in Accounting and Business Administration from Berry College; a Juris Doctorate from the Woodrow Wilson School of Law; and... More
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  • BARCHART MORNING CALL 12/31 0 comments
    Dec 31, 2013 8:57 AM | about stocks: VEEV, HAE, HPQ, MRVL, BA, TFIFF, FDX, AVEO, OFIX, CZNC, FSGI, TWGP

    BARCHART MORNING CALL

    Tuesday, December 31st, 2013View Older Reports

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    OVERNIGHT MARKETS AND NEWS

    March E-mini S&Ps (ESH14 +0.05%) this morning are up +0.04% and European stocks are up +0.14% in uninspired holiday trade. Most European markets close early today ahead of the New Year holiday, although the U.S. market is open for a full day. The S&P 500 has rallied over 29% in 2013, the best year since 1997. Asian stocks closed mixed: Japan and South Korea closed for holiday, Hong Kong +0.26%, China +1.33%, Taiwan -0.14%, Australia -0.09%, Singapore +0.45%, India +0.13%. China's Shanghai Stock Index climbed to a 1-week high, led by a rally in brokerage stocks, after the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) gave approval for 5 companies to raise a combined $353 million from IPO sales. China, the world's biggest IPO market in 2010 with $71 billion raised, hasn't had an IPO since Oct 2012 as regulators cracked down on fraud. The CSRC estimates that about 50 companies are expected to complete IPO approval preparations and list by the end of Jan. The Shanghai Stock Index still lost 7.6% for the year on concern that a slowdown in Chinese economic growth will curb company profits. Commodity prices are mixed. Feb crude oil (CLG14 -0.64%) is down -0.35%. Feb gasoline (RBG14 -0.18%) is down -0.06%. Feb gold (GCG14 -0.30%) is down -0.07%. March copper (HGH14 -0.03%) is up +0.06%. Agriculture and livestock prices are mixed. The dollar index (DXY00 +0.11%) is up +0.14%. EUR/USD (^EURUSD) is down -0.23%. USD/JPY (^USDJPY) is down -0.18%. March T-note prices (ZNH14 -0.09%) are down -5.5 ticks.

    China's yuan posted a 20-year high today of 6.0506 per dollar after the PBOC raised its daily fixing on the yuan by 0,09% to 6.0969, the strongest since the peg to the dollar was removed in 2005. The yuan is allowed to diverge a maximum 1.00% from the daily fixing.

    The yuan accounted for 8.66% of letters of credit and collections used in global trade finance in Oct, second to the dollar as it surpassed the euro's share of 6.64%, according to data from Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication.

    The UK Dec Lloyds Bank commercial business barometer fell -2 points from Nov to 48, the lowest in 5-months.

    U.S. STOCK PREVIEW
    Today's Oct CaseShiller U.S. Composite-20 home price index is expected to show an increase of +0.95% m/m, adding to the +1.03% increase seen in September. Today's Dec U.S. consumer confidence index from the Conference Board is expected to show a +5.8 point increase to 76.2, more than reversing the -2.0 point decline to 70.4 seen in November. Today's Dec Chicago PMI is expected to show a -2.2 point decline to 60.8, adding to the -2.9 point decline to 63.0 seen in November. There are no major U.S. earnings reports today. There are no equity conferences this week.

    OVERNIGHT U.S. STOCK MOVERS

    Empire Capital reported a 5.8% passive stake in Veeva Systems (VEEV +0.06%) .

    Haemonetics (HAE -1.12%) was downgraded to 'Hold' from 'Buy' at Benchmark Co.

    Business Insider reports that Hewlett-Packard (HPQ -0.43%) is planning to cut another 5,000 jobs in addition to the 29,000 jobs it had targeted previously.

    DigiTimes reports that solar-grade crystalline silicon wafer prices have risen to 98 cents-99 cents due to strong demand and high-efficiency wafers have exceeded $1 and that prices are also likely to rise by another 5% in January 2014.

    Marvell (MRVL +0.95%) jumped 9% in pre-market trading after KKR Fund Holding reported a 6.8% stake in the company.

    Boeing (BA -0.72%) was awarded a $750 million government contract to provide integrated engineering services for the B-1 weapon system.

    Transforce reported a 19.95% stake in Vitran (VTNC -3.44%) .

    Bloomberg reported that FedEx (FDX -0.26%) has been sued by New York City for delivering untaxed cigarettes from a Long Island Indian reservation to New York City residents' homes, with the city seeking $52 million from the shipper.

    Great Point Partners reported a 5.69% passive stake in Aveo Pharmaceuticals (AVEO +8.02%) .

    MARKET COMMENTS

    Mar E-mini S&Ps (ESH14 +0.05%) this morning are up +0.75 of a point (+0.04%). The S&P 500 on Monday closed little changed in thin holiday-week trade. Profit-taking and long liquidation helped pushed stock prices down after U.S. Nov pending home sales rose +0.2% m/m, weaker than expectations of +1.0% m/m. Closes: S&P 500 -0.02%, Dow Jones +0.16%, Nasdaq 100 -0.11%.

    Mar 10-year T-notes (ZNH14 -0.09%) this morning are down -5.5 ticks. Mar 10-year T-note prices on Monday closed higher. T-note prices found support from the weaker-than-expected U.S. Nov pending home sales along with month-end buying by fixed-income funds that typically purchase longer-maturity Treasuries to align the interest rate sensitivity of their holdings with the benchmark Treasury indexes. Closes: TYH4 +7.50, FVH4 +4.50.

    The dollar index (DXY00 +0.11%) this morning is up +0.114 (+0.14%). EUR/USD (^EURUSD) is down -0.0032 (-0.23%) and USD/JPY (^USDJPY) is down -0.19 (-0.18%). The dollar index on Monday closed lower but remained above last Friday's 1-3/4 month low. EUR/USD gained on hawkish comments from ECB President Draghi who said he sees no need for further cuts to the bank's benchmark interest rate amid "encouraging signs" that the euro crisis may be resolved. USD/JPY posted a new 5-year high on divergence in monetary policy between the BOJ and the Fed which weakens the yen against the dollar, although long liquidation set in and USD/JPY settled lower. Closes: Dollar index -0.392 (-0.49%), EUR/USD +0.00598 (+0.44%), USD/JPY -0.006 (-0.01%).

    Feb WTI crude oil (CLG14 -0.64%) this morning is down -35 cents (-0.35%) and Feb gasoline (RBG14 -0.18%) is down -0.0018 (-0.06%). Feb crude oil and gasoline on Monday closed lower. Weaker-than-expected U.S. Nov pending home sales along with a slide in stock prices fueled long liquidation in energy futures. Another bearish factor for gasoline prices was end of the strike at five French Total SA refineries, which will boost French refinery output and reduce demand for imported U.S. gasoline supplies. Closes: CLG4 -1.03 (-1.03%), RBG4 -0.0226 (-0.80%).

    GLOBAL EVENT CALENDAR12/31/2013

    US0900 ETOct S&P CaseShiller composite-20 home price index expected +0.95% m/m and +13.45% y/y, Sep +1.03% m/m and +13.29% y/y.
     0945 ETDec Chicago PMI expected -2.2 to 60.8, Nov -2.9 to 63.0.
     1000 ETDec consumer confidence (Conference Board) expected +5.8 to 76.2, Nov -2.0 to 70.4.
    UK0430 ETUK Dec Lloyds business barometer, Nov 50.
    CHI2000 ETChina Dec manufacturing PMI expected -0.2 to 51.2, Nov unch at 51.4.
    JPNn/aJapanese markets close for a Bank holiday.

    U.S. STOCK CALENDAR12/31/2013

    Company NameTickerTimeEvent DescriptionPeriodEstimate
    Orthofix International NVOFIX US Q2 2013 Earnings ReleaseQ2 2013 
    Citizens & Northern CorpCZNC US Q4 2013 Earnings ReleaseQ4 20130.4
    First Security Group Inc/TNFSGI US Q4 2013 Earnings ReleaseQ4 2013 
    Tower Group International LtdTWGP US Q3 2013 Earnings ReleaseQ3 2013-1.044

    Stocks: VEEV, HAE, HPQ, MRVL, BA, TFIFF, FDX, AVEO, OFIX, CZNC, FSGI, TWGP
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