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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 6/16 0 comments
    Jun 16, 2014 9:33 AM | about stocks: NCLH, AKS, WMB, CNP, DISH, RNR, MU, GNC, MDT, MDT, MDRX, AMG, PFG

    BARCHART MORNING CALL

    Monday, June 16th, 2014

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    OVERNIGHT MARKETS AND NEWS

    September E-mini S&Ps (ESU14 -0.27%) this morning are down -0.23% and European stocks are down -0.49% as sectarian strife in Iraq spreads and threatens to throw the country into civil war. Concern is mounting that the U.S. will be forced to intervene in Iraq to stop insurgents from taking over the country. Also, violence in Ukraine escalated over the weekend after 49 Ukraine soldiers were killed after pro-Russian insurgents shot down a military transport plane. Asian stocks closed mixed: Japan -1.09%, Hong Kong -0.08%, China +0.72%, Taiwan +0.07%, Australia +0.13%, Singapore -0.09%, South Korea +0.26%, India -0.15%. China's Shanghai Stock Index rallied up to a 1-3/4 month high on signs the central bank is widening its easing measures after the PBOC expanded the group of lenders covered by a reserve-ratio cut that was announced on Jun 9. The Chinese government is trying to boost funding for small businesses and agriculture in an attempt to spur economic growth. Commodity prices are mostly higher. July crude oil (CLN14 +0.10%) is down -0.02% as crude prices shed overnight gains on speculation that the spread of violence will not disrupt crude supplies from Iraq, OPEC's second-largest producer. July gasoline (RBN14 +0.01%) is up +0.10%. Aug gold (GCQ14 +0.59%) is up +0.49% at a 2-1/2 week high as intensifying violence in Iraq spurs safe-haven demand for gold. July copper (HGN14 +0.91%) is up +0.74%. Agriculture prices are higher. The dollar index (DXY00 +0.04%) is up +0.03%. EUR/USD (^EURUSD) is up +0.03%. USD/JPY (^USDJPY) is down -0.20%. Sep T-note prices (ZNU14 +0.13%) are up +4 ticks as the slide in equities boosts the safe-haven demand for Treasuries.

    UK Jun Rightmove house prices rose +0.1% m/m and +7.7% y/y, slower than May's +3.6% m/m and +8.9% y/y increase.

    The Eurozone May CPI fell -0.1% m/m, right on expectations, and was left unrevised at +0.5% y/y. The May core CPI was also left unrevised at +0.7% y/y.

    U.S. STOCK PREVIEW

    Today's June Empire manufacturing index is expected to show a -4.01 point decline to 15.00, falling back a bit after the +17.27 point surge to 19.01 seen in May. Today's May industrial production report is expected to rebound higher by +0.5%, reversing most of the -0.6% decline seen in April. Today's June NAHB housing market index is expected to show a +2 point increase to 47, recovering a bit after the -1 point drop to a 1-year low of 45 seen in May. There are no Russell 1000 companies that report earnings today.

    Equity conferences this week include: American Diabetes Association Conference on Mon, Deutsche Bank 1x1 Insurance Conference on Mon, Natural Gas for Off Road Applications USA Conference on Mon, Wall Street Journal CFO Network Annual Meeting on Mon-Tue, Canadian Telecom Summit 2014 on Mon-Wed, RBC Capital Markets Global Mining & Materials Conference on Tue, Sterne Agee Executive Summit on Tue, Deutsche Bank Global Consumer Conference on Tue-Wed, Wells Fargo Securities Healthcare Conference on Tue-Wed, Predictive Analytics World Conference on Tue-Thu, Jefferies Global Consumer Conference on Wed-Thu, Nomura Corporate Day on Wed, Citi CorpGlobal Water Conference on Thu, Goldman Sachs European Chemicals Vision Conference on Thu, J.P. Morgan Oil & Gas Corporate Access Day on Thu, Morgan Stanley China Industrials Summit on Thu, and Noia Conference 2014 on Thu.

    OVERNIGHT U.S. STOCK MOVERS

    Norwegian Cruise Line (NCLH -0.18%) was downgraded to 'Neutral' from 'Buy' at SunTrust.

    AK Steel (AKS +0.63%) was upgraded to 'Buy' from 'Neutral' at BofA/Merrill.

    Williams (WMB +0.70%) was upgraded to 'Buy' from 'Hold' at Jefferies with a price target of $65.

    CenterPoint Energy (CNP +0.25%) was upgraded to 'Outperform' from 'Market Perform' at BMO Capital.

    DISH (DISH -0.14%) was upgraded to 'Overweight' from 'Neutral' at JPMorgan Chase.

    RenaissanceRe (RNR +0.85%) was downgraded to 'Market Perform' from 'Outperform' at JMP Securities due to valuation.

    Micron (MU +1.04%) was upgraded to 'Outperform' from 'Neutral' at RW Baird.

    GNC Holdings (GNC -5.51%) was downgraded to 'Neutral' from 'Outperform' at RW Baird.

    Medtronic (MDT -0.15%) jumped 11% in pre-market trading after Sanford C. Bernstein said that Medtronic's acquisition of Covidien will allow it to challenge Johnson & Johnson as the world's biggest medical device company.

    Covidien Plc (COV -0.03%) surged 35% in pre-maket trading after Medtronic agreed to buy the company for $42.9 billion.

    Eminence Capital reported a 5.1% passive stake in Allscripts (MDRX -1.63%) .

    MARKET COMMENTS

    Sep E-mini S&Ps (ESU14 -0.27%) this morning are down -4.50 points (-0.23%). The S&P 500 index on Friday closed higher. Bullish factors included (1) the unexpected -0.2% m/m drop in May PPI, weaker than expectations of +0.1% m/m, which boosted speculation the Fed may delay any hike in interest rates, and (2) strength in technology stocks led by a rally in Intel after the world's largest semiconductor maker said annual sales will increase for the first time in 3 years. Strength in stocks was limited after early-June U.S. consumer confidence unexpectedly fell -0.7 to 81.2, weaker than expectations of +1.1 to 83.0. Closes: S&P 500 +0.31%, Dow Jones +0.25%, Nasdaq +0.31%.

    Sep 10-year T-notes (ZNU14 +0.13%) this morning are up +4 ticks. Sep 10-year T-note futures prices on Friday closed lower. Bearish factors included (1) negative carry-over from a drop in British gilts after BOE Governor Carney said that interest rate increases "could happen sooner than markets currently expect," and (2) reduced safe-haven demand for T-notes as stocks erased early losses and settled higher. Closes: TYU4 -8.00, FVU4 -6.00.

    The dollar index (DXY00 +0.04%) this morning isup +0.022 (+0.03%). EUR/USD (^EURUSD) is up +0.0004 (+0.03%). USD/JPY (^USDJPY) is down -0.20 (-0.20%). The dollar index on Friday closed unchanged. EUR/USD weakened after ECB Executive Board member Coeure said that the ECB's measures introduced Jun 5 created "stability and predictability of rates, with low rates close to zero for a long period of time." Gains in the dollar were muted after stocks recovered from early losses and closed higher, which reduced safe-haven demand for the dollar. Closes: Dollar Index unch, EUR/USD -0.0017 (-0.13%), USD/JPY +0.310 (+0.30%).

    July WTI crude oil (CLN14 +0.10%) this morning is down -2 cents (-0.02%). July gasoline (RBN14 +0.01%) is up +0.0030 (+0.10%). July crude and gasoline prices on Friday settled mixed. July crude posted an 8-3/4 month high and closed higher after Islamist fighters extended their advance into Iraq, which risks starting a civil war that disrupts oil supplies from Iraq, OPEC's second-largest producer. July gasoline retreated from a 1-1/2 month high and closed lower after early-Jun U.S. consumer confidence index unexpectedly declined. Closes: CLN4 +0.38 (+0.36%) RBN4 -0.026 (-0.84%).

    GLOBAL EVENT CALENDAR06/16/2014

    US 0830 ET Jun Empire manufacturing index expected -4.01 to 15.00, May +17.72 to 19.01.
      0915 ET May industrial production expected +0.5%, Apr -0.6%. May capacity utilization expected +0.3 to 78.9%, Apr was -0.7 to 78.6%.
      1000 ET Jun NAHB housing market index expected +2 to 47, May -1 to 45.
      1100 ET USDA weekly grain export inspections.
      1600 ET USDA weekly crop progress.
    EUR 0500 ET Revised Eurozone May CPI, previous +0.5% y/y. Revised May core CPI, previous +0.7% y/y.

    U.S. STOCK CALENDAR06/16/2014

    Company Name Ticker Time Event Description Period Estimate
    Affiliated Managers Group Inc AMG US 9:00 Annual General Meeting    
    Principal Financial Group Inc PFG US   Roadshow - Boston Y 2014
    Stocks: NCLH, AKS, WMB, CNP, DISH, RNR, MU, GNC, MDT, MDT, MDRX, AMG, PFG
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