Closing Update for Friday, August 14: Low Confidence

by: Midnight Trader

4:07 PM, Aug 14, 2009 --

  • DJIA -76.7 or 0.8% to 9,321
  • S&P 500 -8.6 or 0.9% to 1,004
  • Nasdaq -23.8 or 1.2% to 1,986


  • Hang Seng up 0.15%
  • Nikkei up 0.76%
  • FTSE down 0.87%


(+) Autodesk (NASDAQ:ADSK) continues late extended-hours recovery after Q2 beat, guidance that straddles Street view.

(+) Star Bulk Carriers (NASDAQ:SBLK) gains as analyst says company likely to pay debts on time.

(+) Discovery Labs (DSCO) CEO resigns.

(+) Allied Irish Bank (AIB) gains on report Royal Bank of Canada wants stake.

(+) Lifeway Foods (NASDAQ:LWAY) beats year-ago results.

(+) VanceInfo (NYSE:VIT) beats with Q2 results.

(+) China GrenTech (NASDAQ:GRRF) tops with Q2 results.

(+) Abercrombie & Fitch (NYSE:ANF) turns higher; swings to Q2 loss on lower sales.


(-) Skystar Bio-Pharmaceutical (NASDAQ:SKBI) results up sharply from year-ago quarter.

(-) J.C. Penney (NYSE:JCP) reports breakeven Q2, raises FY EPS view to straddle Street.

(-) Boeing (NYSE:BA) down as WSJ report says 787 fuselage work halted in Italy.

(-) Mindspeed (NASDAQ:MSPD) prices shares.

(-) NetList (NASDAQ:NLST) reports Q2 revs down sharply from year-ago levels.

(-) Kimco (NYSE:KIM) gets analyst downgrade.

(-) Umpqua (NASDAQ:UMPQ) increases share offering.


A weaker-than-expected consumer confidence reading sent traders scurrying for the exits Friday, pushing the major averages deep in the red.

Friday's dip handed stocks their first weekly decline in five.

The Reuters/University of Michigan Survey of Consumers came in at a 63.2 reading in August, down from 66 in July and below Street estimates for a rise to 68.5. Traders have been betting economic conditions would improve in the second-half of 2009, but today's data demonstrated that consumers, wracked by heavy personal debt loads, employment worries, and continuing deterioration in the housing market, may stall a recovery by tightening spending even further.

In other data released today, the Labor Department said that consumer prices showed no change in July, in line with analysts' expectations and far below the 0.7% jump in June. Prices have fallen 2.1% over the past 12 months, the biggest annual decline since a similar drop in the period ending in January 1950. Most of the past year's decline reflects energy prices falling 28.1% since peaking in July 2008. Some economists are concerned that the economy could fall into a deflationary spiral not seen since the Great Depression.

U.S. industrial output, however, rose in July for the first time since October, the Federal Reserve reported earlier this morning. The seasonally adjusted output of the nation's factories, mines and utilities increased 0.5% last month, reversing course after a 0.4% decline in June. Output is down 13.1% in the past year. It was only the second increase in industrial production since the recession began in December 2007. Since then, output has fallen 14.6%. A Reuters survey of economists called for a 0.3% rise in production and a reading of 68.3% for capacity utilization.

Looking forward to next week, earnings season still has some life left in it as several major names are due with quarterly results. Among companies posting financials on Monday are: Agilent Technologies (NYSE:A) and Lowe's (NYSE:LOW). On Tuesday, Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) and Home Depot (NYSE:HD) are set to issue quarterly numbers, while on Wednesday, JDSU (JDSU), NetApp (NASDAQ:NTAP) and Synopsys (NASDAQ:SNPS) are slated to report numbers. On Thursday, Brocade Communications (NASDAQ:BRCD), Intuit (NASDAQ:INTU), (NYSE:CRM) and Pacific Sunwear (NASDAQ:PSUN) will issue results.

On the economic front, the Empire manufacturing index will be released on Monday. Tuesday will see building permits, PPI, and housing starts data. Crude inventories are set for release on Wednesday, and initial claims and the Philadelphia Fed are due on Thursday. On Friday, existing home sales are slated for release.

Crude oil settled down about $3 at $67.51 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

About this article:

Want to share your opinion on this article? Add a comment.
Disagree with this article? .
To report a factual error in this article, click here