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TWM Today: Wall Street

|Includes: DE, JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM), TGT
JPMorgan London Unit Gets Record Fine From U.K.’s FSA ~ JP Morgan Chase's (NYSE:JPM) London unit was fined a record $48.8 million by Britain’s financial regulator for not properly separating client money from the firm’s accounts.  An average of $8.6 billion wasn’t properly segregated by JPMorgan Securities Ltd. in an error that went undetected for seven years, the Financial Services Authority said in a statement today. As much as $23 billion of client money held by the bank’s futures and options business wasn’t put in separate overnight customer accounts between 2002 and 2009, the FSA said.  (Bloomberg)

Jobs Data Show Labor Market Improving ~ The number of workers filing new claims for jobless benefits fell last week, while private employers added jobs in May, further evidence the labor market was improving. The data on Thursday came ahead of the government's closely watched employment report on Friday, which is expected to show non-farm payrolls increased 513,000 in May, buoyed by hiring for the decennial census, after a 290,000 increase in April. That would mark five straight months of job gains.Initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 10,000 to a seasonally adjusted 453,000, the Labor Department said. That was a touch above market expectations for 450,000.Separately, private employers added 55,000 jobs in May after increasing payrolls by 65,000 the prior month. (Reuters)

U.S. Economy: Service Industries Grew in May for Fifth Month ~ Service industries in the U.S. expanded for a fifth month and factory orders rose, pointing to a broadening economic recovery that’s generating more jobs. The Institute for Supply Management’s index of non- manufacturing businesses, which makes up almost 90 percent of the economy, held at 55.4 for a third month in May. Readings above 50 signal expansion. Bookings at factories rose 1.2 percent in April, a Commerce Department report showed. Companies from Target Corp (NYSE:TGT) to Deere & Co (NYSE:DE) are seeing a pickup in sales that indicates confidence is growing even as the European debt crisis roils financial markets. A government report tomorrow is likely to show employers added more than 500,000 jobs last month, leading to gains in incomes and spending that will help sustain the economic rebound as government support wanes.  (Bloomberg)

Fed Chief Urges More Lending to Small Business ~ Ben Bernanke, the Federal Reserve chairman, said Thursday that banks needed to increase lending to small businesses to reduce unemployment and help the economic recovery. Outstanding loans to small businesses declined to $660 billion in the first quarter of 2010, from almost $700 billion two years ago, Mr. Bernanke said, adding that it was difficult to tell whether the decrease was a result of reduced demand or tightened credit standards. In any case, he said, increasing the flow of capital to small companies was crucial to the recovery. “While maintaining appropriate prudence, lenders should do all they can to meet the needs of legitimate, creditworthy borrowers,” Mr. Bernanke said at a meeting at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago’s branch in Detroit. Healthy small businesses are critical to job growth but have a harder time expanding payrolls than large companies without sufficient access to credit, Mr. Bernanke said. He said only 40 percent of small businesses that tried to borrow in 2009 had all of their needs satisfied.  (NYSE:NYT)

Disclosure: Long TGT