US FINANCIAL MARKET
- British luxury brand Burberry highlighted a rebound in Chinese demand as it beat forecasts with a 9% revenue rise.
- Wal-Mart said it plans to hire more than 100,000 veterans in the United States over the next five years, a move supported by First Lady Michelle Obama.
- Dell is in talks to go private. Dell has steadily ceded market share to Hewlett Packard and China’s Lenovo in the past few years.
- ConocoPhillips is selling some properties in North Dakota and Montana to a subsidiary of Denbury Resources Inc. for $1.05 billion. The sale doesn’t include any of ConocoPhillips’ Bakken Formation assets. The company owns 626,000 net acres there. With this deal, ConocoPhillips has raised about $12 billion from asset sales in 2012. Proceeds from the sales will be used for general corporate purposes.
- American Airlines confirmed orders with Boeing and Airbus for hundreds of new planes valued at $8.7 billion. The deals update and in some cases finalize orders just months before filing for bankruptcy court protection. The deals were part of a landmark agreement for 460 planes (200 Boeing 737s and 260 Airbus A320s) that American signed in July 2011 in what it called the largest aircraft order in aviation history.
US ECONOMY & POLITICS
- US businesses increased stockpiles 0.3% in November. Retail sales increased 0.5% after rising 0.4% in November, the Commerce Department said. Sales rose 5.2% for the whole of 2012.
- The Labor Department said its seasonally adjusted producer price index slipped 0.2% last month, driven by a decline in both gasoline and food prices. Core finished goods prices edged up 0.1% (vs. consensus +0.2%), while core intermediate goods prices rose by 0.2%. These data are consistent with continued subdued inflation in the near term.
- Manufacturing in New York State contracted for a sixth straight month in January. The New York Fed’s Empire manufacturing index failed to improve in January and remained in negative territory at -7.8 (vs. consensus 0.0). The details were also quite weak, with new orders and shipments both declining. The employment component ticked up, but remained in negative territory.
- The United States faces a “material risk” of losing its triple-A status if there is a repeat of the wrangling seen in 2011 over raising the country’s self-imposed debt ceiling, credit ratings firm Fitch said on Tuesday. Fitch currently assigns the United States its highest rating of AAA, but with a negative outlook.
- The Treasury reached its statutory borrowing limit on Dec. 31 and is using “extraordinary” measures to pay for the government. Those measures will work only until mid-February to early March.
- Congress faces an additional deadline at the end of March to pass legislation to keep the government running at current funding levels in absence of an annual budget.
- Obama is weighing potential executive action on guns, still pushing assault weapons ban.
EUROPE & WORLD
- Fitch is cautiously optimistic over euro debt crisis. The worst of Europe’s debt crisis is probably over and the odds are that no country will drop out of the euro. However, Fitch said its AAA credit rankings on France and the U.K. are likely to come under pressure this year.
- Germany’s economy shrank by about 0.5% in the final quarter of 2012. Its GDP grew by just 0.7% in 2012. Exports grew by 4% in 2012, about half the rate of 2011.
- The UK’s consumer prices rose 2.7% from a year earlier.
TODAY in HISTORY
- Queen Elizabeth I was crowned in Westminster Abbey (1559)
- The Republic of New Connecticut declared its independence. Six months later it was renamed Vermont (1777)
- The donkey was first used as symbol of the Democratic Party in Harper’s Weekly (1870)
- Martin Luther King, Jr. was born on this day in 1929. King’s birthday has been a public holiday in the US since 1986, commemorated on the 3rd Monday in January.
- The world’s largest office building, the Pentagon, was completed (1943)
- Harry S Truman became the first U.S. President to use radio and television to say farewell as he left office (1953)
- The first Super Bowl was played: Green Bay Packers 35, Kansas City Chiefs 10 (1967)
- US Airways Flight 1549 is forced to land in the Hudson River. All 150 passengers and 5 crew members survived (2009)
Sources: Reuters, Yahoo Finance, Google Finance, Bloomberg, CNN Money.
This information has been prepared from sources believed to be reliable, but no representation is being made as to its accuracy or completeness. The information provided should be used only as general information and is not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. The economic forecasts set forth in the material may not develop as predicted. All indices, such as the S & P 500, are unmanaged and may not be invested into directly.