US FINANCIAL MARKET
- Investors reduced bearish stock bets to the lowest level since at least 2007 as the bull market in American equities begins its fifth year.
- Judge cut Apple’s $1 billion award against Samsung by more than 40% and set a new trial to determine damages.
- HSBC net profits drop nearly 17% in 2012, as it counted the cost of a hefty U.S. fine it paid to settle money-laundering claims. But earnings remained robust at $13.5 billion as Asian businesses performed well. HSBC also announced that it raised its dividends this year in a show of strength over rivals.
- The price of oil fell Monday after political leaders in Washington failed to stave off automatic cuts in government spending that could hurt the U.S. economy.
US ECONOMY & POLITICS
- Janet Yellen, the Fed’s influential vice chair, said that the central bank’s aggressive monetary stimulus is warranted given how far below its full potential the economy is operating.
EUROPE & WORLD
- China’s services industries expanded last month at the slowest pace since September. The non-manufacturing PMI fell to 54.5 in February from 56.2 in January.
- China’s foreign currency reserves, which have surged more than 700% since 2004, are enough to buy every central bank’s official gold supply – twice. China’s foreign reserves rose to $3.3 trillion at the end of 2012. About two-thirds of China’s assets are dollar-denominated and another quarter is in euros.
TODAY in HISTORY
- The Constitution of the United States went into effect (1789)
- Vermont became the 14th state in the United States (1791)
- Jeannette Rankin took her seat as the first woman elected to the U.S. House of Representatives (1917)
- The presidential inauguration was broadcast on radio for the very first time (1925)
- Frances Perkins, appointed Secretary of Labor, became first woman to serve in the Cabinet (1933)
- Time and Warner announced plans to merge into the world’s largest media and entertainment conglomerate (1989)
- Abraham Lincoln was inaugurated as president (1861)
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.