US FINANCIAL MARKET
- Profit from companies in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index will exceed $120 a share by next year, double the level in 2008, according to Wall Street estimates.
- Forty-eight% of investors reported that capital expenditures are the best use of corporate cash.
- Samsung will hold a very Apple-like event to unveil its latest smartphone in New York today. In the fourth quarter of 2012, Samsung controls 29% of global smartphone shipments, compared with 21% for Apple.
- Disney pushed back the release of its Infinity video-game system by two months, postponing a potential source of profit at its interactive unit.
- Dow Chemical plans to raise an additional $1.5 billion from asset sales over the next 18 months.
- Honda Motor will recall nearly 250,000 vehicles globally due to braking problems.
- China Mobile, the world’s biggest phone carrier by number of subscribers, said that profit rose just 2.7% last year as it grappled with fierce competition and higher costs.
US ECONOMY & POLITICS
- The Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index improves to the highest level since April 2012.
- Initial claims for unemployment benefits fell by 10,000 last week to 332,000. The less-volatile four-week moving average decreased to 346,750, the lowest level since March 2008.
- Continuing claims were also below expectations, feel by 89,000 to 3.02 million.
- The headline producer price index (PPI) rose by 0.7% in February, as expected. It was pushed up by a sizable 7.2% increase in seasonally adjusted gasoline prices. Heating oil prices also climbed 9.7%. Core finished goods PPI increased 0.2%.
- The US current account deficit narrowed to $110.4 billion in Q4.
- The outlook for U.S. business spending is improving as rising earnings. Orders for non-military capital goods excluding aircraft, considered a proxy for future business spending on equipment and software, climbed 7.2% in January.
- Development of oil-shale deposits through Central California using fracking and other techniques may boost the state’s economic activity by as much as 14.3%, a University of Southern California study said.
EUROPE & WORLD
- European stocks advanced to a 4 1/2-year high as the region’s policy makers prepared to begin a two-day summit in Brussels to discuss a bailout for Cyprus.
- The IMF will visit Ukraine at the end of this month to resume talks with the Kiev government on a new $15 billion loan program.
TODAY in HISTORY
- The cotton gin was patented by Eli Whitney (1794)
- The FBI’s “Ten Most Wanted Fugitives” list made its debut (1950)
- The Soviet Congress voted Mikhail Gorbachev into the newly-created and powerful position of president (1990)
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.