US FINANCIAL MARKET
- Irish Ryanair announced a $15.6 billion order for 175 passenger jets from Boeing.
- Boeing and Airbus are upgrading their medium-haul passenger models to offer about 15% fuel savings from the middle of the decade. The fact that the 737 provided nine more seats than the A320 was more important to Ryanair than fuel savings, CEO O’Leary said.
- Samsung is developing a wearable digital device similar to a wristwatch, joining rival Apple in creating new products.
- Europe’s car market shrank a further 10.2% in February. Ford’s sales dropped 20.8%. GM and Fiat were the next biggest fallers, dropping 20.1% and 15.7% respectively.
- Walgreen’s fiscal second-quarter earnings climbed 11%, helped by contributions from European health and beauty retailer Alliance Boots, a business sale gain, and its new contract with Express Scripts. Walgreen operated 8,072 drugstores or 231 more than it had a year ago.
- Farmers from Australia to Europe to the U.S. are poised to reap the second-largest wheat crop on record as fields recover from drought and heat waves, boosting global stockpiles for the first time in four years. Output will climb 4.3%, about 10 million tons short of the all-time high set two years ago.
US ECONOMY & POLITICS
- Housing starts gained a smaller-than-expected 0.8% in February, yet an upward revision to January left the level of housing starts in line with expectations at 917,000 units.
- Single family starts rose 0.5% while multi-family starts rose 1.4% in February. Over the past 12 months, total housing starts are up a strong 27.7% and single family starts are up 31.5%.
- Building permits rose more than expected, up 4.6%, with gains in both single family (+2.7%) and multi-family (+8.1%) categories, continuing the upward trend seen over the past two years.
- More homeowners got back above water. There were 10.4 million homeowners who owed more on their mortgages than their homes were worth in the final quarter of 2012, down from 10.6 million in the third quarter, said CoreLogic.
EUROPE & WORLD
- Cyprus’s government proposed to spare small savers from a divisive levy on bank deposits but said it expects parliament to reject the measure.
- Cyprus Central Bank governor expects 10% of deposits to be withdrawn when banks reopen.
- The euro zone cannot lend more to Cyprus than the 10 billion euro ($13 billion) bailout it agreed, French Finance Minister Pierre Moscovici said.
- Investor confidence in Germany unexpectedly edged higher this month. The ZEW institute’s index, which measures investors’ outlook for the next six months, rose to 48.5 points in March from 48.2 in February.
- India’s central bank lowered its key interest rate by a quarter percentage point to 7.5%.
- China’s foreign direct investment rose for the first time in nine months in February, a sign that confidence in Chinese economy is improving amid optimism growth will keep rebounding.
TODAY in HISTORY
- The first bank robbery in America was reported. The City Bank of New York City lost $245,000 in the heist (1831)
- Nevada state legislature legalized gambling (1931)
- The Academy Awards were first televised (1953)
- Workers are saving too little to retire.
- Workers and employers in the U.S. are bracing for a retirement crisis, even as the stock market sits near highs and the economy shows signs of improvement. New data show that powerful financial and demographic forces are combining to squeeze individuals and companies that are trying to save for the future and make their money last.
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.