US FINANCIAL MARKET
- Stocks opened higher on Wednesday on optimism that U.S. politicians would strike a last-minute deal to prevent the country from defaulting on its debt, an event that could roil markets and economies worldwide.
- Bank of America posted a quarterly shareholder profit of $2.22 billion, reversing a year-earlier loss, as fewer loans went bad. Revenue in the third quarter fell 1.5 percent to $22.19 billion. Bank of America set aside $296 million to cover bad loans, compared with $1.77 billion in the same quarter last year.
- PepsiCo reported higher quarterly earnings and said it was on track to meet its financial goals for the year, despite a sluggish economy. Net income was $1.91 billion, up from $1.90 billion a year earlier. Net revenue rose 1.5 percent to $16.91 billion.
- Abbott Laboratories reported higher-than-expected quarterly earnings and boosted its quarterly dividend by more than 50 percent.
- W.W. Grainger reported lower-than-expected quarterly earnings.
- BlackRock, the world’s largest money manager, said that its third-quarter profit rose 15 percent, boosted by strong investor demand for the company’s iShares and retail business. The company reported net income of $730 million, up from $642 million a year earlier. BlackRock ended the quarter with total assets under management (AUM) of $4.1 trillion.
- Intel’s third-quarter results modestly beat expectations, but its current-quarter revenue outlook fell short and it warned that production of its upcoming Broadwell processors was delayed. Intel posted net earnings of $2.95 billion compared to $2.97 billion in the year-ago quarter. Revenue was $13.48 billion, barely changed from $13.46 billion in the year-ago quarter.
- Yahoo’s net revenue dipped slightly in the third quarter as prices for its display ads remained under pressure. Yahoo said it earned $297 million in net income in the third quarter.
- Yahoo also said it was selling less of its 24 percent stake in Alibaba’s planned initial public offering in 2014.
- Twitter revealed a tripling in quarterly losses as it prepares to list on the New York Stock Exchange in one of the year’s most anticipated IPOs. The company more than doubled its third-quarter revenue to $168.6 million. But net losses widened to $64.6 million in the September quarter compared with $21.6 million a year earlier. Sales and marketing costs rose to $61.2 million from $23.7 million a year earlier. Twitter grew its monthly active users 39 percent to 231.7 million on average. That figure was up from about 218 million when the company first disclosed its IPO filing on October 3.
- Apple has told manufacturers of the 5C that it will cut orders of the smartphone for the final three months of the year. But analysts said the decision by consumers to spend more and buy the pricier 5S model would benefit Apple.
- Amazon and HTC have been in talks since at least June to develop handsets for sale to users of the Amazon Prime service. Amazon started working with Foxconn Technology Group last year on a smartphone that would enable customers to view its content.
- Boeing said a body panel fell off of a 787 Dreamliner operated by Air India while the plane was in flight on Saturday. Boeing said the loss of the fuselage panel posed no safety risk to passengers.
- Wal-Mart expects slightly stronger sales growth next year as it makes changes such as opening more smaller U.S. stores and shutting 50 poorly performing stores in Brazil and China. Wal-Mart expects its overall sales to rise to $475 billion to $480 billion this fiscal year, a gain of about 1.9 percent to 3 percent over last year’s $466.11 billion. For fiscal 2015, it is targeting 3 percent to 5 percent growth.
- JPMorgan agreed to pay $100 million to resolve Commodity Futures Trading Commission claims that the company deployed a “recklessly aggressive” trading strategy in derivatives bets last year, CFTC Commissioner Bart Chilton said in a statement today.
- Advance Auto Parts agreed to buy General Parts International, a privately held parts maker, for $2.04 billion in cash.
- LVMH’s CEO said that growth at its flagship Louis Vuitton fashion brand was slightly below that of the group’s fashion and leather division in the third quarter.
- The $1.5 billion U.S. electronic-cigarette industry has tripled sales this year with the help of TV ads, Nascar sponsorships and product giveaways. Government regulation may now threaten those marketing tactics. The FDA is set to decide this month whether to lump e-cigarettes in with conventional smokes as part of its oversight of the $90 billion U.S. tobacco market.
- Top Analyst Upgrades and Stocks to Buy:
- Apple was reiterated at Buy and the price target was raised to $580 from $560 according to Canaccord Genuity.
- Home Depot was started as Buy at SunTrust.
- Lowe’s was started as Buy at SunTrust.
- Intel was raised to Buy from Neutral at B. Riley, reiterated Outperform with $30 price target at Credit Suisse and reiterated Buy with $28 target at Bank of America Merrill Lynch.
- Whole Foods Market was started as Outperform at BMO Capital Markets.
- Cisco was downgraded to Neutral from Buy at MKM Partners.
US ECONOMY & POLITICS
- Fitch Ratings warned on Tuesday it could cut the sovereign credit rating of the United States from AAA, citing the political brinkmanship over raising the federal debt ceiling.
- U.S. Senate leaders are rushing to lock up an agreement to end the fiscal impasse, stepping in after House Republicans’ last-minute plan to avert a U.S. government default collapsed. The emerging Senate accord may be announced as early as this morning, though passage in the Republican-led House is far from assured.
- Confidence among U.S. homebuilders fell more than forecast in October to a four-month low as rising interest rates and the budget battle in Washington stifled progress in the housing market. The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo index of builder sentiment decreased to 55 this month from a revised 57 in September.
EUROPE & WORLD
- U.K. jobless claims fell the most in 16 years last month as a wider measure of unemployment remained at 7.7 percent amid signs that the labor market is improving.
- European monthly car sales rose the most in more than two years as the end of a recession in the region. Registrations in September jumped 5.5 percent to 1.19 million vehicles.
TODAY in HISTORY
- French queen Marie Antoinette was guillotined for treason (1793)
- Margaret Sanger opened the first birth-control clinic in New York City (1916)
- The Cuban Missile Crisis began (1962)
- China detonated its first atomic bomb (1964)
- John Paul II was elected pope (1978)
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. Securities offered though LPL financial Member FINRA / SIPC