July Construction Spending declined 0.9% in July the biggest drop in a year. The national Manufacturing ISM came in a weaker than expected 49.6 in August. The Dow Jones Industrial Average traded down from 13,092.39 to 12,977.09 in morning trading then consolidated in the afternoon. The NASDAQ traded down from 3068.41 to 3040.24 in morning trading then rebounded to 3082.26 in the afternoon.
Asian stocks were mixed on Monday. The Nikkei 225 ended the day at 8,784 – down 0.63%. The Hang Seng ended the day at 19,559 – up 0.39%. On Tuesday Asian stocks were lower. The Nikkei 225 ended the day at 8,776 – down 0.10%. The Hang Seng ended the day at 19,430 – down 0.66%. European exchanges were higher on Monday. The FTSE 100 ended the day at 5,758 – up 0.82%. The DAX ended the day at 7,015 – up 0.63%. The CAC 40 ended the day at 3,454 – up 1.19%. European exchanges were lower on Tuesday. The FTSE 100 ended the day at 5,672 – down 1.50%. The DAX ended the day at 6,933 – down 1.17%. The CAC 40 ended the day at 3,399 – down 1.58%.
US Treasuries were closed on Monday, and today the yield on the 10-Year US Treasury rose from 1.542% to 1.596% versus its 50-day simple moving average at 1.590%. Comex gold traded up from $1687.6 the Troy ounce to $1698.4 on Monday well above the 200-day simple moving average at $1645.8. The rally continued on Tuesday to $1701.6. Crude oil rebounded from $96.01 per barrel to $97.37 on Monday above the 200-day simple moving average at $96.66. On Tuesday crude oil declined to $94.97. The euro versus the dollar rebounded from 1.2563 to 1.2608 on Monday staying between its 50-day and 200-day simple moving averages at 1.2368 and 1.2850. On Tuesday the euro dipped to 1.2559. US equity markets were closed on Monday.
Northern Tier Energy (NTI) is initiated with a Buy at Goldman Sachs and Bank of America-Merrill, while Credit Suisse is equally bullish at Outperform. Dahlman Rose downgrades Alpha Natural Resources (ANR), Peabody Energy (BTU), and Walter Energy (WLT), all to Hold from Buy.
Big Movers – Heckmann (HEK) up 28.62%.
Dow components – Chevron (CVX) down 0.96%, Exxon Mobil (XOM) down 0.56%.
Energy Select Sector SPDR (XLE) was trading at $70.96 at 3:30 PM on Tuesday, down 0.80% on the day – up 2.65% year-to-date.
ArcelorMittal (MT) is a new Buy at Jefferies. Dow Components – Alcoa (AA) down 1.69%, DuPont (DD) down 1.87%. The Materials Select Sector SPDR (XLB) was trading at $35.22 at 3:30 PM on Tuesday, down 1.21% on the day – up 5.13% year-to-date.
Ingersoll-Rand (IR) is lowered to Neutral from Buy at Bank of America-Merrill Lynch. CSX Corp (CSX) and Norfolk Southern (NSC) are each cut to Hold from Buy at Dahlman Rose. Dow components – Boeing Co (BA) down 0.95%, Caterpillar (CAT) down 3.35%, General Electric (GE) down 0.99%, 3M Company (MMM) down 1.10%, United Technologies (UTX) down 2.02%.
The Industrial Select Sector SPDR (XLI) was trading at $36.067 at 3:30 PM on Tuesday, down 0.81% on the day – up 6.87% year-to-date.
It may sound like a contradiction in terms, but McDonald's (MCD) will open its first ever vegetarian restaurants at two locations near Indian pilgrimage centers later this year. Data for August auto sales are due out today, with those of new light vehicles in the U.S. expected to rise 17.2% on year to 1.255M units. Margins should improve as incentive spending per unit falls 6%. Japanese automakers should lead the charge again, boosted by earthquake-affected comparisons from last year, while Volkswagen (VLKAY) and Ford (F) are also tipped for a strong month. Manchester United (MANU) is initiated with a Buy at Jefferies, a Buy at Deutsche Bank, an Overweight at JPMorgan, and an Outperform at Credit Suisse. Nomura, with a Neutral and $13 target, advises greater caution. Big 5 Sporting Goods (BGFV) is boosted to Overweight from Neutral at Piper Jaffray. GameStop (GME) gets upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Goldman Sachs. News Corp. (NWSA) is boosted to Overweight from Equal Weight at Barclays. AutoZone (AZO) is removed from the Conviction Buy list at Goldman.
Dow Components – Disney (DIS) up 0.02%, Home Depot (HD) down 0.07%, McDonalds (MCD) down 0.50%.
The Consumer Discretionary Select Sector SPDR (XLY) was trading at $45.49 at 3:30 PM on Tuesday, down 0.13% on the day – up 16.58% year-to-date.
Campbell Soup (CPB) beat estimates by 3 cents with revenue in-line with estimates. For FY13, the company sees growing sales between 10%-12% and EPS by 3%-5% to $2.51-$2.57. Smithfield Foods (SFD) missed estimates by 4 cents and revenue by $60M. Annie’s Inc. (BNNY) is initiated with a Buy at SunTrust. ConAgra Foods (CAG) is moved to Overweight from Neutral at JPMorgan.
Dow components – Kraft (KFT) up 0.58%, Coca Cola (KO) down 0.11%, Procter & Gamble (PG) up 0.22%, Wal-Mart (WMT) up 1.29%.
The Consumer Staples Select Sector SPDR (XLP) was trading at $35.691 at 3:30 PM on Tuesday, up 0.65% on the day – up 9.85% year-to-date.
Valeant Pharmaceuticals (VRX) has agreed to acquire Medicis Pharmaceuticals (MRX), a provider of dermatological and aesthetic pharmaceutical products, for $2.6B ($44 a share - a 39% premium). Humana (HUM) is lifted to Outperform from Market Perform at Leerink. Medicis Pharmaceutical (MRX) is now Neutral from Underperform at Credit Suisse.
Big Movers – Medicis Pharmaceutical (MRX) up 38.12%, Valeant Pharmaceuticals (VRX) up 15.04%.
Dow Components – Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) down 0.24%, Merck (MRK) up 0.33%, Pfizer (PFE) down 0.31%.
The Health Care Select Sector SPDR (XLV) was trading at $38.96 at 3:30 PM on Tuesday, up 0.31% on the day – up 12.31% year-to-date.
The New York AG has reportedly subpoenaed at least a dozen P-E companies as part of an investigation into the legality of a widespread tax strategy that has saved the firms hundreds of millions of dollars. The companies include KKR, Apollo Global Management (APO) and Bain. Ellington Financial (EFC) is assigned an Outperform at JMP Securities. Performant Financial (PFMT) is a new Outperform with Wells Fargo. Goldman Sachs (GS) downgraded elsewhere this morning, is upgraded by Crédit Agricole to Buy from Outperform. Morgan Stanley (MS) is upgraded to Overweight from Neutral at JPMorgan. Nomura (NMR) is now Neutral from Underperform at Macquarie. NYSE Euronext (NYX) is upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at Keefe Bruyette. Banco Santander (SAN) is downgraded to Hold from Buy at ING Groep. Fifth Third Bancorp (FITB) is downgraded to Equal Weight from Overweight at Evercore. Amid expectations investment banking capital requirements could be larger than expected, Barclays (BCS) is downgraded to Neutral from Overweight at JPMorgan, which gives an identical ratings reduction to Goldman Sachs (GS). Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) is lowered to Hold from Buy at Investec.
Dow Components – American Express (AXP) up 0.07%, Bank of America (BAC) down 0.50%, JP Morgan Chase (JPM) down 0.75%, Travelers (TRV) down 0.45%.
The Financial Select Sector SPDR (XLF) was trading at $15.16 at 3:30 PM on Tuesday, unchanged on the day – up 16.62% year-to-date.
An international research team that includes university scientists, Nokia (NOK) and Toshiba (TOSBF) is introducing a breakthrough quantum chip at the British Science Festival. The chip will provide greatly enhanced security that's "guaranteed by the laws of physics" for smartphones and computers, as well as making them much faster: working on light, 100 photons could theoretically solve trillions of equations simultaneously. EZchip Semiconductor (EZCH) is a new Buy at Deutsche Bank. Peregrine Semiconductor (PSMI) is picked up with an Overweight at JPMorgan. Informatica (INFA) is upgraded to Outperform from Neutral at Robert W. Baird. International Business Machines (IBM) is boosted to Overweight from Equal Weight by Barclays. Marvell Technology (MRVL) gets moved to Neutral from Reduce at Nomura. TiVo Inc. (TIVO) is upgraded to Overweight from Neutral at JPMorgan. Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) is downgraded to Underweight at Evercore. ARM Holdings (ARMH) is cut to Sell from Hold at Deutsche Bank. Fiserv (FISV) is downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Goldman Sachs. Monolithic Power (MPWR) is downgraded to Neutral from Overweight at Piper Jaffray. Nvidia (NVDA) is now Neutral from Positive at Susquehanna. Skyworks (SWKS) is cut to Equal Weight from Overweight at Barclays.
Dow Components – Cisco Systems (CSCO) down 0.73%, Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) down 0.06%, IBM (IBM) down 0.55%, Intel Corp (INTC) down 1.97%, Microsoft (MSFT) down 1.88%.
The Technology Select Sector SPDR (XLK) was trading at $30.50 at 3:30 PM on Tuesday, up 0.03% on the day – up 19.84% year-to-date.
Vodafone (VOD) is downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform by Sanford Bernstein. Dow Components – AT&T (T) up 0.44%, Verizon (VZ) up 1.61%. The NASDAQ Telecommunications Index (IXTC) was trading at $194.78 at 3:30 PM on Tuesday, down 0.27% on the day – down 1.09% year-to-date.
American States Water (AWR) is reduced to Neutral from Outperform at Robert W. Baird. Dominion Resources (D) down 0.11%, Edison International (EIX) up 0.26%, First Energy (FE) down 0.26%, PG&E Corp (PCG) down 0.16%, Southern Company (SO) up 0.22%. The Utilities Select Sector SPDR (XLU) was trading at $36.50 at 3:30 PM on Tuesday, up 0.41% on the day – up 1.45% year-to-date.
STOCKS: CVX, XOM, AA, DD, BA, CAT, GE, MMM, UTX, DIS, HD, MCD, KFT, KO, PG, WMT, JNJ, MRK, PFE, AXP, BAC, JPM, TRV, CSCO, HPQ, IBM, INTC, MSFT, T, VZ, D, EIX, FE, PCG, SO, NTI, ANR, BTU, WLT, MT, IR, CSX, NSC, VLKAY, F, MANU, BGFV, GME, NWSA, AZO, CPB, SFD, BNNY, CAG, VRX, MRX, HUM, MRX, APO, EFC, PFMT, GS, MS, NMR, NYX, SAN, FITB, BCS, RBS, NOK, TOSBF, EZCH, PSMI, INFA, IBM, MRVL, TIVO, AMD, ARMH, FISV, MPWR, NVDA, SWKS, VOD, AWR
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