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After hours buzz: Martha Stewart, Netflix & more
Martha Stewart Omnimedia surged more than 25 percent in extended-hours trade on news that the media entity has entered into a 10-year partnership with marketing firm Meredith, which will take over ad sales, circulation and production of Martha Stewart Living and Martha Stewart Weddings magazines. Shares of Meredith were unchanged in after-hours trade.
Apple lost about 1 percent in after-hours trade on reported leaks of its new iPads ahead of an expected launch event on Thursday.
Wal-Mart fell 0.7 percent in extended-hours trade after the world’s largest retailer cut its full-year sales growth forecast.
Netflix slid nearly 26 percent in after-hours trade after the video-streaming service reported subscriber growth figures were lower than expected, despite posting earnings in line with estimates.
EBay lost 3 percent in extended-hours trade after the e-commerce firm missed revenue expectations and reported disappointing guidance.
American Express declined 1 percent in extended-hours trade after the world’s largest credit card issuer posted earnings that beat estimates and revenue that slightly missed expectations.
Las Vegas Sands gained nearly 2 percent in after-hours trade as the casino operator posted third-quarter earnings that matched expectations.
Hit by Netflix and market losses, the Nasdaq 100 ETF, the PowerShares QQQ Trust, lost nearly 1 percent in extended-hours trading.
The S&P 500 ETF, SPY, also declined more than 0.7 percent in after-hours trade.
U.S. stocks cut losses in harrowing, volatile session
NEW YORK (MarketWatch) — Wall Street flirted with its worst decline in more than 3 years in a roller -coaster day of trading that culminated with shares recovering from the depths of what began as a bona fide market rout Wednesday.
U.S. stocks sold off amid the largest volume in nearly three years, as investors jettisoned risky securities and scrambled for the safety of government bonds as 10-year Treasurys surged and yields briefly dipped below 2%, until settling at a 52-week low.
Implied volatility on the S&P 500, as measured by the CBOE Vix index jumped to levels not seen in more than 2 years. Vix rose 15% to 26.
The S&P 500 SPX, -0.81% briefly turned negative for the year before rebounding and on intraday basis recorded a 9.8% decline from peak to trough. The benchmark index closed down 15.21 points, or 0.8%, to 1,862.49.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, -1.06% fell as much as 460 points, but finished down 173.45 points, or 1.1%, to 16,141.74.
The Nasdaq Composite COMP, -0.28% at one point entered correction territory, falling more than 10% from its previous peak, but regained its footing, finishing with modest losses. The tech-heavy index closed down 11.85 points, or 0.3%, to 4,215.32.
Meanwhile, the Russell 2000 RUT, +1.02% defied selling pressure and finished the day up 7 points, or 0.7%, at 1,069.
Strategists at Voya Investment Management blamed a “perfect storm” on the selloff. That storm includes: “The surging dollar, plummeting oil prices and recessionary bond yields are creating havoc in the markets because they are signaling deflation. No, not just in Europe but globally as well,” they wrote in a note.
Disappointing economic reports added to already jittery sentiment on Wall Street. Reports on manufacturing in the state of New York and U.S. wholesale prices missed expectations, and a reading on retail sales showed a decline for the first time in eight months. http://www.marketwatch.com/story/us-stocks-futures-flat-ahead-of-bank-of-america-results-retail-sales-2014-10-15
Tumultuous stock market plagued by ‘mini flash crashes’
WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — In a session Wednesday marked by heavy, whipsaw trading, there were instances of what some are calling “mini flash crashes,” again showing the fragility of heavily automated stock markets.
In the first hour of trading, numerous companies saw a dramatic drop in their stock prices before recovering. http://www.marketwatch.com/story/market-turmoil-plagued-by-mini-flash-crashes-2014-10-15
Investors are scared. The CBOE Volatility Index, or VIX VIX, +25.58% which measures implied volatility on the S&P 500 jumped to as high as 31.06, the highest level since December 2011 during the worst of the eurozone debt crisis. The index traded recently at 29.47.
That is a huge jump when measured versus the persistently and extraordinarily low levels that investors grew accustomed to over the past two years, but it is only slightly above historical average of 20. As the Federal Reserve withdraws its liquidity support, these levels may again become the norm. Also read: Strap in! Wall Street’s roller coaster here to stay.
Here’s what’s driving the market meltdown
Weak U.S. data, Europe, Ebola fears play role in selloff
NEW YORK (MarketWatch) — Interconnected worries over deflation, a potential rerun of the eurozone debt crisis and some surprisingly rotten U.S. economic data are shocking investors on Wednesday.
Here’s a rundown of the carnage:
It was panic mode in the early going, as the Dow DJIA, -2.04% plunged as much as 370 points as the S&P 500 SPX, -2.08% erased its gain for the year. Losses reaccelerated in early afternoon.
The S&P 500 has recorded a decline of 9% from its intraday peak reached on Sept. 19 to its trough on Wednesday. Financials and consumer discretionary stocks are leading the way lower.
While stock prices climbed the wall of worry for the first nine month of the year, strategists were at a loss to point to a single catalyst for this selloff. It appears a confluence of bad news spooked investors this time.
A trio of disappointing U.S. economic reports — retail sales, the Empire State Index and the producer price index — ahead of the opening bell, problems in Europe and mounting concerns over the threat posed by Ebola were all been cited as reasons for the drop.
The 10-year Treasury note yield 10_YEAR, -6.46% which serves as a benchmark for all sorts of borrowing costs, from mortgages to students loans, took a sharp tumble on Wednesday as investors sought the safety on bonds. At one point Wednesday morning, the yield, which moves in the opposite direction as prices, dropped as much as a third of a percentage point, with the yield pushing below 2% for the first time since June 2013. It rebounded higher to trade at 2.050%, according to Tradeweb
Nonetheless, the 10-year yield is down nearly a full percentage point since the end of last year, defying the expectations of most investors, who were bracing for rising rates. The most recent drop comes as investors found particular reason to fear global economic weakness. Signs of lagging inflation in Europe and slowing growth in Asia combined with weak U.S. numbers to suggest that a slow-growth global economy could delay plans for the Federal Reserve to hike its key lending rates. http://www.marketwatch.com/story/heres-whats-driving-the-market-meltdown-2014-10-15
S&P 500 on track for biggest percentage drop in 3 years
NEW YORK (MarketWatch) — The S&P 500 has plunged 48 points, or 2.6%, to 1,829.62 on Wednesday. If it closes at this level, it will be its biggest one-day percentage drop in 3 years. The benchmark index is more than 9% below its record close, reached on Sept 18.
Dow plunges 450 points, S&P drops 3%: Worst day in nearly 3 years
10:10am Great to see getting a much deserved bounce .015 +94%
9:41am getting a much due bounce .0015 x .0016 +23%
Gold turns higher after disappointing US economic data
Gold prices turned higher Wednesday, shrugging off early-morning losses, after a trio of weak U.S. economic reports boosted hopes of a prolonged period of low interest rates from the Federal Reserve.
U.S. stock futures fall after weak data
NEW YORK (MarketWatch) — U.S. stock futures headed lower after a trio of economic releases came in weaker than expected, pointing to another day of selling on Wall Street. Investors reacted to weak reports on consumer health and manufacturing in the New York region. Retail sales fell in September for the first time in eight months, showing a continued reluctance among Americans to splurge on consumer goods. Wholesale prices fell slightly in September as inflationary pressure in the nation’s economic pipeline continued to recede. Meanwhile the Empire State manufacturing survey retreated sharply in October, the New York Fed said Wednesday. Futures for the S&P 500 fell 22 points, or 1.2%, to 1,852. Dow Jones Industrial Average futures fell 142 points, or 0.9%, to 16,112. The Nasdaq 100 futures fell 38 points, or 1%, to 3,773.
Retail sales fall for first time since January
A 0.3% drop in September would have been worse if not for iPhone
WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — Sales at U.S. retailers fell in September for the first time in eight months and only the release of Apple’s new iPhone 6 prevented an even steeper decline.
Sales at retail outlets dropped a seasonally adjusted 0.3% last month, showing a continued reluctance among Americans to splurge on consumer goods. Economists polled by MarketWatch expected a 0.2% reduction.
Although the decrease stemmed mainly from lower purchases of cars, trucks and gasoline, sales were soft in most categories. Internet retailers, clothing outlets and home-improvement stores all saw outright declines, the Commerce Department reported Wednesday.
The one bright spot: electronics stores, whose sales jumped 3.4% to mark the biggest gain in a year and a half. They benefited from Apple’s launch of the iPhone 6.
Retail sales account for about one-fourth of consumer spending, the main engine of U.S. economic activity. Lackluster consumer spending is a chief reason why the recovery that began five years ago is the weakest in post-war history. Sales have risen 4.3% in the past 12 months, about two-thirds the historic growth rate.
Still, there’s a good chance sales will snap back in October. Auto purchases tapered off last month after a big surge in August, but they are still on track to post the biggest annual increase in 2014 in at least eight years. And Internet retailers rarely suffer consecutive declines.
The decline in spending at gasoline stations, meanwhile, is good news for consumers.
Economists at Deutsche Bank, for example, estimate Americans could collectively pocket an extra $40 billion in cash if prices hold steady at $3.30, the equivalent of three-tenths of annual gross domestic product.
Put another way, households that fill up two cars twice a month would spend about $25 less. They could pocket the savings or use the cash to pay for other goods and services.
In August, the increase in retail sales was unchanged at 0.6%.
Stock futures SPZ4, -1.31% extended their losses after the retail sales report, as well as separate data showing a big slowdown in New York-state manufacturing sentiment and the first drop in producer prices in more than a year. http://www.marketwatch.com/story/retail-sales-fall-for-first-time-since-january-2014-10-15
U.S. retail sales fall 0.3% in September amid broad weakness
WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) – U.S. retail sales fell in September for the first time in eight months and the decline would have been even sharper if not for the release of the new iPhones, showing a continued reluctance among Americans to splurge on consumer goods. Sales at retail outlets fell a seasonally adjusted 0.3% last month, chiefly because of lower purchases of cars, trucks and gasoline, the Commerce Department said Wednesday. Economists polled by MarketWatch had forecast a 0.3% decline. Yet even if autos and gas are excluded, retail purchases fell 0.1% last month. Internet retailers, apparel outlets and home-improvement stores all saw a decline in sales. The one bright spot: electronics stores, whose sales jumped 3.4% to mark the biggest gain in a year and a half. They benefited from Apple’s launch of the iPhone 6. Retail sales account for about one-fourth of consumer spending, the main engine of U.S. economic activity. Sales have risen 4.3% in the past 12 months, about two-thirds the historic growth rate.
Empire State manufacturing index slows sharply in October
Index drops to 6.2 from hitting 27.5 in September
WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — Manufacturing in the New York region slowed sharply in October, according to data released Wednesday, in a worrying signal for the U.S. economy.
The New York Fed’s Empire State general business conditions index plunged to 6.2 in October after hitting a near five-year high of 27.5 in the prior month.
The drop was much larger than expected. A MarketWatch survey of economists called for a reading of 21.0 in October. Readings greater than zero signal expansion.
October’s reading is the lowest level of the index since April.
Stock futures SPZ4, -1.32% extended their losses after the data was released, as well as separate data showing a decline in retail sales and producer prices.
The Empire State index is of interest to traders primarily because it’s seen as an early forecast of the national Institute for Supply Management factory survey due out in two weeks. In September, the ISM manufacturing gauge fell to 56.6% from 59.0% in August, in readings where over 50% indicates improving sentiment.
The new orders index of the Empire State index dropped to negative 1.7 in October from 16.9 in the prior month. The shipments index fell 26 points to 1.1,
Unfilled orders remained negative. Both price indexes retreated in October.
The employment indexes were mixed. The number of employes index rose to 10.2 in October from 3.3 in the prior month while the average workweek slipped to negative 1.1 from 3.3 in the prior month.
The index of future general business conditions fell 5 points to 41.7 in October. http://www.marketwatch.com/story/empire-state-manufacturing-index-slows-sharply-in-october-2014-10-15