Friday’s Market Prepper

Friday's Market Prepper







President Trump has delivered a message to House Republicans: If the American Health Care Act doesn't pass today, we're moving on. That means Obamacare would stay in place if enough conservative lawmakers don't get behind the new healthcare legislation. Investors regard the vote as a test for the Trump administration that could show whether it can muster the backing needed to push through its economic agenda.


Dallas Fed President Robert Kaplan sees three interest rate rises in 2017 as "a reasonable baseline." I'm not "looking for a pause" in rate raises as long as U.S. employment and inflation figures continue to improve, he told reporters, adding that it would be right for the Fed to begin trimming its balance sheet in the future. Kaplan is a voting member on the FOMC.

There is "no reason" to withdraw the bank's massive monetary stimulus now or raise bond yield targets, as inflation remains far from its 2% goal, BOJ Governor Haruhiko Kuroda said at a Reuters Newsmaker event. He also dismissed market concerns that the central bank will eventually lose its ability to control long-term interest rates under its yield curve control framework.

The possibility of the United States branding South Korea a currency manipulator cannot be ruled out, according to Finance Minister Yoo Il-ho. Those "problems" could happen if America changes its criteria. A formal declaration of currency manipulation requires the U.S. Treasury to seek negotiations to resolve the situation or could result in punitive tariffs.

Belgian authorities are tightening security around Antwerp after a man drove his car at high speed through a busy shopping area, forcing pedestrians to jump out of the way. Police have arrested the suspected driver, identified as Mohamed R., a 39-year old French man of North African origin. Knives, a shotgun and a canister with an unknown liquid were found in his vehicle.

Economic activity in the eurozone accelerated in March, bolstering optimism over the region in the face of Brexit. Markit's flash composite PMI rose to 56.7, hitting a nearly six-year high, from 56.0 in February. "It signals GDP growth of 0.6% in the first quarter," said Chris Williamson, chief economist at IHS Markit. "It's an economy firing on all cylinders."

Oil is set for its third weekly drop ahead of this weekend's meeting in Kuwait, at which OPEC and its production-cutting allies will assess the effectiveness of their actions to date. Talks will also be overshadowed by the question of whether the persisting glut requires curbs to be extended beyond the summer.


On a party-line vote of 50-48, the Senate has approved overturning Obama-era regulations that put strict requirements on consumer privacy protection. The agency, then led by Tom Wheeler, voted to require ISPs to get consumer consent before using data like health and financial information, as well as precise geolocation in ads and internal marketing. Major providers opposed the restrictions at the time. Related tickers: T, VZ, CMCSA, CHTR, FTR, CTL, WIN, CCOI, OTCPK:ATCEY

The YouTube advertising exodus continues as Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ), JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM) and LYFT pull ads from the platform amid concerns they may have appeared on channels that broadcast offensive videos. Whether the recent events are a harbinger of bigger problems may depend on whether Google can give businesses more control over ad placement. Alphabet (GOOG, GOOGL) shares this week have already fallen more than 3%.

Looking to create a new revenue stream, Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) is exploring a subscription-based premium version of its Tweetdeck interface. "We're conducting this survey to assess the interest," a spokeswoman told The Verge. Tweetdeck's core service would remain free, but the advanced platform - including new analytics, alerts about breaking news and other tools - could run about $20 per month.

Four tech giants are heading back to the line of scrimmage. Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), Twitter (TWTR) and YouTube (GOOG, GOOGL) have all submitted proposals to the NFL in the hope of streaming Thursday Night Football games next season. Twitter won the contest last season with a $10M bid (CBS and NBC pay a lot more for the rights to broadcast the 10 games on TV).

CEOs must speak up to ensure America remains globally competitive, BOX chief Aaron Levie told CNBC, declaring "we are at a point where business and politics are inseparable." Corporate leaders must take a more active role in telling Washington what they think about things like immigration reform, encryption policy, privacy issues, global trade and healthcare, which, "is certainly going to impact a lot of different markets."

HSBC plans to add as many as 1,000 new employees to its Chinese retail banking and wealth management arm this year, most of them in the Pearl River Delta, the heart of the bank's growth strategy in China. If that target is hit, the new additions will mean HSBC will have hired twice as many people for the business as it did in 2016, suggesting its growth in the region remains strong.

Brexit boost... Deutsche Bank (NYSE:DB) +1% premarket after choosing a new office for its London headquarters, signaling a vote of confidence in Britain's capital. Employing around 7,000 people in London, the German lender is due to begin transferring staff to the new building, which will house its corporate and investment bank, in the second half of 2023.

Credit Suisse has restated its full-year earnings to reflect a charge of 272M francs after reaching a settlement on toxic mortgage securities with the U.S. National Credit Union Administration. The move comes as the bank increased its bonus pool by 6%, defying a trend toward smaller payouts at many of its peers to prevent an exodus of top talent. CS +1.1% premarket.

Marking another setback for the agency in a high-profile international corporate tax case, Amazon (AMZN) has won a more than $1.5B tax dispute with the IRS over its transactions with a Luxembourg subsidiary. Judge Albert Lauber of the U.S. Tax Court rejected a variety of IRS arguments, and found that on several occasions it abused its discretion, or acted arbitrarily or capriciously.

Hershey and the trust that controls it are filling positions on their respective boards following a year marked by a $23B acquisition overture from Mondelez (NASDAQ:MDLZ) and a series of resignations. The departures followed criticism of poor governance, excessive compensation and unnecessary expenses at the Hershey Trust (NYSE:HSY) by its overseer, the Pennsylvania attorney general.

Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes plans to give out personal shares in the company to investors who promise not to sue her or the blood testing firm. Investors could get about two additional shares for each one they bought, meaning the effective cost would be lowered to about $5, WSJ reports. Though Theranos (Private:THERA) raked in more than $600M in its latest funding rounds, it now has about $150M or less in cash, excluding debt.

"There are serious discussions with the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE:ICE) about having the NYSE be one of the exchanges for the Aramco (Private:ARMCO) IPO and I believe the decision will be made on the financial merits," Saudi foreign minister Adel al-Jubeir told Fox News. "Our objective is to try to complete the IPO sometime in 2018."

The U.S. State Department is expected to approve the construction of TransCanada's (NYSE:TRP) Keystone oil pipeline today, Reuters reports, ahead of Monday's deadline to complete a review of the project. The move would mark the beginning of a process that could be lengthy; approvals are needed from state regulators, and the endeavor, which was previously blocked by the Obama administration, could face legal challenges. TRP +1.6% premarket.

Thursday's Key Earnings
Conagra Brands (NYSE:CAG) -0.3% as sales declined.
GameStop (NYSE:GME) -11.3% AH after weak guidance.
Micron (NASDAQ:MU) +10.3% AH on strong NAND demand.

Today's Markets
In Asia, Japan +0.9%. Hong Kong +0.1%. China +0.6%. India +0.3%.
In Europe, at midday, London -0.2%. Paris -0.5%. Frankfurt -0.2%.
Futures at 6:20, Dow +0.2%. S&P +0.2%. Nasdaq +0.2%. Crude +0.7% to $48.01. Gold -0.3% to $1243.70.
Ten-year Treasury Yield flat at 2.42%

Today's Economic Calendar
8:00 Fed's Evans speech
8:05 Fed's Bullard speech
8:30 Durable Goods
9:45 PMI Composite Flash
1:00 PM Baker-Hughes Rig Count

Known to most as Uranium Pinto Beans, Jason has more than 15 years under his belt of trading stocks, options and currencies. His expertise primarily lies in chart analysis, and he has a strong eye for undervalued stock. Because he’s got the ability to identify great risk/reward trades he usually enjoys taking the path less traveled and reaping the benefits from the adventure.

He is a co-founder of Option Millionaires, and he is best known for his weekly webinars with Scott, as well as his high level training webinars and charts found in the forums.

More Posts by UPB: View All | Private Twitter Feed: Access Now! (For Diamond Members)

Leave a Reply