In Portfolioticker today
Today at the stock market
“Wall Street dipped on Monday, as a selloff in technology shares weighed heavily on the Nasdaq, while the most recent statement from North Korea’s to Washington added to a cautious tone.
On Nasdaq, a 1.26-to-1 ratio favored decliners.
North Korea’s foreign minister said President Donald Trump had declared war on the country and it reserved the right to take countermeasures, including shooting down U.S. bombers even if they are not in its airspace. The White House disputed the declaration, calling the suggestion “absurd.”
The comments buoyed safe-haven assets, those that are favored by investors in times of crisis, with gold up 1% and the Japanese JPY strengthened 0.26% to 111.71 per USD.
“The North Korea narrative is not going away and the longer it remains part of the conversation, the more negative it becomes,” said Peter Kenny, senior market strategist at Global Markets Advisory Group, in New York.
Tech names such as Facebook, down 4.5%, Microsoft, down 1.55%, and Apple, down 0.88%, were among the biggest drags on the benchmark S&P 500 index. Apple shares flirted with correction territory following a report that the company had told suppliers to scale back shipments of parts for its upcoming iPhone X. “There has been some disappointment in the reception of Apple’s latest iPhone release, and that is driving some concern and that is bleeding through to the supply-chain names,” said Kenny.
The S&P technology index slid 1.42%, its worst daily performance in 5 weeks. The index remains the best performing of the 11 major S&P sectors this year, however, with a rise of nearly 23%.
The losses in tech were offset somewhat by a sharp climb in the energy sector, which rose 1.47%. The sector notched its sixteenth gain in the last 18 sessions.
Oil prices hit a more than two-year high after major producers said the global market was on its way towards rebalancing, while Turkey threatened to cut oil flows from Iraq’s Kurdistan region toward its ports.” Reuters
^ Market indices today (mouseover for 12 month view) Chart: Google Finance
|Index||Ticker||Today||Change||31 Dec 16||YTD|
|S&P 500||SPX (INX)||2,496.66||-0.23%||2,238.83||+11.51%|
^ USD and AUD denominated indices over the past 52 weeks Chart: Bunting
|Index||Currency||Today||Change||31 Dec 16||YTD|
Portfolio stock prices
Facebook was hardest hit today, most likely because of last Friday’s SEC Filing which reported founder Mark Zuckerberg’s announcement that he anticipates selling 35 – 75 million shares of his Facebook stock over the next 18 months or so. Form 8-K, Facebook Inc
|Stock||Ticker||Today||Change||31 Dec 16||YTD|
^ Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index (DXY) movements today (mouseover for 12 month view) Chart: Bloomberg
“The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index (DXY) rose 0.4% to the highest in more than 3 weeks.
The EUR fell 0.9% to USD 1.1847, the weakest in a month.
Britain’s GBP fell 0.3% to USD 1.3466.” Bloomberg
^ AUD movements against the USD today (mouseover for 12 month view) Chart: xe.com
Oil and Gas Futures
“West Texas Intermediate crude rose 3% to $52.18/barrel, the highest since Apr 2017.” Bloomberg
Prices are as at 15:48 EDT
- NYMEX West Texas Intermediate (WTI): $52.25/barrel +3.14% Chart
- ICE (London) Brent North Sea Crude: $59.14/barrel +4.01% Chart
- NYMEX Natural gas futures: $2.92/MMBTU -1.18% Chart
North Korea Accuses USA of Declaring War
Press Release Extract [ser_korea]
“North Korea’s foreign minister Ri Yong Ho said on Monday that US President Donald Trump had declared war on North Korea and that Pyongyang reserves the right to take countermeasures, including shooting down U.S. bombers even if they are not in its air space.
Ri said a Twitter message by Trump on Saturday in which the president warned that the minister and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un “won’t be around much longer” if they acted on their threats, amounted to a declaration of war. “The whole world should clearly remember it was the U.S. who first declared war on our country. Since the United States declared war on our country, we will have every right to make countermeasures, including the right to shoot down United States strategic bombers even when they are not inside the airspace border of our country. The question of who won’t be around much longer will be answered then.”
Ri warned said on Friday North Korea might test a hydrogen bomb over the Pacific Ocean, in what would be North Korea’s first atmospheric nuclear test. Experts said such a move, while perhaps not imminent, would be proof of North Korea’s ability to successfully deliver a nuclear warhead on a missile.
On Saturday, USAF B-1B Lancer bombers escorted by fighters flew in international airspace over waters east of North Korea in a show of force after a heated exchange of rhetoric between Trump and Kim over North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs.
The Pentagon said the flight was the farthest north of the demilitarized zone separating North and South Korea that any U.S. fighter jet or bomber has flown in the 21st century. “That operation was conducted in international airspace, over international waters, so we have the right to fly, sail and operate where legally permissible around the globe,” Pentagon spokesman Colonel Robert Manning said on Monday.
North Korea, which has remained technically at war with the United States since the 1950-53 Korean War ended in a truce not a peace treaty, has been working to develop nuclear-tipped missiles capable of hitting the U.S. mainland and conducted its sixth and largest nuclear test this month.
China, North Korea’s neighbor and main ally, which has nevertheless backed U.N. sanctions over Pyongyang’s nuclear program, called on Monday for all sides in the crisis to show restraint and not “add oil to the flames.” China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang described the situation as highly complex and sensitive. He said it was vitally important everyone strictly, fully and correctly implemented all North Korea related U.N. resolutions, which call for both tighter sanctions, and efforts to resume dialogue. All sides should “not further irritate each other and add oil to the flames of the tense situation on the peninsula at present”, Lu told a daily news briefing.
Speaking to British Prime Minister Theresa May by telephone, Chinese President Xi Jinping repeated Beijing’s position that the North Korean issue should be resolved peacefully via talks and hoped Britain could play a constructive role in pushing for this, Chinese state media said.
On Monday, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, a staunch U.S. ally, said he would dissolve parliament’s lower house on Thursday for a snap election, seeking a mandate to stick to his tough stance toward a volatile North Korea and rebalance the social security system.” Reuters
JP: Nikkei Flash Manufacturing PMI®
Press Release Extract [ser_jp_pmi]
- Flash Japan Manufacturing PMI® rises to four- month high of 52.6 in September (52.2 in August)
- Flash Manufacturing Output Index at 53.5 (52.5 in August). Strongest growth for four months
- Export sales expand at faster pace, but rate of job creation softens to ten-month low.
Commenting on the Japanese Manufacturing PMI survey data, Annabel Fiddes, Principal Economist at IHS Markit, which compiles the survey, said:
“Latest data signalled a further improvement in growth momentum across Japan’s manufacturing sector with the PMI rising to a four-month high in September.
“Firms signalled stronger expansions in both output and new orders amid reports of firmer demand both at home and abroad. The strong end to Q3 bodes well for production in the coming months, with business confidence also perking up slightly since August.””
IHS Markit, “Nikkei Flash Japan Manufacturing PMI®“, 25 Sep 2017 More
^ JPY movements against the USD over the past month (mouseover for inverse) Chart: xe.com
Stockmarket: Nikkei 225
^ Nikkei N225 movements over the past week Chart: Google Finance
^ CNY movements against the USD over the past month (mouseover for inverse) Chart: xe.com
^ Shanghai CSI300 movements over the past week Chart: Google Finance