‘Twas nice knowin’ ya, 12,000:
- It was not a welcoming equities environment for the waking U.S. investor on Thursday: news of a massive $7 billion trade deficit reported by China, a downsizing of fourth-quarter GDP by Japan, and a move by Moody’s to downgrade Japan’s debt as well as harness it with a negative outlook had already sparked selloffs in Asia and Europe. The U.S. market didn’t disappoint, thanks to falling to five-week lows as the Dow closed below 12,000 for the first time since Jan. 31 with a 228-point drop that was its worst in five months. This all came, don’t ya know, with oil slipping nearly 2% to move under $103 a barrel. It turns out some other stuff also can tweak the market now and then. Unsurprisingly, bonds were a big hit, with the 10-year note’s yield slumping to 3.39%, its lowest level since, you guessed it, Jan. 31. With a falling dollar and lower crude prices, the precious metal trade cooled off some, with gold and silver both finishing lower.
- After the closing bell, shares of Aeropostale (NYSE:ARO) slipped nearly 7% after the company’s fourth-quarter earnings report, which included downside forecasts for both the first quarter and its full year ahead. Clean Energy Fuels (NASDAQ:CLNE) rose 4.7% after a fourth-quarter earnings beat.
- On Friday, you’ll be offered up the February report on retail sales, the Univ. of Michigan report on consumer sentiment, and a look at January business inventories. A smattering of who-cares earnings are in the mix, too.
OUT THERE SOMEWHERE:
- Premature baby drug cost balloons 100-fold. Really helpful.
- Pay for postage by text message? Yes, in Sweden.
- Dalai Lama hanging it up.
- Remember the Dust Bowl? Remember when it came back?
- Here’s to not living in the Diabetes Belt.
- The Chinese-growth-savior model not looking great.
- Betting on gold forever — this time is not different.
- Why assume there’s no succession plan at Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL)?
- Largest cities through history.
- Gas prices are eroding the American dream.
- Whether failure is the best option for AOL (NYSE:AOL).
- There is Groupon, and there are all the wannabes.
- Role model alert: investors on Forbes’ billionaire list.