Breaking Stock Market and Financial News

Arab states send Qatar 13 demands to end crisis, official says

Top Reuters News - 2 hours 49 min ago
DUBAI (Reuters) - Four Arab states boycotting Qatar over alleged support for terrorism have sent Doha a list of 13 demands including closing Al Jazeera television and reducing ties to their regional adversary Iran, an official of one of the four countries said.

The Mautes of the Philippines: from monied family to Islamic State

Top Reuters News - 3 hours 51 min ago
MANILA/MARAWI CITY, Philippines (Reuters) - Before they formed one of the most dreaded militant groups in the Philippines and pledged loyalty to Islamic State, the Mautes were a wealthy, political family in the southern region of Mindanao, largely influenced by the matriarch, Farhana.

Senate Republicans unveil Obamacare replacement bill, but fate uncertain

Top Reuters News - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 22:06
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Senate Republicans on Thursday unveiled legislation that would replace Obamacare with a plan that scales back aid to the poor and kills a tax on the wealthy, but the bill's fate was quickly thrown into question as several senators voiced skepticism.

Friend of former South Korea leader jailed for three years: Yonhap

Top Reuters News - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 22:04
SEOUL (Reuters) - The friend of former South Korean leader Park Geun-hye who was at the center of an influence-peddling scandal that rocked the country's business and political elite has been sentenced to three years in jail, the Yonhap news agency reported on Friday.

Trump nominates Woody Johnson, Jamie McCourt as U.S. ambassadors

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 21:51

President Donald Trump looked to the world of sports ownership to select a pair of ambassadorships Thursday, nominating New York Jets owner Woody Johnson to be America's envoy to the U.K., and former Los Angeles Dodgers co-owner Jamie McCourt as ambassador to Belgium. Both have been major Republican donors, and Johnson is a longtime friend of Trump's. Johnson has owned the Jets since 2000, and served more than 30 years as chairman and CEO of private asset-management firm The Johnson Group in New York. McCourt co-owned the Dodgers with her husband, Frank, until a bitter divorce forced the sale of the team in 2011. She also served as the team's CEO, and is a prominent Southern California attorney and investor.

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Judge in Michigan blocks deportation of 100 Iraqis

Top Reuters News - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 20:21
(Reuters) - A U.S. judge on Thursday temporarily blocked the deportation of about 100 Iraqi nationals rounded up in Michigan in recent weeks who argued that they could face persecution or torture in Iraq because they are religious minorities.

Philadelphia 76ers pick Markelle Fultz first in NBA Draft

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 20:02

The Philadelphia 76ers selected Markelle Fultz as the top pick in the NBA Draft on Thursday night. Fultz, a point guard, played one season at Washington before going pro, and was widely expected to be the first player chosen. The 76ers acquired the No. 1 pick earlier this week in a trade with the Boston Celtics, who dropped to the No. 3 pick and picked up a first-round pick next year. The Los Angeles Lakers picked UCLA point guard Lonzo Ball with the second pick, and the Celtics took Duke forward Jayson Tatum third. In the first big trade of the night, the Minnesota Timberwolves acquired All-NBA swingman Jimmy Butler from the Chicago Bulls in exchange for Zach LaVine, Kris Dunn and the No. 7 pick in the draft. This year's draft is considered to be one of the most talent-rich in years, creating much buzz among fans as teams try to load up with talent to compete with the league's newest superteam, the Golden State Warriors, who have won two of the past three NBA championships.

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Venezuelan troops fire on protesters; one killed

Top Reuters News - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 19:59
CARACAS (Reuters) - Venezuelan troops on Thursday fired what appeared to be rubber bullets at protesters as they attacked the perimeter of an airbase, and a demonstrator was killed, bringing the death toll to at least 76 in unrest since April.

North Korea tests rocket engine: U.S. officials

Top Reuters News - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 18:20
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - North Korea has carried out another test of a rocket engine that the United States believes could be part of its program to develop an intercontinental ballistic missile, a U.S. official told Reuters on Thursday.

Suspect in Michigan airport stabbing attempted to buy gun before attack

Top Reuters News - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 17:36
(Reuters) - The man charged with stabbing an airport police officer in Michigan unsuccessfully attempted to purchase a gun before the attack, which is being investigated as an act of terrorism, federal officials said on Thursday.

Bed Bath & Beyond shares tank after earnings, sales miss

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 16:28

Shares of Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. tanked 12% late Thursday after the retailer reported fiscal first-quarter earnings and sales that missed expectations, citing "softness" in in-store sales. Bed Bath & Beyond said it earned $75.3 million, or 53 cents a share, compared with $122.6 million, or 80 cents a share, in the year-ago period. Sales reached $2.74 billion, flat in relation to the prior-year quarter. Analysts polled by FactSet had expected earnings of 66 cents a share on sales of $2.79 billion. The company saw "strong growth" in digital channels in the quarter, but in addition to in-store softness, it also faced higher direct-to-customer shipping expenses, coupon expenses, and advertising costs during the quarter, it said in a statement. "It remains to be seen whether these challenges were more pronounced in, or unique to, the first quarter due to the smaller sales base in this period, and/or a later start to the summer selling period," it said. Shares ended the regular trading session up 0.2%.

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Dow, S&P 500 book 3rd straight loss, even as oil and health care rally

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 16:09

The Dow industrials and the S&P 500 on Thursday logged their third straight finish in the red, despite crude-oil prices gaining after a recent sell-off, and as health-care stocks lured buyers. Still, sharp gains in the health-care sector wasn't enough for the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 index to halt a recent downtrend. The Dow closed little changed but enough for the index to end off 0.1% lower at 21,397, the S&P 500 index [: SPX] closed down, 1 point, or less than 0.1%, at 2,434, while the Nasdaq Composite Index logged a slight gain of less than 0.1% at 6,236. Health-care was the start of the day's action, with the sector, as measured by the exchange-traded Health Care Select Sector SPDR ETF on pace to book its best weekly gain, up 9.3%, since the period ended Nov. 11. A popular biotechnology ETF, the iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF , also was on track for its best weekly gain since November. Those moves came as lawmakers released a draft of the GOP-led, health-care bill that is aimed at overhauling Obamacare. Among companies, health-care names Johnson & Johnson and Merck & Co. Inc. [: MRK] were among the best performers among blue chips. Looking ahead, the Federal Reserve's test of the banking sectors financial health will be released after the close, which could influence trade for banks including Goldman Sachs Group , and J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. . Meanwhile, crude-oil prices , advanced 0.5%, to settle at $42.74 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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Exclusive: Amazon to charge $2.8 million for NFL ad packages - sources

Top Reuters News - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 14:57
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Amazon.com Inc is looking to charge advertisers $2.8 million for packages that include 30-second spots during the Thursday night National Football League games it will stream live to its Prime customers this coming season, two people familiar with the matter told Reuters.

Oil recoups some of its recent loss; strong U.S. output remains a key concern

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 14:41

Oil prices rose Thursday, recouping only small portion of the more than 2% decline they saw as strong U.S. crude output remained a key concern. The energy market will get a weekly update on the number of active U.S. rigs drilling for oil on Friday. August WTI crude tacked on 21 cents, or 0.5%, to settle $42.74 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange following two straight sessions of declines.

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Trump says he did not tape conversations with former FBI head Comey

Top Reuters News - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 13:57
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump said on Thursday he did not make and does not possess any tapes of his conversations with James Comey, after suggesting last month that he might have recordings that could damage the former FBI director.

Exclusive: Uber hires law firm to probe how it handled India rape case - source

Top Reuters News - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 13:37
SAN FRANCISCO/NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Uber Technologies Inc [UBER.UL] has hired a law firm to investigate how it obtained the medical records of an Indian woman who was raped by an Uber driver in 2014. The review will focus in part on accusations from some current and former employees that bribes were involved, two people familiar with the matter told Reuters.

GOP health bill boosts hospital, health insurer and drug stocks

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 13:31

Hospital system stocks rallied as much as 8% on Thursday following the release of the Senate GOP health bill, which appears to be more favorable to hospitals than the House of Representatives bill passed in early May. Tenet Healthcare Corporation shares jumped 8%, Community Health Systems Inc. shares skyrocketed 8.2%, HCA Healthcare Inc. shares rose 3.6% and Universal Health Services Inc. shares lifted 2.6% in midday trade, compared with a 1.6% rise in the Health Care Select Sector SPDR . Health insurer stocks also rose Tuesday, with UnitedHealth Group shares up 1.4%, Aetna Inc. stock rising 1.1%, Humana Inc. shares lifting 1.3% and Anthem Inc. shares up 0.9%, compared with a 0.2% rise in the S&P 500 . The Senate health bill "tries to phase in the pain" of changes to the Affordable Care Act like Medicaid spending cuts, said Spencer Perlman, director of health-care research at Veda Partners, who described the Senate plan as having "the same architecture" but "nicer furnishings." Still, the benefit for hospitals is only in the short-term and thus probably overdone, he said. "Clearly, the Senate bill is viewed as less disruptive than the House bill to the number of people currently receiving insurance," said Stefanie Miller, senior analyst at Height Securities. But "the initial reaction may have oversimplified how different this bill is," she said, predicting that stocks that have risen on the news may be "rebalancing" in the coming days. Drug stocks also rose in Tuesday trade, with the SPDR S&P Pharmaceutical ETF rising 1.7% and the SPDR S&P Biotech ETF rising 1.6%, which could be happening because the health bill has given investors confidence in Republicans achieving another legislative priority, tax reform, Miller said. Shares of the Health Care Select Sector SPDR have risen 8.7% over the last three months, compared with a 3.9% rise in the S&P 500 .

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Trump tweets that he didn't tape conversations with ex-FBI Director Comey

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 13:13

President Donald Trump on Thursday addressed a long-festering question about his private conversations with former FBI Director James Comey. In a tweet on Thursday afternoon, Trump said: "With all of the recently reported electronic surveillance, intercepts, unmasking and illegal leaking of information, I have no idea whether there are 'tapes' or recordings of my conversations with James Comey, but I did not make, and do not have, any such recordings, I did not make, and do not have, any such recording." He did leave open the possibility that such tapes exist. Questions around the existence of tapes of Trump's conversations with Comey emerged after another Trump tweet, in which he implied that tapes of his one-on-on talks with the intelligence chief may exist: "James Comey better hope that there are no 'tapes'," Trump wrote. In a hearing with the Senate Intelligence Committee Comey on June 8, Comey said: "Lordy, I hope there are tapes." Comey fired by the president in May as he was investigating Russia's alleged ties with members of Trump's administration.

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'Imagine there's no Brexit': EU boss channels Lennon

Top Reuters News - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 12:34
BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Since this month's election, many British voices have joined a debate on how or even if Brexit may happen; on Thursday, one EU executive added that of John Lennon, sparking a round of more and less musical replies.

Theft and other 'shrink' at retailers totaled $48.9 billion in 2016, up from 2015: NRF

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 12:30

The National Retail Federation said Thursday that theft and other inventory "shrink" at retailers totaled $48.9 billion in 2016, up from $45.2 billion in 2015. The rise in losses coincided with flat or declining retail security budgets, the group said. Nearly half of the retailers surveyed (48.8%) said inventory shrink increased. Shoplifting accounted for the biggest losses at $798.48 per incident, double the $377.00 average in 2015. The NRF attributes some of the rise to an increase in the threshold for felony crimes, with only larger thefts reported. Employee theft also increased to $1,922.80 from $1,233.77 in 2015. Retailers were asked about return fraud for the first time, reporting an average loss of $1,766.27. The NRF and University of Florida polled 83 loss prevention executives between March 29 and May 1. The SPDR S&P Retail ETF is down 11.1% for the year so far while the S&P 500 index is up 9% for the period.

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