Will President Trump Make A Wise Decision or a Dangerous One?

Trump almost took the country to the abyss, but instead he stopped and made the smarter choice. Instead of giving Bannon a rubber stamp on the national security council he gave the national security state a man they trust and respect.

General known for sharp questions will be Trump's new top security adviser - Reuters

Breaking Stock Market and Financial News

Gold futures eke out a loss to stretch declines to a 4th session in a row

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 13:49

Gold futures eked out a small loss Tuesday to stretch declines to a fourth session in a row as the U.S. dollar strengthened on the back of upbeat comments from Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen on the nation's economy. Yellen's "positive comments about the strengthening of the labor market and note that inflation is moving toward the Fed's target of 2% have essentially put the possibility of a March rate hike on the table," said Brien Lundin, editor of Gold Newsletter. April gold fell 40 cents to settle at $1,225.40 an ounce.

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U.S. Secret Service director stepping down

Top Reuters News - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 13:44
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Secret Service Director Joseph Clancy plans to step down next month, the agency said on Tuesday, two years after he took charge of the agency following high-profile security lapses by the service responsible for protecting the president.

Spicer says Trump asked Flynn to resign

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 13:36

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) -- President Donald Trump asked his now-former national security adviser Michael Flynn to resign, White House press secretary Sean Spicer said Tuesday. Spicer said it was "a matter of trust" that led Trump to ask for Flynn to resign.

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Tesla shares are now $2 away from beating record

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 13:22

Tesla Inc. shares were set to extend their winning streak to a fifth day, up more than 1% and only a couple of dollars away from their Sept. 4, 2014, record closing of $286.04 and intraday record of $291.42. The stock traded as high as $287.39 on Tuesday, its best intraday since Sept. 3, 2014, when it traded as high as $288. Tesla's momentum comes a week before the company is scheduled to report fourth-quarter results, and ahead of likely updates on key initiatives such as Model 3 production schedule. Tesla shares on Monday closed at their best in nearly 19 months.

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Exclusive: Yellen brushes off warning, says Fed has authority on global talks

Top Reuters News - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 13:22
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, in response to a warning from a U.S. congressman to halt global regulatory talks in the early stages of Donald Trump's presidency, said in a letter the Fed has the authority and responsibility to consult with its foreign counterparts and does so to benefit the United States.

Apple's stock surges to all-time intraday high

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 13:12

Shares of Apple Inc. rallied 1.2% in afternoon trade Tuesday to reach an all-time intraday record, extending the run of gains following strong quarterly results and amid growing optimism over new iPhone releases. The stock recently traded as high as $134.88, surpassing the previous all-time intraday high of $134.54 reached on April 28, 2015. The stock had closed at a record on Monday, passing the previous record set two-years earlier, following an upbeat report from Goldman Sachs. The stock has rallied 11% since Apple reported after the Jan. 31 close fiscal first-quarter earnings and revenue that beat expectations. The buzz on Tuesday is that Apple's appearance on the list of Wireless Power Consortium members boosts hopes that the 10th anniversary release of the new iPhone 8 later this year will include wireless charging. The stock has soared 43% over the past 12 months, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has climbed 28%.

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House Democrats escalate effort to obtain Trump tax returns

Top Reuters News - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 12:23
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Congressional Democrats on Tuesday tried but failed to pressure Republicans into seeking President Donald Trump's tax returns, saying the scandal over Michael Flynn made it imperative to find out whether the president has business ties to Russia.

SEC fines Morgan Stanley for unsuitable sales of inverse ETFs

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 12:20

The Securities and Exchange Commission settled charges with Morgan Stanley Smith Barney on Tuesday, fining the firm $8 million for selling unsuitable ETF products to customers and not obtaining proof the clients understood the risks involved with purchasing inverse ETFs. Morgan Stanley admitted its wrongdoing. Those clients did not sign disclosure notices that explained that single inverse ETFs were typically unsuitable for investors planning to hold them longer than one trading session unless used as part of a trading or hedging strategy. Many of the clients who purchased single inverse ETFs to be held long-term in retirement and other accounts experienced losses. Morgan Stanley also failed to conduct risk reviews to evaluate the suitability of inverse ETFs for each advisory client and did not ensure that certain financial advisers completed training on the product and its risks.

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Russia reportedly deploys controversial cruise missile

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 12:11

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) - Russia has deployed a cruise missile that American officials say violates a 1987 arms-control treaty, potentially complicating relations with a Trump White House that had planned to seek more common ground, according to the New York Times. The Obama administration objected to the missile and had asked Russia to make it compliant with 1987 ban on intermediate ground-launched weapons. Yet Russia apparently has gone ahead and deployed a number of these new missiles that U.S. officials call a SSC-8. The Pentagon is considering options to counter the missile and shield NATO allies within its range, the Times said.

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White House to reopen for public tours

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 12:02

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) -- The White House will reopen for public tours, first lady Melania Trump said Tuesday. It will reopen on March 7. Members of Congress -- who can arrange visits for their constituents -- have voiced displeasure over the unavailability of such tours.

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Financial ETFs jump after Yellen hints that near-term rate hike is possible

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 11:44

Exchange-traded funds that track the financial sector jumped on Tuesday, after Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen offered an upbeat outlook for the U.S. economy and suggested that interest rates could be raised at "upcoming meetings." Some took the comments as implying that the Federal Open Market Committee could raise key interest rates as early as the Fed's next policy meeting in March. Higher rates are seen as a tailwind for the sector, in large part because of bank net interest margin, or the difference between the interest they earn on the loans they make and the interest they pay out. Low rates can depress net interest margins, which can lead to lower earnings. The Financial Select Sector SPDR ETF rose 0.8% and was by far the biggest gainer among S&P 500 sectors. The SPDR S&P Bank ETF added 1.2% while the SPDR S&P Regional Banking ETF advanced 1.3%.

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Under Armour upgraded as stock's plunge helps balance out risk versus reward

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 10:22

Shares of Under Armour Inc. tacked on 0.4% in morning trade Tuesday, after the athletic apparel and accessories company was upgraded at Morgan Stanley, which citing a more balanced risk-versus-reward scenario following the plunge in the stock price over the past year. Analyst Jay Sole raised his rating to equal weight, after being at underweight for teh past 13 months, but he cut his stock price target to $20, which is below current levels, from $25. The stock has tumbled 46% over the past 12 months, while the S&P 500 has climbed 25%. Sole said among some of the investor concerns are whether the Under Armour brand is broken and how well the company can control costs. "Visibility is still relatively low, but we think answers [will] begin to emerge over the next six months," Sole wrote in a note to clients. "The stock now discounts more reasonable long-term assumptions, in our view, even though in the near term this means an elevated multiple."

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Treasury yields jump as Yellen seen priming the market for more rate hikes

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 10:19

Treasury yields jumped on Tuesday after Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen left the door open to an interest-rate increase at the central bank's coming March policy meeting. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose 4.5 basis points to 2.481%, while the yield on the two-year note -- typically the most sensitive to rate-hike expectations -- rose 3.7 basis points to 1.246%. The yield on the 30-year Treasury bond rose 3.5 basis points to 3.067%. Yellen said that Fed officials will consider raising interest rates "at our upcoming meetings," a decidedly more hawkish message than the central bank's latest policy outlook, which cautioned that the central bank would be careful to raise interest rates gradually. Yellen added that waiting too long to raise interest rates would be "unwise" because it could force the central bank to play catch-up.

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Gold futures off session highs as traders weigh Yellen's remarks

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 10:18

Gold futures edged higher Tuesday, but traded well off the session's highs as traders weighed prepared remarks from Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen, as well as comments from Richmond Fed President Jeffrey Lacker. In prepared remarks ahead of her testimony to Congress, Yellen said interest-rate hikes can be gradual but the central bank will look to incoming economic data to see if an adjustment to the federal funds rate would be appropriate. Separately, Lacker said that "significantly higher rates are warranted." April gold rose $2.10, or 0.2%, to trade at $1,227.90 an ounce, below the intraday high of $1,236.

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Fed report says some smaller banks may be vulnerable to drop in commercial real estate prices

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 10:00

Rising commercial real estate prices may leave some small banks vulnerable to a drop in the market, the Federal Reserve said Tuesday. In a report to Congress on financial stability, which accompanied Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen's testimony to the Senate Banking Committee, the central bank said that commercial real estate prices, which have been an area of growing concern at the central bank, rose further. Overall financial vulnerabilities in the U.S. financial system overall have continued to be moderate since mid-2016, the Fed said. Valuation pressure in some asset classes have been rising, particularly late last year, the report said. Outstanding riskier corporate debt edged down over the past year, but issuance of leveraged loans was strong.

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U.S. stocks open lower as investors await Yellen testimony

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 09:31

U.S. stocks opened slightly lower on Tuesday as investors awaited comments from Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen. The main three benchmarks retreated after touching the latest in a series of record highs on Monday, with the S&P 500 index down two points, or 0.1%, to 2,326. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 34 points, or 0.2%, to 20,381. The Nasdaq Composite Index shed eight points, or 0.1%, to 5,756. T-Mobile U.S. Inc. shares rose after the company reported strong fourth-quarter earnings. U.S.-listed shares of Credit Suisse Group AG rose after the Swiss lender posted a wider-than-expected loss on litigation costs and said it would cut 5,500 jobs this year. Shares of General Motors Co. rallied after the PSA Group, owner of French car maker Peugeot, said it is in talks to buy GM's Opel brand. Shares of toy maker Mattel Inc. rose after it said it will team up with Alibaba to develop and sell new products for Chinese consumers.

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Cynosure's stock rockets after buyout deal with Hologic

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 09:29

Shares of Cynosure Inc. soared 28% in active premarket trade Tuesday, after the medical aesthetics systems and technologies company announced a deal to be acquired by Hologic Inc. in a deal valued at $1.65 billion. With volume of 5.7 million shares, Cynosure's stock was the most active ahead of the open. Under terms of the deal, Hologic will pay $66 a share in cash for each Cynosure share outstanding, which represents a 28% premium to Monday's closing price of $51.50. Hologic said it expects the deal to reduce net earnings, but add 3 cents a share to 5 cents a share to adjusted earnings in fiscal 2017. Syngergies aer expected to be $25 million by the third year after the deal closes. Cynosure develops products used by plastic surgeons for noninvasive body contouring, hair removal and skin revitalization. Hologic's stock slumped 5.1% ahead of the open. Cynosure's stock has run up 47% over the past 12 months through Monday, while Hologic shares have climbed 23% and the S&P 500 has rallied 25%.

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Molson Coors' stock falls after profit miss

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 08:43

Shares of Molson Coors Brewing Co. dropped 2.7% in premarket trade, after the brewer missed fourth-quarter profit expectations. Net income rose to $1.44 billion, or $6.65 a share, from $32.8 million, or 18 cents a share, in the same period a year ago. Excluding non-recurring items, such as impairment charges related to Molson core brands, adjusted earnings per share came to 46 cents. The FactSet EPS consensus was 88 cents. Net sales rose to $2.29 billion from $844.4 million, as volume in hectoliters grew to 21.8 million from 7.8 million. The FactSet revenue consensus was $2.56 billion. "The biggest news for 2016 was completing our acquisition of the remaining 58 percent of MillerCoors and the Miller global brand portfolio for $12 billion, representing the largest transaction in the Company's history, which made Molson Coors the third-largest global brewer," Chief Executive Mark Hunter. The stock has lost 0.6% over the past three months through Monday, while the S&P 500 has climbed 7.6%.

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Carnival Corporation increases cruise offerings to Cuba

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 08:22

Carnival Corporation said Tuesday that the company will expand its cruises to Cuba starting in June 2017. The company already began sailing to Cuba in May 2016 with its Fathom brand, but now has approval to began cruises with its largest cruise brand, Carnival Cruise Line. The company will be sailing its largest capacity ship, with 2,052 passengers, from Port Tampa Bay in Florida to Havana, Cuba. The company said it anticipates approval for its other brands to sail to Cuba as well. Shares of Carnival Corporation have gained 5.6% in the past month, compared to the S&P 500's gain of 2.4%.

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Dick's Sporting Goods boosts dividend by nearly 12%

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Tue, 02/14/2017 - 08:19

Dick's Sporting Goods Inc. said Tuesday it was raising its quarterly dividend to 17 cents a share, a 11.5% increase over the previous dividend of 15.25 cents a share. The sporting goods retailer's new dividend is payable on March 31 to shareholders of record on March 10. Based on Monday's stock closing price of $52.42, the new annual dividend rate of 68 cents a share represents a dividend yield of 1.30%, compared with the aggregate S&P 500 dividend yield of 2.04%, according to FactSet. Dick's shares, which were still inactive in premarket trade, have dropped 14% over the past three months, while the SPDR S&P Retail ETF has lost 3.9% and the S&P 500 has gained 7.6%.

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