Breaking Stock Market and Financial News

Asia stocks fall, yen and franc gain as North Korea moots H-bomb test

Top Reuters News - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 22:09
TOKYO (Reuters) - Asian stocks fell and the Japanese yen and Swiss franc gained on the mooted possibility of North Korea conducting another hydrogen bomb test, this time in the Pacific Ocean.

Hurricane Maria devastates Puerto Rico, heads for Turks and Caicos

Top Reuters News - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 22:06
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (Reuters) - Hurricane Maria destroyed buildings and knocked out power across Puerto Rico before flooding parts of the Dominican Republic and then regaining some of its strength as it approached the Turks and Caicos Islands and southeastern Bahamas on Thursday night.

North Korea's Kim says will make 'deranged' Trump pay dearly for U.N. speech

Top Reuters News - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 22:04
SEOUL/NEW YORK (Reuters) - North Korean leader Kim Jong Un blasted U.S. President Donald Trump as "mentally deranged" on Friday and vowed to make him pay dearly for threatening to destroy his country, hours after Trump ordered fresh sanctions over Pyongyang's weapons programs.

White House seen easing limits on drone strikes: NY Times

Top Reuters News - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 21:54
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Trump administration is preparing to relax Obama-era rules on drone strikes and commando raids, paving the way for more frequent operations against Islamic State and other militant groups, the New York Times reported on Thursday, citing officials familiar with the internal deliberations.

Yen surges as North Korea says it may test nuclear bomb in Pacific

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 21:30

North Korea's foreign minister said late Thursday the country may test a hydrogen bomb in the Pacific Ocean, according to a report by South Korea's Yonhap news agency. Speaking in New York at a United Nations meeting, Ri Yong Ho said North Korea might consider a nuclear test of "unprecedented scale" in the Pacific, although he said he did not know leader Kim Jon Un's exact thoughts. The news sent the Japanese yen, a haven asset, surging higher. The U.S. dollar, which was as high as 112.55 yen before the announcement, fell as low as 112.20 yen after. As of 9 p.m. Eastern, the dollar was trading at 112.26 yen . The dollar rose against the South Korean won, last at 1,133.89 won from an earlier low of 1,131.28.

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Manafort's FBI surveillance began after he left Trump campaign: report

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 19:45

Paul Manafort was placed under FBI surveillance after he left the Trump campaign in August 2016, the Wall Street Journal reported late Thursday, citing U.S. officials familiar with the matter. On Monday, CNN reported the FBI had wiretapped Trump's former campaign chairman as late as this year, but did not say when the surveillance began. The Journal said the surveillance -- which had been approved by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act court -- did not include listening to Manafort's phone calls in real-time. Manafort's spokesman told the Journal that he may have gotten caught in the crossfire of a politically motivated investigation. "It's unclear if Paul Manafort was the objective," Jason Maloni said. "Perhaps the real objective was Donald Trump." Manafort's home was raided by the FBI in July, and his his spokesman, Maloni, has been subpoenaed by special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian election-meddling. On Wednesday, the Washington Post reported that while Manafort was Trump's campaign chairman, he had offered to give private campaign briefings to a Russian billionaire with close ties to Vladimir Putin.

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NFL star Hernandez's family sues league over 'severe' CTE

Top Reuters News - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 19:45
BOSTON (Reuters) - Former New England Patriots player Aaron Hernandez, who killed himself in prison in April, had a "severe case" of the brain disease chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a lawyer said on Thursday as he sued the team and NFL on behalf of the athlete's young daughter.

Hewlett Packard Enterprise to lay off 5,000 workers, Bloomberg reports

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 19:29

Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co. plans to cut about 10% of its staff, or 5,000 workers, Bloomberg News reported Thursday evening based on anonymous sources. HPE has been in constant flux since Chief Executive Meg Whitman split the former Hewlett-Packard in two in 2015, creating the business-focused company she runs and HP Inc. , the consumer-focused printer and personal-computer business. After HPE's most recent earnings report, which came on the heels of a spin-off of much of HPE's software business, Whitman said HPE was about to enter into a new program called HPE Next to “simplify how we work.” HPE shares gained 0.7% in late trading Thursday, after closing with a 1.2% gain at $13.79.

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Trump orders new sanctions against North Korea, Kim calls him 'deranged'

Top Reuters News - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 19:05
NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump ordered new sanctions against North Korea on Thursday and Pyongyang's leader defiantly vowed to persist with its nuclear and missile programs and said it would consider measures against the United States.

Tom Price's trips on private jets cost taxpayers more than $300,000: report

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 18:33

Tom Price, President Donald Trump's secretary of health and human services, has flown private jets for government travel at least 24 times since May, costing taxpayers more than $300,000, according to a report by Politico on Thursday. Citing inside sources and HHS documents, Politico found that flying private jets rather than commercial flights has become the norm for Price. While Price's office said he only flies private jets when commercial flights are not feasible, Politico found a number of regular commercial flights to Price's travel destinations, at a fraction of the cost. His immediate HHS predecessors -- Sylvia Mathews Burwell and Kathleen Sebelius -- regularly flew commercial, Politico reported. "This shows a complete disregard for the expense to the taxpayer," Walter Shaub, the former director of the U.S. Office of Government Ethics told Politico. Price has publicly vowed to crack down on wasteful government spending. And Price is apparently not the only top Trump administration official regularly taking private charter flights. A spokesperson for Linda McMahon, the head of the Small Business Administration, told Buzzfeed she occasionally uses private jets, and the Associated Press reported Education Secretary Betsy DeVos uses her personal private jet for work, at her own expense.

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Billion-dollar database software startup MongoDB files for IPO

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 17:50

MongoDB Inc. , a subscription-based database software startup valued at more than $1 billion, filed for its initial public offering, according to the Securities and Exchange Commission late Thursday. Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs and Barclays are listed among the underwriters. MongoDB said it seeks up to $100 million in the IPO, but that figure is generally used as a placeholder in initial filings. The New York City-based company was last valued at $1.6 billion by venture capitalists with more than $300 million in total VC funding, according to The Wall Street Journal. For the fiscal year ended Jan. 31, 2017, MongoDB reported revenue of $101.4 million, a 55% rise from the previous year, for a net loss of $86.7 million, or $3.55 a share. The company plans to list under the ticker symbol "MDB" on the Nasdaq.

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Versartis shares down 82%

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 17:04

Shares of Versartis Inc. plummet 82% late Thursday after the biopharmaceutical company said its drug somavaratan failed to meet its primary endpoint in a phase 3 trial. The drug, a form of human growth hormone that seeks to treat growth-hormone deficiency, failed to demonstrate superiority to Genotropin, an offering from Pfizer Inc. , in a study focusing on pediatric growth-hormone deficiency. "We are very surprised and disappointed to learn the outcome," Chief Executive Jay Shepard said in Thursday's announcement, adding that the company planned to provide a corporate update later this year. Versartis shares have gained 27% in the past three months, more than 10 times the gains for the S&P 500 Index in the same period, and nearly 45% so far this year.

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U.S. may drop federal oversight of AIG: WSJ

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 17:03

The Federal Stability Oversight Council may decide to remove federal oversight of American International Group as early as Friday, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar the the matter. The outcome of whether AIG will continue to be considered a systemically important financial institution -- which subjects the insurer to Federal Reserve oversight -- isn't certain, the report said. Shares of AIG, which was bailed out by the federal government during the financial crisis, edged higher in after-hours trade.

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Aaron Hernandez--former New England Patriot--had signs of CTE brain disease: reports

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 16:49

Former New England Patriot football player Aaron Hernandez showed signs of Chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE, a brain diseased associated with trauma linked to playing football, according to an examination conducted by Boston University. A neurological examination of Hernandez's brain performed by Dr. Ann McKee, professor of pathology and neurology at BU, said based on her findings, Hernandez showed signs of stage 3 or 4 CTE, representing the most severe form of the disease, according to a news release. Hernandez was found not guilty on double homicide charges in April. He was serving a life sentence for first-degree murder in a separate trial that took place in 2015. Five days after his not-guilty verdict, the ex-Patriot was found dead in his cell of an apparent suicide. A number of former NFL players have been diagnosed with CTE. Hernandez's lawyer is said to be filing a lawsuit against the National Football League related to the BU findings, according to Deadspin.

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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg outlines plan to crack down on election interference

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 16:41

Facebook Inc. Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg said Thursday that the company is taking additional steps to protect election integrity on the its platform. Facebook stock edged down less than 1% after hours to $171.05. "So today I want to share the steps we're taking to protect election integrity and make sure that Facebook is a force for good in democracy," he said in a Facebook Live video. "While the amount of problematic content we've found so far remains relatively small, any attempted interference is a serious issue." Among other measures, Zuckerberg promised to add 250 people across the company that are focused on security and safety, which would include doubling the current team working on election security. The Facebook executive also said the company plans to make political advertising "more transparent" by forcing advertisers to disclose which page paid for ads and also will let its users see any ads a page is running across all audiences on its platform. Facebook plans to work more closely with election commissions around the world and share more information with other tech and security firms. "... We are in a new world. It is a new challenge for internet communities to deal with nation states attempting to subvert elections. But if that's what we must do, we are committed to rising to the occasion." This year Facebook shares have risen 35.7%, as the S&P 500 index increasing 9.9%.

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Texas Instruments hikes dividend, share buybacks

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 16:39

Texas Instruments Inc. shares rose in the extended session Thursday after the chip maker's board raised the quarterly dividend by 24% and added a hefty share buyback authorization. Texas Instruments shares rose 1.5% to $87.35 after hours. The company will raise its quarterly dividend to 62 cents a share from 50 cents, with the new dividend payable Nov. 13 to shareholders as of Oct. 31. Texas Instruments's board also added $6 billion in share repurchase authority, in addition to the 44.6 billion in purchasing authority that remained at the end of June 2017.

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McDonald's raises dividend by 7%

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 16:34

McDonald's Corp. said late Thursday its board of directors has approved a 7% dividend increase to $1.01 a share, payable Dec. 15 to shareholders of record Dec. 1. That's the company's 41st consecutive dividend increase. McDonald's shares fell less than 0.1% in after-hours trading after ending the regular session down 0.5%.

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Presidio shares fall 5% after company posts revenue miss

MarketWatch Market Pulse - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 16:25

Shares of Presidio Inc. fell more than 5% late Thursday after the IT company missed fiscal fourth-quarter revenue expectations. Presidio said it earned $10.4 million, or 11 cents a share, in the quarter, versus a net loss of $7.4 million, or 10 cents a share, in the year-ago period. Adjusted for one-time items, the company earned $30.6 million, or 32 cents a share, compared with $23.4 million, or 25 cents a share, in the prior-year quarter. Revenue fell to $729 million, from $754 million a year ago. Analysts polled by FactSet had expected adjusted earnings of 32 cents a share on sales of $737 million. The shares ended the regular trading session down 0.4%.

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Puerto Rico, St. Croix devastated by powerful Hurricane Maria

Top Reuters News - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 16:15
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (Reuters) - Deadly Hurricane Maria caused flooding in the Dominican Republic as it brushed past the country on Thursday after destroying buildings and knocking out power across the U.S. territories of Puerto Rico and St. Croix.

Exclusive: Turkey to deploy troops inside Syria's Idlib - Erdogan

Top Reuters News - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 16:04
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said on Thursday Turkey will deploy troops in Syria's northern Idlib region as part of a so-called de-escalation agreement brokered by Russia last month.

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