Morning Minutes 4/23/2020

Morning Minutes

Stocks Consolidate Amid Mixed Earnings and Employment News

April 23, 2020

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Market Commentary By:
Colin Cieszynski, CFA, CMT
Chief Market Strategist
ccieszynski@siawm.com
+1 (647) 282-4428

Stock markets are up slightly this morning, consolidating Wednesday’s gains. US index futures are up about 0.3%. European index futures such as the Dax and FTSE are essentially flat while Asia-Pacific markets were mixed overnight.

Weekly US initial jobless claims were 4.4 million last week, more than the 4.2 million the street had expected but down from the previous week’s 5.5 million claims. Continuing clams were 15.9 million last week up from 11.9 million the week before but better than the 16.4 million the street had expected.

Employment news from companies is mixed this morning with WestJet and Mullen Group announced layoffs in Canada today. In the US, Tyson Foods is shuttering a second pork plant following a COVID-19 outbreak among employees, while La-Z-Boy announced plans to start resuming production at several of its plants next week.

Today’s corporate news spotlight is on retailers where results have been mixed. Target announced that its same store sales for the February to April quarter are up more than 7.0%, compared with 1.5% in the January quarter, boosted by a spike in online sales, which have more than doubled. Target noted particularly strong growth (10-20%) in consumer staples, food/beverage, and hardlines with clothing and related lines dropping 20%. Speaking of struggles in clothing, Gap announced that it has suspended paying rent on its stores and is negotiating with its landlords to defer rent payments.

In other earnings news today, Eli Lilly beat the street ($1.75 vs street $1.48) while a number of companies missed expectations or reported losses including Hershey, Blackstone, Las Vegas Sands,

Energy markets continue to stabilize with WTI crude up 14.3% to near $15.75/bbs, while Brent Crude is up 7.6% trading near $22.00/bbl. Production exceeding demand and storage capacity remains a concern. We are also seeing a more general improvement in commodity prices with copper up 0.6% today. Auto-sensitive precious metals platinum (up 3.0%) and palladium (up 1.1%) are outpacing gold’s 0.85% gain today.

 

New Video: Market Commentary and Portfolio Update – April 22, 2020

With Jeremy Fehr – Founder and CEO, Paul Vendrinsky – Portfolio Manager and Ted Bader – President of SIA Wealth Management

A new webinar video of Jeremy Fehr, founder of SIA Charts and SIA Wealth, discussing current trends in world markets, and Jason Leesui, Vice President of SIA Wealth discussing Advisor Alpha and portfolio strategy is now available. A PDF version of the presentation is available.

GoToMeeting Version: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/recording/8264632388716317442

YouTube Version: https://youtu.be/GQQT–JJ_8c

 

Replay links and registration information for future webinars can also be found in the webinar section of the SIA Wealth Website.

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