Markets dropped more than 1 percent today as investors continued to face concerns about central bank stimulus coming to an end while the economy remains weak. A battery of mixed economic reports encouraged investors to take profits and keep their heads low after markets around the world sold off.
Gold: +$1.30 to $1,401.80 per ounce Oil: +$0.42 to $93.68 per barrel U.S. 10-Year: -0.057 to 2.089%
Productivity and Costs: Workers Do More For Less In First Quarter: Non-farm business sector labor productivity increased at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 0.5 percent during the first quarter of 2013, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The increase in productivity reflects a 2.1 percent gain in output and a 1.6 percent gain in hours worked. Wednesday’s report is the second estimate for the first quarter, and reflects a downward revision in productivity from 0.7 percent in the previous estimate… (Read more.)
ADP: Federal Budget Cuts Are Finally Hurting Job Growth: Even though the job market has remained surprisingly resilient after the $85 billion in across-the-board federal spending cuts that took effect March 1, businesses added a disappointing 135,000 jobs in May, reported private payroll processor ADP on Wednesday. Economists had expected the economy to add 167,000 jobs in the past month, and the fact that this target was missed indicates that the big federal budget cuts may be finally taking a toll on the labor market… (Read more.)
U.S. Manufacturing Stagnates as Core Factory Orders Fall: All told, U.S. manufacturing conditions are pretty stagnant. Wednesday’s factory orders report, released by the U.S. Census Bureau, showed that total new orders for manufactured goods increased by 1.0 percent in April. The increase is less than the 1.4 percent gain forecast by economists, and follows a downwardly-revised decline of 4.7 percent in March… (Read more.)
Here’s your Cheat Sheet to today’s top stock stories:
Dell (NASDAQ:DELL) has evaluated a proposal from Carl Icahn, and the board has determined that the activist investor doesn’t have enough money to top the board-supported buyout from company founder Michael Dell and private equity firm SilverLake Management… (Read more.)
BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY) will release its newest device in the U.S. soon, with the hope that their Q10 smartphone can bring back old BlackBerry fans by reinstating the much-loved full keyboard that originally made BlackBerry devices so popular… (Read more.)
Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) is looking to expand into the grocery business. The online retailer is planning a major roll-out of its online grocery business, called AmazonFresh, which it has been quietly working on for years… (Read more.)
Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) is still beating rival Samsung for smartphone sales in the U.S., according to new data from comScore. The report ranks Apple as number one with a 39.2 percent share of the OEM (original equipment manufacturer) market. Samsung was ranked second with a 22 percent OEM market share… (Read more.)
General Motors (NYSE:GM) is poised to rejoin the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index on Thursday after the close of trading, and The Treasury Department celebrated Wednesday by announcing that it will begin another round of sales of the company’s stock that it acquired as part of the financial bailout known as the Troubled Asset Relief Program… (Read more.)
Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) has had an incredible year thus far, but some of that success could be dampened by a suit filed by the state of Texas claiming that the company’s vertically integrated supply chain that cuts out the dealer network by selling cars directly to the public breaks some local franchise laws… (Read more.)
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