Financial News and Notes 9/26/11 – 10/1/11


-World financial leaders meet in Washington during the IMF meetings with leaders outside of Europe pressing for stronger, quicker action in the troubled continent by increasing the bailout fund through borrowing against it.  However, Germany opposes the idea and it is thought the ECB might not allow it.  9/26

-New home sales fell in August down 2.3% from July. 9/27

-The Consumer Confidence index for September was up slightly over august, but still near 2009 lows.  9/28

-For the 4th straight month home prices rose in July, but are still down compared to a year ago. 9/28

-Greece approved a new property tax law to help increase revenues and an important step in the ability of the country to receive additional foreign aid.  9/28

-Capital spending for non-defense goods rose in August to the highest level seen since 2008.  9/29

-Unemployment claims dropped to their lowest level since April falling to a seasonally adjusted 391,000 last week. 9/30

-Second quarter GDP was revised up to 1.3% ahead of expectations.  9/30

-Germany voted to increase its share of the contribution to the continents bailout fund clearing a major hurdle in increasing the overall size of the fund from $250 billion euros to $440 billion.  9/30

-Chinese manufacturing contracted slightly in Sept.  10/1


-UBS chief Oswald Grubel resigned over the weekend in the wake of the massive investment loss by a trader in London. 9/26

-Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway announced it will buy back shares of company stock, a strong signal that he believes that the company’s stock is undervalued.  9/27

-Companies in the S&P 500 have $976 billion of cash on hand according to S&P, the highest amount ever.  9/27

-Amazon revealed a new tablet computer, the Kindle Fire, which is the first serious challenger to Apple’s iPad.  9/29

-Nokia announced it will be cutting 3,500 manufacturing jobs. 9/30

-S&P raised its credit rating for GM to BB+, a step below investment grade. 9/30

-Bank of America announced it will begin charging standard customers $5 a month to use their debit cards to make purchases.  9/30


-Investors have moved $92 billion out of stock investments over the three months ending in August. 9/26

-Markets jumped back up after the weakness of the previous week as investors grew confident that European officials would take steps to stem the European debt crisis.  The Dow rose 2.5%, the S&P 500 rose 2.3%.  Europe was up 1.9% as well.  Gold fell to $1,592.50. 9/27

-Global markets rallied for a third day as hopes rose that a broader European fix was in the works.  The Dow rose 1.3%, the Nikkei was up 2.8%, and Europe rose 4.4%.  9/28

-The winning streak was snapped as global markets fell on worries that not enough progress was being made in Europe and commodity prices fell.  The Dow fell 1.6%, the S&P 500 dropped 2.1%, and Europe dropped 1.1%. 9/29

-The third quarter was not kind to stocks as they saw their worst quarter since the throes of the financial crisis. The Dow fell 12.1% for the quarter and it was also the 5th straight down month for the index.  The S&P 500 fell 14%.  The up and down quarter was captured by the VIX volatility index which rose 160% from June 30th.  Concerns over sovereign European debt, the possibility of the U.S. entering another recession, and fast growing emerging markets showing signs of cooling permeated the markets throughout the quarter.  The 10 year treasury yield plummeted and finished the quarter below 2% at 1.929% as investors sought the safety of US debt.  10/1

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