David's Feed
Nov 6, 2014
via Morning Bid with David Gaffen

My dinner with The Hulk

Walt Disney Co headlines the day’s earnings, and its eagerly anticipated third-quarter report is likely to illustrate how one company can benefit from some unique content that outpowers all expectations.

As a media giant with big movie studios and a lot of other recurring revenue, Disney in the last 17 quarters has brought in less than $10 billion in revenue just three times and exceeded $12 billion in revenue twice (two of the last three quarters). That’s pretty consistent.

Nov 5, 2014
via Morning Bid with David Gaffen

Radio-free Europe

Election Day having come and gone, attention in markets turns to Europe ahead of the results of Thursday’s European Central Bank meeting.

At the latter, the roaring of terrible roars and gnashing of terrible teeth between ECB head Mario Draghi and the Germans – who function as the disapproving mom in this dysfunctional relationship – will or won’t come to a head with news about whether the ECB will go further on a monetary policy that many deem inadequate to face a crippling lack of demand that has pounded many European economies, notably Italy and France of late (with Germany not doing all that much better).

Nov 3, 2014
via Morning Bid with David Gaffen

I’m just a bill…

This week is chock full of events to keep investors interested, be it in election day this Tuesday or jobs data on Friday. It’s hard to escape the notion that the United States may be starting to hit a stride when it comes to growth. There’s some expectation that this may positively affect U.S. earnings, which generally came out looking good with companies like Caterpillar and Union Pacific saying relatively good things about the U.S. in their earnings. There is also the worry that the U.S. may be dragged down by the rest of the world, but so far that effect has been limited.

The election has the possibility of derailing the market rally, but really, only for a time. Elections – more true of presidential elections than mid-terms – bring a litany of armchair analysis that ranges from uninformed to painfully uninformed, and most is reduced to mostly aphorisms. There’s little in the way of overarching themes being identified this time around.

Oct 29, 2014
via Morning Bid with David Gaffen

We come to praise QE, not to bury it

So, that’s it. Seven years and $4.4 trillion later, the U.S. Federal Reserve will exit quantitative easing, despite what a few Fedsters have said about the possibility of QE4. Let’s remember that third sequels rarely, if ever, are satisfying, they tend to meet with shrugs from audiences, and don’t often include the original cast of characters. “Alien Resurrection” ring a bell? That’s what QE4 would be. But I digress.

After a few weeks of freaking out – from a toxic stew of weak European and Chinese data, uncertainty over the threat of a big Ebola outbreak, and some calculated, questionable chats from Fed officials that mostly confused people – the panic appears to be over.

Oct 28, 2014

GOP Senate takeover could boost sagging energy stocks

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Investors stung by plunging oil prices and energy stocks may find relief right around the corner: A Republican-led U.S. Senate could well jump-start energy-friendly policies that would shore up the beaten-down sector.

Political oddsmakers say Republicans should win the Senate in next week’s mid-term elections. Although major reforms on big issues like taxes or immigration are thought unlikely, GOP control of Congress could see laws advanced in a handful of areas, with energy topping the list.

Oct 27, 2014
via Morning Bid with David Gaffen

Rousseff and the damage done

Few political developments in the last several months have been more binary than Brazil’s presidential election. It has been more polarized than the Federal Reserve, the European Central Bank, the Ebola scare, the U.S. Midterm elections, Ukraine and what-have-you.

With the narrow re-election of Dilma Rousseff over centrist candidate Aecio Neves, it wouldn’t be all that crazy to expect the Bovespa stock exchange to go through an extended round of weakness, not just on Monday, but for a few days after that, given the prevailing view of Rousseff’s policies as being lousy for markets.

Oct 24, 2014
via Morning Bid with David Gaffen

Still feeling the fear trade

Fear remains in the markets and it is being tested again following the diagnosis of a New York-based doctor with the Ebola virus. Even though there are just nine documented cases of the deadly disease on U.S. soil so far and just one death.

Relating all of this to markets can’t help but seem myopic and flippant, but it cannot be ignored, either. So the best method is to merely present the information and move on. U.S. stock futures dipped around 8:30 p.m. ET after news that the test had come back positive – about a 0.5 percent drop. That’s similar to the activity during the day’s trade when the first news of the doctor hit through the New York Post.

Oct 20, 2014
via Morning Bid with David Gaffen

Them apples

Apple ain’t what it used to be, at least in terms of how investors see it. That is probably a decent thing for those who still believe in the growth story.

The company, which reports results after the close today, is still the most valuable in the nation by market capitalization. And yet, by a number of considered metrics, the stock falls far short of where it’s been in the past.

Oct 17, 2014
via Morning Bid with David Gaffen

Turn it off, like a light switch

We may be seeing some sort of return to calm, at least on some levels. General Electric’s results have futures moving higher – the stock is up 3 percent in premarket action – and there’s a general sense that some of the selling has exhausted itself, at least for the time being.

After several days of rapidly careening lower, the market seemed to hit its washout moment late Wednesday, when a torrent of selling pushed the 10-year Treasury to 1.86 percent and more than 4 million S&P e-mini futures contracts changed hands.

Oct 16, 2014
via Morning Bid with David Gaffen

Ebola and market pressures

There’s a glut of various stresses operating in the markets right now: Europe’s inability to get out of its own way, the sharp fall in oil prices that probably says more about supply issues and lackluster demand in Asian markets than the United States, the uncertain path of the Federal Reserve and a nagging concern that weak inflation figures show the economy really isn’t healing all that much.

But make no mistake about it – Ebola is a pressure point for markets at this moment, and one only need look at the “scare” moments in markets to really see it.

    • About David

      "David Gaffen oversees the stocks team, having joined Reuters in May 2009. He spent four years at the Wall Street Journal, where he was the original writer of the web site's MarketBeat blog. He has appeared on Fox Business, CNN International, NPR, and assorted other media and is the author of the forthcoming book "Never Buy Another Stock Again.""
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