The median forecast of 48 economists surveyed by Bloomberg called for a decrease to 340,000. Applications in California remained elevated and analysts werent able to determine how many non-federal workers filed due to the government shutdown, a Labor Department spokesman said as the figures were released to the press. China Rates The MSCI Emerging Markets Index fell for a second day, losing 0.1 percent. The Shanghai Composite Index dropped 0.9 percent and the Hang Seng China Enterprises Index of mainland companies listed in Hong Kong slid 1.3 percent.
Related: More banks in the crosshairs after JPM deal All eyes on earnings: Northrop Grumman ( NOC , Fortune 500 ) reported earnings and sales above expectations and raised its out look for the year. Boeing ( BA , Fortune 500 ) reported a surge in quarterly profit and revenue as the aircraft manufacturer works its way through a backlog of orders. The read more stock rose in premarket trading. But Caterpillar ( CAT , Fortune 500 ) reported a slump in sales and earnings, noting that a slowdown in the mining sector has taken a bite out of heavy equipment manufacturing. The stock dropped.
“We are nowhere near a market top because this rally has real internal strength in it,” says Ken Winans of Winans Investments. “This bull run has room to run.” ASK MATT: Is S&P 500 good place to start investing? A closer look at the companies at or approaching highs show that: Well-known consumer brands are big winners. Disney, Chipotle Mexican Grill and Starbucks are among the stocks that have blown the furthest into record ground.
Earnings Scorecard Some 47 companies in the S&P 500 are due to release results today. Earnings have beaten projections at 76 percent of the 210 companies that have posted results so far this reporting period, while 53 percent exceeded sales projections, data compiled by Bloomberg show. Jobless claims decreased by 12,000 to 350,000 in the week ended Oct. 19 from a revised 362,000 in the prior period, the Labor Department said. The median forecast of 48 economists surveyed by Bloomberg called for a decrease to 340,000. Applications in California remained elevated and analysts werent able to determine how many non-federal workers filed due to the government shutdown, a Labor Department spokesman said as the figures were released to the press.
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Companies, banks, mutual funds and individuals were all sellers of stocks in the net sum of $2.77m; $1.24m; $2.69m and $3.17m, respectively. The major factor that has triggered the latest rally is the PM Nawaz Sharifs visit to the US where already some gains have been secured. Those include the US State Department asking Congress to resume more than $300 million in blocked security assistance and an earlier approval by the Congress to release $1.6bn economic and military assistance to Pakistan. Investors were keeping a close eye on what passes in the upcoming meeting between PM Sharif and President Obama. The flow of mixed quarterly results has also kept investors on their feet.
The burden of making a case for commodity stocks should be less right now, considering the lackluster performance purportedly low-risk blue chips stocks like Wal-Mart /quotes/zigman/245476/quotes/nls/wmt WMT -0.55% , McDonalds /quotes/zigman/233369/quotes/nls/mcd MCD -0.96% , Coca-Cola /quotes/zigman/222647/quotes/nls/ko KO 0.00% and General Mills /quotes/zigman/227548/quotes/nls/gis GIS +0.75% have done recently. All of these supposedly stable picks are in the red since May despite a 10% rally for the broader S&P 500 /quotes/zigman/3870025 SPX -0.47% . Click to Play Startups may see boost from new ‘crowdfunding’ rules WSJ’s Andrew Ackerman explains how startups could potentially benefit from new “crowdfunding” rules that were cleared by the Securities and Exchange Commission. Oh, and by the way since May 1, weve seen a 10% rally for aluminum king Alcoa /quotes/zigman/246295/quotes/nls/aa AA -0.96% , a 20% gain for copper and gold miner Freeport McMoRan /quotes/zigman/154700/quotes/nls/fcx FCX +0.74% , and a 30% gain for U.S. Steel /quotes/zigman/295713/quotes/nls/x X -2.30% .
Dow component 3M Co reported a 6 percent rise in quarterly profit due to higher sales across all its businesses. Ford Motor Co rose 3.9 percent to $18.20 in premarket trade after the second-largest U.S. automaker reported higher-than-expected third-quarter profit and boosted its full-year global earnings outlook. According to Thomson Reuters data through Wednesday morning, of the 160 companies in the S&P 500 that have reported earnings, 66.3 percent have topped Wall Street expectations, above the 63 percent beat rate since 1994 and roughly in line with the 66 percent rate over the past four quarters. On a revenue basis, 53.8 percent of reporting companies have beaten analysts’ expectations, below the 61 percent beat rate since 2002 but above the 49 percent rate for the past four quarters.