Bulge Bracket Bargains at Goldman and Morgan Stanley

Mae Love
October 18, 2018

Trump has urged the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries to raise output to help cover a shortfall due to new USA sanctions on Iran.

France's CAC 40 added 1.5 percent while the DAX in Germany jumped 1.4 percent. The Kospi in South Korea advanced 1.1 percent to 2,169.20.

The S&P 500 index lost 16.34 points, or 0.6 per cent, to 2,750.79. Shares rose in Taiwan, Indonesia and Singapore.

WALL STREET: U.S. stocks bounced back from a series of losses, racking up their biggest gain in six months on Tuesday.

The S&P 500 index jumped 59.13 points, or 2.1 per cent, its largest gain since March 26, and finished at 2809.92. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks climbed 2.8 percent to 1,596.84.

Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs and UnitedHealth led a parade of companies that reported profits for the third quarter that surpassed analysts' expectations.

UnitedHealth, the largest USA health insurer and provider of privately run Medicare Advantage plans, once again topped Wall Street forecasts and raised its projections for the year. The stock climbed 4.7 percent to $272.57.

Goldman Sachs today reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit, driven by its equities trading and investment banking businesses that offset weakness in bond trading. Sentiment was also lifted by encouraging data.

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Homebuilders sank after the Commerce Department said construction of new homes dropped in September.

APEC finance ministers meet in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea.China's new yuan loans may have risen to 1.36 trillion yuan (US$196 billion) in September from August's 1.28 trillion yuan as officials sought to buoy economic growth.

Scott Wren, senior global equity strategist for the Wells Fargo Investment Institute, said stocks jumped because the industrial production report suggests inflation isn't speeding up, and that investors took that as a sign the Fed won't accelerate the pace of its interest rate increases.

ANALYST'S TAKE: "Asia Pacific markets have kickstarted the day in synchronized gains owing to the relief in the USA, sustaining the trend in taking after overnight leads", Jingyi Pan of IG said in a commentary. Apart from scandals including workplace harassment, Uber faces intensifying competition and sold its Southeast Asian operations to rival Grab in March.

The Nasdaq added 187 points, or 2.5 per cent, to 7,620.

USA benchmark crude oil added 0.2 percent to $71.92 per barrel in NY. Alphabet, Google's parent company, rose 2.8 percent to $1,133.08.

"We don't expect the Kingdom to be as accommodative to the White House requests for stronger production", he said, adding that the Saudis could cut as much as 500,000 barrels per day of production "as a warning shot should the USA opt to impose any type of sanction in response to the Khashoggi developments".

CURRENCIES: The dollar strengthened to 112.39 yen from 112.28 yen late Tuesday. However, bond trading revenue fell 10 percent to $1.31 billion.

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