Monday, June 20, 2016 – Friday June 24, 2016
On Monday, U.S. crude oil gained almost 3% to close at $49.37 a barrel, driving up the energy sector. The U.S. dollar index traded lower by about .5% and the pound surged more than 2% against the dollar. Markets ended the day with the Dow Industrials up 129 points.
On Tuesday, Fed Chair Janet Yellen testified before Congress, stating that a U.K. vote to leave the EU could have significant economic repercussions. She also said the Fed needs to remain cautious with its approach to monetary policy and is carefully monitoring data from the labor sector. She is still optimistic that the labor sector will continue to improve. Markets ended the day basically unchanged, as many investors stayed in cash.
On Wednesday, existing home sales for May rose 1.8% to an annualized 5.53 million units. The EIA petroleum status report for the week ending June 17th dropped 900,000 barrels, marking its fifth consecutive weekly decline, however, this drop was less than expected and U.S. crude fell 2.5% on the news. Markets ended the day down slightly.
On Thursday, jobless claims for the week ending June 18th fell 18,000 to 259,000, close to a 43 year low, and the flash manufacturing PMI moved up to 51.4, compared to the previous month’s 50.5. Voters in the U.K. headed to the polls and markets rallied strong, with the Dow Industrials closing up 230 points.
On Friday morning the results of the U.K. referendum were released, and the U.K. will be leaving the EU, with 52% of voters wanting to exit, and 48% wanting to stay. Gold rose more than 8% on the news, the British Pound plummeted to a 31 year low against the dollar, while the dollar index was up as much as 3%. The process of withdrawing from the EU will be slow, anticipated to take two or more years, and there will be periods of volatility since this has no precedent. Markets opened Friday morning down sharply with the Dow Industrials off more than 500 points.
Red Hat Inc. (NYSE: RHT) shares fell more than 4% Wednesday after market, as the open source software solutions provider reported first-quarter earnings of $61.2 million, or 33 cents a share, an increase from $48 million, or 26 cents a share, from a year ago. Red Hat also revealed it will buy back up to $1 billion of its stock.
Shares of Tesla Motors (NASDAQ: TSLA) plummeted after the electric car manufacturer announced plans to acquire solar energy company SolarCity for about $2.8 billion. Wall Street analysts see the deal as a negative for Tesla. Oppenheimer Funds and RBC Capital Markets have downgraded Tesla and removed previous price targets.
Shares of Adobe Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: ADBE) fell despite an earnings beat. The software company announced quarterly profit of $244 million, or 48 cents a share, on sales of $1.4 billion. However, analysts expected adjusted earnings of 68 cents a share.
The longtime leader of the popular retailer Macy’s (NYSE: M), Terry Lundgren, will step down as CEO next year. Recently, Macy’s has been struggling to adapt to new consumer demands. Jeff Gennette will take over as CEO in 2017.
FedEx (NYSE: FDX) reported a better than expected fourth quarter. Despite beating earnings, shares fell after the report because revenue was slightly lower than expected in its freight section. In addition FedEx suffered from unfavorable currency exchange rates.