Monday, September 24, 2018 – Friday September 28, 2018
On Monday, markets fell on reports that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein was about to resign or be fired. The White House then announced a meeting was scheduled between President Trump and Rosenstein on Thursday, however, that meeting was ultimately delayed until next week. In addition China’s cancellation of a trade delegation also put pressure on markets. The Dow Industrials closed 181 points lower.
On Tuesday the Case-Shiller home price index for July increased .1% and consumer confidence for September increased 5 points to 138.4, its highest read in 18 years. In his speech at the United Nations, President Trump emphasized fair trade. Markets ended the day mixed.
On Wednesday new home sales for August increased slightly to an annualized 629,000 units and the EIA petroleum status report for the week ending September 21st saw crude oil inventory increase by 1.9 million barrels. The Federal Reserve concluded their meeting and, as expected, raised the federal funds target rate by 25 basis points to a range of 2 – 2.25%. The Fed also increased GDP forecasts with 2018 now at 3.1%, and 2019 at 2.5%, and they also removed the word “accommodative” from their policy statement. Markets ended the day lower on the news with the Dow Industrials losing 106 points.
On Thursday durable goods orders for August rose 4.5% compared to the previous month’s 1.7% decline and jobless claims for the week ending September 22nd increased 12,000 to 214,000. The pending home sales index for August declined 1.8%. Markets rose modestly, with tech taking the lead.
On Friday personal income for August rose .3%, consumer spending also rose .3% and the PCE price index increased .1%. Markets opened lower on trade worries and then recovered slightly. Now let’s take a look at some stocks.
Instagram’s Chief Executive Officer Kevin Systrom and Co-Founder Mike Krieger have resigned from Facebook (NASDAQ: FB) on Monday to “explore our curiosity and creativity again,” the two said in a statement. The two have been with Instagram for eight years, and six with the Facebook team. Facebook shares fell by 2.2% after the announcement.
Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ: CMCSA) won its bid for London-based Sky Plc. The all-cash transaction is worth approximately $38.8 billion, beating out 21st Century Fox and Walt Disney’s bid. Comcast’s share fell by 8% on Monday morning. Later in the week, Disney (NYSE: DIS) allowed Fox to sell its remaining 39% stake to Comcast.
Sirius XM Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: SIRI) announced on Monday its intent to acquire Pandora Media, Inc. (NYSE: P) The deal will be an all-stock agreement, worth approximately $3.5 billion, allowing Sirius to establish itself as the largest audio entertainment service in the world. Following the announcement, Pandora shares jumped by 8% on Monday, while Sirius shares fell by 7.7%.
Nike, Inc. (NYSE: NKE) announced its fiscal first quarter results on Tuesday during after-hours. Despite topping analysts’ estimates, Nike shares fell by 3% on Wednesday. For the quarter, Nike reported adjusted earnings per share of 67 cents on revenue of $10 billion.
Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. (NASDAQ: BBBY) reported its fiscal first quarter results with earnings per share of 36 cents, compared to 67 cents a year ago and flat year over year revenue of $2.9 billion. The company missed estimates on both revenue and earnings, sending shares plummeting by 21% on Thursday.