(Bloomberg) -- European equities were little changed as investors rotated into cyclicals and out of defensive shares, while some U.K. firms and sectors rose following the country’s budget.The Stoxx Europe 600 Index closed up less than 0.1%, as gains for carmakers and travel shares offset declines in utilities and health-care shares. The FTSE 100 rallied 0.9% after Britain’s spring budget. U.K. homebuilders climbed after the government confirmed support measures, while Diageo Plc advanced as a planned increase in alcohol duties was canceled in the announcement.Equities in Europe have had a bumpy start to 2021, with a vaccination-driven rally peaking in mid-February. Since then, spiking yields in U.S. treasuries and German bunds have damped investors’ appetite for stocks, particularly weighing on so-called bond-proxy haven sectors.“Markets are transitioning to a more robust and mature phase of the recovery trade,” according to Barclays Plc strategists led by Emmanuel Cau. They expect European stocks to continue to catch up with U.S. peers, because cheaper value shares and non-U.S. equities stand to benefit from rising growth and inflation expectations.Automotive stocks accounted for most of the day’s top performers, buoyed by overall cyclical strength, while UBS Group AG analyst upgrades additionally boosted Renault SA and Continental AG. British insurer Hiscox Ltd. trailed the pack, having scrapped its dividend amid worse-than-expected gross written premiums.You want more news on this market? Click here for a curated First Word channel of actionable news from Bloomberg and select sources. It can be customized to your preferences by clicking into Actions on the toolbar or hitting the HELP key for assistance.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
Mortgage rates have risen past a psychological benchmark for the first time since they fell to historic lows during the pandemic. The average rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage increased to 3.02% this past week, according to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey—the first time since July that the rate has risen above 3%. “Since reaching a low point in January, mortgage rates have risen by more than 30 basis points,” wrote Freddie Mac’s chief economist, in a release.
A new compromise would make millions of Americans ineligible for the third checks.
Congress is nearing passage of the third economic stimulus check it will send out to you and other taxpayers as part of its Covid-19 relief bill.
(Bloomberg) -- As the leader of crypto exchange Kraken, Jesse Powell is bound to be bullish on Bitcoin. Yet he’s projecting a disruptive future that would stretch the imagination of even the most ardent crypto fans.In a Bloomberg Television interview, Powell said Bitcoin could reach $1 million in the next decade, adding that supporters say it could eventually replace all of the major fiat currencies.“We can only speculate, but when you measure it in terms of dollars, you have to think it’s going to infinity,” he said. “The true believers will tell you that it’s going all the way to the moon, to Mars and eventually, will be the world’s currency.”The CEO also said San Francisco-based Kraken is considering going public, possibly next year.Extreme predictions are nothing new in the world of Bitcoin, where adherents stand to profit from convincing a wider audience that crypto is a legitimate asset class, rather than a speculative fad. The dollar remains the world’s reserve currency and is the benchmark for global trade, though its value has softened in the past year.Powell said Bitcoin bulls see it one day exceeding the combined market cap of the dollar, euro and other currencies.The dollar “is only 50 years old and it’s already showing extreme signs of weakness, and I think people will start measuring the price of things in terms of Bitcoin,” he said.The digital currency slipped 3% in early U.S. trading on Thursday, hovering around $49,000. Prices have surged almost 600% since the start of 2020 on the back of wider mainstream adoption, with bulls seeing it as both an inflation hedge and speculative asset.Critics argue that Bitcoin is in a giant, stimulus-fueled bubble destined to burst like the 2017 boom and bust cycle.Kraken benefits from higher prices as it reaps fees from increased trading. Bloomberg reported last month that the exchange was in talks to raise new funding, which would double the company’s valuation to more than $10 billion.“Personally, I think $10 billion is a low valuation,” Powell said. “I wouldn’t be interested in selling shares at that price.”The CEO did acknowledge the potential for wild market swings, saying prices can “move up or down 50% on any given day.” That kind of volatility has long been one of the negatives of Bitcoin, relegating the market to one of speculation, rather than a means of doing business.“If you are buying into Bitcoin out of speculation, you should be committed to holding for five years,” Powell said. “You have to have strong convictions to hold.”For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
Australian dollar has pulled back slightly on Wednesday, but what I am keeping a close eye on is the fact that the February candlestick was a shooting star.
Stock benchmarks on Thursday afternoon were lower as Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said he was monitoring the recent rise in bond yields, and that the pent-up inflation expected this year was unlikely to last.
Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell on Thursday said he would be concerned if there was persistent tightening in U.S. financial conditions
36% of taxpayers said the Recovery Rebate Credit was the 'most confusing' part of taxes this year.
Max out your 401(k) each year, and be sure to get your 401(k) employer match, if you have one. And for you super savers, here are other ways to save for retirement.
Longtime Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA) bull Ron Baron acknowledged Thursday morning his fund Baron Capital sold 1.7 million shares of the electric automaker despite his long-held belief the stock has a path to $2,000. What Happened: Baron Capital invested $387 million in Tesla's stock back in 2014 and the position has grown to be worth $5.5 billion in February, Baron said on CNBC's "Squawk Box." Over the past six months, the fund has sold 1.7 million out of its 8-million share position between $450 and $900 a share with an average price of $666.70. Baron said many of his friends were skeptical with his original 2014 thesis that Tesla's stock would return 20 times. "We persisted," Baron said. "And at the time we invested, it was unlikely in most people's opinions that electric cars were going to dominate." Related Link: Ark More Convinced On Tesla's Autonomous Strategy And Cathie Wood Says A New Price Target Is Coming Soon Why It's Important: The decision to authorize a sale of a stock he believes still has tremendous upside potential was due strictly to profit-taking as the stock's surge means it accounted for an outsized representation in the fund portfolio, Baron said. The fund also used some of the proceeds from the sale to pay down part of a line of credit. Baron said it was "painful" to sell close to 2 million shares of Tesla's stock as the company's prospects of eventually selling 20 million cars a year is a more realistic outcome. Tesla has so many opportunities ahead, such as the ability to monetize each of the 20 million cars sold by charging a monthly $100 fee for autonomous driving features. "That alone is worth the present price of the stock in 10 years," he said. See also: How to Invest in Tesla Stock What's Next: The billionaire himself said he has not sold a single share he personally owns and is unlikely to do so "for another 10 years." Tesla's stock traded around $657 a share at publication time. See more from BenzingaClick here for options trades from BenzingaExclusive: Grayscale CEO 'Wouldn't Rule Out' Future Bitcoin ETF Launch In US© 2021 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.
Indian merchants have almost entirely stopped signing new export contracts with Iranian buyers for commodities such as rice, sugar and tea, due to caution about Tehran's dwindling rupee reserves with Indian banks, six industry officials told Reuters. "Exporters are avoiding dealing with Iran since payments are getting delayed for months," said a Mumbai-based dealer with a global trading house. Iran's rupee reserves in India's UCO and IDBI Bank, the two lenders authorised to facilitate rupee trade, have depleted significantly and exporters are not sure whether they would be paid on time for new shipments, the dealer said.
(Bloomberg) -- The most popular stock trade in China is unraveling, tarnishing the reputations of some of the country’s most successful money managers and undermining the outlook for the world’s second-largest equity market.Until three weeks ago, buying the nation’s beloved liquor maker Kweichow Moutai Co. was a surefire way for the $3 trillion mutual fund industry to mint money and attract bumper inflows. The stock soared 30% year-to-date through its Feb. 10 record, after gaining almost 70% in 2020 -- and doubling in the year before that.Many funds, flush with a record amount of cash, didn’t have a choice if they wanted to keep their clients and attract new investors. Buying Moutai was the simplest and most effective way to top rankings -- until it wasn’t. The stock began tumbling after the Lunar New Year break, and kept falling. It’s now down 22% since its peak, including a drop of as much as 6% Thursday, and has lost more than $111 billion in value.One of the most high-profile casualties is E Fund Management Co.’s Zhang Kun, the first in China to oversee 100 billion yuan ($15 billion). Zhang’s E Fund Blue Chip Selected Mixed Fund is down 12% in 10 trading days after returning 95% last year largely due to a big bet on baijiu, the Chinese white spirit. The fund had 9.6% of its assets invested in Moutai as of December. Another fund run by Zhang has lost 23%. Zhang didn’t immediately reply to a request for comment.The fund manager has received “verbal abuse” in recent weeks by investors who were previously fans, according to a report Wednesday in China’s state tabloid Global Times. He was known as “Prince Charming” or “Brother Kun” among his investors, who now refer to him on social media as “Kun Gou” or “Kun the dog” -- an offensive term in Chinese.Other copycat money managers will be feeling the pain: recent data showed two-thirds of mutual fund assets were invested in only 100 stocks, while the top 400 stocks lured 93% of total funds. Although China’s onshore market contains more than 4,000 stocks, Moutai is by far the largest with a market value of about $390 billion.Moutai accounts for 27% of the loss in the FTSE China A50 Index of the nation’s largest companies since Feb. 10. When added together with fellow spirit makers Wuliangye Yibin Co. and Luzhou Laojiao Co., the three comprise more than half of the gauge’s decline.Concern had been growing about the stretched valuations of Moutai and its peers, especially as gains accelerated. A gauge tracking consumer staples, including liquor makers, traded at a record 36 times projected 12-month earnings in February.Read how China is warning against ‘entertaining’ investors with fund pitchesTo be sure, the company’s shares have faced plenty of risks in the past. The stock tumbled about 8% in a single day in July after the People’s Daily criticized the high price of the company’s liquor. In 2017, Xinhua News Agency said the stock was rising too fast, triggering a selloff. Back in 2013, the stock plunged when Xi Jinping came to power and clamped down on lavish spending by party cadres.But this time around, authorities have grown increasingly concerned about risks to the financial system posed by excess liquidity. On Tuesday, China’s top banking regulator jolted markets with a warning about the need to reduce leverage amid the rising risk of bubbles globally and in the local property sector. With Moutai being the best-known proxy for liquidity-fueled bets and momentum, fund managers will likely need to find a new strategy to protect their returns.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
Baird analyst Ben Kallo began coverage of the company, setting a price target that implies a modest gain for the stock.
Tanger Factory Outlet Centers Inc (NYSE: SKT) is attracting heightened discussion on r/WallStreetBets, the forum that came to light with the short squeeze in GameStop Corp (NYSE: GME) stock earlier in the year. What Happened: The North Carolina-based real estate investment trust which operates factory outlet centers had a comments volume of 600 on WallStreetBets as of press time, as per SwaggyStocks data, and was the top-trending stock in the community in the near-term. Several users were pointing to what they said is a short squeeze opportunity. One forum member claimed he “just had to buy” Tanger stock as Melvin Capital and Citadel are short on it. Tanger shares have soared 76.69% since the year began. In the after-hours trading on Wednesday the company’s shares rose 5.13% to $18.65 after closing 9.24% higher at $17.74. Why It Matters: Tanger is the second most shorted stock after GameStop — attracting short interest or 39.98%, according to High Short Interest Stocks, a website that tracks stocks with short interest over 20%. The company was affected badly by the COVID-19 pandemic as most of the occupants of their outlet centers are non-essential businesses, the Motley Fool reported. See also: How to Buy Tanger Factory Outlet Centers (SKT) Stock However, the company’s fourth-quarter results indicated that it managed to attract customer traffic at 90% of 2019 levels and collect 95% of billed rent in the same period. Some of the positives related to the latest results have been noted by the WallStreetBets participants. Another emerging darling of the Reddit crowd is Rocket Companies Inc (NYSE: RKT), which was the second most discussed firm on the discussion board attracting over 3,700 comments as of press time. The resulting spike in Rocket shares gave Rocket founder Dan Gilbert’s wealth a billion boost on Tuesday before the stock dipped 32.67% on Wednesday. Related Link: GameStop Short-Selling Fame's Melvin Posts 20% Returns For February: Report Photo by Billy Hathorn on Wikimedia See more from BenzingaClick here for options trades from BenzingaWhy Globalstar Stock Spiked 9% In After-Hours TodayGameStop Short-Selling Fame's Melvin Posts 20% Returns For February: Report© 2021 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.
U.S. stocks closed lower Wednesday, as benchmark bond yields climbed nearer to their highs of 2021 and a slate of fresh economic data came in mixed, despite progress on the vaccination front.
(Bloomberg) -- The main fund from Cathie Wood’s Ark Investment Management slipped in pre-market trading on Thursday, as it struggles to stabilize following a 20% drop from its February peak.The $22.9 billion Ark Innovation ETF (ARKK) was down 0.7% as of 8:53 a.m. in New York. The ETF tumbled 6.3% on Wednesday, adding to recent losses as growth stocks such as Pinterest Inc. and Zillow Group Inc. took a beating.The decline on Thursday had been steeper, but ARKK clawed back some of the drop as futures on the Nasdaq 100 Index also erased much of an earlier decline. The underlying gauge lost almost 3% on Wednesday, with traders turning away from tech in favor of so-called value stocks that had underperformed during the pandemic.The rotation, along with higher bond yields that dim the allure of equities, is taking the shine off what had been one of the hottest investments on Wall Street. Since peaking on Feb. 12, ARKK’s price has now dropped by a fifth, the level that commonly defines a bear market.“People are worried the crowded trades will lose their momentum like they did last September” when some of the biggest tech names suffered a bout of selling, said Matt Maley, chief market strategist at Miller Tabak + Co.Yields on benchmark 10-year Treasury notes have jumped more than 50 basis points in 2021, on track for the largest quarterly increase since 2016. Consequently, it’s growing more difficult to justify sky-high valuations for highly speculative, expensive areas of the stock market.ARKK’s three largest holdings, Tesla Inc., Square Inc. and Roku Inc., have about tripled over the past year. Tesla is up close to 350%, while Square has surged about 200% and Roku is up more than 240%. They all slumped on Wednesday.In fact, all but three stocks held by ARKK fell and three suffered losses exceeding 10% on Wednesday, including Stratasys Ltd., a maker of 3D printers, and Veracyte Inc., which develops molecular tests for oncology.The fund’s tilt toward long-term growth means short-term profitability isn’t a key consideration when stocks are picked. In fact, two-thirds of its current holdings didn’t make a profit in the past year.Inflows to the fund have faltered in the past week, but there’s yet to be a mass exodus. ARKK took in more than $600 million combined in Friday and Monday trading, then lost $150 million in Tuesday’s session, the latest for which data is available.“There is growing unease in the markets and whether higher-risk asset classes can continue to climb,” said Michael Purves, chief executive officer at Tallbacken Capital Advisors. “If sentiment turns, you can see substantial outflows.”(Updates for Thursday’s pre-market moves.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
The oil industry is no stranger to boom-bust cycles, but the pandemic has been its wildest ride to date, and on March 4 it’s due to take another turn when OPEC meets to consider rolling back production cuts. As the world’s cars and airplanes idled, global oil demand bottomed out in April at levels 16.4% below the previous year, dragging the price into negative territory for the first time. White-knuckling through it all has been OPEC, the 13-member cartel that dictates quotas for most of the world’s biggest oil-producing countries (notably excluding the US).
It’s been a bad week for tech stocks. The Nasdaq tumbled 2.7% on Wednesday and the slide looks set to continue on Thursday. So buy the dip before tech stocks move at least 25% higher this year, says veteran tech analyst Daniel Ives of investment firm Wedbush.
Barstool Sports founder Dave Portnoy tweeted an elaborately produced “emergency press conference” video to debut the ETF. The stunt was also an uncomfortable reminder that one man’s meta meme may be another’s market manipulator.