Tuesday, February 13, 2018
What to watch today
Stocks started the week with a huge move to the upside, as each of the major indexes gained more than 1.3% with the Dow pacing gains, adding 1.7%, or 410 points. The tech-heavy Nasdaq was up 1.5%, or 107 points, while the S&P 500 rose 1.39%, or 46 points. Treasury yields, meanwhile, remained elevated. The VIX index, which tracks market volatility, fell 3 points on Monday. But the big market swings that became a feature of 2018’s market environment in the last two weeks of trading are still clearly in place.
On Tuesday, investors will contend with a largely open calendar, as the National Federation of Independent Business’ latest reading on small business optimism will be the only big economic data report released in the morning. Earnings due out Tuesday are expected from Pepsico (PEP), Under Armour (UAA), MetLife (MET), and Western Union (WU).
Walgreens in talks to buy AmerisourceBergen: Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc. (WBA) has made a takeover approach to drug distributor AmerisourceBergen Corp. (ABC), a move that could help boost profitability at the drugstore giant and insulate it against external threats in an increasingly competitive health-care landscape. [The Wall Street Journal]
Icahn, Deason urge Xerox shareholders to oppose Fujifilm deal: Xerox Corp.’s (XRX) plan to sell itself to Japan’s Fujifilm Holdings has come under further pressure with Carl Icahn and Darwin Deason urging fellow shareholders to oppose the $6.1 billion deal. The activist shareholders, who own a combined 15% of the U.S. printer and copier maker, said the agreement dramatically undervalued Xerox and criticized the deal structure. [Reuters]
Lawsuit claims Cohen’s Point72 is hostile to women: A female executive at billionaire Steven A. Cohen’s Point72 Asset Management LP on Monday filed a lawsuit accusing the firm of operating as a “boys’ club” that subjects women to a openly hostile working environment and pays them less than men. Lauren Bonner, an associate director, said a “structural sexism” pervades Point72, where women are denigrated by even high-level employees, including a top executive who declares “no girls allowed” in advance of some meetings. [Reuters]
Trump’s trippy budget math: President Donald Trump’s federal budget for 2019, released Feb. 12, foresees a far cheerier economic future than just about anybody else analyzing the economy. Trump expects real GDP growth to hit 3% this year, and stay near that level every year for at least a decade. Private economists think the economy will grow just 2.4% in 2018, and the Congressional Budget Office is gloomier still, seeing just 2.2% growth. Many economists, meanwhile, think a recession could hit around 2020, sending growth negative. [Yahoo Finance]
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