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Wednesday August 24th 2016: Latest financial news from the worldWall St. falls as healthcare, materials stumble
Wall Street retreated on Wednesday, pulled lower by weakness in the materials and healthcare sectors as investors continued to weigh the possibility of an interest rate hike in the coming months. Materials were down 1.2 percent as names such as Newmont Mining and Freeport-McMoRan were the worst performing names on the S&P 500, losing more than 7 percent. The market is awaiting Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen's speech in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, on Friday for insight on the direction of monetary policy.
HP Inc beats estimates, weak printer demand weighs on forecast
By Aishwarya Venugopal (Reuters) - HP Inc , the hardware business of the former Hewlett-Packard Co, reported higher-than-expected quarterly revenue and profit as demand recovered for its notebooks. However, HP forecast current-quarter profit below analysts' estimates, reflecting weak sales of its printers as companies cut costs across industries. HP's shares fell nearly 6 percent in extended trading on Wednesday. Third-quarter revenue from the company's computer business rose 7.5 percent from the second quarter as sales of notebooks improved. ...
U.S. banking regulators focused on cyber security after SWIFT attacks
U.S. banking regulators said on Wednesday they are focused on cyber security risks and controls for U.S. financial institutions after attacks earlier this year involving the global financial network known as SWIFT. In a letter responding to questions from Representative Carolyn Maloney, a Democrat from New York, the regulators also said the U.S. Treasury Department's Office of the Comptroller of the Currency was drafting guidance on interbank messaging and wholesale payment systems. "As part of ongoing supervision activities, the OCC's onsite examination teams regularly address emerging issues, such as the recent reports of cyber-attacks involving SWIFT," said the letter from banking regulators including the Federal Reserve Board and Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.
Ex-Comverse CEO pleads guilty to fraud, a decade after fleeing to Africa
By Nate Raymond NEW YORK (Reuters) - The former chief executive officer of Comverse Technology Inc pleaded guilty to securities fraud on Wednesday and was ordered detained a decade after fleeing the United States for Namibia to avoid prosecution. Jacob "Kobi" Alexander, the Woodbury, New York-based software developer's founder, entered the plea in federal court in Brooklyn, after ending his fight to avoid extradition. Benjamin Brafman, Alexander's lawyer, said he was "bitterly disappointed." It was unclear if Alexander would appeal.
Puerto Rico cannot enforce a Wal-Mart tax: U.S. appeals court
A U.S. appeals court on Wednesday said cash-strapped Puerto Rico cannot force Wal-Mart Stores Inc's affiliate on the island to pay a special corporate tax that the retailer claimed was discriminatory and violated the U.S. Constitution. The 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston upheld a lower court order blocking Puerto Rico from imposing its alternative minimum tax against Wal-Mart Puerto Rico Inc. Wal-Mart argued it was the only company that fit that description and effectively taxed on items from its own distribution centers but not those bought from Puerto Rican vendors.
More U.S. retailers probing phony Egyptian cotton
CHICAGO/NEW DELHI (Reuters) - U.S. retailer Bed Bath & Beyond on Wednesday said it ordered an external audit of textiles from Welspun India , after Target Corp last week accused the Indian manufacturer of passing off cheap sheets as premium Egyptian cotton for two years. This could compound the woes of Welspun, which supplies to several large U.S. retailers and has seen its shares plummet nearly 43 percent since Target's announcement on Friday. It also harms Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's efforts to spur global companies to increase manufacturing in India.
Iran, Ecuador discuss ways to strengthen oil prices
By Alexandra Valencia QUITO (Reuters) - Iran and Ecuador on Wednesday discussed ways that the two countries can strengthen oil prices as Iran signals it may support joint efforts by exporters to prop up flagging crude. Iran has been boosting output since Western sanctions were eased in January. Tehran refused to join a previous attempt this year by OPEC plus non-members such as Russia to stabilize production, and talks collapsed in April. ...
Animal spirits: consumers' devotion lifts pet-care stocks
Shares of a clutch of companies that sell pet food, develop diagnostic tests for animals and offer veterinary care have far outrun the wider market this year, delivering an average total return of nearly 35 percent versus around 8.3 percent for the Standard & Poor's 500 . Shares of animal health testing company Idexx Laboratories Inc , for example, have skyrocketed more than 50 percent this year, while vet clinic operator VCA Inc is up 31 percent and pet food maker Blue Buffalo Pet Products Inc is up 40 percent. Edelstein follows Blue Buffalo and rival Freshpet Inc , which is up 25 percent in 2016.
U.S. crude down 3 percent after big stockpile build
The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said crude inventories rose 2.5 million barrels last week, versus analysts' forecasts for a draw of 500,000 barrels. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) futures settled down $1.33, or 2.8 percent, at $46.77 per barrel. Brent crude futures fell 91 cents, or 1.8 percent, to close at $49.05.
U.S. existing home sales decline, prices still strong
U.S. home resales fell more than expected in July after four straight months of strong gains, as a lack of inventory limited choice for buyers, but further price rises suggested the housing market remained on solid ground. The slump in sales reported by the National Association of Realtors on Wednesday is likely to be temporary, given that a tightening labor market is steadily pushing up wages and mortgage rates are near historically low levels. Existing home sales declined 3.2 percent to an annual rate of 5.39 million units last month, the NAR said.
WHY IT MATTERS: Income inequality
WHY IT MATTERS: Health care
US stocks edge higher in midday trading
Major stock indexes shifted higher in midday trading Thursday, getting a lift from an encouraging report on Chinese manufacturing and some positive earnings from Best Buy, Dollar Tree and other retailers. The market also got a boost from data showing modest improvement in sales of previously occupied homes.
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Hace exactamente cinco años, Cook tomó las riendas de la gigante de Cupertino. Bajo su mandato, la empresa alcanzó su récord de ventas para el iPhone, lanzó un reloj inteligente y abrió casi 500 tiendas por todo el mundo. ¿Cómo pintan los próximos 5 años?
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