The FOMC meeting announcement was just released following the two-day December Fed meeting. Here’s what we know so far…
As widely expected, the Fed raised its benchmark lending rate 0.25% to a new range of 0.50% to 0.75%. That makes a new midpoint of 0.625%. Market odds heading into today’s FOMC meeting announcement were 95%, according to CME Group’s FedWatch Tool.The Fed says the labor market has continued to strengthen, but it doesn’t expect much more improvement. The unemployment rate currently sits at a nine-year low of 4.6%.Household spending has been rising moderately, but business-fixed investment has remained soft, according to officials.Inflation has increased since earlier this year but is still below the committee’s 2% longer-run objective. That partly reflects earlier declines in energy prices and in prices of non-energy imports.Market-based measures of inflation have climbed considerably but still are low. Most survey-based measures of longer-term inflation expectations are little changed, on balance, in recent months.The FOMC expects that economic conditions will evolve in a manner that will warrant only gradual increases in the federal funds rate. The federal funds rate is likely to remain, for some time, below levels that are expected to prevail in the longer run.The Fed is projecting three interest rate hikes in 2017, with the average rate expectation at 1.37%.
Fed Chair Janet Yellen followed the FOMC meeting announcement with a press conference at 2:30 p.m. Her comments will be picked-after over the next four weeks for clues on when we might see the next rate hike.
historical stock prices: Tetra Technologies, Inc.(TTI)
- [By Lisa Levin]
Energy sector was the top gainer in the US market on Wednesday. Top gainers in the sector included TETRA Technologies, Inc. (NYSE: TTI), CARBO Ceramics Inc. (NYSE: CRR), and Atwood Oceanics, Inc. (NYSE: ATW).
- [By Lisa Levin]
Wednesday afternoon, the energy sector proved to be a source of strength for the market. Leading the sector was strength from TETRA Technologies, Inc. (NYSE: TTI) and Abraxas Petroleum Corp. (NASDAQ: AXAS).
historical stock prices: (MALRF)
- [By SEEKINGALPHA.COM]
The other producing lithium miners, and soon to be producers. I have discussed these previously in detail here, here and here. Needless to say, the top 3 producers are non-pure plays (SQM (NYSE:SQM), Albemarle (NYSE:ALB), and FMC Corp. (NYSE:FMC)). The top pure play currently producing miners are Orocobre (ASX:ORE) (OTCPK:OROCF), Tianqi Lithium (SHE:002466), Jiangxi Ganfeng Lithium, Galaxy Resources, Mineral Resources [ASX:MIN] (OTC:MALRF), and Neometals [ASX:NMT] (OTC:RRSSF). The near-term producers include Altura Mining [ASX:AJM] (OTCPK:ALTAF), Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS) (OTC:PILBF), Kidman Resources (ASX:KDR), Critical Elements, Nemaska Lithium (OTCQX:NMKEF) [TSX:NMX], Lithium Americas (OTCQX:LACDF) [TSX:LAC], Lithium X (OTCQX:LIXXF) (TSXV:LIX), Neo Lithium, and Bacanora Minerals (OTC:BCRMF) [TSXV:BCN], Advantage Lithium (OTCQB:AVLIF) [AAL], European Metals (OTCPK:MNTCF, ASX:EMH, AIM:EMH) and Pure Energy (OTCQB:PEMIF) [PE].
historical stock prices: Exxon Mobil Corporation(XOM)
- [By Paul Ausick]
Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM), the country’s largest producer of natural gas, traded up about 0.3% at $86.92 in a 52-week range of $71.55 to $95.55.
- [By Money Morning News Team]
A $2 trillion valuation makes the company worth more than Chevron Corp. (NYSE:CVX), BP Plc. (NYSE ADR:BP), Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM), and Royal Dutch Shell Plc. (NYSE: RDS.A) – combined.
- [By Paul Ausick]
Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM) traded up about 1.23% at $85.77. The stock’s 52-week range is $73.55 to $95.55. Volume was about 15% above the daily average of around 11.1 million shares. The company had no specific news Friday.
historical stock prices: Navigant Consulting, Inc.(NCI)
- [By Lisa Levin]
Shares of Navigant Consulting, Inc. (NYSE: NCI) were down 14 percent to $17.02 after the company posted downbeat quarterly results.
Hertz Global Holdings, Inc (NYSE: HTZ) was down, falling around 18 percent to $14.24. Barclays downgraded Hertz from Equal-Weight to Underweight.
historical stock prices: Discover Financial Services(DFS)
- [By Ben Levisohn]
We get the bull case.American Express is a blue-chip Dow component with an iconic global brand. It generates >30% returns on tangible, but it is trading well below its historical multiple and has underperformed post the election. Costco is now in the rearview mirror, and the string of negative surprises that have weighed on the stock are now poised to abate and position the company to start surprising positively. With Capital One Financial (COF), Discover Financial Services (DFS), and Synchrony Financial (SYF) all trading near their historical peaks, some have concluded thatAmerican Express is headed back to its historical high above $90. While this thought process may sound logical, we believe it only works in a world where generalists are steering the ship, and view it as highly susceptible to unraveling when negative revisions hit. American Express is not the business it once was, it doesnt have the same earnings power, and, in our view, it doesnt deserve to trade near its historical valuation.
- [By JACK HOUGH]
Like CVS, Discover has trounced the broad market over the long term but sold off recently. It’s down more than 15% this year. Costs rose early in the year in part due to one-time expenses related to anti-money-laundering efforts and other regulatory concerns. Analysts predict an offsetting decline in expenses next year. Don’t confuse Discover with a company that’s primarily in the business of running a credit-card network, like Visa (V) and MasterCard (MA). It’s basically a credit-card lender, like Capital One Financial (COF), that runs its own network to gain a competitive advantage.
By saving on network fees, Discover can offer attractive card rewards, including a popular cash-back program. Any card lender can offer cash back, of course, but being too aggressive risks hurting margins. Discover has grown its portfolio of credit-card loans much faster than big banks have in recent years. And it has done so with industry-leading returns on capital. Rising growth could be on the way. Early this year, Discover went on a marketing spree. Last quarter, it reported its best card growth since 2007. Historically, new-card growth and loan growth have been closely correlated. In a November note to investors, Morgan Stanley analyst Cheryl Pate predicted accelerating loan growth within six months. Meanwhile, defaults remain low. Shares sell for less than 10 times projected earnings for the next four quarters, down from 12 times at the end of last year. They could rise 20% on a combination of earnings growth and a valuation rebound. The dividend yield is 2%.
- [By Matthew Cochrane]
While a new year has been ushered in, it is clear PayPal’s philosophy has not changed. Last week, PayPal entered into another major agreement, this time with credit card issuerDiscover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS).