The S&P 500 spent the day wallowing in shallow red ink, but a rally at the close nudged the index into the positive territory for a fractional gain of 0.07%. The week tells a better story, with a gain of 2.04%. Thus far, of the thirteen S&P 500 market days in 2012, eleven have been advances, athough three of them were in the 0.02% to 0.07% range. The index has a year-to-date gain of 4.59%. It is 3.54% below its interim high at the end of April 2011.
From an intermediate perspective, the S&P 500 is 94.4% above the March 2009 closing low and 16.0% below the nominal all-time high of October 2007.
Oil fell for a fourth day, the euro weakened and U.S. equity futures slid after Greek bondholders said they’ve made their maximum offer in negotiations to prevent the country from defaulting.
Oil lost 0.3 percent to $98.05 a barrel as of 1:26 p.m. in Tokyo. The euro fell 0.3 percent to $1.2891. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index (MXAP) of shares rose 0.1 percent, led by telephone companies and financials. Standard & Poor’s 500 Index futures slumped 0.3 percent. Silver advanced to a six-week high and wheat and corn futures climbed at least 0.8 percent. Bond risk in Japan dropped to the lowest level in almost three months.
Markets including China, South Korea and Taiwan were shut today for the Lunar New Year holiday. Bondholders are leaving it to the European Union and International Monetary Fund to decide whether to accept a deal on Greece’s debt, said Charles Dallara, managing director of the Institute of International Finance and representative for the private creditors. EU leaders will meet in Brussels today to discuss budget rules, a financial firewall to protect indebted states and a ban on imports of Iranian oil.
Research In Motion’s Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie have bowed to investor pressure and resigned as co-CEOs, handing the top job to an insider with four years at the struggling BlackBerry maker.
Thorsten Heins, a former Siemens AG executive who has risen steadily through RIM’s upper management ranks since joining the Canadian company in late 2007, took over as CEO on Saturday, RIM said on Sunday.
The shift ends the two-decade long partnership of Lazaridis and Balsillie atop a once-pioneering technology company that now struggles against Apple and Google.
Economics, FedSpeak and Eurozone Follies:
Eurogroup meeting of eurozone finance ministers
Ecofin meeting of EU finance ministers (totally different than Monday’s meeting!)
Spain sells bills
Treasury sells 2-year notes
FOMC meeting, Day One
President Obama’s State of the Union address
Germany sells bonds, er, bunds
Pending Home Sales index for December
Treasury sells 5-year notes
FOMC policy announcement
Ben Bernanke Press Conference! We’ll bring the popcorn! Or rather we’ll eat Xanax like popcorn.
Italy sells bonds
Durable Goods orders for December
Weekly jobless claims
New home sales for December
Leading indicators for December
Treasury auctions 7-year notes
Italy sells more bills
Fourth-quarter GDP report
University of Michigan consumer sentiment for January
Advanced Micro Devices
International Game Technology
Johnson & Johnson
Air Products & Chemicals
Total System Services
Stanley Black & Decker
St. Jude Medical
Varian Medical Systems
Time Warner Cable
Mead Johnson Nutrition
Procter & Gamble
T. Rowe Price