- US law enforcement actions that are hobbling North Korea’s financial system may be as important as diplomacy in persuading the country to give up its nuclear weapons program.
- Crude oil traded near a three-day low in NY as ministers from OPEC signaled they intend to keep production close to the highest in more than 20 years and fear over production disruptions subsided.
Wall Street Journal:
- Venture-capital investments in US energy-technology companies increased last year because of greater demand for more reliable and affordable alternatives to fossil fuels, citing a survey.
- Kuwait has made a large oil and gas find that, if confirmed, could make it a significant gas producer for the first time, citing energy minister Sheikh Ahmad al-Fahd al-Sabah.
- The NYMEX, which started its pit-trading floor for energy futures in London six months ago, plans to close the floor and move over to electronic trade.
- Iranian-made bombs are being brought across the border into Iraq and put into the hands of insurgents fighting coalition forces.
- The US economy has “a great deal of momentum” and more interest rate increases may be needed, especially if growth exceeds expectations, St. Louis Fed Reserve President Poole said. Poole said he doubted a cooling housing market could undermine the economy’s expansion, adding that the Fed would take appropriate steps should growth slow unexpectedly.
Late Buy/Sell Recommendations
- Reiterated Outperform on (TXU), (EBAY), (CRL) and (ETR).
Asian Indices are -1.0% to -.50% on average.
S&P 500 indicated -.09%.
NASDAQ 100 indicated -.09%.
US AM Market Call
NASDAQ 100 Pre-Market Indicator/Heat Map
Before the Bell CNBC Video(bottom right)
Top 20 Business Stories
Daily Stock Events
Rasmussen Consumer/Investor Daily Indices
CNBC Guest Schedule
Earnings of Note
- None of note
8:30 am EST
- Final 4Q Non-farm Productivity is estimated to fall .1% versus a prior estimate of a .6% decline.
- Final 4Q Unit Labor Costs are estimated to rise 3.0% versus a prior estimate of a 3.5% increase.
3:00 pm EST
- Consumer Credit for January is estimated to rise to $5.0 billion versus $3.3 billion in December.
BOTTOM LINE: Asian indices are lower, led down by technology and energy shares in the region. I expect US equities to open lower and to rally modestly into the afternoon, finishing slightly lower. The Portfolio is 50% net long heading into the day.