U.S. Stocks Rise as Service, Jobs Data Offset China (Bloomberg)
U.S. stocks rose, sending the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index higher for a third day, as better- than-forecast growth in American employment and service industries offset concern about China’s economy. U.S. equities rose after ADP Employer Services said companies added 162,000 jobs last month, topping the median forecast of 38 economists surveyed by Bloomberg for a 140,000 advance. Service industries in the United States expanded more than forecast in September. The ADP report was better than estimated, but it hasn’t been a good indicator of the official jobs data and the market is going to want confirmation from the government report on Friday,” said Stephen Wood, the New York-based chief market strategist for North America for Russell Investments which oversees $152 billion.
H-P Tanks as Whitman Sees More Pain Ahead (Marketwatch)
Hewlett-Packard stock shed more than 10% to $15.33 by early afternoon as the company also posted an earnings forecast that one analyst said was “much worse than expected.” The company’s CEO Meg Whitman blamed its woes on the series of major management changes, which she said “caused multiple inconsistent strategic plans and executional miscues.” Whitman said the company sees the coming fiscal year as “a fix and rebuild year,” when the tech powerhouse will see “broad-based profit decline,” though “more contained” than in fiscal-year 2012.
Stocks and bonds will be virtually worthless and gold and hard assets will be the only investments worth having unless the United States. tames its addiction to debt and deficits, Pimco’s Bill Gross said Tuesday. Washington must close both the budget deficit, which entails spending and revenue during the course of a given year, as well as a “fiscal gap,” which describes the amount that will be needed to pay for social programs such as Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid that have unfunded liabilities of tens of trillions of dollars, Gross said. “Unless we begin to close this gap, then the inevitable result will be that our debt/GDP ratio will continue to rise, the Fed would print money to pay for the deficiency, inflation would follow and the dollar would inevitably decline,” Gross wrote. “Bonds would be burned to a crisp and stocks would certainly be singed; only gold and real assets would thrive within the ‘Ring of Fire,'” another Gross term for U.S. economic conditions.
U.S. Data Point to Impetus in Economy (Financial Times)
Refinancing applications have soared as Americans rush to take advantage of record low rates triggered by the Federal Reserve’s programme of quantitative easing. Consumer sentiment going into the Nov. 6 election remains one of the critical factors in the race for the White House. The Institute for Supply Management’s service sector index rose to 55.1 from 53.7 last month — well ahead of expectations for a small decline. High quality global journalism requires investment. The jump in applications signals that consumers are betting on the same thing as the Fed: that banks will finally be forced to loosen lending standards. “That has been the missing ingredient,” Mr Gilhooly said, “and the Fed has the wind at its back after 10 months of improving existing home sales and prices moving off the floor.”