U.S. Stock Futures Little Changed as Hurricane Lands (Bloomberg)
Futures were little changed as investors assessed the impact of Hurricane Sandy, the Atlantic Ocean superstorm that struck the East Coast yesterday. The markets in New York City, which took a heavy hit from the storm, remain closed today, while the futures market in Chicago is open. Exchanges are planning to reopen tomorrow, weather permitting, according to statements from NYSE Euronext and Nasdaq OMX Group Inc. With parts of New York City flooded, all eyes are on clean up and recovery efforts. Power still needs to be restored to among the 6.5 million people without power on the eastern seaboard.
Nikkei falls to two-week closing low after BOJ eases (Reuters)
Japan’s Nikkei average fell 1% to a two-week closing low on Tuesday, after the Bank of Japan eased monetary policy by increasing the size of its asset buying and lending program by $138 billion, largely as expected. Honda Motor Co shed 2.8%, extending the pervious session’s 4.7% decline after the carmaker cut its full-year net profit forecast by a fifth due to slowing sales in China due to a territorial dispute. Central banks are continuing to prop up the financial markets with easy money policies. It is an open question how much longer these type of programs will continue to work, as the law of diminishing returns has already taken hold with Federal Reserve policies in the United States.
With One Week Until Election Day, Will Jobs Report Be a Deciding Factor? (Yahoo!Finance)
One week from today, Americans will take to the polls. Judging from the latest poll numbers, the U.S. presidential race will be won or lost on the razor’s edge. So what, if anything, will push voters into one camp or the other? Some have started to suggest that Hurricane Sandy will affect the race as both campaigns have been suspended in light of the storm. What very well could impact the race is Friday’s jobs report from the Labor Department. Realistically, we don’t think either of these will make much difference in the grand scheme of the election. Most voters probably have made up their minds and one data point in the final week before the election is unlikely to be a deciding factor.