E Columbus Day

Despite banks being closed, US stock markets are in a frenzy - mostly bullish - over hopes for another stimulus package, and this has boosted shares of banks in particular during a week when many of the big ones are reporting. Higher jobless claims are expected to soften Senate Republicans towards compromise on a stimulus deal, which the White House desperately wants.

In other news, drug stocks, with a conspicuous exception (of one we own), are up. Tech and alternative energy shares are mostly buoyant, but one of our picks is lower. The US imposed sanctions against another 8 Iranian banks.

China intervened to lower its currency exchange rate against the US dollar, and the US blocked the access of Hong Kong banks to US government economic statistics sites. I am uncertain these are related events, but it is likely. If Hong Kong banks give Beijing early notice of economic news, it can make money from its access ahead of markets.

Other various news includes how today, the airline my family and I booked with, Boeing (BA), fired its CEO. Israel will admit another 2000 Ethiopians to the country despite them not being fully Jewish, as they are related to Ethiopians already in Israel from earlier immigration. If you want to own part of the Boston Red Sox, you may get a chance to bid on its sale.

Tech & Tel

News in the tech sector and on the global front includes:

  • European trust-busters are targeting several US tech giants. Wall Street says it doesn't matter.
  • Marketbeat tipped GE as a China play.
  • Royal KPN (KKPNY), a Dutch telco, is planning to spin off its infrastructure arm and sell its services sector to the EQT sub of Investor AB (IVSBF) of Sweden, which appears to be interested. EQT has other telco interests. This will require a special Netherlands approval, which may not be forthcoming.
  • Finnish Nokia (NOK) forecast that global GNP will gain $8 billion from 5G by 2030. Jim Cramer said not to buy NOK, so it did not fall at all. Its Swedish rival Ericsson (ERIC) fell 0.18%. Vodafone (VOD) rose.
  • Samsung (KRX: 005930) removed its K-pop boyband BTS from promotions after China accused South Korea of atrocities during the Korean War.
  • Deutsche Bank analysts put a buy on Microsoft (MSFT) with a target price of $245.
  • New year highs were hit by Naspers (NPSNY) of South Africa and Prosus (PROSY) of Holland. Prosus was created to stop Naspers from being too big.
  • Chinese electric vehicle maker Nio (NIO) is up another 1%.
  • Mercado Libre (MELI), the Latin American Amazon, is up 1.23%. Amazon is ending its video game crucible.
  • This is boosting Nintendo (NTDOY), the Japanese gaming console maker, picked by Abhimanyu Sisodia.
  • Bonus stock Qualcomn (QCOM) rose 1.16% to a new high after it was recommended by two obscure brokers. It has delayed its Q4 and full year earnings, which were supposed to come out last week. It may be due to holidays.
  • Sorting and reverse vending machine maker Tomra Systems (TMRAF) jumped 2%.
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