DAILY MARKET REPORTS
- U.S. stocks rose Thursday, putting the S&P 500 on course for its longest streak of record closes in 20 years.
- Tech stocks, which have led much of the recent rally, have risen about 26 percent this year.
- The number of Americans filing applications for new unemployment benefits fell in late September, though recent hurricanes continued to disrupt economic activity in several regions.
- Earnings of S&P 500 companies are expected to rise 5.5 percent in the quarter from a year earlier.
- Shares of Constellation Brands gained 4% after the Corona brewer’s results showed strong beer sales.
- Biogen was up 4% after Morgan Stanley upgraded its rating on the stock to “overweight”.
US FINANCIAL MARKET
Amazon is reportedly testing its own delivery service
- Bloomberg News is reporting Amazon is trying out a new delivery program called “Seller Flex” where the company will pick up packages from third-party sellers selling on its platform and deliver the products to consumers.
Constellation brews higher profit, lifts forecast on margin growth
- The company said beer sales rose 12.8 percent in the second quarter on strong demand for premium beers.
- Its premium beer brands are Corona and Modelo.
- Net income rose to $500 million for the quarter from $358.9 million a year earlier.
- Sales rose nearly 3 percent to $2.08 billion.
Netflix is raising its prices on some plans
- The increase would be the first in two years for Netflix, and affects most of Netflix’s 53 million U.S. subscribers.
- Netflix will now charge $11 per month instead of $10 for a plan that includes HD and allows up people to simultaneously watch programs on two different internet-connected devices.
- The price for another plan that includes ultra-high definition, or 4K, video, is going up by 17 percent, to $14 from $12 a month.
- A plan that limits subscribers to one screen at a time without high-definition will remain at $8 a month.
Apple Releases Update to Fix Watch Connectivity Issue
- Version watchOS 4.0.1 meant to fix some cellular-connectivity issues with Series 3 model.
Google launches new phones, speakers in hardware push
- Google on Wednesday unveiled the second generation of its Pixel smartphone along with new voice-enabled home speakers.
- Google’s new products, including a Pixelbook laptop, wireless earbuds and a small GoPro-like camera.
- The products showcase Google-developed operating systems and services, notably the voice assistant.
- Last month, Google expanded its hardware development capabilities by picking up a 2,000-person smartphone engineering team at HTC for $1.1 billion.
Facebook is testing adding context to news stories
- The new feature will allow Facebook users to tap a button for additional information about the news article and source.
- Facebook has come under pressure in recent weeks to better combat the spread of fake news and misinformation.
- “This new feature is designed to provide people some of the tools they need to make an informed decision about which stories to read, share, and trust,” the company said in a statement.
Boeing Buying Drone Maker Aurora Flight Services
- Aurora Flight Sciences is a maker of aerial drones and pilotless flying systems that will expands Boeing’s reach in the new field of electric-powered aircraft.
- The proposed deal marks Boeing’s second acquisition in less than a year involving autonomous systems following last December’s purchase of Liquid Robotics.
Court reverses ban on sales of Sanofi, Regeneron drug Praluent
- A U.S. appeals court has thrown out a ban on sales of Sanofi SA and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals’ cholesterol-lowering drug Praluent, in a closely watched case that could have broad implications for drug development.
Johnson & Johnson Abandoning Insulin Pumps
- Sales of Animas Vibe and OneTouch Ping pumps discontinued immediately in U.S. and Canada.
- The company is citing increased competition that made selling the pumps unsustainable.
- J&J said the 90,000 diabetes patients that use Animas products will be offered the option to transfer to a pump from Medtronic.
- The company recorded a $200 million charge in its second quarter, primarily related to the insulin pump business.
GM more than doubles self-driving car test fleet in California
- GM’s self-driving unit, Cruise Automation, has more than doubled the size of its test fleet of robot cars in California.
- In the past three months, the Cruise unit has increased the number of vehicles registered for testing on California streets to 100 from the previous 30 to 40, GM spokesman Ray Wert.
- In total, GM Cruise vehicles have been involved in 13 collisions reported to California regulators in 2017, while Alphabet’s Waymo vehicles have been involved in three crashes.
US ECONOMY & POLITIC
U.S. Trade Gap Narrowed in August
- The foreign-trade gap in goods and services narrowed 2.7% from the prior month to a seasonally adjusted $42.395 billion in August, the Commerce Department said.
- Imports decreased 1% in August, and exports increased 0.4% from July.
- Exports of goods increased a slight $600 million, while imports of goods decreased $300 million, underpinned by volatility in the energy category.
- Looking at only trade in goods, August imports to the U.S. from China were $45.8 billion, the highest on record.
U.S. factory orders strengthen in August
- Factory orders rebounded 1.2% in August after a sharp decline in the prior month, the Commerce Department reported.
- Orders for durable goods, about half of all orders, rose a revised 2% in August compared with the prior estimate of a 1.7% gain.
- Orders for non-defense capital goods excluding aircraft jumped 1.1% in August after a 0.9% gain in July.
U.S. jobless claims fall
- Initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 12,000 to a seasonally adjusted 260,000 for the week ended Sept. 30, the Labor Department said.
- Claims shot up from a low of 236,000 in late August, hitting 298,000 at the start of September.
- As a result, Harvey and Irma are expected to cut into job growth in September.
- That’s about 11.2 million jobs that could be touched in one way or another by the storms.
EUROPE & WORLD
ECB officials cautious about stimulus withdrawal
- Top officials at the European Central Bank at their last meeting had broadly agreed that the economy still needs “very substantial” stimulus.
- The written account of the Sept. 7 meeting indicated the bank would only move slowly in phasing out its 60 billion euros ($71 billion) in monthly bond purchases next year.
- Officials thought that “inflation dynamics remain subdued” despite monthly injections of newly printed money into the financial system through bond purchases since March, 2015.
Canada’s Trade Deficit Widens in August on Export Weakness
- According to economists at Royal Bank of Canada, market expectations heading into Thursday’s Canada trade report was for a C$2.6 billion
- In August, exports fell 1% to C$43.63 billion.
- Imports totaled C$47.04 billion in August, or unchanged from the previous month, the data agency added.
- Canada’s trade report indicated exports to the U.S. fell 1.8% in August, to C$32.61 billion.
TransCanada Ends Two Pipeline Projects, Citing ‘Changed Circumstances’
- TransCanada Chief Executive Officer Russ Girling said the decisions come after “a careful review of changed circumstances.”
- The 4,500-kilometer (roughly 2,800 miles) Energy East pipeline was planned to run from Alberta and Saskatchewan to the refineries of Eastern Canada and a marine terminal in New Brunswick, carrying about 1 million barrels of crude oil a day.
- The Eastern Mainline project included new natural gas pipeline and compression facilities largely along the company’s existing systems in Southern Ontario.
- As a result of its decision to end the projects, TransCanada said it is reviewing the project’s 1.3 billion Canadian dollar ($1.04 billion) carrying value and expects to record an estimated $1 billion impairment charge in its fourth quarter.
TODAY in HISTORY
- Earl Warren was sworn in as the 14th Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court. (1953)
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