Photo: Stu Forster/Getty Images
Stocks tanked after the opening bell, down almost two per cent at times. But gradually over the course of the day most moved closer to the green.First, the scoreboard:
Dow: 12,573, -31, -0.3%
S&P 500: 1,335, -6, -0.5%
Nasdaq: 2,866, -22, -0.7%
Here’s what you need to know.
- Initial jobless claims surprised even the most bullish economists on the Street, falling to 350,000 first time filers from last week’s revised 376,000. That’s the lowest level since March 2008, but it follows a seasonal trend over the July 4th holiday. Click here to put those number in context >
- Fastenal reported slightly better than expected earnings before the opening bell. The nuts and bolts manufacturer earned $0.38 per share on revenue of $804.9 million. Shares traded up more than six per cent over the day.
- The Dow opened sharply lower, falling nearly two per cent by 11 a.m. The euro traded below $1.22 as well, hitting a low of $1.2169 before rebounding slightly. The currency has been declining rapidly over the past several weeks.
- The number of Americans with underwater mortgages declined to 11.4 million during the first quarter. At that rate, 23.7 per cent of all residential properties with a mortgage were underwater, compared to 25.2 per cent at the end of 2011. An underwater mortgage indicates a homeowner owes more on their property than it is worth. These are the 16 cities getting destroyed by foreclosures.
- Boeing received an order for 150 737 Max jets from United Airlines, worth $14.7 billion at list price. The agreement pushes the total number of 737’s ever ordered over 10,000, and brings Boeing’s orders since the Farnborough Air Show began to $20.6 billion. Meanwhile, Airbus logged orders that topped $16.7 billion at list price since the show started.
- Wells Fargo agreed to pay a fine of $175 million to settle claims that it lent to black and Hispanic borrowers at higher interest rates than similarly qualified white applicants. The bank will compensate those black and Hispanic borrowers who were issued subprime loans while white applicants won prime loans, the U.S. Department of Justice said in a statement during the middle of the trading day.
- Before the closing bell, The Wall Street Journal reported that Bill Ackman took a major stake in consumer goods giant Procter & Gamble with the Federal Trade Commissions blessing. According to Bloomberg, this is his “largest initial investment ever.” Here’s Bill Ackman’s huge presentation on his favourite investment right now >
- Also to note today: overnight action from the world’s central banks. Both South Korea and Brazil cut benchmark interest rates, while Japan increased its asset buying program.