Thursday, January 3, 2013
U.S. stocks pulled back a bit Thursday after comments in the Federal Reserve's minutes indicated that "some members" were not comfortable with the "free money forever" policies, and had indicated they'd like to see an end to quantitative easing by the end of 2013. That said, the only members at the Fed who are the key decision makers (Bernanke, Yellen, Dudley from the NY Fed) are among the most dovish so dissent from other members is something for discussion purposes only and has no impact on the future path. The S&P 500 fell 0.2% and the NASDAQ 0.4%.
- The private sector created 215,000 new jobs in December, a much stronger than expected number boosted by gains in construction hiring. ADP said construction added 39,000 positions in the month, second only to trade and transportation utilities, which grew 53,000. Expectations were for an increase of 133,000.
- Weekly jobless claims rose by 10,000 to a seasonally adjusted 372,000. The four-week moving average for new claims, edged up 250 to 360,000.
Oil dropped 0.2% to $92.92, silver retreated 0.9% to $30.72, and gold fell 0.8% to $1674.60.
British shares gained 0.3% while both German and French shares fell 0.3%.
- In Germany, unemployment increased by only 3,000 in December, below analysts' forecasts of an increase of 11,000.
Markets in Japan and mainland China remained closed for public holidays.
- China’s non-manufacturing purchasing managers’ index rose to 56.1 in December from 55.6 in November. A reading above 50 indicates expansion.