Stock market news, October 10, 2014: This morning (Friday), U.S. stock market futures were down as global stocks continued their selloff. The same forces fueled yesterday's 334-point loss for the Dow Jones Industrial Average. Global stocks slipped to a six-month low, causing volatility to surge, and the S&P Volatility Index (VIX) - the market's fear gauge - soared 25%.
Crude oil prices are also down this morning. Brent crude - the global benchmark set in London - slipped to its lowest level since 2010. Oil prices continue to slide as growth indicators in major economies suggest lackluster growth and falling demand. The slide was aided this morning by a report in Italy, Europe's third-largest economy, that the nation's industrial production slipped 0.7% in August, compared to the same period in 2013.
Here are the top stories affecting the stock market today:
- The Activist Acts: In an open letter to Apple Inc.(Nasdaq: AAPL) Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook, billionaire activist investor Carl Icahn said he believes the company's stock should be valued at $203, more than 100% its current value. Icahn said the company has the opportunity to boost its share value by returning a large share of its "excessive liquidity" to shareholders through a stock buyback. He encouraged the company to make a tender offer with its roughly $133 billion net cash. Apple shares were down 0.5% in premarket hours.
- Go Go Gadget: Tech giant Google Inc. (Nasdaq: GOOG, GOOGL) announced plans to release its newest smartphone, called Shamu, later this month, according to The Wall Street Journal. The device will be the company's largest smartphone to date, signaling Google's commitment to target Samsung and Apple in the "phablet," or super-sized mobile device, market. According to reports, the device will have a 5.9-inch screen, justifying its name after the famous killer whale. The phone's manufacturer is Motorola Mobility, which Google is selling to Lenovo Group Limited (ADR) (OTC: LNVGY) - a company our defense & tech specialist called "the new king of the computer industry" earlier this year...
- Breaking Up: Shares of Symantec Corp. (Nasdaq: SYMC) were down as much as 1.5% in premarket hours on news that the firm plans to split into two separate, publicly-traded companies by December 2015. The first company will specialize in security, where Symantec is a clear market leader; the second firm will focus on information management, an area in which Symantec serves 75% of Fortune 500 companies. The announcement is the latest in a string of pending splits and spinoffs that includes the recent announcement by eBay Inc. (Nasdaq: EBAY) to spin off its PayPal division, and Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE: HPQ) to split into computing and printing divisions.
- Get Smart: China's ecommerce giant Alibaba Holding Group Ltd. (NYSE: BABA) announced it has invested another $50 million in smart remote startup Peel. The financing deal was completed in June, but it remained unannounced due to Alibaba's pre-IPO quiet period. Peel's smart app allows users to convert their smartphones into universal remotes that power televisions, DVRs, and other household devices.
- Strong Debut: It wasn't bad news for every company on the market yesterday, especially one making public debuts. Shares of market software company Hubspot (NYSE: HUBS) jumped more than 20% yesterday after the firm listed on the New York Stock Exchange. HUBS raised $125 million during its IPO, selling shares at $25, above its expected range. We will see if the hot IPO season continues today with the introduction of Dave & Buster's Entertainment Inc. (Nasdaq: PLAY), which priced its IPO at $16 per share, the low end of its range. The company raised $94.1 million in its IPO and will debut on Nasdaq this morning.
- Economic Calendar: Today's economic calendar features speeches from three members of the Federal Reserve, an update on import and export prices, and a report on the Treasury budget.
- Earnings Reports: Stay tuned for earnings reports from Safeway Inc. (NYSE: SWY), Fastenal Co. (Nasdaq: FAST), and Hanmi Financial Corp. (Nasdaq: HAFC).
Full U.S. Economic Calendar October 9, 2014 (NYSE: all times EDT)
- Import and Export Prices at 8:30 a.m.
- Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank President Charles Plosser speaks at 9 a.m.
- Kansas City Fed President Esther George speaks at 1 p.m.
- Dallas Federal Reserve Bank President Richard Fisher speaks at 1:30 p.m.
- Treasury Budget at 2 p.m.
- Richmond Federal Reserve Bank President Jeffrey Lacker speaks at 3 p.m.
Money Morning Small-Cap Investing Specialist Sid Riggs did some statistical analysis on recent financial media commentary that the Russell 2000 Index experienced a Death Cross. What he found were actually "startlingly lucrative implications" for investors...Tags: Carl Icahn, Stock Market, Stock market futures, stock market news, Stock Market Today, Todays Stock Market, today’s market news, today’s top stock market news, top stock market news, U.S. markets, U.S. stock futures, U.S. stock market futures, U.S. stock market today, U.S. stock markets, U.S. stock markets today
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