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US close: Losses trimmed after sentiment data

Date: Friday 12 Nov 2010

US close: Losses trimmed after sentiment data

Though stocks finished above their worst levels it was still a grim end to the week for US markets.

The University of Michigan sentiment index rose to 69.3 in November, its highest level since June, from 67.7 in October, prompting a half-hearted rally but concerns about European sovereign debt, especially Ireland and Portugal, deterred buyers, as did speculation that a Chinese rate rise is on the way in order to check inflation in the People’s Republic.

There was also little to cheer from the G20 meeting in Seoul. No plan has been agreed, but there was an acknowledgement that "persistently large imbalances" should be addressed – but not until next year.

There are also rumours that Beijing will stop foreign companies buying property in China and cap residential purchases to just one home.

Dow Jones fell 90 at 11,192, with commodity plays doing especially badly. Weaker oil prices hit Exxon Mobil and Chevron plus oilfield services group Schlumberger, while aluminium producer Alcoa reacted to declines on the metal markets, as did miners such as Freeport McMoRan and Newmont Mining.

The tech-laced Nasdaq, down 37 at 2,518, was dragged lower by the mighty Apple, which had a chunk taken out of it after it was reported mutual fund Capital Growth Management sold most of its stake in the iPhone maker in the third quarter. The broader-based S&P 500 dropped 14 to 1,199.

Graphics chip maker Nvidia provided some cheer for tech stock followers, however, with better than expected third quarter earnings. The company also raised fourth quarter earnings guidance.

Fellow chip maker Intel also made headway after announcing a 15% increase to its quarterly dividend to 18c a share.

Walt Disney was the best performer among Dow stocks, even after quarterly profits dropped 7% due mostly to its ESPN cable channel and theme parks.

Retailer JC Penney reported third-quarter earnings of 19c per share on $44m in net income, up 63% and topping analyst expectations.

Houser builder DR Horton was on shaky foundations, however, after chief executive officer Donald Tomnitz admitted making a profit in 2011 will be a “greater challenge” as sales are likely to be less vibrant.

S&P 500 - Risers
Fortune Brands Inc. (FO) $58.60 +7.76%
Nvidia Corp. (NVDA) $13.42 +6.44%
Walt Disney Co. (DIS) $37.75 +5.07%
Juniper Networks Inc. (JNPR) $35.80 +3.68%
Novell Inc. (NOVL) $5.82 +2.46%

S&P 500 - Fallers
CF Industries Holdings Inc. (CF) $119.65 -6.34%
D. R. Horton Inc. (DHI) $11.51 -5.42%
Office Depot Inc. (ODP) $4.48 -5.08%
PulteGroup Inc. (PHM) $7.49 -4.83%
Lincoln National Corp. (LNC) $23.89 -4.44%
Huntington Bancshares Inc. (HBAN) $5.90 -4.26%

Dow Jones I.A - Risers
Walt Disney Co. (DIS) $37.75 +5.07%
Intel Corp. (INTC) $21.56 +1.63%
Kraft Foods Inc. (KFT) $30.62 +0.53%

Dow Jones I.A - Fallers
Boeing Co. (BA) $63.09 -3.49%
Alcoa Inc. (AA) $13.49 -2.32%
Hewlett-Packard Co. (HPQ) $42.21 -2.06%
Bank of America Corp. (BAC) $12.12 -2.02%
Cisco Systems Inc. (CSCO) $20.13 -1.90%

Nasdaq 100 - Risers
Nvidia Corp. (NVDA) $13.42 +6.44%
Intel Corp. (INTC) $21.56 +1.63%
Research in Motion Ltd. (RIMM) $59.68 +1.04%
Garmin Ltd. (GRMN) $29.65 +1.02%
Symantec Corp. (SYMC) $17.21 +0.83%

Nasdaq 100 - Fallers
Foster Wheeler AG (FWLT) $28.09 -3.83%
Wynn Resorts Ltd. (WYNN) $110.31 -3.71%
Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc. (VRTX) $33.78 -3.46%
Citrix Systems Inc. (CTXS) $64.74 -3.08%
Gilead Sciences Inc. (GILD) $37.78 -3.08%
Baidu Inc. (BIDU) $110.68 -3.00%
Dell Inc. (DELL) $13.53 -2.88%
Apple Inc. (AAPL) $307.90 -2.76%

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