Wall St. set to extend record run as ‘Trump trade’ rekindles

The three main U.S. stock indexes closed at record highs on Thursday and Friday as optimism about the economy rose after President Donald Trump vowed to make a major tax announcement in the next few weeks. The S&P 500 has surged 8.3 percent since Trump's Nov. 8 election, fueled by expectations he will lower corporate taxes, reduce regulations and increase infrastructure spending. The rally had stalled amid concerns over Trump's protectionist stance and lack of clarity on policy reforms.

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Wall St. set to extend record run as ‘Trump trade’ rekindles

U.S. jobless claims drop from five-month high

The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits fell from a five-month high last week, pointing to labor strength that underscores the economy's sustained momentum. A tight labor market together with signs of a strengthening economy and steadily rising inflation will likely push the Federal Reserve to hike interest rates next week. Initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 10,000 to a seasonally adjusted 258,000 for the week ended Dec. 3, the Labor Department said on Thursday.

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U.S. jobless claims drop from five-month high

U.S. nonfarm payroll job growth seen pushing case for Fed hikes

U.S. employment growth likely picked up in September, putting pressure on the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates and signaling that steam could be building in the economy ahead of America's presidential election. Yellen has said the economy needs to create just under 100,000 jobs a month to keep up with population growth. The Labor Department will release its employment report on Friday at 8:30 a.m ET and the data is expected to show the jobless rate holding steady at 4.9 percent.

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U.S. nonfarm payroll job growth seen pushing case for Fed hikes

Bank rally on shaky legs as traders assess rate hike odds

NEW YORK (Reuters) – A rare run of outperformance by U.S. bank shares appears to have hit a wall as a spate of soft readings on the economy have tempered bets that the Federal Reserve might raise rates soon.

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Bank rally on shaky legs as traders assess rate hike odds

Wall Street lower as investors cautious ahead of Fed minutes

The Fed left interest rates unchanged at its meeting last month but said near-term risks to the economy had diminished, leaving the door open for a possible rate hike this year. Investors will parse the minutes, due at 2:00 p.m. ET (1800 GMT), for hints on when the Fed would next raise rates, particularly in light of New York Fed President William Dudley's hawkish comments on Tuesday. “Investors seem guarded today,” said Eric Wiegand, senior portfolio manager at the Private Client Reserve at U.S. Bank.

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Wall Street lower as investors cautious ahead of Fed minutes

U.S. mortgage demand to buy homes hits six-month low: MBA

The Mortgage Bankers Association said its seasonally adjusted index of mortgage activity for home purchases, a leading indicator of housing sales, fell 4 percent in the week ended Aug. 12. The average rate on “conforming” 30-year home mortgages, or loans with balances of $417,000 or less, dipped to 3.64 percent last week from 3.65 percent, the Washington-based group said. Weekly mortgage activity on home purchases reached an eight-month peak in early June before a decline since even as 30-year mortgage rates hovered near their lowest in over three years.

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U.S. mortgage demand to buy homes hits six-month low: MBA

S&P 500 closes at seven-month high after Yellen comments

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The S&P 500 closed at a 7-month high on Monday as Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen painted a mostly upbeat picture of the economy but gave little sense of when a rate hike may be coming.

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S&P 500 closes at seven-month high after Yellen comments

Supreme Court rejects Google appeal in class action dispute

By Lawrence Hurley WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday rejected Google Inc's bid to throw out a class action lawsuit involving claims that the company deceived California advertisers about the placement of Internet ads through its Adwords service. The court's decision not to hear the case leaves in place a September 2015 ruling by the San Francisco-based 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that the litigation could move forward as a class action representing advertisers who used the service between 2004 and 2008. Google is part of Alphabet Inc. The 2008 lawsuit accused Google of violating California fair advertising laws because it misled advertisers about where the ads would be placed.

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Supreme Court rejects Google appeal in class action dispute

U.S. consumer spending increase strongest in over six years

U.S. consumer spending recorded its biggest increase in more than six years in April as households stepped up purchases of automobiles, suggesting an acceleration in economic growth that could persuade the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates soon. Fed Chair Janet Yellen said on Friday an interest rate hike would probably be appropriate in the “coming months,” if the economy continued to pick up and the labor market added jobs.

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U.S. consumer spending increase strongest in over six years

U.S. sues to block Halliburton-Baker Hughes deal, says anti-competitive

By Diane Bartz and Terry Wade WASHINGTON/HOUSTON (Reuters) – The U.S. government filed a lawsuit on Wednesday to stop Halliburton Co from buying Baker Hughes Inc , arguing the combination of the No. 2 and No. 3 oil services companies would lead to higher prices in the sector. The move, which comes after months of talks on divestitures of some overlapping businesses, significantly cuts the chances of the deal going through, although Halliburton said it would “vigorously contest” the lawsuit. The Justice Department said the merger, valued at $35 billion when it was first announced in November 2014, would leave only two dominant suppliers in 20 business lines in the global well drilling and oil construction services industry, with Schlumberger NV being one of the two.

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U.S. sues to block Halliburton-Baker Hughes deal, says anti-competitive