Your Thursday Blip 10/15/20

Your Thursday Blip 10/15/20

Stocks fell 200 points at the open because of three news items. One was Treasury Sec Mnuchin saying he did not expect to reach a stimulus deal on coronavirus relief before the Nov. 3rd election. Then unemployment claims came in higher than expected and the third thing was rising covid infections in Europe threatening another economic shutdown. At the close however the Dow had clawed its way back to finish with a loss of only 19 points at 28,494. Trading volume for the day was lower.
Since early June, oil prices have hovered in a range of $38 to $42 per barrel. Today’s price stands at $40.32 off about 70 cents. Global demand growth concerns are on the rise stemming from the prospect of Europe heading into another lockdown while in the US the stimulus package appears dead for now. While oil is flat, natural gas prices have suddenly popped 5% higher as the latest domestic supply build fell well short of expectations. Commodity traders are also betting on a colder winter this year due to the La Nina weather pattern in the Pacific. There has also been some chatter about increases in residential energy demand as more people stay home for work and school. Propane patio heaters are apparently a hot item.
Morgan Stanley topped earnings forecasts with a 31% increase in net income while revenue fell 7%. The company’s wealth management and trading operations performed well and Morgan does not have much in the way of a credit card or lending business. In a time of economic uncertainty both Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs remain low risk plays in the financial industry due their lack of lending exposure on one hand and their ability to trade on the other.

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