Your Wednesday Market Blip 4/15/20

Your Wednesday Market Blip 4/15/20

Stocks retreated today with the Dow falling 445 points to close at 23,504. Trading volume was lower and lately the markets have been in a pattern of low volume down days and high volume up days which, according to IBD, is a positive sign since it indicates that institutional investors appear more interested in buying than selling. Banks continue to pull back after Bank of America reported a 45% drop in profits and added $3.6 billion to reserves.
The airline bailout program is underway. Seattle base Alaska Air will get $992 million in funding which includes $267 million in a repayable loan plus the Treasury will buy 847k non-voting shares of Alaska stock at $31.61 per share. The company estimates the federal assistance will cover 70% of payroll costs from April through September. Just three months ago the company paid its workers a $163 million bonus and upped its dividend by 7% but today they are taking federal assistance, have cut the dividend entirely and CEO Brad Tilden has given up his base pay. How times have changed.
The Port of Seattle is asking departments to revise budgets in light of a drop in revenue and might even announce furloughs if the shutdown continues. Container shipping volumes are decreasing with a 3% drop in March but the biggest money maker for the Port has always been airport parking fees and these along with gate fees and rents for concessions at the terminal are off significantly plus cruise ships are canceling or pushing back ports of call.