The ECB raised the maximum amount of emergency liquidity available to Greek banks by 400 million euros ($435 million), less than the 900 million euros requested by the Greek central bank. Greek banks were cut off from regular ECB funding operations in Feb, forcing them onto Emergency Liquidity Assistance (ELA) from the Greek central bank. The 400 million euro increase from the ECB takes the ELA to near 70 billion euros.
Eurozone Q4 labor costs rose +1.1% y/y, a smaller increase than the upward revised +1.4% y/y increase in Q3 that was originally reported at +1.3% y/y.
The Japan Jan all-industry activity index rose +1.9% m/m, right on expectations and the largest increase in 3-3/4 years.
Japan Feb nationwide department store sales rose +1.1% y/y, the first increase in 11 months.
Lennar (LEN +1.76%) reported Q1 EPS of 50 cents, above consensus of 45 cents.
Newmont Mining (NEM +3.39%) was upgraded to 'Overweight' from 'Neutral' at HSBC.
Integrated Core Strategies reported a 5.1% passive stake in Dynegy (DYN +3.07%) .
Aetna (AET +1.97%) was upgraded to 'Buy' from 'Neutral' at Sterne Agee.
Cintas (CTAS +1.06%) reported Q3 EPS of 85 cents, higher than consensus of 78 cents, and then raised guidance on fiscal 2015 EPS to $3.31-$3.34 from $3.20-$3.25, above consensus of $3.27.
Wynn Resorts (WYNN -1.33%) was initiated with a 'Buy' at Brean Capital with a price target of $174.
Las Vegas Sands (LVS +2.74%) was initiated with a 'Buy' at Brean Capital with a price target of $65.
MGM Resorts (MGM +3.59%) was initiated with a 'Buy' at Brean Capital with a price target of $27.
Williams-Sonoma (WSM -3.47%) reported Q4 EPS ex-items of $1.52, right on consensus, but then lowered guidance on fiscal 2015 EPS to $3.35-$3.45, well below consensus of $3.63.
Guess (GES -2.45%) jumped 10% in after-hours trading after it reported Q4 EPS of 63 cents, above consensus of 57 cents.
Jabil Circuit (JBL +0.04%) reported Q2 core EPS of 50 cents, stronger than consensus of 45 cents.
Cerner (CERN +0.39%) was upgraded to 'Outperform' from 'Neutral' at RW Baird.
Smart & Final Stores (SFS +0.06%) raised guidance on fiscal 2015 adjusted EPS to 67 cents-70 cents, above consensus of 63 cents.
Herman Miller (MLHR +0.45%) reported Q3 adjusted EPS of 37 cents, higher than consensus of 34 cents.
Jun 10-year T-notes (ZNM15 -0.04%) this morning are up +0.5 of a tick at a new 1-1/4 month high. Jun 10-year T-note futures prices on Wednesday rose to a 1-1/4 month high and closed higher. Closes: TYM5 +1-2/32 points, FVM5 +23.50. Bullish factors included (1) the FOMC’s cut in its U.S, GDP and PCE inflation estimates following the conclusion of its 2-day policy meeting, and (2) the FOMC’s cut in its 2015 year-end federal funds rate median estimate to 0.625% from Dec’s 1.125%, which signals a slower pace of tightening than previously expected.
The dollar index (DXY00 +0.20%) this morning is up +0.178 (+0.18%). EUR/USD (^EURUSD) is down -0.0172 (-1.58%). USD/JPY (^USDJPY) is up +0.49 (+0.41%). The dollar index on Wednesday fell to a 1-week low and closed lower: Dollar index -1.035 (-1.04%), EUR/USD +0.02655 (+2.51%), USD/JPY -1.259 (-1.04%). Bearish factors included (1) the FOMC’s cut in its U.S. 2015 GDP estimate and its year-end fed funds forecast, and (2) the post-FOMC statement saying that the Fed won’t begin to raise interest rates until it is confident that inflation will move back toward its 2.0% target and the labor market improves further.
Apr WTI crude oil (CLJ15 -3.78%) this morning is down -$1.39 a barrel (-3.11%) and Apr gasoline (RBJ15 -1.43%) is down -0.0169 (-0.94%). Apr crude oil and gasoline prices on Wednesday closed higher: CLJ5 +1.20 (+2.76), RBJ5 +0.0765 (+4.42%). Apr crude recovered from a 6-year low and both crude and gasoline closed higher on bullish factors that included (1) the slide in the dollar index to a 1-week low, and (2) the -4.47 million bbl decline in EIA gasoline inventories, a bigger drop than expectations of -900,000 bbl. Crude prices posted a 6-year low after EIA crude stockpiles jumped +9.62 million bbl to a record 458.5 million bbl (data from 1982), much more than expectations for a +4.4 million bbl build.
|US||0830 ET||Weekly initial unemployment claims expected +4,000 to 293,000, previous -36,000 to 289,000. Weekly continuing claims expected -18,000 to 2.400 million, previous -5,000 to 2.418 million.|
|0830 ET||Q4 current account balance expected -$104.1 billion, Q3 -$100.3 billion.|
|0830 ET||USDA weekly Export Sales.|
|1000 ET||Mar Philadelphia Fed business outlook survey expected +1.8 to 7.0, Feb -1.1 to 5.2.|
|1000 ET||Feb leading indicators expected +0.2%, Jan +0.2%.|
|1100 ET||Treasury announces amount of 2-year T-notes (previous $26 billion), 2-year floating rate notes (previous $13 billion), 5-year T-notes (previous $35 billion) and 7-year T-notes (previous $29 billion) to be auctioned Mar 25-26.|
|1300 ET||Treasury auctions $13 billion 10-year TIPS.|
|JPN||0030 ET||Japan Jan all-industry activity index expected +1.9% m/m, Dec -0.3% m/m.|
|EUR||0600 ET||Eurozone Q4 labor costs, Q3 +1.3%y/y.|
|Lennar Corp||LEN US||Bef-mkt||Q1 2015 Earnings Release||Q1 2015||0.45|
|Tech Data Corp||TECD US||Bef-mkt||Q4 2015 Earnings Release||Q4 2015||2.033|
|Michaels Cos Inc/The||MIK US||Bef-mkt||Q4 2015 Earnings Release||Q4 2015||0.743|
|Mallinckrodt PLC||MNK US||5:30||Annual General Meeting||Y 2015|
|Tech Data Corp||TECD US||9:00||Q4 2015 Earnings Call||Q4 2015|
|Michaels Cos Inc/The||MIK US||9:00||Q4 2015 Earnings Call||Q4 2015|
|Lennar Corp||LEN US||11:00||Q1 2015 Earnings Call||Q1 2015|
|Keysight Technologies Inc||KEYS US||11:00||Annual General Meeting|
|Two Harbors Investment Corp||TWO US||13:15||Analyst & Investor Day||Y 2015|
|NIKE Inc||NKE US||16:15||Q3 2015 Earnings Release||Q3 2015||0.845|
|NIKE Inc||NKE US||17:00||Q3 2015 Earnings Call||Q3 2015|
|Platform Specialty Products Corp||PAH US||Investor and Analyst Day||Y 2015|