Monday, November 1, 2010


Weekly Recap - Week ending 29-Oct-10The S&P 500 settled essentially unchanged, sticking to a relatively tight trading range this week as traders awaited an FOMC announcement next week and the midterm elections.

 Four of the 10 S&P 500 sectors gained, led by a 1.4% advance in materials. Tech (+0.8%) also was an area of strength, lifted by an 8.7% rise in Broadcom (BRCM) on an earnings beat, which helped the Nasdaq outperform the other major indices. Industrials underperformed with a loss of 1.0%.  Tech

 In corporate news, about 180 S&P 500 companies reported earnings this week. Roughly 80% topped EPS estimates, versus 60% topping sales forecasts.

 Shares of 3M (MMM) took a hit despite posting an upside earnings report. Shares fell -6.9%.
 Fellow Dow components Microsoft (MSFT) and Merck (MRK) both topped earnings estimates, while Chevron (CVX) missed.

 Halliburton (HAL) faced stiff selling pressure on heavy volume following reports regarding the stability of the cement mixture foundation at the Deepwater Horizon well. HAL fell -6.8% on the week.

 IBM (IBM) announced that its board had approved $10 bln for share repurchases. IBM rose 2.8% for the week.

 In economic news, the advance estimate of Q3 GDP showed annualized growth of 2.0%, in-line with estimates. While the growth tops the 1.7% rate seen in the second quarter, it is well below the rate needed to spur enough job creation to bring the unemployment rate down significantly.

 Existing home sales rose 10% to an annualized rate of 4.53 mln units, topping the consensus of 4.25 mln units. New home sales for