August 13th, 2012

S&P 500 Futures – Most U.S. stocks fell, led by health-care companies and utilities, after the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index posted its longest advance in 20 months last week.

About two stocks fell for each that rose in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index, which lost 0.1 percent to 1,404.44 at 10:01 a.m. in New York. The benchmark measure on Aug. 10 completed its longest rally since December 2010 amid speculation the Federal Reserve would introduce more stimulus measures. The Dow (INDU) Jones Industrial Average slipped 0.1 percent to 13,187.70 today.

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April 27th, 2012

Cattle Futures – U.S. beef packer profits are back in the black for the first time in seven months as the onset of spring has boosted demand for steaks and hamburgers that will headline backyard cookouts.

This annual surge in beef sales, and subsequent profits, could not come soon enough for the U.S. beef industry, which has been hurt by drought, an uproar over ammonia-treated beef, and another case of mad cow disease.

On Thursday, U.S. beef packers earned an estimated $3.45 per head of cattle, according to the Colorado-based analytics firm HedgersEdge, which uses proprietary data to calculate the margins.

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April 26th, 2012

Commodity Brokers – The Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the main U.S. derivatives regulator, is reviewing the release of information about the first domestic case of mad cow disease in six years.

Cattle futures slumped in advance of a U.S. Department of Agriculture April 24 announcement that a case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy, or BSE, had been confirmed in a dairy cow in California.

“CFTC reached out to USDA with questions on the BSE announcement timeline for their routine market analysis,” Courtney Rowe, USDA spokeswoman, said in an e-mail yesterday.

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April 26th, 2012

S&P 500 Futures – U.S. stocks gained, giving the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index its biggest three-day advance since February, after better-than-estimated housing data overshadowed disappointing earnings at United Parcel Service Inc.

A measure of homebuilders in S&P indexes rose 4.8 percent as PulteGroup Inc. rallied 10 percent amid a narrower loss. Chevron Corp. (CVX) advanced 2.3 percent as the energy company lifted its dividend. Amazon.com Inc. (AMZN), the largest Internet retailer, surged 12 percent at 4:57 p.m. New York time as revenue beat estimates. UPS (UPS), the biggest package-delivery company that is considered a proxy for the economy, retreated 1.8 percent.

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April 19th, 2012

S&P 500 Futures – U.S. stocks swung between gains and losses as better-than-forecast earnings offset disappointing economic data and concern over Europe’s debt crisis.

Bank of America Corp. (BAC) and Morgan Stanley rose more than 0.4 percent as trading revenue helped earnings. Travelers Cos. added 4.8 percent, the most in the Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDU), as the insurer said profit beat analysts’ estimates. EBay Inc. (EBAY) rallied 15 percent as growth in its PayPal payments business boosted results. Qualcomm Inc. (QCOM) declined 4.6 percent after projecting sales and profit that fell short of estimates.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index gained 0.1 percent to 1,387.01 at 11:52 a.m. New York time, after dropping as much as 0.4 percent earlier. The Dow rose 16.80 points, or 0.1 percent, to 13,049.55 today.

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