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Specter of Higher Interest Rates Sends Markets South

Originally published: 04.01.15 by Margot Crabtree


Even though markets started out strong, Wall Street closed in a tumble after a strong jobs report renewed fears that the Federal Reserve will increase interest rates held at historic lows as our trading session ended March 13, 2015.

The Conference Board's index of leading economic indicators grew by 0.2 percent in January, the lowest rise in five months, suggesting the economy's momentum has slowed a bit. Growth was slower in the fourth quarter than originally thought: at 2.2 percent it was down from the earlier estimate of 2.6 percent.

Commerce Department reported that consumer spending, which drives 70 percent of the U.S. economy, was up 4.2 percent for the quarter, and the strongest rate since the first quarter of 2006.

In mid-month, the Nasdaq closed above 5,000 for the first time since the dot-com bust. The Commerce Department said new orders for manufactured goods unexpectedly slipped 0.2 percent in January following a 3.5 percent decline in December; economists polled by Reuters expected factory orders to rise 0.2 percent in January.

The department also reported that retail sales slipped 0.6 percent in February, following a 0.8 percent decline in January, the third straight drop. The University of Michigan's preliminary sentiment reading for March


was 91.2, from February's 95.4, and off the median forecast of 95.5 from economists surveyed by Reuters.

"Regardless of whether the Fed hikes in June or September, it's coming and it's not very far away," said Craig Erlam, senior market analyst at OANDA. "That makes the dollar very strong compared to its peers."

Exchange
Symbol
Company Name
Price
7/15/14
Price
6/15/14
Net
Change
PercentChange
52-Week
High
52-Week
Low
Shares
Outstanding
Market
Capitalization
NASD AAON AAON, Inc. 22.15 23.37 -1.22 -5.22% 23.95 16.78 54060 1197429
NYSE ABB ABB Ltd. 20.16 21.34 -1.18 -5.53% 26.35 19.14 2260000 45561600
NYSE ARG Airgas, Inc. 114.84 115.27 -0.43 -0.37% 119.00 101.36 75120 8626780.8
NYSE AOS AO Smith Corp. 62.04 62.76 -0.72 -1.15% 64.49 44.14 89360 5543894.4
NYSE FIX Comfort Systems USA, Inc. 19.42 16.96 2.46 14.50% 19.76 12.63 37270 723783.4
NYSE DOV Dover Corp. 71.25 74.41 -3.16 -4.25% 91.84 67.13 163040 11616600
NASD ELON Echelon Corp. 1.08 1.16 -0.08 -6.90% 3.30 1.06 43900 47412
NYSE DD E. I. DuPont de Nemours & Co. 80.50 76.18 4.32 5.67% 80.41 63.70 905410 72885505
NYSE EME EMCOR Group, Inc. 44.63 43.70 0.93 2.13% 48.00 38.68 62980 2810797.4
NYSE EMR Emerson Electric Co. 55.26 58.68 -3.42 -5.83% 69.94 54.95 685200 37864152
NYSE FCAU Fiat Chrysler 16.41 14.53 1.88 12.94% 16.59 8.54 1280000 21004800
NYSE F Ford Motor Co. 16.20 16.30 -0.10 -0.61% 18.12 13.26 3960000 64152000
NYSE GM General Motors Co. 38.05 37.62 0.43 1.14% 38.47 28.82 1610000 61260500
NYSE HON Honeywell International, Inc. 101.17 104.38 -3.21 -3.08% 105.39 82.89 782660 79181712.2
NASD HDSN Hudson Technologies, Inc. 4.20 3.54 0.66 18.64% 4.80 2.55 32310 135702
NYSE IR Ingersoll-Rand Plc 67.22 67.69 -0.47 -0.69% 69.01 52.47 263320 17700370.4
NYSE JCI Johnson Controls, Inc. 48.82 48.50 0.32 0.66% 52.00 38.60 657290 32088897.8
NYSE LII Lennox International Inc. 107.86 104.27 3.59 3.44% 109.38 72.91 44680 4819184.8
NYSE LXU LSB Industries, Inc. 39.68 35.39 4.29 12.12% 42.41 28.91 22660 899148.8
NYSE MTW Manitowoc Co., Inc. 21.41 21.86 -0.45 -2.06% 33.50 16.24 135620 2903624.2
NYSE NWL Newell Rubbermaid, Inc. 38.60 39.57 -0.97 -2.45% 40.37 28.27 268500 10364100
NYSE MLI Mueller Industries, Inc. 34.84 34.62 0.22 0.64% 35.45 27.10 56920 1983092.8
NASD NTK Nortek, Inc. 84.40 79.00 5.40 6.84% 92.30 70.73 16260 1372344
OTC NSANY Nissan Motor Co. Ltd. 21.33 19.81 1.52 7.67% 21.46 16.65 2100000 44793000
NASD OFLX OmegaFlex, Inc. 29.51 31.00 -1.49 -4.81% 39.46 15.93 10090 297755.9
NYSE PH Parker-Hannifin Corp. 117.72 124.06 -6.34 -5.11% 133.41 99.82 142460 16770391.2
NYSE RBC Regal-Beloit Corp. 76.65 76.14 0.51 0.67% 80.22 62.15 44710 3427021.5
NYSE ROK Rockwell Automation 111.52 117.90 -6.38 -5.41% 128.57 98.55 135440 15104268.8
OTC SIEGY Siemens Aktiengesellschaft  108.66 109.87 -1.21 -1.10% 137.06 103.20 881000 95729460
NYSE SPW SPX Corp.  83.58 87.37 -3.79 -4.34% 111.47 77.30 40980 3425108.4
NYSE TXN Texas Instruments 57.12 57.97 -0.85 -1.47% 59.99 41.47 1050000 59976000
NYSE UTX United Technologies Corp. 118.74 121.25 -2.51 -2.07% 124.45 97.30 907160 107716178.4
NYSE WSO Watsco, Inc. 120.39 116.96 3.43 2.93% 121.66 84.28 32360 3895820.4

 

The HVACR Business Stock Index inched down just 2.66 points, or 0.20 percent. Declining issues topped advancing issues by a 19-to-14 count.

Nortek was the top dollar gainer after releasing fourth quarter earnings. NTK's revenue for the quarter was up 16 percent, to $636.8 million. Net income was $4.6 million, or 0.29 per share, compared to a loss of $8.9 million, or $0.58 per share in the year-ago quarter. Analysts were expecting earnings per share of $0.19. Strength included sales in its HVACR unit. NTK rose 5.40 points, or 6.84 percent, and was the top dollar gainer. Nortek closed at 84.40.

Rockwell was the top dollar loser this month, shedding 6.38 points, or 5.41 percent. Rockwell issued $600 million in bonds to increase operating cash and to pay down debt. Rockwell CEO Keith Nosbusch sold 1,200 shares at an average price of $118, for a total value of $141,600. ROK closed at 111.52.

Echelon maintained its top percentage loser spot, hitting new 52-week lows after filing its annual report as our session came to a close. ELON shed 0.08 points, or 6.90 percent, and ended at 1.08.

LSB Industries advanced 1.22 points, or 3.17 percent. News that activist investor Starboard Value will nominate 5 candidates to LXU's board followed the current board's decision, after an internal review, to retain its present strategies.

Earlier suggestions from the activist investors included splitting the company in two, a move the company said it will consider after its expansion of a chemical facility in 2016. LXU ended at 39.68.


Margot Crabtree is president of Trade Trends, Inc., a financial data services provider. She has been offering market analysis with customized stock indices and financial commentaries since 1999. For additional information, visit  www.tradetrendsonline.com

 




About Margot Crabtree

Margot is president of Trade Trends, Inc., a financial data services provider. She has been offering market analysis with customized stock indices and financial commentaries since 1999. For additional information, visit tradetrendsonline.com.

 

 




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