Weekly Market Wrap: 12/4/09 Friday, December 4, 5:05 PM ET
The U.S. labor market improves in November and the Fed says the economy is recovering. Gold hits another new all-time high mid-week and then falls sharply below $1,200 an ounce.
Hi. I’m SAYOKO MURASE. Welcome to the “Weekly Market Wrap” for Wednesday, December 4, 2009.
Equity indexes were higher for the week.
The Dow Industrials ended the week HIGHER, and the S&P 500 Index closed UP. The Nasdaq Composite Index also ADVANCED.
Crude oil futures fell this week. Front month crude futures were trading just abovew $76 a barrel on Friday afternoon.
Gold declined after it reached another all-time high this week, surging to $1,221.50 an ounce in New York and $1,226 in electronic trading. Gold is trading at $1,176 an ounce on Friday afternoon.
On the economic front, the Labor Department announced that the unemployment rate unexpectedly dipped to 10 percent in November. Nonfarm payrolls dropped by a seasonally adjusted 11,000, the fewest jobs lost since December 2007. Details of the report were generally positive. Hours worked increased and temporary-help employment was higher.
The Federal Reserve said the economy is recovering in its Beige Book report released this week. The Fed reported that economic conditions have been generally improving in eight of its twelve regions.
The Fed also indicated unemployment is expected to remain high for several years. Commercial real estate was the biggest problem spot, with rising vacancy rates, downward rent pressure, and little new development.
Retailers released same-store sales for November today, and for the most part, fell short of expectations. Dillard’s (NYSE:DDS) November same-store sales fell 11 percent and Macy’s (NYSE:M) was down 6.1 percent. Discounter Target (NYSE:TGT) said its same-store sales fell 1.5 percent.
General Electric (NYSE:GE), Comcast, and Vivendi have announced a finalized deal to transfer a controlling share of NBC Universal to Comcast. Comcast will own 51 percent of NBC and GE will own 49 percent. The deal is still subject to regulatory approval.
In third quarter earnings news, computer networking and services company Novell (NOVL) reported a loss of 74 cents per share. Analysts had expected a 7 cent per share profit.
Men’s clothing retailer Joseph Bank (JOSB) net income for the third quarter of 63 cents per share, beating the street by 8 cents.
This is the “Weekly Market Wrap” for Friday, December 4. Please join us on Monday with the “Week Ahead Market Report.”
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