Virgin Galactic in Spotlight of Financial Advisors as Stock Soars

The US stock market declined last week amid concerns that the impact of the coronavirus will be larger than expected. On Sunday, the IMF suggested that the outbreak would reduce global growth by 0.1% and China’s economy would slow down by 0.4 percentage points to 5.6%. Nevertheless, expectations are that the impact would be short-term, although there is still a possibility that the spread of the virus would continue for longer and would affect more countries, IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva said.
Markets also dipped on the back of Apple Inc (NASDAQ: AAPL) warning that its sales would be affected by the coronavirus epidemic. The tech giant said it does not expect to meet its revenue forecast for the first quarter due to slower production and weaker demand in China.
On the other hand, some investors displayed confidence that the Chinese government and central bank will put more measures in place to offset the impact of the virus. The central bank already cut the interest rates and the government said it would reduce the required pension contributions and insurance fees.

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US stocks continued to climb higher despite the overwhelming concerns over the coronavirus outbreak. Between February 10 and February 14, the NASDAQ Composite gained 1.07%, followed by the S&P 500, which appreciated by 0.84%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average inched up by 0.41%.
Investors are still trying to assess the impact of the coronavirus on the Chinese and global economy. By Saturday, the amount of infected people in China surged to 66,492 and the number of deaths amounted to 1,523. A spike in numbers was registered on Thursday on the back of China changing the counting method, which resulted in an increase of nearly 15,000 cases and 242 deaths. Outside of China, there are 447 confirmed cases and one death (a Chinese tourist who died in Paris).
On Saturday, China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi said they are confident that the Chinese economy will “emerge stronger from the epidemic.” On the other hand, World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said that it’s impossible to predict the trajectory of the outbreak and a major concern remains the impact of the virus on countries with a weaker health system.

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Two out of three benchmark US stock indexes ended last week in the red as concerns over the coronavirus spread continued to cast a shadow over investor sentiment. Even solid results posted by some major players, such as Apple and Tesla, did not manage to maintain sustainable growth in stocks.
The spread of the coronavirus in China and across the world has created a lot of uncertainty. Over 80 people have died in China, which has more than 2,800 confirmed cases. In the US, a fifth case was confirmed last week and the Center for Disease Control announced the first case of person-to-person transmission. At the same time, the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus a global health emergency but did not suggest restrictions on international trade and travel. In this way, the impact of the virus on the global economy remains unclear.
Corporate earnings were also in the spotlight last week. By January 31, 45% of S&P 500 companies reported their fourth-quarter results, according to FactSet. Among these, 69% posted better-than-expected earnings and 65% beat revenue expectations. Most companies that beat earnings expectations are from the Technology and Consumer Discretionary sectors.

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During the last shortened trading week, the US stock market lost some ground as concerns regarding the new coronavirus outbreak in China overshadowed strong financial results reported by a number of companies, including Intel Corporation (NASDAQ: INTC), American Express Company (NYSE: AXP), and IBM (NYSE: IBM). US stock markets were closed on Monday, January 20 on the back of Martin Luther King Day, but between January 21 and January 24, the S&P 500 lost 0.76%, followed by the Dow Jones Industrial Average and NASDAQ Composite, which recorded declined of 0.71% and 0.60%, respectively.
The spotlight for the past week was on China, where an outbreak of a new coronavirus already killed over 40 people and the number of infected people surged to more than 2,000. The virus already managed to spread to other countries, including South Korea, Japan, France, and the US. Despite the fact that the World Health Organization declined to raise an international virus alert and health experts suggest that the virus will not be disruptive, investors remained concerned about the impact of the virus on the Chinese economy. However, some analysts suggest that the coronavirus could be just an excuse for investors to sell off stocks that are trading near record highs.
On the other hand, the ongoing earnings season in the US continues to bring good news. According to FactSet, by January 24, 17% of the companies in the S&P 500 had reported their results for the fourth quarter. Of these companies, 73% managed to post better-than-expected EPS and 67% topped sales estimates, both figures being above 5-year averages.

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Between January 13 and January 17, the Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced by 1.53%, while two other benchmark indexes, the S&P 500 and NASDAQ Composite appreciated by 1.26% and 1.24%, respectively. The bullish sentiment was fueled by positive economic data, the signing of the phase one trade agreement between the US and China and a strong start to the fourth-quarter earnings season.
In the US, housing starts surged by 16.9% in December, reaching a 13-year high. Retail sales advanced by 0.3% last month, which shows that the economy maintained a growth trajectory towards the end of 2019. In China, industrial production surged by 6.9% on the year last month, which represents the highest pace of growth in nine months, although the economic growth in China slowed to 6.1%, which was still in line with expectations.
The details from the US-China trade deal showed China increasing purchases of manufacturing, energy and agricultural goods and services by at least $200 billion over two years, including $77.7 billion in acquisitions of manufactured goods, $32 billion in agricultural products, $52.4 billion in energy, and $37.9 billion in services. In addition, China will submit an action plan to strengthen intellectual property protection within 30 days and will stop pressuring American companies to share technology with local joint-venture partners. However, despite signing the deal, tariffs on Chinese imports remain in place until the agreement’s second phase is completed.

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US stocks started last week trading lower as investors were jittery over the tensions in the Middle East. However, as the prospect of an open military conflict with Iran was dimmed by President Trump’s comments, markets managed to recover and even the mixed jobs report did not prevent the main indexes from closing higher. The NASDAQ Composite advanced by 1.18%, with many tech stocks that are part of the index gaining ground amid reports that Chinese Vice Premier Liu He will travel to Washington this week to sign a phase-one trade agreement. The Dow Jones Industrial Average inched up by 0.42% and even managed to briefly touch the 29,000 mark for the first time in history. The S&P 500 appreciated by 0.59%.
Investor sentiment was mainly driven by the ongoing Iran-US conflict for most of the last week with some investors moving towards safe havens such as gold, oil and defense stocks. On Tuesday, Iran fired 15 ballistic missiles at military bases in Iraq housing US and coalition forces, although no casualties on the American or Iraqi side were reported. The following day, President Trump addressed the nation and said that the US will pursue further economic sanctions against Iran instead of escalating military conflict. Trump’s comments managed to soothe investors and helped move stocks higher.
In addition, there were two jobs reports last week. On Wednesday, the December ADP jobs report showed a gain of 202,000 jobs, higher than the consensus estimate of 157,000 and the previous month’s print of 124,000. This was the largest gain in eight months. However, nonfarm payroll data was less positive, showing a gain of just 145,000 jobs versus expectations of 164,000 and a November figure of 256,000. The unemployment rate of 3.5% was in line with estimates and the average hourly earnings growth of 2.9% on the year was lower than the consensus of 3.1%.

Financial Advisors Take Aim at Chinese Ev Maker NIO Following Solid Q3 Beat and Steady Growth in Deliveries

The US stock market had a strong end of 2019 and was on track for a great start of the year until an escalation of tension between the US and Iran sent most stocks lower. Nevertheless, stock market indexes gained ground last week, with the S&P 500 advancing by 0.42%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average growing by 0.61%, and the NASDAQ Composite appreciating by 0.84%...

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