Connect with us

Business

S&P 500 hits record high on tech strength, earnings optimism

Published

on

October 26, 2021

By Devik Jain and Shashank Nayar

(Reuters) – The benchmark S&P 500 hit a record high on Tuesday, boosted by Tesla, Nvidia and other tech-related companies, while upbeat results from UPS and GE lifted optimism around the earnings season.

Tesla Inc rose 5.4%, extending a record run that helped the electric car leader surpass $1 trillion in market value on Monday after landing its biggest-ever order from rental car company Hertz.

Advertisement

Chipmaker Nvidia rose 7.8% to an all-time high, while gains in Amazon, Apple and Microsoft helped the tech-heavy Nasdaq outperform.

“Inflation and supply chain troubles don’t seem to be an issue in the near term as the market right now is just focused on the quarterly performance and with calm benchmark rates, it only helps with the mood,” said Robert Pavlik, senior portfolio manager at Dakota Wealth in Fairfield, Connecticut.

All the 11 major S&P sectors advanced in early trading, with technology and consumer discretionary rising the most.

Some stellar earnings reports have helped drive the Dow and the S&P 500 to record highs, lifting investor sentiment in October after concerns around inflation, the Fed’s tapering and property group China Evergrande’s crisis rattled markets last month. The tech-heavy Nasdaq is trading about 0.4% below its Sept. 7 record high.

Earnings at S&P 500 companies are expected to grow 35.6% year-on-year for the third quarter, with market participants assessing how companies are navigating supply-chain bottlenecks, labor shortages and inflationary pressures.

Advertisement

Facebook Inc slipped 1.8% as the social media giant’s third-quarter revenue too faced the brunt of Apple Inc’s privacy rules, while advertisers were also affected by global supply-chain disruptions and labor shortages.

Shares of Twitter Inc, which also generates revenue by selling digital ads, inched up 0.1%, ahead of its results on Tuesday.

Eyes are also on quarterly updates from Alphabet Inc and Microsoft Corp after market close, with focus on how Google’s ad revenue fares.

Meanwhile, data showed U.S. consumer confidence unexpectedly rebounded in October as concerns about high inflation were offset by improving labor market prospects.

At 10:22 a.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.39% to 35,879.05 to hit a fresh all-time high. The S&P 500 gained 0.70% to 4,598.40, and the Nasdaq Composite jumped 1%, to 15,378.23.

Advertisement

United Parcel Service Inc surged 7.1% to top the S&P 500 index after the delivery firm reported better-than-expected quarterly earnings and revenue, bolstered by strong e-commerce demand.

General Electric Co rose 3.5% after the industrial conglomerate raised its full-year earnings forecast.

Shares of “Transformers” toy maker Hasbro Inc climbed 5% after it posted an upbeat third-quarter profit even as it warned of a hit to holiday sales from supply chain issues.

Advancing issues outnumbered decliners by a 1.53-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and a 1.26-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.

The S&P index recorded 52 new 52-week highs and no new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 90 new highs and 39 new lows.

Advertisement

(This story has been refiled to correct spelling of Tesla in paragraph 1)

(Reporting by Devik Jain and Shashank Nayar in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)

Continue Reading
Advertisement

Business

Deutsche Post CEO favourite to become Telekom chairman – sources

Published

on

December 5, 2021

BERLIN (Reuters) – Frank Appel, the chief executive of German logistics company Deutsche Post, is the favourite to become the next supervisory board chairman of Deutsche Telekom, two sources close to the matter told Reuters.

The sources said Deutsche Post’s supervisory board is due to meet on Wednesday and Deutsche Telekom’s board will meet a week later to discuss the matter.

Both companies declined to comment.

Advertisement

The Handelsblatt newspaper reported on Saturday that Appel would potentially be proposed for election at Deutsche Telekom’s annual meeting on April 7.

The term of office of Telekom chairman Ulrich Lehner, who has headed the Telekom supervisory body since 2008, ends at next year’s shareholder meeting. He had already confirmed that an external search for a successor was under way.

Appel’s predecessor at Deutsche Post, Klaus Zumwinkel, also served as supervisory board chairman of Telekom.

The German government holds stakes in both companies.

Appel, a former McKinsey consultant, has been with Deutsche Post since 2000. In 2002, he became a member of the board of management, and in 2008 he moved up to the post of CEO.

Advertisement

His contract runs until 2022 and a decision on his future at the Post had been expected soon. Some industry insiders have speculated that Appel could be ready to move on given that Deutsche Post has posted record results through the pandemic.

(Reporting by Matthias Inverardi and Nadine Schimroszik; Writing by Emma Thomasson; editing by David Evans)

Continue Reading

Business

Canadian employers, facing labor shortage, accommodate the unvaccinated

Published

on

December 5, 2021

By Julie Gordon and Steve Scherer

OTTAWA (Reuters) – Canada’s tight labor market is forcing many companies to offer regular COVID-19 testing over vaccine mandates, while others are reversing previously announced inoculation requirements even as Omicron variant cases rise.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government adopted one of the strictest inoculation policies in the world for civil servants and has already put more than 1,000 workers on unpaid leave, with thousands more at risk.

Advertisement

Airlines, police forces, school boards and even Canada’s Big Five banks https://www.reuters.com/world/americas/canadas-major-banks-require-employees-entering-premises-be-vaccinated-2021-08-20 have also pledged strict mandatory vaccine policies. But following through has proven less straightforward, especially as employers grapple with staffing shortages and workers demand exemptions.

Job vacancies in Canada have doubled so far this year, official data shows, and vaccine mandates can make filling those jobs harder, potentially putting upward pressure on wages. That could fuel inflation https://www.reuters.com/world/americas/canadas-annual-inflation-rate-hits-47-oct-highest-since-feb-2003-2021-11-17, already running at a near two-decade high.

“It’s already difficult to find staff, let alone putting in a vaccine mandate. You’d cut out potentially another 20%” of potential workers, said Dan Kelly, chief executive of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business.

There are pitfalls to employing the unvaccinated. Companies run a higher risk of COVID-19 outbreaks and many vaccinated employees are uncomfortable working with those who have not had the jab, said industry groups and marketing experts.

At Luda Foods, a Montreal-based soup and sauce maker, president Robert Eiser said he has 14 open jobs, no vaccine mandate and no plans to restrict new hires to the vaccinated.

Advertisement

“I don’t know that I want to reduce the (labor) pool, which is already quite low,” said Eiser. “We need to attract people to meet the demand. If we don’t, our competitors will.”

Data released on Friday underpinned Canada’s tight labor market, with a hefty 153,700 jobs https://www.reuters.com/markets/us/canada-posts-hefty-job-gains-outlook-clouded-by-omicron-variant-2021-12-03 added in November. It also showed a growing mismatch between available workers and unfilled jobs. And job postings are far above pre-pandemic levels. (Graphic: Canada job postings surge above pre-pandemic level Canada job postings surge above pre-pandemic level, https://graphics.reuters.com/HEALTH-CORONAVIRUS/CANADA2/klvyknzklvg/chart.png)

WALKING BACK

The province of Quebec backtracked on a vaccine mandates for healthcare workers last month, saying they could not afford to lose thousands of unvaccinated staff. Ontario, which was also eyeing a mandate, said it would not go ahead.

Toronto-Dominion Bank and Bank of Montreal have both softened their vaccine policy to allow regular testing for workers who missed their Oct. 31 inoculation deadline.

Advertisement

In Canada, 86% of adults are fully inoculated, though that drops under 80% among 18-40 year olds. At least 15 cases of the new Omicron https://www.reuters.com/markets/rates-bonds/canada-has-reported-total-11-cases-omicron-variant-health-official-2021-12-03 variant in Canada have been reported in the past week.

John Cappelli, vice president of onsite managed services in Canada for global recruitment firm Adecco, said half of his clients are mandating vaccines with the other half allowing regular testing for the unvaccinated.

But he expects the Omicron variant will prompt more workplaces to get strict on vaccination, even as they grapple with the tightest job market he’s seen in his 25-year career.

“We are now starting to see our first workplace (COVID-19) cases in five months,” he said.

The number of Canadian job postings on search website Indeed mentioning vaccine requirements has quadrupled since August. (Graphic: Canada job postings and vaccine mandates, https://graphics.reuters.com/HEALTH-CORONAVIRUS/CANADA3/byvrjqrlmve/chart.png)

Advertisement

In the hard-hit manufacturing sector, where 77% of firms say their top concern is attracting and retaining workers, vaccine mandates are more rare.

Dennis Darby, CEO of Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters, said most of Canada’s factories have operated safely throughout the pandemic. While CME encourages vaccination, “some companies are still using rapid testing if somebody doesn’t want to get vaccinated,” he added.

But companies risk a hit to their reputation if they are overt in efforts to tap into the unvaccinated as a labor pool, said Wojtek Dabrowski, managing partner at Provident Communications.

“If you go out and say, ‘We are intentionally seeking to hire unvaccinated people,’ many customers are equating that with you being anti-science and anti-safety,” said Dabrowski.

(Reporting by Julie Gordon and Steve Scherer in Ottawa, additional reporting by Rod Nickel in Winnipeg and Nichola Saminather in Toronto; Editing by Alistair Bell)

Advertisement

Continue Reading

Business

Israeli firm to sell HSBC Tower in New York for $855 million

Published

on

December 5, 2021

By Steven Scheer

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israel’s Property and Building Corp said on Sunday it agreed to sell the HSBC Tower building in midtown Manhattan for $855 million to New York-based real estate firm Innovo Property Group, recording a net loss of $45 million.

The Israeli company, which is 63% owned by Discount Investment Corp, said it had also sold property in Israel for 390 million shekels ($123 million).

Advertisement

Doron Cohen, chief executive of both Property and Building and Discount, said management was focusing on income-producing properties in Israel and that the amount it was receiving from both transactions would allow it to advance this policy.

“We are continuing the policy and examining the possibility of realising additional properties in the United States and in Israel,” Cohen said, noting the sale of the HSBC building came despite “gloomy” predictions over U.S. commercial real estate market.

He cited Tivoli Village, an upscale apartment complex in Las Vegas that opened this year, which may be put up for sale as part of the company’s efforts to boost liquidity and reduce debt.

Along with conglomerate Koor Industries, Property and Building, bought the 30-storey, 80,000 square metre HSBC Tower in 2009 for $353 million. In 2011, Property acquired Koor’s stake in the tower which has an occupancy of 99%, it said. HSBC had bought the building in the 1990s.

Property and Building said the value of the HSBC Tower in its books was $864 million as of Sept. 30. After costs, it said it would record a net loss of $45 million from the sale.

Advertisement

Completion of the sale is expected by April 1, 2022 subject to Innovo’s right to advance the date while also receiving options to postpone the completion twice for 30 days each.

Property said after the sale it will have a net cash flow of $343 million.

Its shares were 0.7% lower in afternoon trading in Tel Aviv.

($1 = 3.1605 shekels)

(Reporting by Steven Scheer;Editing by Elaine Hardcastle)

Advertisement

Continue Reading
Advertisement

Trending