CLOSING BELL: August 15th: DJIA: 13,164.78 | DOWN 7.36 | -.06%
OIL: $94.33, UP 0.90, +0.96%
GOLD: $1,606.60, UP 4.20, +0.26%
GASOLINE (US Avg): $3.709, UP .007
By Richard Leong, Reuters – U.S. stocks were steady on Wednesday, holding close to their highest level since May on hopes of more central bank stimulus for struggling economies, but uncertainty about the extent and timing of any moves hurt the euro and safe-haven U.S. and German government bonds.
Oil prices in London clung near three-month peaks, boosted by worries about supply disruption due to Mideast tensions, while a focus on some weaker-than-expected U.S. economic data pushed gold back above $1,600 an ounce.
Stock markets have been riding high in recent weeks on hopes that European Central Bank plans expected to be detailed in September can put a floor under Spain and Italy’s debt troubles and prevent the euro zone from unraveling.
Traders have also raised bets the U.S. Federal Reserve will embark on a third round of large-scale bond purchases, known as QE3, perhaps as soon as its next policy meeting in September.
While recent weak economic data in Europe and Asia supported the view that more monetary stimulus is needed to avert a global recession, surprisingly strong July figures on U.S. employment and retail sales recently caused some traders to reconsider the expected timing on QE3.
Read the rest of this article at Reuters here.
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