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16 Dec 2016 07:16 GMT+0 - Opening Wrap

In Asian Equity Markets Japan's Nikkei index rose on Friday to cap a nine-day rally as strength on Wall Street and a weaker yen buoyed confidence. The Nikkei climbed 0.7 percent to 19,401.15, with the ninth day of gains the longest winning streak since May 2015. The broader Topix rose 0.5 percent to 1,550.67 and the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 advanced 0.6 percent to 13,882.89. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific stocks outside Japan was a shade lower after falling 1.8 percent on Thursday. Shanghai was flat after losing 0.7 percent the previous day, while Malaysian and Indonesian stocks weakened slightly. South Korea's Kospi added 0.2 percent.

 

In Currency Markets the dollar held hefty gains against major currencies on Friday, after scaling 14-year highs against the euro and a broader basket of currencies as markets repositioned for a faster pace of rate rises by the Federal Reserve over the next year. The euro was little changed at $1.0427 after plumbing $1.0366 on Thursday. The dollar last stood at 118.20 yen, gaining 2.5 percent for the week. Sterling licked its wounds after sinking to a three-week low against the dollar overnight. It was down 0.1 percent at $1.2405 after falling to a three-week low of $1.2378 on Thursday. The dollar slightly eased against the Swiss franc after hitting a six-year high of 1.0344 francs on Thursday. The greenback was last down 0.1 percent at 1.0295 francs.

 

In Commodities Markets oil prices rose on Friday after Kuwait appeared to be lining up bigger supply cuts than had been initially expected from January as part of a coordinated effort by oil producers to drain a global glut. International Brent crude oil futures were trading at $54.29 per barrel, up 0.5 percent from their last settlement. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures were up 0.61 percent, at $51.21 per barrel. Precious metals sagged in the wake of a stronger dollar. Spot gold and platinum were near 10-1/2-month lows of $1,122.35 and $885 an ounce hit overnight while silver fell to its lowest since June. Copper was up 0.1 percent at $5,737 a ton. 

 

In US Equity Markets  stocks rose on Thursday, led by gains in bank shares, a day after the Federal Reserve raised interest rates for the second time in nearly a decade. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 0.3 percent, to 19,852.24, the S&P 500 gained 0.39 percent, to 2,262.03 and the Nasdaq Composite added 0.37 percent, to 5,456.86. Yahoo fell 6.1 percent after the technology company disclosed a massive data breach that raised fears Verizon might kill a deal to buy its core internet business. Verizon was up 0.3 percent. Economic data on Thursday showed U.S. consumer prices moderated in November, but the underlying trend continued to point to firming inflation pressures.

 

In Bond Markets  Japanese government bond prices eased on Friday, with the 10-year yield briefly hitting a 10-month high, as the bonds rout in the U.S. showed no signs of ebbing though strong results of the Bank of Japan's bond buying stemmed the losses. In early Friday trade, the 10-year JGB yield rose to 0.100 percent.  Superlong bond yields fell as a result, with the 20-year yield falling 1.5 basis point to 0.600 percent, falling further from Tuesday's 10-month high of 0.650 percent. The 30-year yield fell 2.0 basis points to 0.695 percent , having fallen more than 10 basis points from nine-month high of 0.805 percent touched on Tuesday.

 

 

Economic Calendar

  • 14:30 GMT+0 US Building Permits

 

US Equity Upgrades

  • AMD (AMD) UPGRADED TO EQUAL WEIGHT FROM UNDERWEIGHT AT MORGAN STANLEY :
  • ASSOCIATED BANC-CORP (ASB) UPGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM UNDERPERFORM AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • CALAVO GROWERS (CVGW) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM NEUTRAL AT DA DAVIDSON
  • CAPITAL ONE (COF) UPGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM UNDERPERFORM AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • CHEVRON (CVX) UPGRADED TO OUTPERFORM FROM NEUTRAL AT MACQUARIE
  • COMERICA (CMA) UPGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM UNDERPERFORM AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • DEXCOM (DXCM) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM NEUTRAL AT B. RILEY
  • DISCOVER (DFS) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM NEUTRAL AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • FIRST HORIZON (FHN) UPGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM UNDERPERFORM AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • FLOWERS FOODS (FLO) UPGRADED TO OVERWEIGHT FROM SECTOR WEIGHT AT KEYBANC
  • HEICO (HEI) UPGRADED TO OUTPERFORM FROM NEUTRAL AT CREDIT SUISSE
  • HILTON (HLT) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM NEUTRAL AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • KANSAS CITY SOUTHERN (KSU) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM HOLD AT AEGIS
  • MAGELLAN MIDSTREAM (MMP) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM NEUTRAL AT GOLDMAN
  • MASTERCARD (MA) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM NEUTRAL AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • MTU AERO (MTUAY) UPGRADED TO OVERWEIGHT FROM NEUTRAL AT JPMORGAN
  • ONEOK PARTNERS (OKS) UPGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM SELL AT GOLDMAN
  • PROFIRE ENERGY (PFIE) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM NEUTRAL AT CHARDAN
  • RANGE RESOURCES (RRC) UPGRADED TO OUTPERFORM AT SCOTIA HOWARD WEIL
  • STRYKER (SYK) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM NEUTRAL AT UBS
  • SWIFT TRANSPORTATION (SWFT) UPGRADED TO OVERWEIGHT FROM NEUTRAL AT JPMORGAN
  • SYNCHRONY (SYF) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM NEUTRAL AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • TELEFONICA (TEF) UPGRADED TO HOLD FROM SELL AT DEUTSCHE BANK
  • UNIVAR (UNVR) UPGRADED TO OUTPERFORM FROM MARKET PERFORM AT WELLS FARGO
  • VISA (V) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM NEUTRAL AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • XILINX (XLNX) UPGRADED TO OVERWEIGHT FROM EQUAL WEIGHT AT MORGAN STANLEY
  • ZIONS BANCORP (ZION) UPGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM UNDERPERFORM AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • ZOETIS (ZTS) UPGRADED TO OUTPERFORM FROM MARKET PERFORM AT COWEN

 

US Equity Downgrades

  • AGNC INVESTMENT CORP. (AGNC) DOWNGRADED TO UNDERPERFORM FROM NEUTRAL AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • ANNALY CAPITAL (NLY) DOWNGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM BUY AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • APOLLO COMMERCIAL (ARI) DOWNGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM BUY AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • BAE SYSTEMS (BAESY) DOWNGRADED TO HOLD FROM BUY AT JEFFERIES
  • BILL BARRETT (BBG) DOWNGRADED TO HOLD FROM BUY AT WUNDERLICH
  • BLACKSTONE MORTGAGE (BXMT) DOWNGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM BUY AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • BRINKER (EAT) DOWNGRADED TO MARKET PERFORM FROM OUTPERFORM AT BMO CAPITAL
  • BUCKEYE PARTNERS (BPL) DOWNGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM BUY AT GOLDMAN
  • GENERAL MILLS (GIS) DOWNGRADED TO SECTOR PERFORM FROM OUTPERFORM AT RBC CAPITAL
  • HALYARD HEALTH (HYH) DOWNGRADED TO HOLD FROM BUY AT DEUTSCHE BANK
  • LADDER CAPITAL (LADR) DOWNGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM BUY AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • M&T BANK (MTB) DOWNGRADED TO UNDERPERFORM FROM NEUTRAL AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • MARATHON OIL (MRO) DOWNGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM BUY AT NOMURA
  • MIDDLEBY (MIDD) DOWNGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM OUTPERFORM AT MACQUARIE
  • MOLINA HEALTHCARE (MOH) DOWNGRADED TO HOLD FROM BUY AT JEFFERIES
  • NEUSTAR (NSR) DOWNGRADED TO MARKET PERFORM FROM OUTPERFORM AT WILLIAM BLAIR
  • NORTHERN OIL (NOG) DOWNGRADED TO SECTOR PERFORM FROM OUTPERFORM AT RBC CAPITAL
  • PENNYMAC FINANCIAL (PFSI) DOWNGRADED TO UNDERPERFORM FROM NEUTRAL AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • PHILLIPS 66 PARTNERS (PSXP) DOWNGRADED TO SELL FROM NEUTRAL AT GOLDMAN
  • PLEXUS (PLXS) DOWNGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM BUY AT LONGBOW
  • SOUTHWEST BANCORP (OKSB) DOWNGRADED TO MARKET PERFORM FROM OUTPERFORM AT HOVDE GROUP
  • STARWOOD PROPERTY (STWD) DOWNGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM BUY AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • TALLGRASS ENERGY GP (TEGP) DOWNGRADED TO SELL FROM NEUTRAL AT GOLDMAN
  • VALEANT (VRX) DOWNGRADED TO EQUAL WEIGHT FROM OVERWEIGHT AT MORGAN STANLEY
  • WEYERHAEUSER (WY) DOWNGRADED TO UNDERPERFORM FROM OUTPERFORM AT CLSA
  • ZIMMER BIOMET (ZBH) DOWNGRADED TO SELL FROM NEUTRAL AT UBS

 

US Equity Initiations

  • ALASKA AIR (ALK) INITIATED WITH AN OVERWEIGHT AT BARCLAYS
  • ALLEGIANT TRAVEL (ALGT) INITIATED WITH AN UNDERWEIGHT AT BARCLAYS
  • BELDEN (BDC) INITIATED WITH A BUY AT DEUTSCHE BANK
  • COLUCID PHARMACEUTICALS (CLCD) INITIATED WITH AN OVERWEIGHT AT BARCLAYS
  • ENVISION HEALTHCARE (EVHC) REINSTATED WITH AN OVERWEIGHT AT BARCLAYS
  • FLEETCOR (FLT) INITIATED WITH A BUY AT CITI
  • GRAY TELEVISION (GTN) INITIATED WITH A BUY AT BENCHMARK
  • JETBLUE (JBLU) INITIATED WITH AN OVERWEIGHT AT BARCLAYS
  • NEOGENOMICS (NEO) INITIATED WITH AN OVERWEIGHT AT CANTOR
  • PHIBRO ANIMAL HEALTH (PAHC) INITIATED WITH AN OVERWEIGHT AT PIPER JAFFRAY
  • PINNACLE FOODS (PF) INITIATED WITH AN OVERWEIGHT AT JPMORGAN
  • TRIUMPH BANCORP (TBK) INITIATED WITH AN OVERWEIGHT AT PIPER JAFFRAY
  • UNITED CONTINENTAL (UAL) INITIATED WITH AN OVERWEIGHT AT BARCLAYS
  • UNITED THERAPEUTICS (UTHR) INITIATED WITH AN OUTPERFORM AT OPPENHEIMER
  • ZOETIS (ZTS) RESUMED WITH AN OVERWEIGHT AT PIPER JAFFRAY

 

 

 

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