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20 Dec 2016 06:59 GMT+0 - Opening Wrap

In Asian Equity Markets Japan's Nikkei index rose on Tuesday after the market digested the Bank of Japan's decision to maintain current monetary policy, while the yen's fall versus the dollar lifted overall sentiment. The Nikkei gained 0.5 percent to 19,494.53, the highest closing level since early December in 2015. The broader Topix added 0.2 percent to 1,552.36 and the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 advanced 0.3 percent to 13,912.64. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific stocks outside Japan pared earlier gains to trade little changed. China's CSI 300 index slid 0.6 percent, and Taiwan shares retreated 0.3 percent, as did Hong Kong

 

In Currency Markets the yen fell only briefly after the Bank of Japan stood pat as widely expected on Tuesday, keeping much of its gains after separate deadly incidents in Turkey and Germany raised security worries in the West. The dollar had fell as low as 116.55 yen on Monday, falling more than two yen from a 10-1/2-month high of 118.66 touched on Dec 15. The safe-haven Swiss franc was another strong performer. It stood at 1.0689 per euro, having hit a six-month high of 1.0680 on Monday.  The euro, which slid 0.5 percent to $1.0401 on Monday, recovered 0.1 percent to $1.0413 on Tuesday.  The British pound also fell to $1.2355 on Monday. The Australian dollar fell to 6-1/2-month lows of $0.7240, turning negative for the year.

 

In Commodities Markets oil prices eased on Tuesday as traders began to unwind positions in the run-up to the year-end holiday season. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude oil futures were trading at $51.97 per barrel, down 15 cents from their last settlement. International Brent crude oil futures were down 1 cent from their last close at $54.91 a barrel. Gold prices were steady on Tuesday after deadly incidents in Germany and Turkey failed to spur safe-haven buying. Spot gold was flat at $1,138.56 an ounce, while U.S. gold futures fell 0.2 percent to $1,140.60 per ounce. Meanwhile, spot silver was 0.3-percent higher at $16.01 an ounce. Platinum edged up 0.2 percent to $918.70, while palladium was down 0.3 percent at $675.20.

 

In US Equity Markets stocks  extended a recent rally on Monday but finished the session short of earlier highs after several people were killed by a truck driven into a Christmas market in Germany. The Dow Jones industrial average  rose 0.20 percent to end at 19,883.06. The S&P 500 ended up 0.20 percent at 2,262.53 and the Nasdaq Composite added 0.37 percent to end at 5,457.44. The S&P technology index rose 0.61 percent, with Microsoft, Intel, Apple and Amazon.com lifting the Nasdaq Composite to within a hair of last Tuesday's record high close.  United Technologies rose 2.12 percent after Credit Suisse upgraded the stock to "outperform" and increased its price target.

  

In Bond Markets  the prices of Japanese government bond ticked up on Tuesday after the Bank of Japan kept its policy steady, a move that appears to set it apart from the other central banks that are scaling back stimulus.  The 10-year JGB yield fell 0.5 basis point to 0.070 percent, falling further from Friday's 10-1/2-month high of 0.100 percent. The 30-year yield lost 2.0 basis points to 0.675 percent , easing from 0.805 percent hit a week ago, while the 20-year yield fell 1.5 basis points to 0.575 percent from last week's 0.650 percent.

 

 

US Equity Upgrades

  • ASML (ASML) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM NEUTRAL AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • BAYER (BAYRY) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM HOLD AT JEFFERIES
  • BRANDYWINE REALTY (BDN) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM HOLD AT EVERCORE ISI
  • BRISTOL-MYERS (BMY) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM HOLD AT JEFFERIES
  • CARTER'S (CRI) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM NEUTRAL AT CITI
  • CHARLES SCHWAB (SCHW) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM HOLD AT SUNTRUST
  • COSTCO (COST) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM NEUTRAL AT CITI
  • CULLEN/FROST (CFR) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM HOLD AT SUNTRUST
  • DEXCOM (DXCM) UPGRADED TO OUTPERFORM FROM PERFORM AT OPPENHEIMER
  • E-TRADE (ETFC) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM HOLD AT SUNTRUST
  • GULFPORT ENERGY (GPOR) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM NEUTRAL AT GUGGENHEIM
  • HUBSPOT (HUBS) UPGRADED TO STRONG BUY FROM OUTPERFORM AT RAYMOND JAMES
  • LAM RESEARCH (LRCX) UPGRADED TO CONVICTION BUY FROM NEUTRAL AT GOLDMAN
  • LUXOFT (LXFT) UPGRADED TO OUTPERFORM FROM MARKET PERFORM AT COWEN
  • REALOGY (RLGY) UPGRADED TO OUTPERFORM FROM NEUTRAL AT WEDBUSH
  • RSP PERMIAN (RSPP) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM NEUTRAL AT GUGGENHEIM
  • TEREX (TEX) UPGRADED TO BUY FROM NEUTRAL AT UBS
  • UNITED RENTALS (URI) UPGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM SELL AT UBS
  • UNITED TECHNOLOGIES (UTX) UPGRADED TO OUTPERFORM FROM NEUTRAL AT CREDIT SUISSE
  • WILLIAMS (WMB) UPGRADED TO OVERWEIGHT FROM EQUAL WEIGHT AT MORGAN STANLEY
 

US Equity Downgrades

  • AMBAC FINANCIAL (AMBC) DOWNGRADED TO SELL FROM NEUTRAL AT MKM PARTNERS
  • AMERIPRISE (AMP) DOWNGRADED ON VALUATION, GROWTH CHALLENGES AT SUNTRUST
  • APPLIED MATERIALS (AMAT) DOWNGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM BUY AT GOLDMAN
  • ARCELORMITTAL (MT) DOWNGRADED TO SELL FROM NEUTRAL AT UBS
  • ASANKO GOLD (AKG) DOWNGRADED TO MARKET PERFORM FROM OUTPERFORM AT BMO CAPITAL
  • BORGWARNER (BWA) DOWNGRADED TO MARKET PERFORM FROM OUTPERFORM AT WELLS FARGO
  • CARNIVAL (CCL) DOWNGRADED TO HOLD FROM BUY AT BERENBERG
  • DEUTSCHE BANK (DB) DOWNGRADED TO SELL FROM NEUTRAL AT CITI
  • FINISH LINE (FINL) DOWNGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM BUY AT CITI
  • GOLDCORP (GG) DOWNGRADED TO MARKET PERFORM FROM OUTPERFORM AT BMO CAPITAL
  • JAKKS PACIFIC (JAKK) DOWNGRADED TO MARKET PERFORM FROM OUTPERFORM AT BMO CAPITAL
  • JAKKS PACIFIC (JAKK) DOWNGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM OVERWEIGHT AT PIPER JAFFRAY
  • KINROSS GOLD (KGC) DOWNGRADED TO MARKET PERFORM FROM OUTPERFORM AT BMO CAPITAL
  • LOWE'S (LOW) DOWNGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM BUY AT CITI
  • MERCK (MRK) DOWNGRADED TO UNDERPERFORM FROM HOLD AT JEFFERIES
  • NORILSK NICKEL (NILSY) DOWNGRADED TO SELL FROM HOLD AT DEUTSCHE BANK
  • SUNOCO (SUN) DOWNGRADED TO NEUTRAL FROM BUY AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • THYSSENKRUPP (TKAMY) DOWNGRADED TO SELL FROM NEUTRAL AT UBS
  • YAMANA GOLD (AUY) DOWNGRADED TO MARKET PERFORM FROM OUTPERFORM AT BMO CAPITAL

 

US Equity Initiations

  • ANADARKO (APC) INITIATED WITH A BUY AT LADENBURG
  • B&G FOODS (BGS) INITIATED WITH A NEUTRAL AT CITI
  • CARPENTER TECHNOLOGY (CRS) INITIATED WITH A HOLD AT DEUTSCHE BANK
  • CIDARA THERAPEUTICS (CDTX) INITIATED WITH A BUY AT H.C. WAINWRIGHT
  • CONTINENTAL RESOURCES (CLR) INITIATED WITH A MARKET PERFORM AT FBR CAPITAL
  • CYPRESS SEMICONDUCTOR (CY) INITIATED WITH A BUY AT BOFA/MERRILL
  • HARLEY-DAVIDSON (HOG) INITIATED WITH A NEUTRAL AT GOLDMAN
  • HISTOGENICS (HSGX) INITIATED WITH A BUY AT H.C. WAINWRIGHT
  • KLA-TENCOR (KLAC) INITIATED WITH A BUY AT GOLDMAN
  • MAGELLAN MIDSTREAM (MMP) INITIATED WITH A BUY AT LADENBURG
  • RECRO PHARMA (REPH) INITIATED WITH AN OVERWEIGHT AT PIPER JAFFRAY
  • RICE ENERGY (RICE) REINSTATED WITH AN OVERWEIGHT AT BARCLAYS

 

 

 

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