(7:11am ET) There was plenty of economic data released in the US during the day; however the equity market sidetracked until 2pm ET, when with prices at modest losing levels on the week until that point, suddenly, and for no discernable reason, there was a rally that left the indexes with small gains through Thursday.
Perhaps traders were anticipating a positive quarterly report from Google (http:www.istockanalyst.comgoog+2.4% on +151% of average daily trading volume)? After the close, the company did not disappoint, beating both revenue and EPS estimates.
The company posted net income of $1.42 billion ($5.16/share), up +8% from the $1.31 billion ($4.84/share) recorded during the same period a year ago. Revenue for 1Q2009 increased +10% to $4.07 billion, from $3.7 billion, excluding traffic acquisition costs. On average, analysts had expected earnings per share of $4.93 and revenue of $4.08 billion, according to Yahoo Finance. For the first time in the Google's history though, net revenue declined quarter to quarter. The company posted revenue of $4.22 billion during the 4Q2008. But EPS were up from $5.10.
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The economic data added up to a lot of pain on many fronts, but the media spin was that perhaps there is a little less pain. In any case, the data was expected, and there was no remarkable affect on share prices.
By the close Thursday, the DJIA (+95.81 +1.19% to 8125.43, S&P 500 (+13.24 +1.55% to 865.30), and NASDAQ Composite (+43.64 +2.68% to 1670.44) were all higher, all of it in the final two hours.
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The Toronto Composite (+97.26 +1.05% to 9343.37) and the Toronto Venture Board (-5.81 -0.59% to 982.13) were headed in opposite directions, mostly because the junior market is over-weighted with precious metals exploration companies, which suffered as $GOLD pulled back sharply (-$15.60/oz to 875.60) to technical support levels.
Ahead of the Citigroup (http:www.istockanalyst.comC) and General Electric (http:www.istockanalyst.comge), trading in the major international equity markets today has been slightly positive, but uninspiring. Japan's Nikkei 225 index (+1.74% to 8907.6) was the best gain on the board. Australia's All Ordinaries index (+0.07% to 3728.1), Hong Kong (-0.12% to 15601.3), Shanghai (-1.19% to 2503.9) and India (+0.96% to 11052.9) were mixed.