Auto stocks fall after BMW warns of global economic slowdown, trade trouble

Shares of automakers fell Wednesday after BMW warned of lower profits, citing international trade tension and the potential impact of Brexit as possible drags on global economic growth. BMW executives said the industry faces a fiercely competitive environment, dogged by questions about how tariffs and trade tension between the U.S., China and Europe could affect supply chains, manufacturing and sales. “Political and economic developments in Europe remain increasingly uncertain,” BMW said in its


Shares of automakers fell Wednesday after BMW warned of lower profits, citing international trade tension and the potential impact of Brexit as possible drags on global economic growth. BMW executives said the industry faces a fiercely competitive environment, dogged by questions about how tariffs and trade tension between the U.S., China and Europe could affect supply chains, manufacturing and sales. “Political and economic developments in Europe remain increasingly uncertain,” BMW said in its
Auto stocks fall after BMW warns of global economic slowdown, trade trouble Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-03-20  Authors: robert ferris, luke sharrett, bloomberg, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, stocks, fell, global, vehicles, trouble, auto, impact, bmw, fall, economic, tension, tariffs, slowdown, trade, trading, warns


Auto stocks fall after BMW warns of global economic slowdown, trade trouble

Shares of automakers fell Wednesday after BMW warned of lower profits, citing international trade tension and the potential impact of Brexit as possible drags on global economic growth.

BMW executives said the industry faces a fiercely competitive environment, dogged by questions about how tariffs and trade tension between the U.S., China and Europe could affect supply chains, manufacturing and sales.

The news comes one day after FedEx executives expressed worries over a slowing global economy.

All three Detroit automakers declined in morning trading Wednesday. Shares of Ford fell 2.3 percent, Fiat Chrysler fell 2 percent and General Motors dipped 2.6 percent.

“Political and economic developments in Europe remain increasingly uncertain,” BMW said in its annual report Wednesday. It specifically cited the “unforeseeable impact of Brexit” and U.S. trade tensions with the European Union and China.

Politico also reported Wednesday that President Trump has the legal grounds impose tariffs on cars imported to the United States, further spooking investors.

“A possible introduction of further trade barriers, including anti-dumping customs duties and duties aimed at protecting national security by the U.S. administration, could have a significantly adverse impact on the BMW Group’s operations through less favorable conditions for importing vehicles,” BMW said. “Moreover, countermeasures by the USA’s trading partners could slow down global economic growth and have a greater-than-expected adverse impact on the export of vehicles produced in the USA.”

This is a breaking news story. Please check back for updates.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-03-20  Authors: robert ferris, luke sharrett, bloomberg, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, stocks, fell, global, vehicles, trouble, auto, impact, bmw, fall, economic, tension, tariffs, slowdown, trade, trading, warns


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China’s exports fall more than 20% in February; overall trade data come in much weaker

China on Friday reported worse than expected trade data for the month of February, customs data showed amid Beijing’s trade dispute with the U.S. Dollar-denominated imports fell 5.2 percent in February from a year ago, missing economists’ forecast of a 1.4 percent fall. China’s February trade balance was also significantly weaker than expected at $4.12 billion. Economists polled by Reuters had expected the overall trade balance to come in at $26.38 billion. China’s politically sensitive trade su


China on Friday reported worse than expected trade data for the month of February, customs data showed amid Beijing’s trade dispute with the U.S. Dollar-denominated imports fell 5.2 percent in February from a year ago, missing economists’ forecast of a 1.4 percent fall. China’s February trade balance was also significantly weaker than expected at $4.12 billion. Economists polled by Reuters had expected the overall trade balance to come in at $26.38 billion. China’s politically sensitive trade su
China’s exports fall more than 20% in February; overall trade data come in much weaker Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-03-08  Authors: huileng tan, nelson ching, bloomberg, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, month, missing, weaker, balance, come, chinas, expected, data, trade, 20, fall, billion, overall, imports, exports, economists


China's exports fall more than 20% in February; overall trade data come in much weaker

China on Friday reported worse than expected trade data for the month of February, customs data showed amid Beijing’s trade dispute with the U.S.

Dollar-denominated exports plunged 20.7 percent for the month of February from a year ago, missing economists’ expectations of a 4.8 percent decline, according to a Reuters poll. January exports had risen 9.1 percent from a year ago.

Dollar-denominated imports fell 5.2 percent in February from a year ago, missing economists’ forecast of a 1.4 percent fall. January imports had fallen 1.5 percent on-year.

China’s February trade balance was also significantly weaker than expected at $4.12 billion. Economists polled by Reuters had expected the overall trade balance to come in at $26.38 billion. The country’s trade balance in January had been $39.16 billion.

China’s politically sensitive trade surplus with the U.S. narrowed sharply to $14.72 billion in February from $27.3 billion in January.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-03-08  Authors: huileng tan, nelson ching, bloomberg, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, month, missing, weaker, balance, come, chinas, expected, data, trade, 20, fall, billion, overall, imports, exports, economists


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Biotech stocks fall after FDA chief Scott Gottlieb resigns

Biotechnology stocks were falling on Wednesday after Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said he is resigning from his post at the agency. The biggest drops were Amgen, Gilead Sciences and Biogen, which were all down more than 2 percent in midmorning trading. Salim Syed, senior biotech analyst at Mizuho Securities, told CNBC that Gottlieb represented a more “friendly FDA,” adding he was “generally really liked by the biopharma investment community.” Gottlieb is resigning to


Biotechnology stocks were falling on Wednesday after Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said he is resigning from his post at the agency. The biggest drops were Amgen, Gilead Sciences and Biogen, which were all down more than 2 percent in midmorning trading. Salim Syed, senior biotech analyst at Mizuho Securities, told CNBC that Gottlieb represented a more “friendly FDA,” adding he was “generally really liked by the biopharma investment community.” Gottlieb is resigning to
Biotech stocks fall after FDA chief Scott Gottlieb resigns Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-03-06  Authors: berkeley lovelace jr, cameron costa
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, secretary, resigning, fall, parry, chief, drug, letter, scott, told, industry, fda, resigns, resignation, stocks, biotech, gottlieb


Biotech stocks fall after FDA chief Scott Gottlieb resigns

Biotechnology stocks were falling on Wednesday after Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said he is resigning from his post at the agency.

The IBB, an ETF that tracks biotech’s biggest players, was down more than 2 percent Wednesday, on pace for its worst day since Feb. 7, when it lost 2.5 percent. The biggest drops were Amgen, Gilead Sciences and Biogen, which were all down more than 2 percent in midmorning trading.

Salim Syed, senior biotech analyst at Mizuho Securities, told CNBC that Gottlieb represented a more “friendly FDA,” adding he was “generally really liked by the biopharma investment community.”

“Finding somebody better than him, that’ll be hard,” he added.

Gottlieb is resigning to spend more time with his family, he said in a letter to FDA staff. The physician has been commuting from his home in Westport, Connecticut, where his wife and three young daughters live. He tendered his resignation to Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar in a letter Tuesday.

Graham Parry, a research analyst at Merrill Lynch who covers the sector, told clients late Tuesday that Gottlieb’s resignation was a “net negative for innovative biopharma companies.”

Gottlieb is widely respected in the industry. In his first year as commissioner, Gottlieb approved a record number of new and generic drugs. Before his appointment, he served on the board of several drug companies and worked as an industry consultant.

“Gottlieb, in our view, as a healthcare policy expert, has been a key influence and architect, along with HHS secretary Alex Azar (former Pharma executive), of relatively innovator-friendly, evidence-based Trump administration healthcare policies and reforms laid out in its drug pricing blueprint last year,” Parry said.

The FDA has not selected a replacement for Gottlieb.

— CNBC’s Angelica LaVito and Gina Francolla contributed to this report.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-03-06  Authors: berkeley lovelace jr, cameron costa
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, secretary, resigning, fall, parry, chief, drug, letter, scott, told, industry, fda, resigns, resignation, stocks, biotech, gottlieb


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Huawei ban won’t make the US fall behind in 5G: Experts

The United States won’t fall behind in the introduction of next-generation 5G mobile networks if Huawei stays banned there, experts told CNBC, though smaller countries and potentially even Europe could suffer from reduced competition. Chinese telecommunications equipment giant Huawei — along with China’s state media — have argued that banning Huawei will reduce competition, increase the cost of 5G networking hardware, and slow the introduction of the critical, high-speed technology. Eric Xu, one


The United States won’t fall behind in the introduction of next-generation 5G mobile networks if Huawei stays banned there, experts told CNBC, though smaller countries and potentially even Europe could suffer from reduced competition. Chinese telecommunications equipment giant Huawei — along with China’s state media — have argued that banning Huawei will reduce competition, increase the cost of 5G networking hardware, and slow the introduction of the critical, high-speed technology. Eric Xu, one
Huawei ban won’t make the US fall behind in 5G: Experts Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-03-06  Authors: arjun kharpal, elizabeth schulze, -shaun collins, chief executive officer, ccs insight
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, wont, huawei, fall, told, europe, worlds, introduction, 5g, xu, ban, experts


Huawei ban won't make the US fall behind in 5G: Experts

The United States won’t fall behind in the introduction of next-generation 5G mobile networks if Huawei stays banned there, experts told CNBC, though smaller countries and potentially even Europe could suffer from reduced competition.

Chinese telecommunications equipment giant Huawei — along with China’s state media — have argued that banning Huawei will reduce competition, increase the cost of 5G networking hardware, and slow the introduction of the critical, high-speed technology.

Eric Xu, one of Huawei’s rotating chairmen, told CNBC in November that a continuing ban of Huawei gear from the U.S. market will lead to the world’s biggest economy to fall behind in the 5G race. Meanwhile, Chinese state-backed publication Global Times said in an op-ed last month that Europe also would lag in 5G if Huawei were blocked there.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-03-06  Authors: arjun kharpal, elizabeth schulze, -shaun collins, chief executive officer, ccs insight
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, wont, huawei, fall, told, europe, worlds, introduction, 5g, xu, ban, experts


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Huawei ban won’t make the US fall behind in 5G: Experts

The United States won’t fall behind in the introduction of next-generation 5G mobile networks if Huawei stays banned there, experts told CNBC, though smaller countries and potentially even Europe could suffer from reduced competition. Chinese telecommunications equipment giant Huawei — along with China’s state media — have argued that banning Huawei will reduce competition, increase the cost of 5G networking hardware, and slow the introduction of the critical, high-speed technology. Eric Xu, one


The United States won’t fall behind in the introduction of next-generation 5G mobile networks if Huawei stays banned there, experts told CNBC, though smaller countries and potentially even Europe could suffer from reduced competition. Chinese telecommunications equipment giant Huawei — along with China’s state media — have argued that banning Huawei will reduce competition, increase the cost of 5G networking hardware, and slow the introduction of the critical, high-speed technology. Eric Xu, one
Huawei ban won’t make the US fall behind in 5G: Experts Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-03-06  Authors: arjun kharpal, elizabeth schulze, -shaun collins, chief executive officer, ccs insight
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, wont, huawei, fall, told, europe, worlds, introduction, 5g, xu, ban, experts


Huawei ban won't make the US fall behind in 5G: Experts

The United States won’t fall behind in the introduction of next-generation 5G mobile networks if Huawei stays banned there, experts told CNBC, though smaller countries and potentially even Europe could suffer from reduced competition.

Chinese telecommunications equipment giant Huawei — along with China’s state media — have argued that banning Huawei will reduce competition, increase the cost of 5G networking hardware, and slow the introduction of the critical, high-speed technology.

Eric Xu, one of Huawei’s rotating chairmen, told CNBC in November that a continuing ban of Huawei gear from the U.S. market will lead to the world’s biggest economy to fall behind in the 5G race. Meanwhile, Chinese state-backed publication Global Times said in an op-ed last month that Europe also would lag in 5G if Huawei were blocked there.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-03-06  Authors: arjun kharpal, elizabeth schulze, -shaun collins, chief executive officer, ccs insight
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, wont, huawei, fall, told, europe, worlds, introduction, 5g, xu, ban, experts


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Treasury yields fall amid US-China trade developments

The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note fell to around 2.7114 percent, while the yield on the 30-year Treasury bond slipped to 3.0786 percent. Market players are focused on U.S.-China trade developments with mixed messages on the progress of talks between Washington and Beijing over the last few days. Sources told CNBC Monday that U.S.-China trade negotiations are in the “final stages” and that a summit in Mar-a-Lago later this month could close the deal. The New York Times also said in


The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note fell to around 2.7114 percent, while the yield on the 30-year Treasury bond slipped to 3.0786 percent. Market players are focused on U.S.-China trade developments with mixed messages on the progress of talks between Washington and Beijing over the last few days. Sources told CNBC Monday that U.S.-China trade negotiations are in the “final stages” and that a summit in Mar-a-Lago later this month could close the deal. The New York Times also said in
Treasury yields fall amid US-China trade developments Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-03-06  Authors: matt clinch
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, treasury, bond, deal, developments, trade, york, washington, fall, players, uschina, yields, yield, president, amid


Treasury yields fall amid US-China trade developments

The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note fell to around 2.7114 percent, while the yield on the 30-year Treasury bond slipped to 3.0786 percent. Bond yields move inversely to prices.

Market players are focused on U.S.-China trade developments with mixed messages on the progress of talks between Washington and Beijing over the last few days. Sources told CNBC Monday that U.S.-China trade negotiations are in the “final stages” and that a summit in Mar-a-Lago later this month could close the deal. The New York Times also said in a report that Monday the trade deal being discussed would do little to address key structural issues.

Meanwhile, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said this week he thought Washington and Beijing were “on the cusp” of reaching a deal. Despite positive comments from different members of the U.S. administration, market players are yet to find out how far-reaching any deal could be.

On the economic front Wednesday, there will be ADP employment numbers at 8.15 a.m. ET and international trade figures out at 8.30 a.m. ET.

Furthermore, New York Fed President John Williams and Cleveland Fed President Loretta Mester are set to speak later on Wednesday.

There are no bond auctions scheduled for Wednesday.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-03-06  Authors: matt clinch
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, treasury, bond, deal, developments, trade, york, washington, fall, players, uschina, yields, yield, president, amid


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Euro zone banks jump, Italian yields fall on report ECB discussing new cheap bank loans

Euro zone bank shares jumped and Italian government bond yields fell on Wednesday after Bloomberg reported the European Central Bank is holding discussions on the design of new ultra-cheap bank loans. The loans known more formally as Targeted Long-Term Refinancing Operations (TLTROs) are expected to boost troubled euro zone lenders. The euro zone banks index rose to a day’s high, up 0.2 percent. Italian government bond yields also briefly extended falls as investors cheered the report. The euro


Euro zone bank shares jumped and Italian government bond yields fell on Wednesday after Bloomberg reported the European Central Bank is holding discussions on the design of new ultra-cheap bank loans. The loans known more formally as Targeted Long-Term Refinancing Operations (TLTROs) are expected to boost troubled euro zone lenders. The euro zone banks index rose to a day’s high, up 0.2 percent. Italian government bond yields also briefly extended falls as investors cheered the report. The euro
Euro zone banks jump, Italian yields fall on report ECB discussing new cheap bank loans Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-03-06
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, fell, bond, italian, yield, euro, ultracheap, loansthe, twoweek, jump, loans, fall, ecb, bank, zone, report, yields, discussing


Euro zone banks jump, Italian yields fall on report ECB discussing new cheap bank loans

Euro zone bank shares jumped and Italian government bond yields fell on Wednesday after Bloomberg reported the European Central Bank is holding discussions on the design of new ultra-cheap bank loans.

The ECB meets on Thursday amid speculation that it is getting ready for a fresh round of stimulus via cheap bank loans.

The loans known more formally as Targeted Long-Term Refinancing Operations (TLTROs) are expected to boost troubled euro zone lenders. The euro zone banks index rose to a day’s high, up 0.2 percent.

Italian government bond yields also briefly extended falls as investors cheered the report. Italy’s 10-year government bond yield touched its lowest level in just over a month at 2.661 percent and was last down 4 basis points on the day.

The euro fell to a two-week low at around $1.12855.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-03-06
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, fell, bond, italian, yield, euro, ultracheap, loansthe, twoweek, jump, loans, fall, ecb, bank, zone, report, yields, discussing


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Elastic shares fall after software company’s post-IPO lock-up period expires

Elastic shares dropped 3.5 percent Wednesday after the software company’s initial post-IPO lock-up period expired, allowing insiders to sell stock for the first time. In its IPO prospectus, Elastic said the lock-up period would cover the traditional 180 days after the offering, which would be early April. On Wednesday, trading volume topped 2.3 million shares, making it the most active day for Elastic since its debut on Oct. 5. Lock-up expirations have hit other technology companies in recent ye


Elastic shares dropped 3.5 percent Wednesday after the software company’s initial post-IPO lock-up period expired, allowing insiders to sell stock for the first time. In its IPO prospectus, Elastic said the lock-up period would cover the traditional 180 days after the offering, which would be early April. On Wednesday, trading volume topped 2.3 million shares, making it the most active day for Elastic since its debut on Oct. 5. Lock-up expirations have hit other technology companies in recent ye
Elastic shares fall after software company’s post-IPO lock-up period expires Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-03-06  Authors: jordan novet, index ventures
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, stock, shares, postipo, software, period, fall, lockup, elastic, companys, traded, ipo, day, trading, volume, expires


Elastic shares fall after software company's post-IPO lock-up period expires

Elastic shares dropped 3.5 percent Wednesday after the software company’s initial post-IPO lock-up period expired, allowing insiders to sell stock for the first time.

Elastic, which provides open-source search software used by businesses, went public in October at $36 a share and the stock has since surged, closing on Tuesday at $87.14. Last week the company said that 25 percent of the shares that have been subject to lock-up agreements will be released and available for sale, so long as the stock’s closing price on Monday was at least 33 percent higher than the IPO price.

In its IPO prospectus, Elastic said the lock-up period would cover the traditional 180 days after the offering, which would be early April. But conditions were met to accelerate the process.

On Wednesday, trading volume topped 2.3 million shares, making it the most active day for Elastic since its debut on Oct. 5. For the third consecutive day the stock moved more than 3 percent lower.

Lock-up expirations have hit other technology companies in recent years, including Nutanix, Pivotal and Roku, introducing sudden dips and spikes in trading volume. Elastic has been lightly traded to date, because only 29 percent of the shares outstanding were available to be traded, with the rest owned by insiders, primarily early employees and venture investors. Large shareholders include Australia’s Future Fund Management Agency, Morgan Stanley, venture-capital firm Benchmark and co-founders Shay Banon and Steven Schuurman.

Often, fewer than 500,000 shares have been traded per day, less than other companies that have gone public recently, like Anaplan, SurveyMonkey and Upwork.

On Tuesday, analysts at Oppenheimer and Co. initiated coverage of Elastic with an outperform rating and a $110 price target.

“We see a long runway for growth and believe current expectations under-appreciate Elastic’s applicability, revenue upside potential” and ability to grow beyond search, the analysts wrote.

WATCH: Elastic CEO on NYSE IPO


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-03-06  Authors: jordan novet, index ventures
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, stock, shares, postipo, software, period, fall, lockup, elastic, companys, traded, ipo, day, trading, volume, expires


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ITV to team up with BBC in ‘BritBox’ subscription streaming offer

UK broadcaster ITV said on Wednesday it was teaming up with the BBC to create a British rival to Netflix called “BritBox”. Chief Executive Carolyn McCall said the partnership, which is close to being concluded, would bring an exciting new subscription video-on-demand service to UK audiences. “This will provide an unrivalled collection of British boxsets and original series in one place,” she said. “We anticipate that other partners will be added to BritBox and we will both speak to regulators an


UK broadcaster ITV said on Wednesday it was teaming up with the BBC to create a British rival to Netflix called “BritBox”. Chief Executive Carolyn McCall said the partnership, which is close to being concluded, would bring an exciting new subscription video-on-demand service to UK audiences. “This will provide an unrivalled collection of British boxsets and original series in one place,” she said. “We anticipate that other partners will be added to BritBox and we will both speak to regulators an
ITV to team up with BBC in ‘BritBox’ subscription streaming offer Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-02-27
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, britbox, wider, streaming, fall, videoondemand, offer, team, subscription, itv, bbc, british, unrivalled, uncertainty, tieup, broadcaster, uk, teaming


ITV to team up with BBC in 'BritBox' subscription streaming offer

UK broadcaster ITV said on Wednesday it was teaming up with the BBC to create a British rival to Netflix called “BritBox”.

Chief Executive Carolyn McCall said the partnership, which is close to being concluded, would bring an exciting new subscription video-on-demand service to UK audiences.

“This will provide an unrivalled collection of British boxsets and original series in one place,” she said.

“We anticipate that other partners will be added to BritBox and we will both speak to regulators and the wider industry about our proposals.”

ITV, the broadcaster of soap opera “Coronation Street” and reality show “Love Island”, announced the tie-up along with 2018 results that saw adjusted earnings fall 4 percent in 810 million pounds ($1.07 billion).

It said it was performing strongly on screen but economic and political uncertainty in Britain would cause advertising revenue for the first four months of 2019 to fall by 3-4 percent.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-02-27
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, britbox, wider, streaming, fall, videoondemand, offer, team, subscription, itv, bbc, british, unrivalled, uncertainty, tieup, broadcaster, uk, teaming


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Fourth quarter growth expected to fall back to slower trend, hit by trade

“The trade numbers suggest we could see negative or flat export growth in the fourth quarter.” Anderson said his first quarter growth forecast is just 1.5 percent. The CNBC/Moody’s Analytics Rapid Update consensus for fourth quarter growth estimates was 2.3 percent, and the forecast for first quarter was an average 1.8 percent. Citigroup was among the firms that trimmed fourth quarter growth forecasts Wednesday, shaving off 0.3 percentage points, to 2.2 percent. “Some of the other stuff like the


“The trade numbers suggest we could see negative or flat export growth in the fourth quarter.” Anderson said his first quarter growth forecast is just 1.5 percent. The CNBC/Moody’s Analytics Rapid Update consensus for fourth quarter growth estimates was 2.3 percent, and the forecast for first quarter was an average 1.8 percent. Citigroup was among the firms that trimmed fourth quarter growth forecasts Wednesday, shaving off 0.3 percentage points, to 2.2 percent. “Some of the other stuff like the
Fourth quarter growth expected to fall back to slower trend, hit by trade Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-02-27  Authors: patti domm, andrew harrer, bloomberg, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, trade, fourth, growth, spending, consumer, going, trend, slower, quarter, fall, data, forecast, expected, hit, investment


Fourth quarter growth expected to fall back to slower trend, hit by trade

A widening trade gap, a more sluggish consumer and softer business spending bit into fourth quarter growth, and economists now expect that the economy grew at about 2.3 percent in the final quarter of 2018.

On top of that, first quarter growth is looking even weaker, at less than 2 percent, and the economy in the two quarters appears to have fallen back to the pace it was at before President Donald Trump entered the White House. That follows growth above 3 percent in the third quarter.

Fourth quarter GDP is released Thursday at 8:30 a.m. ET.

If the number matches the Refinitiv consensus forecast for the fourth quarter, GDP growth for all of 2018 will be 2.9 percent, slightly less than the 3 percent targeted by the Trump administration. Economists are expecting that some of the factors affecting it are transitory and related to the government shutdown or trade conflicts.

Economists were encouraged by a sharp rebound in February consumer confidence Tuesday, suggesting that the consumer may be now looking past the shutdown and the stock market sell off in December.

“The bad news is with the tax reform bill, the Republicans were promising this would lead to a permanent lift in business investment which would lead to productivity growth in the U.S. which would let us grow at 3 to 4 percent, and that really hasn’t taken shape,” said Scott Anderson, chief economist at Bank of the West. “This hope of a permanent lift in productivity doesn’t seem to be playing out, and therefore we’re going to go back down pretty quickly to where we were, but now we’re going to be be running trillion-plus deficits on top of it.”

Anderson said he cut his forecast for fourth quarter growth to 2 percent Wednesday after trade data showed a record deficit in goods in December of $79.5 billion, up 10 percent from a year ago. The surprise drop in December retail sales, reported earlier in the month, also added to a reduction in consumption to a slower pace of about 2.5 percent.

“Residential investment, or housing, is down around 5 percent or so, and there’s lackluster equipment spending that probably grew a bit below four percent. Structural investment, or commercial real estate is down 1 percent, and consumer spending at 2.5 percent is a big come down from the third quarter when we were at 3.5 percent,” he said. “The trade numbers suggest we could see negative or flat export growth in the fourth quarter.”

Anderson said his first quarter growth forecast is just 1.5 percent.

“It’s going to be really hard to get that 3 percent growth rate this year. The fiscal stimulus is probably going to add half as much as it did last year. You’re just not going to get as much support for consumer and business spending as you did in 2018. We do expect slower growth around the world in 2019,” Anderson said.

The CNBC/Moody’s Analytics Rapid Update consensus for fourth quarter growth estimates was 2.3 percent, and the forecast for first quarter was an average 1.8 percent.

Citigroup was among the firms that trimmed fourth quarter growth forecasts Wednesday, shaving off 0.3 percentage points, to 2.2 percent.

“This is one of the prints that just has a lot of question marks all over it, especially with the December retail sales data which seemed out of sync,” said Shawn Snyder, head of investment strategy at Citi Personal Wealth Management. “We’re trying to react to the December retail sales data, and we’re already seeing consumer confidence pickup in February.”

“Some of the other stuff like the trade data, you could overlook just because some of it is related to the trade war. You want to separate the fundamentals from some of these transitory effects,” Snyder said.

Anderson said the a bright spot remains the labor market, which has shown solid growth. “The Fed is saying they’re seeing higher wage growth. Maybe there is still some good news there,” he said. “The wild card is the consumer. Will they come back?…Maybe the consumer will come back in the second quarter. Maybe we’re too pessimistic on the consumer.”


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-02-27  Authors: patti domm, andrew harrer, bloomberg, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, trade, fourth, growth, spending, consumer, going, trend, slower, quarter, fall, data, forecast, expected, hit, investment


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