Wall Street was in for some choppy trading sessions this week, as investors shifted their attention to the Fed and its massive stimulus measures. Earlier this week, markets took their cue from comments made by three Fed officials. Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago President Charles Evans had stated that while the central bank’s stimulus measures have made good progress, officials need “more time” before they can make any substantial monetary policy changes. St. Louis Fed President James Bullard’s and New York Fed President William Dudley’s commentary also reflected this sentiment, though Dudley indicated that the Fed could change asset purchases in either direction [for more market news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter]. See the full story here
The party continues on Wall Street; investors remain bullish on stocks judging by the sheer price action as both the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average managed to close out last week well above their all-time highs. The economic data front is sending hints of a potential downturn as manufacturing indicators remain weak; nonetheless, this has failed to put a noticeable dent in the bulls’ armor of confidence as markets shrugged off last week’s worse-than-expected industrial production data [for more market news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter].
Not every stock is surging to record highs; in fact, one particular large-cap miner offers a risky, but compelling, opportunity for investors still looking to get a piece of the action on Wall Street. Contrarian investors should add Cliffs Natural Resources (CLF) to their watchlist because this former S&P 500 sweetheart is resting on major historical support, thereby offering a great entry point for those with a bullish outlook for the steel industry and the global economic recovery as a whole.
Hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking”, has become one of the fastest-growing methods for tapping into abundant shale reserves held within the U.S. The process works by pumping fracturing fluids-like slickwater, gel or foam–into a wellbore at a sufficient enough rate to fracture the rocks below. When these fractures occur, the operator injects proppants into the well to prevent the fractures from closing when the fluid pressure is reduced. And finally, oil and gas leak from the fractures into the well for extraction.
But the revolutionary process is not without its drawbacks, as many criticize the side effects caused from fracking. Below, we outline the case against fracking and why a number of people have rallied against this rapidly-developing energy extraction method [for more fracking news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter]. See the full story here
When investors think of commodities, barrels of oil or bars of gold typically come to mind, but there are plenty of other investable assets that many overlook. One of the most basic needs for the sustainability of human life is water, and it is quickly becoming a commodity that is presenting as a long-term buy. Not only does water hold advantages over a number of other commodities, but the industry will only become more demanded and valuable as the world population continues to soar [for more water news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter]. See the full story here
While many traders primarily focus on resources like gold or oil, there are plenty of other opportunities in the commodity space. One such opportunity lies in cotton, which can be found in almost every textile product around the world; but as a soft commodity this constant demand does not always translate into consistent returns. The fluffy crop has enjoyed a strong start to 2013, but is well known for its large movements from day to day and for keeping investors on their toes [for more cotton news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter]. See the full story here
As the U.S. economy finally picks up its pace, many investors are returning to the corner of the market that was one of the primary sources of the 2008 financial crisis: housing. Across the board, housing stats have been on the rise in recent years, including home prices, housing starts, building permits and construction. As such, interest in the raw materials involved in housing have also benefited from the uptrend, particularly lumber [for more commodity news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter]. See the full story here
The commodities front remains mixed as the U.S. dollar’s recent rally has put downward pressures on many resource prices. Furthermore, the ongoing bull run on Wall Street has prompted many investors waiting on the sidelines to jump into equities in lieu of chasing paltry yields in the bond market or lackluster returns in the commodities space [for more market news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter].
Surprisingly, gold has managed to keep afloat in recent weeks amid the stock market euphoria, which is a commendable feat given the extreme selling pressures it saw earlier in April. The outlook for the yellow metal remains mixed, however, as technical patterns and currency market trends are hinting at another round of selling in the near future.
The global energy space has been dominated by discussions about fossil fuel alternatives in recent years, as there are a number of solutions to our addiction to these commodities. One of the most popular options has been the use of corn-based ethanol in crude oil, which decreases the amount of crude oil needed when the ethanol is mixed in. While it is not a one-stop solution, many see it as a sign of weening ourselves off of crude oil and working towards a more renewable resource [for more ethanol news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter]. See the full story here
Natural gas is one of the most popular commodities in the world and it often ranks among the CME Group’s most traded futures contracts; however, the commodity had been stuck in a rut since the 2008 recession before it finally saw some relief as 2013 opened. From natural gas’s peak to the beginning of the year, the fossil fuel had declined by more than 92%, as a number of macroeconomic factors weighed on the commodity. Just as it finally picked up steam in 2013, NG sputtered into May, dipping more than 9% through the first week of the month [for more natural gas news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter]. See the full story here