Polar vortexes and heavy snow are two of the most defining characteristics of the 2013-2014 winter season in the U.S. Bitter cold and harsh weather conditions have taken their toll on parts of the economy, especially when it comes to employment figures. However, when it comes to natural gas prices, the cold weather has propelled the fossil fuel higher, as incessant demand has sent NG on a tear to open up the year [for more natural gas news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter]. See the full story here
Earlier this week, President Obama unveiled his budget proposal for the year beginning Oct. 1. The proposed 2015 budget totals $3.9 trillion, including certain tax increases, as well as budget cuts and increases across nearly all departments. A closer look at the breakdown of Obama’s budget reveals several key factors commodity traders and investors should be aware of – particularly for the energy and agriculture industries [for more commodity news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter] See the full story here
On Wall Street, the agriculture business has long been a popular place for commodity trading. After all, it was with agricultural futures that commodity trading got its start, when farmers originally used futures contracts to offset losses in crop yields. Over the years, the agriculture space has rapidly developed, offering investors various options to cash in on the industry [for more agricultural news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter]. See the full story here
2013′s fourth quarter earnings season saw companies across all sectors reporting both hits and misses. Alcoa set the tone for the commodity space, reporting a fourth quarter net loss of $2.3 billion and missed analysts’ EPS estimates. While other commodity stocks also managed to post better-than-expected results, some showed signs of weakness from 2013′s commodity slump. Overall, most companies managed to post better-than-expected earnings during the fourth quarter as compared to the third [for more commodity news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter].
Major equity indexes have managed to claw their way back up to where they were prior to the broad-based correction seen on Wall Street at the end of last month. In fact, the NASDAQ-100 has even managed to post fresh highs, whereas the Dow Jones Industrial Average still has room to run before it hits previous resistance levels. Amid the bullish price action, however, economic data remains suppressed by the harsh weather conditions at home, which have dragged on retail sales as well as the labor market recovery [for more commodity futures news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter].
Major U.S. equity indexes have managed to snap the losing streak that plagued markets since the New Year and February is off to a very green start. Upbeat corporate earnings have helped fuel the rebound on Wall Street while a relatively quiet political front has also helped to bring back certainty. Last month’s employment report was a mixed bag, and although investors reacted positively in light of ”oversold” conditions at the time, the next labor market data release will likely be scrutinized more heavily as investors look for clues surrounding the Fed’s next move [for more commodity futures news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter].