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Stocks slightly higher as bank earnings come in mixed

Stocks slightly higher as bank earnings come in mixed

Stocks ticked up Wednesday morning as a host of major banks released a mixed set of quarterly results.

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Dow component Goldman Sachs (GS) on Wednesday reported third-quarter results that well exceeded consensus estimates, as investment banking and fixed income trading revenue each grew over last year and topped expectations. The trading boost Goldman Sachs and other banks including JPMorgan Chase and Citigroup but it did not extend to Bank of America (BAC), which posted lighter-than-expected trading revenue from stocks and bonds, and a miss on overall revenue compared to estimates. Bank of America also built its credit reserves during the quarter, adding more padding in case of potential customer loan defaults amid the pandemic.

At Wells Fargo (WFC), the company swung back to a quarterly profit in the third quarter after a loss in the second, though income missed expectations and was pressured by low rates, and activity overall remained low as both loans and deposits declined.

Meanwhile, lackluster prospects for more stimulus and concerns over the timeline for developing a COVID-19 vaccine and treatment weighed on investors. Each of the S&P 500, Dow and Nasdaq declined for the first time in five sessions as of Tuesday’s close.

An impasse among U.S. lawmakers in Washington has kept hopes running low that more virus relief aid will come to fruition before the November election. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Tuesday he will have the Senate take up relief legislation after the chamber’s return on Monday, with his narrower proposal set to include funds chiefly targeted to the Paycheck Protection Program. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, however, has rejected slimmed-down stimulus proposals and deemed them inadequate, and even President Donald Trump said on Tuesday on Twitter to “Go big or go home!!!” for more stimulus.

Meanwhile, a pair of front-runners

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What Millennials’ Top Stocks Tell Us About The Market And Them

What Millennials’ Top Stocks Tell Us About The Market And Them

How do Millennials choose stocks?

Millennials like stocks. Why shouldn’t they? Stocks only go up, right Dave Portnoy? 

I recently reviewed the latest survey from Apex clearing, S&P Global Market Intelligence and Investors Business Daily. Each quarter, they review account holdings of a large group of Millennial generation investors, and analyze which individual stocks are the most popular in their portfolios. Below, you can see a chart of the Top 10 as of the end of last month, out of their full list of the top 100 stock holdings of this group.

Young investors and stocks: awesome!

Before I specifically deliver some observations from that latest list, let me say this about millennials and stocks: I am thrilled that younger folks are learning about investing while they are still in the earlier stages of their retirement saving. There is an entire generation of Baby Boomers that wishes they had the opportunity to invest in such transparent, liquid markets at such a low cost. But in the 1980s and 1990s, the internet and investment markets were in a nascent stage versus today.

The issue for all investors, including millennials, is that they have not known any serious hardship as investors since they started investing. Market declines have been so quickly-remedied since 2008, you could excuse this generation for thinking that stocks only go up…but when they go down, they come right back.

Index-mania is out there: but there’s a cure

There is also the issue of “index-mania” I have described before. While it is possible that investing in the S&P 500 Index is the only strategy a young investor will ever need until they approach retirement, that is not the lesson from history. In fact, I would say that strategy is on seriously borrowed time.

That

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Stocks Tick Up After Goldman Earnings Soar, But Key Economic Indicator Shows Consumer Worries

Stocks Tick Up After Goldman Earnings Soar, But Key Economic Indicator Shows Consumer Worries

Topline

Stocks barely budged Wednesday morning after a mixed bag of pre-market earnings results revealed that the economic recovery is still suffering from weak fundamentals.

Key Facts

As of 9:35 a.m., the Dow Jones Industrial Average had edged up .1%, while the S&P 500 and the tech-heavy Nasdaq ticked up .2% and .5%, respectively.

Shares of Goldman Sachs climbed 1% after the New York-based investment banking giant reported $3.5 billion in profits and a 30% surge in revenue fueled by the mid-pandemic trading boom. 

Bank of America, on the other hand, failed to impress investors, posting mixed results for the third quarter that beat analysts expectations on profits, which totaled $4.9 billion, but fell behind on revenue expectations; its shares are down nearly 3%.

Wells Fargo shares are down 3% after reporting a 56% drop in quarterly earnings due to decreased interest income in light of historically low interest rates, the firm said.

Global markets were also fairly tepid on Wednesday: As of market open, the United Kingdom’s FTSE 100 had fallen .4%, and France’s CAC 40 was virtually flat, while Japan’s Nikkei 225 ended Wednesday up just .1%.

The consumer price index for September–a key measure of inflation–came in slightly below expectations, rising .19% during the month and leading to an unchanged year-over-year rate of 1.7%.

Key Background

The Covid-19 pandemic threw the economy into a deep recession, and Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Richard Clarida said Wednesday morning that the U.S. economy needs another year–or maybe more–until it fully recovers. The recovery thus far has been marked by slowed job growth, layoffs that remain high and a volatile stock market that’s been rocked in recent weeks by mounting uncertainty around

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Worried About a Stock Market Crash? Buy These Recession-Proof Tech Stocks

Worried About a Stock Market Crash? Buy These Recession-Proof Tech Stocks

Sure, the stock market is booming now, but remember that it was also booming in January of this year — right before the quickest market crash of all time. Meanwhile, Congress is at an impasse on a new stimulus deal, even though leading Federal Reserve officials are pleading for more fiscal help.

A sudden market turnaround isn’t out of the realm of possibility. You can prepare for it and reduce your risk by investing in recession-resistant businesses. Investing in recession-proof stocks lets you sleep well at night and hold for the long-term, no matter what craziness is going on in the real economy. While no stock is 100% immune to the real economy, some companies have better business models for dealing with downturns, even in the high-flying technology sector.

Some recession-resistant companies offer needed goods or services that must be bought in good times and bad. Others cater to a mass-market audience, providing a good or service at lower costs than competitors. That second type of stock may actually benefit during recessions by scooping up market share.

That’s why the following four recession-resistant tech stocks look like fine buys today, even if the stimulus lags and the economy double-dips.

A person leans back in a desk chair with their hands folded behind their head, staring out the window at a city skyline.

Image source: Getty Images.

Amazon

It’s Prime Day! That means deals, deals, deals on a wide variety of goods and services from Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN), the dominant player in U.S. e-commerce. Amazon was the first mover in e-commerce. Today, its massive scale and distribution network allow it to offer unbeatable selection, prices, and one-day delivery, which the company rolled out last year.

Even in tough times, it’s really hard to give up your Amazon Prime membership, which counted more than 150 million members worldwide as of last year. Given the importance of Amazon’s services amid the pandemic, that number is

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7 Consumer Stocks for an Impenetrable Defense: AAPL, KR, OLLI, SAM

7 Consumer Stocks for an Impenetrable Defense: AAPL, KR, OLLI, SAM

As consumers, we can all possibly tell stories of how the pandemic has affected our lives — including confidence in the economy, spending habits, and life choices since March. The current news headlines on the second wave of the novel coronavirus outbreak worldwide are likely to affect consumer sentiment and spending this fall and winter. Therefore, let’s look at seven consumer stocks for an impenetrable defense even if moods ebb and flow.

How do consumers feel about the state of the economy and its future? In addition to anecdotal evidence and news headlines, economists conduct regular surveys and construct indices that may help gauge the sentiment. For example, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) — which has 37 member countries including the U.S. and other developed economies — publishes a “Consumer confidence index (CCI),” whose long-term average is 100. In May, it fell to a multi-year low of 97.67. And the reading for September stands at 98.51.

Moreover, in the U.S., the University of Michigan’s Consumer Confidence Index and the Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index are measures of public confidence. That said, recent results from both indices also show similar readings. So, although consumers are feeling better compared to earlier in the year, the sentiment is still subdued.

Typically, how the Main Street feels affects what happens on Wall Street. For example, the S&P 500 bottomed out on March 23, having decreased close to 35% from its level on Feb 19. Since then, broader markets and shares of many companies have risen sharply. In fact, a large number of stocks hit new highs by early September. The S&P 500 index also saw an all-time high on Sept. 2. But, the indices have been consolidating since.

Yet, it is hard to know how broader markets mare fare in the

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