For Immediate Release
Chicago, IL – August 21, 2018 – Zacks.com announces the list of stocks featured in the Analyst Blog. Every day the Zacks Equity Research analysts discuss the latest news and events impacting stocks and the financial markets. Stocks recently featured in the blog include Amazon.com AMZN, Petroleo Brazileiro S.A PBR, Gilead Sciences GILD and KLA-Tencor KLAC.
Today, Zacks is promoting its ''Buy'' stock recommendations. Get #1Stock of the Day pick for free.
Here are highlights from Monday’s Analyst Blog:
Time for Jackson Hole: Global Week Ahead
It is late August again. The world’s central bankers are going to be in Jackson Hole, Wyoming speaking to Jerome Powell and the rest of the Fed contingent. Mr. Powell himself will speak Friday morning.
I would not expect market moving news out of the 2018 confab. Still, this it is a good conference to learn about macro themes keeping these central bankers up at night.
In light of that, it may surprise many of you to learn this—
The Jackson Hole conference’s official 2018 theme is the economic impact of superstar firms like Amazon.com. That makes the discussion going on there particularly relevant for share investors too.
Across the Global Week Ahead – to consider events across the rest of the world – here are five big Reuters in London themes. These are the ones most likely to dominate the thinking of investors and traders alike:
(1) Will the Chinese yuan fall under 7.0 per dollar for the first time in a decade?
The Chinese yuan is under pressure, and close to falling below 7.00 per dollar for the first time in over a decade. It got some respite as talks planned for later this month between lower-level officials from Beijing and Washington offered a glimmer of hope that the two superpowers may work towards a solution to their escalating trade conflict. Chinese policymakers are not taking any chances, though, banning some offshore lending to discourage short-selling and support the yuan.
A light schedule of data releases this week should take some pressure off the yuan. But global aversion towards emerging markets might still push it towards the 7.00/$ level that many see as a line in the sand Beijing authorities will defend to prevent further currency weakness and capital outflows.
(2) Time for the Jackson Hole Fed Conference
It's that time of year again – Jackson Hole time. Fed Chairman Jerome Powell is scheduled to speak on Friday, Aug. 24, at the annual global central bank conference in Jackson Hole, WY. He will speak on monetary policy in a changing economy at the start of the two-day conference. In the past, Fed chairs have used speeches at the Kansas Fed-sponsored conference to signal future U.S. central bank policy moves.
The Fed has signaled to markets it will hike interest rates in September and possibly December. Against this backdrop, the U.S. central bank is shrinking its balance sheet by allowing maturing securities to roll off without replacing them.
Some analysts and investors say the Fed could mention the balance sheet in its latest minutes, to be released Aug. 22, and that could also be a major focus at Jackson Hole. And what about the waves of Turkey-fueled risk aversion crashing around global markets? Will Powell nod to that or the damage higher U.S. rates and a rising dollar are doing to emerging markets?
(3) Beware the Emerging Market (EM) Bears
The grizzly conditions in emerging markets will remain front and center. Emerging stocks have just entered bear market territory, the Turkish lira and Argentine peso are locked in turmoil, the yuan and Chinese tech stocks are wobbling and the three R's – the South African rand, Russian rouble and Indian rupee – are all flashing a deep shade of crimson.
There are a number of events watch out for next week.
Chinese and U.S. officials meet in Washington, just before new U.S. tariffs on $16 billion of Chinese goods are due to take effect.
Turkey's markets are closed for most of the week for Eid al-Adha, which could make things volatile because the U.S. Treasury has warned Ankara to expect more economic sanctions unless it hands over detained American pastor Andrew Brunson. A Turkish court on Friday rejected an appeal for his release.
There could also be progress in the long-running NAFTA saga that has been hanging over Mexico. U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer expressed hope on Thursday that a breakthrough could be made in the coming days, though his Mexican counterpart Ildefonso Guajardo cautioned flexibility will be needed.
(4) Watch the Safe Haven U.S. Dollar
The dollar's status as the go-to currency in times of market turbulence has been reinforced by the Turkish crisis and fallout. It's risen to its strongest level in over a year, but few analysts are prepared to call the peak just yet.
It's up a blistering 8% since mid-April, and few currencies have been left unscathed: countries with big current account deficits have taken a beating, the offshore yuan had slid to a 19-month low, while the euro, sterling and Australian dollar are all at their weakest levels in more than a year.
The Fed's interest rate hikes and buoyant U.S. economy have boosted the greenback, at the same time inflicting increasing damage on emerging markets. As the Bank for International Settlements said last month: "When the dollar is weak, there tends to be greater appetite for risk, but a stronger dollar often goes hand in hand with the reversal of risk attitudes."
President Trump took to Twitter this week to proclaim that money "is pouring into our cherished DOLLAR like rarely before." There may be more upside ahead.
(5) What Happened to the Euroboom?
The days of #Euroboom seem far behind us, with trade wars, a weakened Angela Merkel and crisis in Italian politics bringing the Eurozone pessimists out of the woodwork in recent months.
What's more, growth appears to have peaked.
On the other hand, the euro's slide to $1.13, its weakest in over a year, will be welcomed in the corridors of power in Eurozone capitals and ECB Towers in Frankfurt. Purchasing managers index data, the most up-to-date snapshot of activity, should tell us whether growth is picking up or not.
ECB watchers will be paying close attention. Signs of resilience in the Eurozone economy will allow the ECB to go ahead with its gradual withdrawal of stimulus. Signs of weakness, especially against a backdrop of severe emerging market volatility, might make them think twice. ECB President Mario Draghi may share his thoughts on this and more at Jackson Hole.
Top Zacks #1 Rank (STRONG BUY) Stocks—
Petroleo Brazileiro S.A: Yes. The consensus says don’t take a chance on Brazil. But the long-term Zacks Rank is A here, and we have share trading at near $11. This is the major state oil company of Brazil. Could it be time to bet on a rebound here?
Gilead Sciences: This is a major biotech stock. The shares price at $73 each. The long-term Zacks VGM score is D, which is not as scary as it may seem, due to the company’s biotech space being so pricey. This may be the time to buy, as the Zacks #1 Rank says the analysts think something is cooking here.
KLA-Tencor: This is a semiconductor equipment – wafer fabricator. If the news is so poor for chips, why is this stock on our #1 list this week? Another time to be contrarian may have arrived for the chip research stocks like this. The long-term Zacks VGM score is a solid B at the moment.
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