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Preview / July 5 - 11

Wall Street Traders Expect Quiet Week

July 05, 2004|From Reuters

All quiet on the trading desk.

With U.S. markets closed today for the Fourth of July observance and a light financial calendar, Wall Street will be sparsely populated this week and stocks are expected to stay flat.

Rebounding oil prices probably will weigh on the market, which has stumbled since Wednesday's interest rate increase by the Federal Reserve.

The effect of Friday's much-weaker-than-expected June jobs report also may carry over into this week, although some experts downplayed the data's effect.

The Labor Department said a net 112,000 jobs were created in June -- far fewer than the 250,000 that Wall Street had anticipated. But the poor numbers probably will not affect stocks after the holiday, said Lincoln Anderson, chief investment officer at LPL Financial Services.

"It's going to be a slow, quiet week," he said.

The holiday comes after the Federal Reserve's much anticipated move to raise its overnight bank loan rate to 1.25% from 1%, as well as a slew of economic data.

Market watchers say the next noteworthy economic data will come out Wednesday, when the Institute for Supply Management releases its June non-manufacturing index, which tracks activity in the service sector.

The ISM non-manufacturing index is expected to post another reading above 60, which together with the strength in the manufacturing index points to an above-trend growth rate in the second quarter, according to Commerzbanc Securities.

Other than that, and a handful of early corporate earnings, this week's financial schedule looks anemic.

"Don't be surprised if the market looks for reasons to rally but doesn't find them," predicted Weston Boone, vice president of listed trading at Legg Mason Wood Walker.

One drag on the market may come from rising oil prices, which are climbing back toward $40 a barrel.

Although the second-quarter earnings schedule is light until July 12, some heavy hitters are scheduled to report this week. Alcoa Inc., the world's largest aluminum producer, will report earnings Wednesday, along with Internet search giant Yahoo Inc. Conglomerate General Electric Co. will release second-quarter results Friday.

From Reuters

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