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Monday Morning Business Brief

April 14, 2014, 6:20 AM

Monday Morning Business Brief

Investors are worried about earnings growth in a number of sectors of the economy. That drove the stock market lower Friday. The Nasdaq dropped 54 points, or 1.3 percent, to 3,999. It was only the second time this year the index has closed below the 4,000 mark. The Dow fell 143 points to 16,026 on Friday. The S&P 500 lost 17 points, closing at 1,815. Futures point to a negative start to the week.

  • International stock markets fell today following two days of U.S. declines and forecasts of lower American corporate profits. The declines came after investors drove U.S. markets lower for a second day Friday due to anxiety that earnings growth was faltering. Benchmark U.S. crude oil rose to near $104.50 a barrel. The dollar gained against the euro and the yen.
  • Investors will have two government reports to look at today. The Commerce Department will release retail sales data for March and business inventories for February. Also, Citigroup will be reporting its first quarter financial results before the market opens.
  • This is the week of the income tax deadline -- in fact it's tomorrow night. But there's also some good news. Millions of tax filers can take comfort in the fact that their chances of getting audited are lower than they have been in years. Budget cuts and new responsibilities are straining the Internal Revenue Service.
  • Entrepreneurs and investors say Silicon Valley's fast-growing financial ties with Russia's tech sector are being slowed down by current political tensions between the White House and the Kremlin. In recent years, there's been a flurry of investment, largely sparked in 2010 when then-Russian President Dmitry Medvedev visited the region and met with high-tech leaders.


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