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Tuesday Morning Business Brief

April 8, 2014, 5:32 AM

Tuesday Morning Business Brief

Investors are hoping today will be the end of the market's longest losing streak in two months. Yesterday wrapped up three straight days of losses, with the S&P 500 falling 20.05 points, or 1.1 percent, to 1,845.04. The Dow Jones industrial average dropped 166.84 points, or 1.02 percent, to 16,245.87. The Nasdaq composite had the biggest decline, falling 47.97 points, or 1.2 percent, to 4,079.75. Futures point to opening gains.

  • International stock markets were mixed today after Japan's central bank refrained from expanding its stimulus and declines in tech stocks weighed on prices. Benchmark crude oil rose above $101 a barrel. The dollar fell againstg the yen and was steady against the euro.
  • The corporate earnings season gets underway after the market closes today. Alcoa leads off with its most recent quarterly financial results. The aluminum maker lost $2.3 billion in the fourth quarter of last year, but that was mostly because it wrote down the value of aluminum-smelting operations. As for government data, the Labor Department releases its job openings and labor turnover survey.
  • Declining smartphone prices hit profit at Samsung Electronics Co. for a second straight quarter. The consumer technology heavyweight says it expects operating income of about 8.4 trillion won ($8 billion) for the January-March quarter, down 4 percent from a year earlier. Samsung will release full quarterly results later this month.
  • Japan's central bank has refrained from expanding its ultra-loose monetary policy despite a sales tax hike, saying the economy is recovering moderately. The Bank of Japan's policy statement today is the first since an April 1 increase in the sales tax, to 8 percent from 5 percent, that is expected to stall economic growth in coming months as consumers adjust to higher costs. The bank's decision was expected.

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