After a volatile trading session on Monday and spending much of the session in negative territory, U.S. stocks rallied at the close to end with solid gains. This came after data showed that U.S. manufacturing activity expanded at the slowest rate in eleven months in January. In their report, the Institute for Supply Management said its index of purchasing managers fell from a reading of 55.5 in December to 53.5 in January. Analysts were expecting the manufacturing PMI to decline to 54.5 last month. Meanwhile, the Commerce Department also reported that personal spending fell 0.3 percent in December, missing expectations for only a 0.2% decline. In November, personal spending rose 0.5 percent. The report also showed that personal income advanced 0.3 percent in December. At the close of U.S. trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) ended the day up 1.1%, or 196 points, at 17,361.04 with 29 out of 30 names ending with gains. Also, the S&P 500 index rose 1.3%, or 25.86 points, to 2,020.86, with all 10 main sectors recording gains. Following the upward trend was the Nasdaq Composite index (COMP) which rose 0.9%, or 41.45 points, to 4,676.69. The tech-heavy index’s heaviest-weighted component Apple Inc. (AAPL) gained 1.3 percent.
On Monday, the euro (EUR) traded higher against the U.S. dollar (USD) moving to session highs. This came after data showed that U.S. manufacturing activity had expanded at its slowest rate in January over the last eleven months. As a result, the greenback slid and the EUR/USD traded at 1.1358, up 0.63% after hitting highs of 1.1362. Also supporting the EUR are hopes that the newly elected Greek government will be successful in reaching a compromise with its international creditors on the terms of its bailout. Data released on Monday showed that the final manufacturing PMI in the eurozone rose from 50.6 in December to 51.0 in January. Declines were seen in Greece, Italy and France while Germany also showed a slowdown from last month stoking concerns regarding recovery. In other currency news, the USD/JPY trade at 117.22, down 0.23% while USD/CHF advanced 0.71 percent to trade at 0.9265. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was at 94.70, down 0.37 percent.
After the market closes on Thursday, LinkedIn Corp. (LNKD, -0.08%) will report its fourth-quarter earnings. According to analysts, we should expect to see growth in the online network for professionals as the company capitalizes on its marketing business and regularly adds users. LinkedIn makes their money from three dominant segments which include premium subscriptions to their site, advertisements as well as talent solutions which enable companies and recruiters to connect. In terms of revenue, LinkedIn is expected to show average earnings of 53 cents per share. This is up from 39 cents a year ago. Meanwhile, the company is also expected to report sales of $617.5 million for the quarter, up from $447.2 million a year ago. Marketing is expected to generate $131.8 million in sales while talent solutions are expected to bring in $366.2 million. Over the last 3 months, the shares of LinkedIn have declined 3 percent and today, their shares are trading at $224.57 each.
In Asian trading on Tuesday, crude oil prices rebounded. This comes as investors turn their attention to the report by the American Petroleum Institute today which will provide estimates of gasoline, crude and distillate stocks. On Wednesday, the U.S. Department of Energy will release their report. Crude oil for March delivery traded at $50.29 a barrel, up 1.04%, on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Overnight on Monday, oil futures were negatively impacted after data showed that the manufacturing activity slowed in the U.S. in January, marking the slowest pace in eleven months. Meanwhile, Brent oil for delivery in March dropped 0.16%, or 9 cents to trade at $52.91 a barrel on Monday on the ICE Futures Exchange in London.