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China rocks the boat

Monday, March 10, 2014 - 02:11

March 10 - Summary: Wall St. joined a global downdraft after Chinese data spark global economic concerns; Boeing falls after new 787 Dreamliner issues; eBay tells invest we can't take on Icahn's board picks. Conway G. Gittens reports.

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Worries that ripples from weak Chinese data will reach U.S. economic shores put Wall Street on the run. The losses, however, were controlled with the market at or near record highs. The market's five-year bull run is being supported by a Federal Reserve that is still nursing the economy back to health, says John Manley of Wells Fargo Advantage Funds. SOUNDBITE: JOHN MANLEY, CHIEF INVESTMENT STRATEGIST, WELLS FARGO ADVANTAGE FUNDS (ENGLISH) SAYING: "The economy is better than it was five years ago. There's no doubt about that. People are in better shape than they were five years ago. Financial corporations are in better shape than they were five years ago, but we haven't reach excesses where the Fed wants to really pull in the reigns yet." Boeing was a drag. Just before the weekend the aerospace giant put out a warning, saying "hairline cracks" were discovered in the wings of 787 Dreamliner jets still on the assembly line. The discovery could delay deliveries but financials won't be hurt, neither will 2014 plane delivery targets. This weekend's mid-flight disappearance of a Malaysian airliner made by Boeing - also seen as a negative for the stock. Monday was investors' first chance to respond to both, sending the stock down by more than one percent. The war of words involving eBay and activist investor Carl Icahn continues. eBay is urging investors to reject nominees to the board made by Icahn, calling his picks unqualified. Shareholders are scheduled to vote at an annual meeting later this spring. Icahn has been vociferous in attacks against eBay - saying the internet company should spin-off payments arm PayPal. Shares of eBay down more than one percent. On the upside: Facebook. UBS raised its price target on the stock to 90 bucks. The research team thinks the leading social network is seeing more ad dollars flow its way. Shares of Facebook reached an all-time high, closing near $72. In Europe, Irish banana company Fyffes - getting snapped up by U.S. banana producer Chiquita. The $526 million deal creates the world's largest banana conglomerate, which will be based in Ireland, avoiding U.S. taxes. As for markets, stocks were mostly negative after the Interfax news agency said armed Russian troops fired automatic rifles in a take-over of a Ukrainian naval post in Crimea.

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China rocks the boat

Monday, March 10, 2014 - 02:11