Saturday, July 19, 2008

US stocks end six-week losing streak despite gloomy predictions

US stocks defied a week of gloomy predictions and controversial financial decisions by US officials, bouncing back by Friday after a slump Monday and Tuesday.
For Friday, better-than-estimated results from Citigroup Inc, JPMorgan Chase & Co and Wells Fargo & Co relieved worries that they would extend their yearlong slump, Bloomberg financial news reported.
US banking giant Citigroup Inc reported a loss of $2.5 billion in the second quarter amid credit losses and write downs in the troubled financial market.
JPMorgan Chase reported profits in the second quarter of $2 billion, down 53 percent from the same 2007 period but better than analysts had expected.
The International Monetary Fund was more upbeat this week in its world economic outlook, saying the United States had stepped back from the brink of the recession that the crisis lending agency had anticipated in April.
The market slumped steeply Monday and Tuesday after US officials announced a possible bailout of two publicly chartered mortgage firms - Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac - which carry about half of all US mortgages.
The blue-chip Dow Jones index gained 3.6 percent for the week.
Friday, the Dow industrials picked up 49.91 points, or 0.44 per cent, to 11,496.57. The broader Standard & Poor's 500 Index earned 0.36 points, or 0.03 percent, to 1,260.68. The technology-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index fell 29.52 points, or 1.28 percent, to 2,282.78.
The dollar rose to 63.1 euro cents from 63.03 euro cents on Thursday, and bumped up to 106.97 Japanese yen from 106.25 Japanese yen.

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