European banks are notably weak, and several large U.S. banks like Citi and Bank of America are down 10 percent pre-open.
Gold stocks are again trading up 2 to 5 percent.
Lowe's and JC Penney continue the trend among retailers, of providing guidance below the already-lowered estimates of analysts.
1) Lowe's earning were roughly in line with expectations, revenues were a tad light. Comp store sales were down 9.9 percent. Guidance for the first quarter of $0.23 to $0.27 is below Street expectations of $0.32. Full year is $1.04-$1.20, below Street estimate of $1.27, with sales estimated to be down 10 to 13 percent.
2) JC Penney reported earnings of $0.94 on continuing operations vs $0.92 consensus. First quarter guidance of a loss of $0.20 to $0.30 is higher than the Street estimate of a loss of $0.19; sales guidance was also poor.
3) This dollar is killing us: generic drug maker Mylan reported earnings above expectations, reaffirmed its 2009 and 2010 earnings, but the strong dollar hurt them. Specifically: sales were up 4 percent, but excluding the effect of the stronger dollar sales would have been up 10 percent.
4) Nibbling at the reflation trade: I noted yesterday that Barclay's upgraded a number of oil service names, under the theory that they are approaching bottoms. Today JP Morgan recommends going long materials and upgrades the sector to neutral from underweight.
Questions? Comments? firstname.lastname@example.org