Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Morning Market Comment - Blood Bath & Beyond

Instead of a Shanghai surprise where they almost melted down again last night, problems closer to home appear to be getting the better of the bulls this morning. Is a trend in the making? Are intrepid shoppers pulling back on purchases of $500 Dyson vacuum cleaners, or 3200 thread count sheets, $400 home espresso machines, or $150 kitchen garbage cans with automatic lids? The housewares retailer Bed Bath and Beyond BBBY issued lowered guidance in the range of Q1 earnings of 36 to 38 cents vs estimates of 39 cents. Same store sales, they say, are likely be only 1.6% vs the 3% to 5% that's the norm at BBBY. BBBY is down more than 6% this morning.

This retailer will also take it on the chin: Cache May same-store sales fall 2 pct; cuts 2nd-qtr view.

For the moment, it appears Wall Street is recognizing that the shut off of the home equity ATM is having some negative repercussions on the all important consumer. S&P futures are down about 4 points. But the question isn't how low the market opens on these weak mornings, but whether it can, with McGeyver like ability, recover by the closing bell. McGeyver was the guy in the 1980's tv series who could put together an aresenal of tricks to get himself out of any sticky situation, even if all that was available was a bottle of draino, ketchup and some matches. Yesterday, the McGeyver like bulls used the soft factory order numbers to recover from the China swoon reasoning that soft factory orders would go into the "we don't have to raise rates" column at the Fed. It will be interesting to see what the bulls use today.

China was McGeyver like last night. At one point Shanghai was down more than 7%, only to finish with a gain of 2.5%. Speculation the Chinese government would step in to stabilize the market led to the turnaround.

Bernanke is upbeat - is that any surprise? Bernanke expects US economy will rebound in months ahead.

This deal is finally done: Private equity firms to acquire Avaya.

Apple has been on a tear. How much higher can it go now that it's already up to $121? Credit Suisse lifted its target to $140 from $120 saying the iPhone will do well because of its technical superiority offseting the negative of its $500 price.

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