Market Watch: New Month -More Problems for China


Investors are no doubt thrilled that the month of January is over, thanks to substantial markets losses on Wall Street.  In the opening month of 2016 the Dow dropped -5.50% , the Nasdaq fell -7.86% last month (its worse January since 2008) and the S&P 500 fell -5.07% for the first month of 2016-The worst month since August 2015 for the S&P and its worst January since 2009. U.S. crude oil futures settled down $2, or 5.95 percent, at $31.62 a barrel.

However the first day of February was a microcosm of the entire month of January with continued volatility, marked by more declines in oil prices and additional sluggish economic data from China. A new survey says Chinese manufacturing fell in January to its lowest in more than three years. It’s the latest sign of weakness for the world’s No. 2 economy after it posted its slowest annual growth in a quarter century. Also: An official survey of factory purchasing managers released Monday fell to 49.4 last month. The latest reading is lower than December’s 49.7 on a 100-point scale on which numbers below 50 indicate contraction.

Art CashinUBS’ Director of Floor Operations at the New York Stock Exchange said Monday that-

“Monetary policy in the U.S. will be tighter even if the Federal Reserve does not raise interest rates this year. I don’t think the Fed tightens anymore, but I think the other central banks are, in effect, tightening for them by bringing their rates down and raising the contrast with the U.S. rates, and therefore the U.S. dollar.”

See more of Art Cashin’s comments on CNBC below.

There was also late word at Monday’s closing bell that Google has surpassed Apple as most valuable company in the world. Google’s parent company- Alphabet, now has a worth of about $570 billion, passing Apple’s current market cap of $535 billion.

Here are the final numbers from Monday, 2/1/16 on Wall Street.

Dow Jones Industrial Average: 16,449.18  (-17.12 / -0.10%)

NASDAQ: 4,620.37  (+6.41 / +0.14%)

S&P 500: 1,939.38  (-0.86 / -0.04%)