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North American Morning Briefing: Investor Mood -2-

Cal-Maine Foods Inc. on Tuesday reported that revenue more than doubled and its profit increased eightfold in the third quarter, as prices for eggs rose significantly and even as avian bird flu continued to affect egg production.

Cal-Maine Foods CALM shares rose about 4% after hours, after falling 1.8% in the regular session to close at $54.27, as its results beat Wall Street expectations.


As Interest Rates Rose, Banks Did a Balance-Sheet Switcheroo

As the Federal Reserve's interest-rate hikes sent bond prices plunging last year, some of the country's largest banks used a simple accounting maneuver to help keep billions of dollars of losses from piling up on their books.

They declared that they intended to hold on to large portions of their money-losing bonds until they matured rather than selling them, and they then changed the bonds' accounting labels accordingly. From then on, the bonds would be frozen in time, no matter how far their values fell in the market.


Banking Worries Fuel Gold Price Rally

Banking-sector turmoil and worries about the economy have gold prices hitting $2,000 a troy ounce for the first time in a year.

The most-actively traded gold futures contract has jumped 7.4% to $1,973.50 this month, reaching an intraday high of $2,014.90 last week and on pace for the largest monthly percentage increase since May 2021. Prices hadn't topped $2,000 since Russia's invasion of Ukraine last spring.


BlackRock says the market is wrong on the Fed. Here are the bonds it's recommending now.

The Federal Reserve is going to stop throwing punches, but it's not about to cut interest rates even as signs of fragility in the financial sector emerge, says leading fund manager BlackRock.

In a note from the BlackRock Investment Institute, the fund manager says the Fed, and other central banks, have made clear that banking troubles wouldn't stop them from hiking interest rates.


International stocks outperform, decouple from U.S. equities by 'unusual degree'

International stocks are broadly outperforming this quarter, decoupling from the U.S. to an unusual extent, according to DataTrek Research.

"Non-US stocks have decoupled from domestic equities by a statistically unusual degree over the last 50 days," said Nicholas Colas, co-founder of DataTrek, in a note Tuesday. This together with their outperformance may bode well for flows into international stocks heading into the second quarter, according to the note.


German Consumer Sentiment Set to Improve in April, Helped by Lower Energy Prices

Consumer confidence in Germany is expected to improve again in April, its sixth gain in as many months, prompted by lower energy prices, though momentum in the month weakened as recession fears loom.

Germany's forward-looking consumer-sentiment index forecasts confidence to tick up to minus 29.5 in April from a downwardly revised minus 30.6 in March, the highest level since July 2022, according to data from market-research group GfK published Wednesday.


Australian February Inflation Data Opens Door to Rate Hike Pause

SYDNEY-Australia's inflation pressures cooled in February, opening the door to a pause in the Reserve Bank of Australia's campaign of aggressive interest-rate increases that began almost a year ago.

The monthly consumer-price index rose 6.8% in the year to February, down from 7.4% in January and 8.4% in December, the Australian Bureau of Statistics said Wednesday. Economists had expected an annual CPI increase of 7.1% in February.


Lawmakers Scold Fed Over Silicon Valley Bank Collapse

Senators rebuked the Federal Reserve for failing to prevent the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank despite identifying risks beforehand, while the central bank's top regulator blamed the firm's executives for not fixing its problems.

In an appearance Tuesday before the Senate Banking Committee, Michael Barr, the Fed's vice chairman for banking supervision, defended the actions of the Fed's supervisors and said the central bank had privately raised concerns with SVB before its March 10 collapse and had given the lender poor ratings for managing its risks.


Ukraine Downs Russian Warplane Near Bakhmut

Ukraine said its forces shot down a Russian warplane near Bakhmut while repelling multiple attempts by the Kremlin's forces to seize the eastern city, which has become an important prize in the broader war.

Bakhmut, a small city in Ukraine's eastern Donetsk region, has become a central battleground in Russia's assault on the country, with the fight there taking on increasing symbolic and strategic importance to both sides after more than six months of brutal combat. Ukraine's forces have held out in the city against overwhelming Russian firepower after the Kremlin's forces began targeting the area last summer.


Kevin McCarthy Pushes for Debt-Ceiling Talks as Unity Eludes GOP

WASHINGTON-House Speaker Kevin McCarthy tried to prod President Biden into starting talks over spending cuts as a condition for raising the debt ceiling, just as Republicans are struggling to unite around a blueprint for negotiations ahead of dual deadlines later this year.

The White House released its own budget proposal earlier this month and has said it won't negotiate on spending until Republicans put forward their own plan. Mr. McCarthy has rejected that notion and said in a letter to Mr. Biden that talks should start as soon as possible. While neither budget would have a chance of becoming law, they serve to outline the parties' policy intentions.


Trump Grand Jury Won't Consider Hush-Money Probe Again This Week

The Manhattan grand jury investigating Donald Trump's role in paying hush money to a porn star has concluded its work for the week, according to people familiar with the matter, making the timing of any potential charges against the former president unknown.

The grand jury isn't expected to meet Wednesday, when it has often heard Trump-related evidence, and any work the panel does on Thursday is expected to be on other cases, the people said. It isn't clear whether grand jurors will consider the Trump matter next week, according to the people.


Jamie Dimon to Face Questioning in Lawsuit Over JPMorgan's Epstein Ties

Jamie Dimon will be questioned in a civil lawsuit over JPMorgan Chase & Co.'s relationship with Jeffrey Epstein, people familiar with the matter said.

The U.S. Virgin Islands sued JPMorgan late last year, saying the bank facilitated Esptein's alleged sex trafficking and abuse by allowing him to remain a client and helping him send money to the late financier's victims.


Fire Started in Protest at Mexican Migrant Detention Center Kills Dozens

Thirty-eight migrants were killed and 30 others injured in a fire at a migrant detention facility in the border city of Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, started by occupants protesting their impending deportation, authorities said Tuesday.

A surveillance video showed migrants trapped in locked cells as the fire erupted, while two guards appeared to make no attempt to release the detained men as smoke filled the detention area. The authenticity of the video was confirmed by Interior Minister Adán Augusto López.


Taiwan President's U.S. Trip Touches a Flashpoint in U.S.-China Ties

The U.S. and China have described Taiwan as the most volatile flashpoint in their increasingly fraught bilateral relations.

Now, after months of sparring by Washington and Beijing over the Ukraine war, a suspected surveillance balloon, TikTok and other issues, Taiwan is set to return to the center of great power tensions, with the island's leader traveling to the U.S.


U.S. Stops Sharing Data on Nuclear Forces With Russia

The U.S. has informed Russia that it will no longer exchange key data on its strategic nuclear forces following Moscow's decision to suspend its participation in the New START treaty cutting long-range nuclear arms, U.S. officials said Tuesday.

"This is the first action we have taken within the treaty in response to Russia's suspension," a senior Biden administration official said. "It is our goal to encourage Russia to return to compliance with the treaty."


Too Much U.S. Government Information Is Classified, Report Finds

WASHINGTON-U.S. officials classify information that should either be public or more widely shared within the government, hobbling national defense objectives and jeopardizing congressional oversight of the executive branch, a Washington research organization found in a new report.

The findings, published Tuesday by the Nonproliferation Policy Education Center, stem from a nearly two-year review of the U.S. classification system and are based on interviews with dozens of current and former officials from the Pentagon, intelligence agencies, the State Department and elsewhere, as well as congressional staffers.




Constellation Software 4Q

Dollarama 4Q

Fennec Pharms 4Q

Neo Performance Materials 4Q

VIQ Solutions 4Q

Economic Calendar (ET):

Nothing major scheduled

Stocks to Watch:

Avino Silver & Gold Mines 4Q EPS 1c; 4Q Rev $14.6M; 4Q Adj EPS 3c


Galiano Gold 4Q Gold Production Was 34,090 Ounces; AGM Expected to Produce 100,000 to 120,000 Ounces at AISC1 Guidance of Between $1,900/oz to $1,975/oz in 2023; 4Q Rev $57.8M; 4Q EPS 13c; 4Q Net $83.7M; 4Q Adj Loss/Shr 3c


Goeasy Provides Update on Canada Budget, Announces New Funding Capacity;

Expects to Keep Posting Annual Rise in Adj Diluted EPS, Despite Govt Plan to Lower Max Allowable Rate of Interest to 35%; Govt Rate Cap Plan May Seriously Affect Other Lenders, Reducing Competition and Driving Business to Those With Operating Leverage;

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March 29, 2023 06:13 ET (10:13 GMT)

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