Dec. 27 - Summary: Equities dip as 10-year note tops 3 percent yield and oil tops $100; Twitter grounded by downgrade; Target admits debit card PINs stolen, but says data ''secure''; GM issues major China recall. Conway G. Gittens reports.
Investors ended the week realizing that stock prices were not the only thing going up recently. And that caused Wall Street to vacillate around the unchanged mark for the entire session. But the week still belongs to the bulls with the Dow and Nasdaq posting gains for the holiday-shortened week. Yields on the 10-year note touched above the closely-watched 3 percent mark to a 2-1/2 year high. Home and auto loan rates will go up as well. But analysts say a gradually improving economy should not be harmed as long as rates don't rise violently next year. Energy prices are also up. Crude oil closed above $100 for the first time since October. Oil supplies in the U.S. nose-dived last week in a possible sign of a pick-up in demand for the world's largest energy consumer. Prices are also on the rise due to supply cuts in Africa. Twitter's stock is flying too high and so Macquarie Securities is looking to clip its wings. The research team downgraded the stock, saying it's going up for no clear reason. Shares of Twitter down for the day after nearly tripling from its $26 IPO price. Other Internet related stocks seemed to move in sympathy. Netflix, Amazon and Priceline were all noticeably weaker on the day. An update from Target: scrambled PINs for debit cards were stolen as part of the massive data breach during the holiday shopping season, but the retailer is confident the security codes are "safe and secure." But investors are still not convinced. Shares of Target have not recovered since the breach was revealed last week. General Motors and its partner are pulling 1-1/2 million vehicles off Chinese roads. Safety reasons involving fuel pumps are behind one of the biggest recalls in the world's largest auto market. European investors returned from their long Christmas break by sending the German DAX to a record high.