The Standard & Poor's 500 Index almost erased a decline of more than 1 percent as oil surged after the U.S. cut output estimates and OPEC signaled it's ready to achieve 'fair prices.' The U.S. equities gauge remains poised for the biggest monthly slide in more than three years, amid the rout in global risk assets sparked by China's shock currency devaluation on Aug. 11. Chinese stocks capped their worst selloff since 2008, while investors sought the safety of the yen.
"The markets are still digesting the China news and it seems that the uncertainty from China's rollercoaster is not over yet," said Guillermo Hernandez Sampere, who helps manage the equivalent of $167 million as head of trading at MPPM EK in Eppstein, Germany. "Any panic created out of this high volatility keeps investors out of the market. There's still no clear message" on when the Fed will raise rates, he said.
The S&P 500 dropped 0.5 percent at 1:24 p.m. in New York, and the MSCI All-Country World Index slid 0.4 percent, poised for the biggest monthly drop since May 2012. The yield on 10- year Treasury notes was little changed near 2.18 percent. U.S. crude jumped 6 percent, while the yen strengthened for the first time in five days
The rout in global equities this month has erased more than $5 trillion from the value of shares in August as Chinese policy makers are trying to bolster the market amid growing concern that its economy may be in worse shape than analysts had estimated.
Trading in U.S. equities has been volatile, with the S&P 500 last week alone plunging the most since 2011 to enter a correction, only to rally more than 6 percent over two days for its best back-to-back gains since the beginning of the bull market in 2009.
The gauge tumbled out of the gates Monday, sliding as much as 1.2 percent in early trading before cutting the drop to 0.1 percent after oil rallied. The Chicago Board Options Exchange Volatility Index rose 3.7 percent, putting its monthly surge past 120 percent, the most since data began in 1990.
"People are happy to tiptoe this week," Steve Bombardiere, an equity trader at Conifer Securities LLC in New York, said by phone. "There's so much emotion right now and in this environment you can come in any morning and have something out of Europe or Asia crossing us and that's what causes us to move. True there were a lot of people who wanted to buy a correction but after last week they paused and are thinking about how long it is going to last."
While Treasuries fluctuated Monday, the yield on two-year Treasury notes headed for a fifth month of gains as Fed Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer kept alive speculation that interest rates will increase next month. The last time they advanced for that long was in 2006, which was also the last time the Fed increased rates.
Bets on a September increase climbed after Fischer said over the weekend there is "good reason" to believe inflation will accelerate and that the Fed should not wait until it hits its inflation goal to act. Investor attention will focus this week on the government's August jobs report, due Friday, as the last major data point before the Fed's meeting on Sept. 16-17.
China's stocks capped the biggest two-month slide since 2008 as bearish bets in the options market climbed and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. cut its forecast for Chinese growth. The Shanghai Composite Index sank 0.8 percent, taking its loss in August to 12 percent after a 14 percent drop in July. Hong Kong's Hang Seng China Enterprises Index also lost 12 percent in the month.
Stocks fell even as people familiar with the matter said China's securities regulator asked brokerages to step up their support for share prices by contributing 100 billion yuan ($15.7 billion) to the nation's market rescue fund and increasing stock buybacks.
The cost of options contracts betting on declines in the China 50 exchange-traded fund has surged to the highest level versus bullish ones since they started trading in Shanghai six months ago.
The yen rose against all of its 16 major peers Monday, with the biggest gains coming versus Taiwan's dollar and South Korea's won. It appreciated 0.4 percent to 121.27 per dollar, while the euro added 0.3 percent to $1.1221. The Aussie weakened 0.6 percent, approaching a six-year low.
The euro area's inflation rate held steady in August, with consumer prices rising an annual 0.2 percent. While that's more than the median analyst forecast for a 0.1 percent increase, it's less than the European Central Bank's goal of just under 2 percent. The ECB is set to give a policy decision on Thursday.
West Texas Intermediate crude surged to $47.84 a barrel. Oil fell below $40 a barrel this month, the lowest since February 2009, on concern slowing demand in the U.S. and China will leave the global market oversupplied.
The Energy Information Administration on Monday trimmed its U.S. production forecast by as much as 130,000 barrels a day for the first five months of the year as it switches to a new survey, the agency said on its website.]]>
The company, a commercial stage medical device company focused on minimally invasive orthopedic fracture repair, said the patient was treated by Dr. Richard Terek.
"IlluminOss' technology promises to fulfill an important clinical need for patients with metastatic bone disease," Terek, an attending orthopedic surgeon at The Miriam and Rhode Island hospitals and chief of orthopaedic surgery at the Providence VA Medical Center, said in a statement.
"In cases of metastatic carcinoma the cancer often destroys so much of the bone that it is difficult to achieve stabilization with a conventional rod. IlluminOss offers a less invasive approach designed to make more effective implants possible. I'm very satisfied with the results in this case to date and look forward to offering this treatment option to more patients who qualify," Terek said.
The IlluminOss System has been used in the treatment of more than 1,000 patients in Europe, where it is commercially available and has been in use since 2010. It allows surgeons to create a first-of-its-kind patient-conforming implant that provides almost instant internal support of bones affected by cancer.
Fractures are repaired utilizing a light-curable polymer, contained within a balloon catheter, the company said.
The company said benefits of the system often include smaller incisions, shorter procedure times and a quicker post-procedure patient mobility, as well as shorter hospital stays and lower complication rates.
"We've already seen many successful results in the treatment of patients around the world but, as a Rhode Island-based company, there is something particularly gratifying to us personally about treating our first patient here," Robert Rabiner, president of IlluminOss Medical, said. "It's been a pleasure to work with Dr. Terek and his team and we commend Rhode Island Hospital on the first-rate infrastructure and support staff it has in place to participate in trials and offer cutting-edge medical advancements to its patients."
IlluminOss is funded by Foundation Medical Partners, New Leaf Venture Partners, Tekla Capital Management, Life Sciences Partners, SR One, Longwood Fund, Excel Venture Management, Pappas Ventures, Mieza Capital and the Slater Technology Fund.
"IlluminOss is well positioned to have a revolutionary impact on the orthopedic device space and is a true testament to Rhode Island's innovation economy," Richard Horan, managing director at the Slater Technology Fund, said. "IlluminOss has grown its staff, increased its facilities and is well on its way toward seeking approval from the FDA to offer its technology commercially in the U.S. It's a real Rhode Island success story and certainly a company to watch."
IlluminOss is currently enrolling patients at other U.S. surgical sites in the Lightfix clinical trial.
For information about this trial, visit www.ClinicalTrials.gov.]]>
PROVIDENCE - The R.I. Department of Transportation has completed an accelerated round of inspections of 230 bridges deemed structurally deficient by federal standards.
The inspections resulted in the emergency closure and repair of the Park Avenue Bridge in Cranston, temporary lane closures and an ongoing weight restriction for the Mineral Spring Avenue Bridge in Pawtucket, repairs to the Pawtucket Avenue Bridge in East Providence, and some two dozen minor bridge repairs statewide, according to a state news release.
Inspections began in May. The last bridge was inspected Aug. 14, according to the state DOT.
According to the 2014 Federal Highway Administration update, one out of five bridges in Rhode Island are considered structurally deficient, requiring monitoring and inspection at least every two years. On taking office this year, state DOT director Peter Alviti Jr. ordered a stepped-up round of additional inspections for all of the structurally deficient spans tracked by the federal government.
Among the findings:
Twenty-eight bridges had inspections that revealed "critical findings," and required corrective actions. Most of these involved removal of loose concrete from bridge components.
The Pawtucket Avenue Bridge in East Providence required installation of timber shoring beneath the structure.
Inspection of the Mineral Spring Avenue Bridge in Pawtucket revealed deterioration of the stone supports that comprise the arch of the bridge, and required a temporary, 18-ton weight restriction and narrowed lanes until the work is complete.
Inspection of the Miantonomi Bridge in Richmond found cracks in the plates that cover the floor beams, requiring ongoing emergency repairs.
The Lafayette Railroad Bridge in North Kingstown has severe deterioration of the bearing areas over the structure's exterior beam pedestals. The state has restricted travel on the shoulders of the bridge to keep vehicles off those portions.]]>
He said that the agency was tasked with creating a unifying message, voice, look and feel that could be tailored to support each of the university's four campuses, in order to drive awareness and better communicate the value of a Johnson & Wales University education.
Forge created a new commercial, "Time Waits for No One," which is now live on networks in the New England, North Miami, Denver and Charlotte, N.C., markets, where it has campuses.
It can be seen HERE.]]>
The specific terms of the transaction have not been disclosed.
"I want to thank our employees who have transitioned to Cartamundi for their hard work and dedication to ensure a smooth and successful transition," Duncan Billing, executive vice president, chief global operations and business development officer for Hasbro Inc., said in a statement. "We look forward to continuing to work with Cartamundi and this talented workforce - albeit in a different capacity - as we continue to manufacture Hasbro's ever-popular board games at both these sites."
The company last month signed a letter of intent to sell the two manufacturing plants to the Cartamundi Group in Belgium.]]>
"Falling gas prices spell good news for Labor Day travelers, who will benefit from the lowest end-of-summer prices at the pump in a decade, and are paying more than a dollar less for regular unleaded fuel than they were a year ago at this time," Lloyd Albert, senior vice president of public and government affairs for AAA Northeast, said in a statement.
AAA Northeast's Aug. 31 survey of prices found self-serve, regular unleaded gasoline averaging $2.39 per gallon in Rhode Island, a decrease of 9 cents from last week. Locally, prices are 29 cents lower than a month ago, and 9 cents less than the national average for regular unleaded of $2.48. A year ago, the Ocean State's average price was $3.53.
Prices in Rhode Island range from $2.19 to $2.63, with midgrade unleaded averaging $2.72; premium unleaded, $2.88; and diesel, $2.67.
In Massachusetts, self-serve, regular unleaded gasoline is averaging $2.35 per gallon. Locally, prices are 24 cents less than a month ago, and are 13 cents less than the national average. A year ago, the Massachusetts average price was $3.45.
Prices range from $2.17 to $2.89 in the Bay State. Other grades of gasoline cost as follows: midgrade unleaded, $2.65; premium unleaded, $2.85; and diesel, $2.69.
AAA offered the following fuel-saving tip: Service a vehicle immediately if the emissions malfunction indicator or "check engine" light comes on.]]>
MANHATTAN - A ruling on Tom Brady's court battle with the National Football League will come this week, according to the judge overseeing the dueling lawsuits.
U.S. District Judge Richard Berman said the two sides failed to reach a settlement that would have taken the decision out of his hands. He said a ruling could come as early as Tuesday or Wednesday on whether to uphold Brady's four-game suspension related to the New England Patriots' use of underinflated footballs in last season's playoffs.
Both sides had asked for a decision by Friday as the Patriots open the NFL season on Sept. 10 against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Berman's ruling this week likely won't mean it's the end of the case. Both sides will have the option to appeal, though a decision in the NFL's favor would mean that Brady would have to get an injunction in order to play in the Patriots' first four games of the year.
Berman ordered Brady and Goodell to appear in court in person Monday for a third time in a last-ditch effort to convince them to settle the case. The talks had new participants, including New York Giants owner John Mara, and two NFL Players Association executives - former NFL kicker Jay Feely and Ira Fishman.
Berman said he had "no questions" about either side's dedication and willingness to reach an agreement.
"Sometimes it doesn't happen, and this is one of those times," Berman said.
NFL officials, including Goodell and their lawyers, declined to comment as they left the lower Manhattan courthouse. Feely, an NFLPA executive committee vice president, was the only person who spoke from Brady's side.
"We've tried our best to reach a settlement," Feely said after court. "For us it reinforces the desire and the need for an independent arbitrator in these matters of personal conduct."
Berman will have to choose whether to defer to the league's disciplinary process or agree with Brady that NFL officials went outside the rules set by the league's collective bargaining agreement with its players. He has no authority to partially reduce the suspension, only to vacate or confirm it.
Brady was suspended after an outside investigation determined he probably knew team employees had deflated game balls below the minimum pressure required by league rules before last season's conference championship game, which the Patriots won 45-7 against the Indianapolis Colts. The quarterback denies wrongdoing.
From the start, Berman has tried to convince Brady and Goodell to resolve their differences out of court. The two men met with the judge for almost seven hours on Aug. 13 to discuss a settlement. Their lawyers have also met with Berman for confidential settlement talks.
Berman, in urging the two sides to end their fight with a settlement, had noted that it takes two years on average to resolve a civil lawsuit through appeals.]]>
The only major drawback is high car insurance costs, the consumer financial services company said. Idaho was ranked the best state for drivers and Louisiana, the worst.
Bankrate.com looked at the costs of gasoline, insurance and repairs, as well as statistics on fatal crashes and car thefts, to come up with its results. And, it also studied commuting time. It said it wanted to rate the overall experience for motorists in each state.
For example, Rhode Island drivers have an average commute of 23.6 minutes each way, annual gas costs hover around $800, and car repairs average approximately $390 per job. The number of fatal crashes per 100,000 miles driven number was 0.82, according to Bankrate.com. Insurance costs (representing a five-year average) are $1,142.47.
In comparison, Idaho has a shorter commute (19 minutes each way), cheaper insurance at $656 and less expensive gasoline at $733. Car thefts were fewer at 95 per 100,000 people, but fatal crashes were higher at 1.34.
Louisiana's commute time, insurance, gas and repair costs all were higher than in Rhode Island, at 24.7 minutes each way; $1,279; $1,017; and $426, respectively. Fatal crashes also were among the highest in the nation at 1.51 per 100,000 miles driven.
The national average for commuting time was 24.4 minutes each way, with insurance costs at $910, gasoline expenses at $949, repair costs at $390, car thefts at 220 per 100,000 people and fatal accidents at 1.11 per 100,000 miles driven.
Bankrate said it gathered statistics from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, FBI, CarMD, Oil Price Information Service, U.S. Department of Transportation, National Association of Insurance Commissioners and U.S. Census Bureau for the study.]]>
A reading of 100 is equal to the state's economic activity in 2000.
Produced jointly by Providence Business News and e-forecasing.com, the indicator rose 0.4 percent in July, following an increase of 0.5 percent in June.
The composite of state leading indicators saw five of its nine components experience a positive contribution in July. Besides unemployment claims and building permits, interest rate spread, national orders index and state employment barometer also had positive contributions.
Four components with a negative contribution to the indicator in July were weekly hours in manufacturing, exports of manufactures, regional consumer expectations and national stock prices.
Looking at its six-month growth rate, the leading indicator climbed 2.6 percent in July, after increasing 2.3 percent in June. That compares with a long-term annual growth rate of 1.8 percent, the same as the annual growth rate of the state's overall economic activity, e-forecasting.com said.]]>
E-mini futures on the Standard & Poor's 500 Index expiring in September lost 0.8 percent to 1,974.5 as of 7:47 a.m. in New York. Contracts on the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 130 points, or 0.8 percent, and those on the Nasdaq 100 Index slid 0.6 percent.
"Financial markets are vulnerable," said Stewart Richardson, chief investment officer at RMG Wealth Management in London. "With economic conditions not improving, and in our view probably deteriorating next year, the volatility and stress seen in the last two weeks will happen again, and likely even be worse."
The S&P 500 has lost 5.5 percent this month, the most since May 2012, as China's currency devaluation spurred concern over global growth, erasing more than $5.3 trillion in equity market values worldwide. The uncertainty sent the Chicago Board Options Exchange Volatility Index up a record 115 percent in August.
More than $2 trillion of share value was erased from U.S. markets between the end of July and the lowest levels of last week, a sum equal to roughly two years of S&P 500 earnings, data compiled by Bloomberg show.
Despite the rout, remarks by Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer suggested the central bank hasn't ruled out lifting interest rates when the Federal Open Market Committee gathers Sept. 16-17. Bets on a September Federal Reserve liftoff climbed after he said there is "good reason" to believe inflation will accelerate.
Netflix Inc. dropped 1.9 percent in early New York trading after saying it won't renew its contract with cable network Epix. Phillips 66 rose 2.1 percent after Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc. disclosed a $4.5 billion stake in the Houston-based oil refiner.]]>