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Leigh Baldwin & Co.

112 Albany Street, Cazenovia, NY 13035 | Phone: (315) 655-2964 Toll Free: 1-800-659-8044

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The Week In Review

11/19-11/23/12

November 23, 2012
Equities began today's abbreviated session with a bullish bias. The sentiment was maintained into the close as the S&P 500 reached its high during the first hour of trade, and hovered near that area until the close. The markets were unfazed by headlines from overseas which indicated the Eurozone Summit has been postponed and will likely take place early next year. Today's volume was well below-average and trade was trapped in a narrow range. As a result, the S&P 500 advanced 1.3%. Technology stocks led the broader market. Shares of Apple (AAPL 571.50, +9.80) added 1.7% as the stock attempts to halt its recent slide. Semiconductor manufacturers outperformed and the PHLX Semiconductor index gained 1.8%. Among individual stocks which comprise the index, Taiwan Semiconductor (TSM 16.84, +0.58) advanced 3.6% after Taiwan's finance minister called on the government to begin purchasing individual equities. Looking at other outperformers within the semiconductor average, Advanced Micro Devices (AMD 1.95, +0.08) and Lam Research (LRCX 35.34, +0.84) saw respective gains of 4.3% and 2.4%. Also of note, OCZ Technology (OCZ 1.16, -0.03) slid 2.5% after the company received a Securities and Exchange Commission inquiry and a subpoena requesting certain company documents. The investigation pertains to financial reporting of customer incentive programs among other matters. Elsewhere, Research in Motion (RIMM 11.66, +1.40) surged 13.7% after National Bank Financial raised its estimates for Blackberry 10 sales. In addition, National Financial Bank raised the price target to $15 from $12. Utility stocks continued their recent slide. The space was the only decliner among S&P sectors as settled lower by 0.3%. The biggest relative weakness was observed among electricity providers as Exelon (EXC 28.57, -0.28), Edison International (EIX 43.49, -0.33), and Southern Company (SO 42.03, -0.25) all lost between 0.6% and 1.0%. The extended weakness in utility stocks comes as investors prepare for the possibility of a dividend tax hike. In addition, electricity providers are expected to face tougher regulation after Superstorm Sandy caused considerable damage to east coast infrastructure. Earlier in the week, the investigative panel appointed by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo named Regina Calcaterra as the director. The newly-established panel will investigate utilities' preparation and response to Superstorm Sandy. The Dow Jones Transportation Average advanced 1.1% and railroad stocks saw relative strength. Kansas City Southern (KSU 77.61, +1.28) gained 1.7% and Union Pacific (UNP 121.98, +1.94) advanced 1.6%. There are no economic data points scheduled for a Monday release.

November 22, 2012

Closed for Thanksgiving

November 21, 2012
The S&P 500 endured choppy trade during the first two hours of action. The index followed the early indecision with a run to session highs where it spent the majority of the afternoon. The market received some encouraging news from the Middle East where Israel and Hamas have reached a cease-fire agreement. However, the Eurozone remains a concern into the holiday as the next tranche of Greek aid is yet to be approved. Today's trade was confined to a tight range and volume was well below average. As a result, the S&P 500 ended higher by 0.2%. The technology sector outperformed the broader market and the SPDR Technology Select Sector ETF (XLK 28.39, +0.09) settled higher by 0.3%. Apple (AAPL 561.70, +0.78) has been in focus recently due to the extended weakness observed in the stock during the past two months. Today, the biggest tech component tacked on 0.1% as the shares attempt to establish support in the $550 area. In notable tech earnings, Salesforce.com (CRM 158.66, +12.76) spiked 8.8% after beating on the top and bottom lines. In addition to the quarterly beat, the cloud computing company issued in-line fourth quarter and full-year earnings and revenue guidance. Peer SAP (SAP 75.23, +0.87) added 1.2%. Elsewhere, NCI (NCIT 4.58, +0.24) surged 5.5% after the company was awarded multiple task orders as part of its contract with the U.S. Army. The total value of the orders was reported at $27.1 million. Also of note, Cirrus Logic (CRUS 31.16, +0.82) advanced 2.7% after the company's Board of Directors authorized the repurchase of up to $200 million of the company's common stock. Industrial bellwether Deere (DE 82.83, -3.16) fell 3.7% after reporting mixed results. During the fourth quarter, the machinery manufacturer earned $1.75, which was $0.13 short of the Capital IQ consensus estimate. However, the company's revenue of $9.05 billion represented a 14.5% year-over-year increase, and beat expectations. Deere's outlook was mostly positive as the company expects full-year 2013 revenue above consensus and net income in-line with expectations. The Dow Jones Transportation Average added 0.3%. Railroads saw relative weakness yesterday, but displayed strength today. Kansas City Southern (KSU 76.33, +0.69) and Norfolk Southern (NSC 57.03, +0.12) finished higher by 0.9% and 0.2%, respectively. On the other hand, airlines which outperformed yesterday were among the biggest laggards. JetBlue Airways (JBLU 5.07, +0.05) and Southwest Airlines (LUV 9.24, +0.13) saw respective gains of 1.0% and 1.4%. Today's choppy price action was reflected in the performance of individual sectors. However, utilities opened as the weakest performing group, and remained there for the duration of the session. Electrical companies have been pressured since Hurricane Sandy, and their shares felt the brunt of today's weakness. The SPDR Utilities Select Sector (XLU 34.18, -0.15) slid 0.4%. Among individual electricity producers, Duke Energy (DUK 60.23, -0.55) and NextEra Energy (NEE 67.25, -0.46) both lost near 0.7%. The weekly MBA Mortgage Index pointed to a 2.2% decrease in mortgage applications during the past week. Today's reading followed prior week's increase of 12.6%. The latest weekly initial jobless claims count totaled 410,000, which was lower than the 423,000 that had been expected by the Briefing.com consensus. The tally was below the revised prior week count of 451,000. As for continuing claims, they fell to 3.337 million from 3.367 million. The University of Michigan's final Consumer Sentiment Survey for November fell to 82.7 from the 84.9 that was posted in the preliminary Survey. The Briefing.com consensus expected the reading to slip to 84.5.Lastly, leading indicators for October increased by 0.2%, which was in-line with the forecast. Today's reading followed prior month's increase of 0.6%.

November 20, 2012
Equities began today's session amid optimism regarding a potential fiscal cliff compromise. In addition, headlines out of Europe indicated the next tranche of Greek aid will likely come through before December 5. The positive sentiment lifted the S&P 500 to its session highs during the opening minutes. The benchmark average maintained these levels throughout the day before seeing a final round of buying which ran it to session highs into the close. Meanwhile, the Nasdaq outperformed with a gain of 2.2%. The materials sector led the market higher. Within the space, two steel producers saw gains despite receiving downgrades. AK Steel (AKS 3.66, +0.09) rose by 2.5% following Longbow's downgrade to 'neutral' from 'buy.' Meanwhile, Mechel Steel (MTL 6.09, +0.25) advanced 4.3% after Morgan Stanley downgraded the company to 'equal-weight' from 'overweight. After seeing considerable pressure during recent market weakness, tech stocks rebounded broadly. The PowerShares QQQ ETF (QQQ 63.78, +1.48) settled higher by 2.4%, after losing more than 10% since September 21. Among technology bellwethers, Apple (AAPL 565.73, +38.05) spiked 7.2% in an attempt to establish support and put a stop to its recent softness. Also of note, Cisco Systems (CSCO 18.30, +0.31) added 1.7% after announcing its intent to acquire Meraki, a start-up specializing in cloud-networking, for approximately $1.2 billion. Due to the nature of their business, financials are expected to be highly sensitive to any hints of progress in budget discussions. Today, the SPDR Financial Select Sector ETF (XLF 15.56, +0.28) ended higher by 1.9%. Bank of America (BAC 9.49, +0.37) was the top performer among the majors. The bank shares gained 4.1% after Stifel Nicolaus upgraded the stock to 'buy' from 'hold' with an $11 price target. Elsewhere, Citigroup (C 36.10, +1.12) added 3.2% after earlier reports indicated the company will eliminate about 300 sales and trading jobs. Separately, Citigroup has agreed to pay $360 million over a Lehman Brothers dispute. The exuberance was apparent in European financials as well. Barclays (BCS 15.85, +0.87) advanced 5.8% after Goldman upgraded the stock to 'buy' from 'neutral.' Meanwhile, Deutsche Bank (DB 43.25, +1.68) and Credit Suisse (CS 22.92, +0.98) saw respective gains of 4.0% and 4.5%. This morning, October existing home sales were reported at 4.79 million. The number was an improvement from the prior month, and it beat expectations. In addition, the November NAHB Housing Market Index came in at 46, which was also better-than-expected. The SPDR S&P Homebuilders ETF (XHB 25.39, +0.50) rose by 2.0% as the strong data combined with a broad-market rally translated into outperformance by builders. PulteGroup (PHM 16.01, +0.33), and Lennar (LEN 36.81, +0.68) gained 1.4% and 1.9%, respectively. Additionally, Lowe's (LOW 33.96, +1.98) surged 6.2% after the home improvement store operator reported third quarter earnings of $0.40 on $12.07 billion in revenue. Both figures were ahead of the Capital IQ consensus estimate, and were followed by in-line full-year earnings guidance.

November, 19 2012
Equities began today's session amid optimism regarding a potential fiscal cliff compromise. In addition, headlines out of Europe indicated the next tranche of Greek aid will likely come through before December 5. The positive sentiment lifted the S&P 500 to its session highs during the opening minutes. The benchmark average maintained these levels throughout the day before seeing a final round of buying which ran it to session highs into the close. Meanwhile, the Nasdaq outperformed with a gain of 2.2%. The materials sector led the market higher. Within the space, two steel producers saw gains despite receiving downgrades. AK Steel (AKS 3.66, +0.09) rose by 2.5% following Longbow's downgrade to 'neutral' from 'buy.' Meanwhile, Mechel Steel (MTL 6.09, +0.25) advanced 4.3% after Morgan Stanley downgraded the company to 'equal-weight' from 'overweight. After seeing considerable pressure during recent market weakness, tech stocks rebounded broadly. The PowerShares QQQ ETF (QQQ 63.78, +1.48) settled higher by 2.4%, after losing more than 10% since September 21. Among technology bellwethers, Apple (AAPL 565.73, +38.05) spiked 7.2% in an attempt to establish support and put a stop to its recent softness. Also of note, Cisco Systems (CSCO 18.30, +0.31) added 1.7% after announcing its intent to acquire Meraki, a start-up specializing in cloud-networking, for approximately $1.2 billion. Due to the nature of their business, financials are expected to be highly sensitive to any hints of progress in budget discussions. Today, the SPDR Financial Select Sector ETF (XLF 15.56, +0.28) ended higher by 1.9%. Bank of America (BAC 9.49, +0.37) was the top performer among the majors. The bank shares gained 4.1% after Stifel Nicolaus upgraded the stock to 'buy' from 'hold' with an $11 price target. Elsewhere, Citigroup (C 36.10, +1.12) added 3.2% after earlier reports indicated the company will eliminate about 300 sales and trading jobs. Separately, Citigroup has agreed to pay $360 million over a Lehman Brothers dispute. The exuberance was apparent in European financials as well. Barclays (BCS 15.85, +0.87) advanced 5.8% after Goldman upgraded the stock to 'buy' from 'neutral.' Meanwhile, Deutsche Bank (DB 43.25, +1.68) and Credit Suisse (CS 22.92, +0.98) saw respective gains of 4.0% and 4.5%. This morning, October existing home sales were reported at 4.79 million. The number was an improvement from the prior month, and it beat expectations. In addition, the November NAHB Housing Market Index came in at 46, which was also better-than-expected. The SPDR S&P Homebuilders ETF (XHB 25.39, +0.50) rose by 2.0% as the strong data combined with a broad-market rally translated into outperformance by builders. PulteGroup (PHM 16.01, +0.33), and Lennar (LEN 36.81, +0.68) gained 1.4% and 1.9%, respectively. Additionally, Lowe's (LOW 33.96, +1.98) surged 6.2% after the home improvement store operator reported third quarter earnings of $0.40 on $12.07 billion in revenue. Both figures were ahead of the Capital IQ consensus estimate, and were followed by in-line full-year earnings guidance.