Wall Street's roller coaster week continues: March 11, 2020

By CNN Business

Updated 7:45 p.m. ET, March 11, 2020
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8:28 a.m. ET, March 11, 2020

Goldman Sachs thinks the bull market is over

From CNN Business' Anneken Tappe

The anticipated economic fallout from the global coronavirus outbreak has been weighing on markets for weeks. Wall Street is close to a bear market, with major stock indexes having fallen nearly 20% from their February record highs.

It's the end of the bull market, according to Goldman Sachs.

After 11 years, 13% annualized earnings growth and 16% annualized trough-to-peak appreciation, we believe the S&P 500 bull market will soon end," said Goldman Sachs equity strategists.

Business activity is expected to be lower across the board, and Goldman's analysts have slashed their S&P 500 earnings per share forecasts to $157 for 2020, a 5% decline versus 2019. It's the second time this year that the bank lowered its earnings forecast.

The virus outbreak is expected to hurt global supply chains, trade and travel. The energy sector, which was already going to get hit with lower demand, now also has to deal with a price war between Saudi Arabia and Russia that is making matters worse.

But not all is lost. Goldman is expecting a rebound later in 2020 after the coronavirus impact begins to wane, and forecasts the S&P 500 to get back to 3,200 points. That would be a 11% increase from yesterday's close. But until the turnaround, the S&P could fall further.

Earnings growth will rebound in the fourth quarter of the year, the analysts said.

8:03 a.m. ET, March 11, 2020

Pepsi buying energy drink maker Rockstar for $3.85 billion

From CNN Business' Paul R. La Monica

Rock Star brand energy drinks pictured on display in a California grocery store in October 2016.
Rock Star brand energy drinks pictured on display in a California grocery store in October 2016. Credit: Shutterstock

Pepsi (PEP) is gobbling up another specialty beverage company, The soft drink giant is buying the popular energy drink maker Rockstar for $3.85 billion.

The Rockstar brand is a good fit with Pepsi's Mountain Dew beverage, the highly caffeinated soda it owns that it markets to younger drinkers and extreme sports enthusiasts, according to Pepsi CEO Ramon Lagurata.

The deal is the latest in a Pepsi shopping spree. The company announced last month that it was acquiring Chinese snack food company Be & Cheery for $705 million. In the past few years, Pepsi has also bought BFY Brands -- which makes air popped snack PopCorners -- South Africa's Pioneer Foods, Muscle Milk and DIY beverage company SodaStream.

Wall Street loves the diversification. Pepsi shares have outperformed the stock of arch rival Coca-Cola (KO) over the past five years.

7:28 a.m. ET, March 11, 2020

Trump to meet with Wall Street executives on virus

From CNN Business' Julia Horowitz

President Donald Trump and his economic team will meet Wednesday with Wall Street CEOs amid growing concerns about tightening financial conditions.

The details: Trump is expected to meet with executives from JPMorgan Chase, Goldman Sachs, Bank of America and Citi.

The Trump administration will likely ask bankers to support businesses that are hurting because of a pullback in consumer spending, according to two industry sources familiar with bankers’ preparations for the meeting.

Goldman Sachs chief financial officer Stephen Scherr said this week that certain companies, especially in the hospitality and energy sector, are facing funding challenges. He suggested that Goldman has had to step in to help those clients.

The big concern: That lenders may pull back and restrict access to credit, compounding economic woes.

But banks also face pressure on profits due to falling interest rates. The KBW Bank Index has plunged nearly 30% in the past month as the coronavirus pandemic has spread and interest rate expectations have come down.

6:35 a.m. ET, March 11, 2020

Oil prices are flat after bumpy week

Saudi Arabia raised the stakes in its oil production standoff with Russia. 

Saudi Aramco said Wednesday that it received a directive from the Ministry of Energy to boost its oil production capacity to 13 million barrels per day, from 12.3 million.

Brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, fell more than 3% after the announcement. They were last flat at $37.25 per barrel, down more than 45% since early January.

6:29 a.m. ET, March 11, 2020

Bank of England slashes interest rates to record low in coronavirus emergency move

From CNN Business' Julia Horowitz

The Bank of England has cut interest rates by half a percentage point in an emergency move to fight the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic.

In a statement, the central bank said that while the magnitude of the shock from the coronavirus remains "highly uncertain," economic activity is "likely to weaken materially in the United Kingdom over the coming months."

It said that slashing its main interest rate to a record low 0.25% would "help to keep firms in business and people in jobs and help prevent a temporary disruption from causing longer-lasting economic harm."

The Bank of England also noted the hit to financial markets in recent days, with stocks and commodities falling sharply and government bond yields reaching record lows.

Indicators of financial market uncertainty have reached extreme levels," the bank said.

Read more here.

6:27 a.m. ET, March 11, 2020

European markets open higher

Britain's FTSE 100 (UKXopened up 1.7%, boosted by an emergency interest rate cut by the Bank of England.

It's the latest in a series of moves from policymakers to soften the blow to markets and economies. The European Central Bank is expected to announce its own measures for the eurozone economy on Thursday.

Other exchanges are also up:

  • Germany's DAX (DAX) gained 1.3%
  • France's CAC 40 (CAC40rose 1.7%.
  • Italy's main stock index gained 2.4%.
6:25 a.m. ET, March 11, 2020

Asian markets are in a rout

  • Australia's S&P/ASX 200 entered a bear market after falling more than 20% from its recent highs. It closed more than 3% lower.
  • South Korea's Kospi (KOSPIdeclined 2.8%
  • Japan's Nikkei 225 (N225closed down 2.3%
  • Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index (HSI) and China's Shanghai Composite (SHCOMP) were both down a little under 1%