Jeff Cox, CNBC.com’s Posts

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Jack Ma, founder of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.

There are any number of reasons to find Alibaba alluring: a global footprint, scads of cash and ownership that has its eyes focused firmly on future growth. That doesn’t mean, though, that the glittery initial public offering, which prices Thursday evening, is all gold. Indeed, there are at least three potential drawbacks investors should consider …

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A trader works on the floor of the NYSE as Fed Chair Janet Yellen speaks on television during a June news conference.

The Federal Reserve remained on its easy-money course Wednesday, allaying market fears that it might start raising interest rates sooner than expected. In a statement released following its two-day meeting, the U.S. central bank left largely intact key provisions, despite expectations in some quarters that it would indicate a tightening bias. The Fed’s Open Market …

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Jack Ma, founder of Alibaba Group

Alibaba’s blockbuster debut as a publicly traded stock has been everywhere leading up to Thursday’s rollout. One place it won’t be, though, is in a lot of investor portfolios. That’s because the e-commerce giant won’t be included in the biggest exchange-traded funds that normally would list a company like Alibaba. Because it is incorporated in the …

Jay LaPrete | Bloomberg News | Getty Images

Life is about to get more difficult for the nation’s big banks but possibly a whole lot easier for the small ones. As Congress enacts stricter regulations for large financial institutions and ponders future measures, there’s growing anticipation that it is moving closer to steps that would exempt those not considered systemically important from the …

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A worker polishes a 2015 Ford Mustang on Aug. 28, 2014 in Flat Rock, Mich.

Job growth cooled in August, with nonfarm payrolls adding just 142,000 even as the unemployment rate fell to 6.1 percent, according to the Labor Department. The fall in the headline rate came as labor-force participation fell, declining to 62.8 percent, or 64,000 workers, tying the 2014 bottom and remaining at the lowest level since 1978. …

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Kieth Miller works on the assembly line building Victory motorcycles at the Polaris Industries factory on August 8, 2014 in Spirit Lake, Iowa

This is a breaking news story. Check back here for updates. Private sector job creation slowed a touch in August, missing expectations though roughly maintaining the pace of expansion so far in 2014. A report from ADP and Moody’s Analytics showed employment growth of 204,000 positions, off a touch from the downwardly revised 212,000 in …

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Federal Reserve Board Chairwoman Janet Yellen testifies before the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee July 15, 2014 in Washington.

Some members of the Federal Reserve’s Open Market Committee want to make a “relatively prompt” rate hike based on the economy’s progress, according to the minutes of the committee’s last meeting. But the minutes, released Wednesday, also showed that most members agreed more data was needed to move up the schedule of rate hikes. “Many …

Kevin Syms | Little Palm Resorts & Spa

After close to a year and a half of pumping money into the stock market, mom-and-pop investors have spent most of the summer in hiding. Since May, money has been streaming out of mutual funds that invest in the stock market—particularly those that are focused on U.S.-based equities. Domestic equity mutual funds surrendered some $26.6 …

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The U.S. economy created 209,000 jobs in June, below expectations, as the unemployment rate climbed to 6.2 percent, reflecting a consistent but unspectacular level of employment growth. Economists expected nonfarm payroll growth to hit 233,000 in July, down from an upwardly revised 298,000 in June, and unemployment to fall to 6.0 percent from 6.1 percent. …

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Janet Yellen, chair of the U.S. Federal Reserve

A second-quarter economic rebound did nothing to change the outlook of the Federal Reserve, which stayed the course Wednesday with ultra-easy monetary policy. While the U.S. central bank voted to cut its monthly bond-buying program another $10 billion, it left its short-term interest rate target near zero and expressed only tepid encouragement about growth. Wall …

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Pedestrians walk by a now hiring sign posted in the window of a Ross Dress for Less store on June 6, 2014 in San Francisco.

Private businesses created 218,000 jobs in July, a number that while solid and in line with trend fell below expectations, according to ADP. The number also fell well short of the 281,000 created in June—the initially reported total was not revised—and could cause economists to tinker with their projections for Friday’s nonfarm payrolls report. Consensus …

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The Federal Reserve building.

Geopolitical events like what’s happening in Ukraine and Gaza can be market movers but still take a back seat to the biggest influence of all: the Federal Reserve. That’s the position both of Peter Boockvar, managing director and chief market analyst at The Lindsey Group, and, it appears, the market itself after a healthy bounce back …

David A. Grogan | CNBC
Treasury Secretary Jack Lew (l) talks with CNBC's Jim Cramer at the Delivering Alpha conference, July 16, 2014.

Congress needs to pass sweeping tax measures to keep companies from moving their operations overseas, Treasury Secretary Jack Lew said Wednesday. Speaking about so-called inversions, in which companies change their domiciles to other countries with more favorable tax structures than the U.S., Lew said action has to be taken soon. JPM’s Erdoes: Bond inflows ‘gives me great …

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Federal Reserve Board Chairwoman Janet Yellen testifies before the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee July 15, 2014 in Washington.

Fed Chair Janet Yellen gave a tepid thumbs-up to the economic recovery while expressing disappointment in housing and pledging to remain vigilant over asset bubbles, in congressional testimony she delivered Tuesday. While Yellen’s remarks were mostly benign and cautious on the economy, a separate Federal Reserve report indicated concern over asset prices. “Valuation metrics in …

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The economy continues to improve but the recovery is not yet complete, Fed Chair Janet Yellen said on Tuesday. While Yellen’s remarks were mostly benign and cautious on the economy, a separate Federal Reserve report indicated concern over asset prices “Valuation metrics in some sectors do appear substantially stretched—particularly those for smaller firms in the …