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Morning Update

This morning Shares of Ford are jumping higher on news that the Case-Shiller housing index rose to its highest level in seven years, and that consumer confidence jumped to its highest level since 2008 and a 10.9% gain. One option trader bought 3500 15.50 weekly calls for $0.08 this morning into the stocks strength, betting that Ford could rally 2.3% by the close this Friday. Strong housing numbers are good for Ford because it indicates strong demand for Ford’s trucks. Additionally, sales of trucks are expected to be strong because gasoline prices are expected to be relatively flat through the rest of 2013.

Besides the positive US housing market, other reasons exist to invest in Ford. Some analysts have predicted that the European economy has reached its low point and will soon be showing some growth within the near future. This would increase European consumption and as a result increase demand for automobiles in the continent, of which Ford had about an 8% market share of April 2013. The Ford Fiesta was the top-selling car in Europe for the first quarter of 2013, and European customers purchased a new Ford Fiesta every two minutes in March. Ford has recently engaged in a deal with local authorities in France to invest $162M and a guarantee to retain workers in their southwest French factory for the next five years, therefore showing a commitment towards maintaining their European presence. The optimistic view on today’s economy and the US job outlook has helped consumer confidence reach a five year high. Ford should be able to capitalize on an increase in consumer confidence as it is has the second largest market share as a domestic automobile producer. Ford trades at roughly 10 times its projected 12 month earnings, far lower than GM, pushing Ford along to lead auto producers this morning.

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