What happened in the news this week that affects how you live and invest? Funny you should ask. Here's a highly curated (read: extremely subjective) list of stories about financial milestones for the week of June 24.
- Chinese companies dropped out of the ranks of the world’s 10 biggest stocks by market value for the first time since 2006 amid a cash crunch, slower growth and the biggest U.S. stock rally in a decade. (6/27)
- European Union governments and lawmakers reached agreement on the bloc’s seven-year budget, as the economic crisis forced the first spending cuts in EU history. (6/27)
- For the first time since August, junk bonds are trading below par amid speculation that companies will have a harder time meeting debt payments as the Federal Reserve prepares to reduce its extraordinary stimulus measures and China reins in its shadow-banking system. (6/27)
- Illinois had to turn away buyers from a $1.3 billion sale of general-obligation bonds even after lawmakers failed twice in the past month to fix the nation’s weakest state pension system. Investors can have confidence that the lowest-rated U.S. state won’t default for the first time since the 1840s, said Marc Joffe, principal consultant at San Francisco-based Public Sector Credit Solutions. (6/26)
- Apple Inc. (AAPL ) dipped below $400 for the first time since April as a glut of unsold iPhones prompted Jefferies & Co. to lower its target price, and Global Equities Research said low morale is causing employee departures. The shares have declined 24 percent this year, compared with a 10 percent gain in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index. (6/24)