A mid-afternoon rebound stalled and stocks finished lower
Monday, pulled under by a surprise drop in service sector activity
last month, offset somewhat by a slightly better-than-expected
increase in November factory orders. Consumer stocks struggled
throughout the session, with snow storms and bitterly cold
temperatures in large portions of the country spurring worries that
retail sales will suffer. The S&P 500 has dropped, although
moderately, over three straight sessions.
The Institute for Supply Management non-manufacturing sector
index fell to a 53.0 reading in December from 53.9 the prior month,
trailing expectations for for a rise to 54.8. While the employment
component last month was bullish, advancing to 55.8 from a 52.5
score in November, new orders tumbled below the 50 mark indicating
expansion, declining to 49.4 December reading from 56.4.
November factory orders jumped 1.8%, the Commerce Department
reported Monday, beating market estimates for a 1.6% advance and
reversing a 0.9% contraction during October.
Commodities were mostly lower. Crude oil for February delivery
fell 50 cents to settle at $93.46 per barrel while January natural
was unchanged at $4.30 per 1 million BTU. February gold slid 20
cents at $1,238.20 per ounce while March silver was off 9 cents to
$20.11 per ounce. March copper added a penny to finish at $3.36 per
Here's where the U.S. markets stood at end-of-day:
Dow Jones Industrial Average down 45.01 (-0.27%) to 16424.98
S&P 500 down 4.60 (-0.25%) to 1826.77
Nasdaq Composite Index down 18.23 (-0.44%) to 4113.68
Hang Seng Index down 0.58%
Shanghai China Composite Index down 1.80%
FTSE 100 Index unchanged
(+) VRS, Agrees to acquire privately held NewPage Holdings Inc,
paying $250 mln in cash through a special dividend to NewPage
shareholders and $650 mln in new first-lien notes issued at
closing. VRS also will issue up to $500 in stock.
(+) SEED, Shares jump to two-year high as investors embrace the
Chinese technology-focused supplier of crop seeds ahead of the
release of FY13 results Wednesday morning.
(+) SCTY, Climbs to a new all-time high after Goldman Sachs
reportedly adds the solar-energy company to its Conviction Buy
List. Goldman downgrades First Solar Inc. (
) to Sell, saying the company is not positioned for near-term
(-) SCSS, Expects Q4 EPS below the low end of its $0.18 to $0.26
guidance on $231 mln in preliminary revenue. Street has been
looking for a $0.22 per share profit on $242.6 mln in revenue.
(-) IPDN, LinkedIn Corp (
) ends Diversity Recruitment Partnership Agreement, effective March
30. The networking and job board for Latino professionals said it
expects an unspecified negative impact on near-term revenue.
(-) HGG Guides Q3 EPS, sales below consensus. Same-store sales
fall 11.2% over year-ago levels.