Wall Street suffered from whiplash Monday as a pair of mergers
in the pharmaceutical sector and bullish economic data mixed with
heavy selling in internet and momentum stocks, causing equities to
erase, then regain early morning gains.
After selling off midday on weakness tied to the Nasdaq
Composite, stocks mostly recovered late in the day as technical
support at the 50-day moving average in the Dow Industrials and
S&P 500 triggered a rebound in the major indices. The Nasdaq
Composite ended near even.
The $100 billion offer by Pfizer (
) for the U.K.'s AstraZeneca (
) was the catalyst for an opening rally, but a slew of other
mergers were also supportive of the firmer tone. Forest Labs put up
as much as $1.5 billion for Furiex Pharmaceuticals (
), and General Electric (
) expressed interest in France's Alstom SA's turbine division.
But while blue-chips and small caps were advancing on the heels
of stronger than expected housing data, the Nasdaq Composite was
back in the red as a result of heavy pressure on internet and
momentum stocks like Facebook (
) and Tesla (TSLA). The feeding frenzy in the tech sector spilled
into the broader markets erasing early gains. Fortunately, bears
were unable to muscle the Dow and S&P below their respective
50-day moving averages, forcing shorts to cover, leading to a
Today's market-friendly data included a 3.4% gain in pending
home sales for March, the first increase in nine months, and well
above estimates for a 0.6% gain.
Also, the Dallas Federal Reserve said manufacturing activity
improved significantly in the region with their index climbing to
11.7 in April, nearly double estimates, and a big leap from 4.9 the
Here's where the markets stand at the close:
Dow Jones Industrial Index was up 87 (+0.5%) at 16,448
S&P 500 was up 6 (+0.3%) at 1,869
Nasdaq Composite Index was down 1 (-0.03%) at 4,074
FTSE 100 was up 0.22%
Nikkei 225 was down 0.98%
Hang Seng Index was down 0.41%
Shanghai China Composite Index was down 1.62%
(+) FURX Offered $1.5 bln from Forest Labs (FRX), also plans to
present data on treatment for irritable bowel syndrome
(+) JCP Consumer report citing gains among department stores
(+) AZN Pfizer (
) offers $100 bln
(-) OZM Evidence suggesting the company helped finance
controversial African oil and mining deals.
(-) RUBI Gets mixed analyst ratings after IPO
(-) ATHX Interim results from the Phase 2 clinical study of the
administration of MultiStem cell therapy failed to show meaningful
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