The U.S. stock market gave back its gain from Wednesday as the
ongoing bank crisis in Cyprus undermines investor confidence.
The major averages in the United States tumbled and stocks
were mostly lower across the world. Overall, however, the market
remains on solid footing and economic reports continue to exceed
The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost around 90 points, or
0.62 percent, to 14,421.
The S&P 500 fell around 13 points, or 0.83 percent, to
close at 1,546.
The Nasdaq Composite lost 32 points, or 0.97 percent, to
Initial jobless claims rose slightly for the week ending March
9 to 336,000 from an upwardly revised 334,000. This was below the
consensus which expected a rise to 345,000.
Continuing jobless claims also rose slightly in the week
ending March 9 to 3.053 million from 3.048 million. This was
below consensus expectations which expected the continuing claims
rate to rise to 3.065 million.
Existing Home Sales
Existing home sales rose 0.8 percent in February to 4.98
million from 4.94 million in the prior month. This barely missed
consensus estimates which called for existing home sales to rise
to 5.00 million.
Data from the Philadelphia Fed's Business Outlook index showed
a strong uptick in March. The index rose from -12.5 in February
to 2.0 in March, which was ahead of consensus expectations that
expected a rise to -3.0.
The Conference Board's Index of Leading Indicators registered
a gain of 0.5 percent for February after rising 0.5 percent in
January. This was in-line with consensus expectations.
Crude oil fell along with the stock market on Thursday. Late
in the day, NYMEX crude futures were down 1.21 percent to $92.37.
Brent futures had lost 1.33 percent and were trading at $107.26.
Natural gas had lost $0.03, or 0.83 percent, to $3.93 late in the
day on Thursday.
Precious metals rose on the session as stocks fell. COMEX gold
futures were last up 0.41 percent to $1,614.10 and silver had
climbed 1.28 percent to $29.19 near the close of equity trading.
Copper futures fell 0.20 percent on the session.
Grain prices were higher on the session with the exception of
wheat and oats, both of which lost around 1 percent. Corn was
last trading up 0.07 percent on the day. In soft commodities,
orange juice futures added around 1.80 percent and cotton lost 1
Near the close of equity trading, the iShares Barclays 20+
Year Treasury Bond ETF (NYSE:
) had jumped 0.84 percent to $117.07. The rise in bond prices
pushed yields lower on Thursday.
While the yield on the 2-Year Note was unchanged at 0.25
percent, the yield on the 5-Year Note fell one basis point to
0.80 percent. The 10-Year Note yield fell three basis points to
1.93 percent and the 30-Year Bond yield was down five basis
points to 3.15 percent.
The U.S. dollar was largely unchanged on the session. Near the
close of equity trading, the PowerShares DB US Dollar Index
Bullish ETF (NYSE:
), which tracks the performance of the greenback versus a basket
of foreign currencies, was down 0.04 percent to $22.54.
The closely watched EUR/USD pair was last down around 0.16
percent to $1.2915. Other significant movers included the
USD/JPY, which fell 1.22 percent, and the AUD/USD, which rose
Volatility and Volume
The VIX moved up on Thursday as the markets fell. The widely
watched CBOE Volatility Index jumped a little less than 10
percent to 13.90.
Volume was below average even as the major averages fell.
Around 112 million SPDR S&P 500 ETF (NYSE:
) shares traded hands compared to a 3-month daily average of 130
Enterprise software giant Oracle (NASDAQ:
) fell almost 10 percent after the company missed Q3 earnings
After days of sharp gains, shares of Fannie Mae (OTC:
) and Freddie Mac (OTC:
) pulled back significantly. Near the close, FNMA was down 24
percent while FMCC had lost almost 26 percent.
Shares of ACADIA Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:
) were up around 24 percent heading into the close after the
company reported data from its late-stage Parkinson's disease
psychosis study with Pimavanserin.
Perry Ellis (NASDAQ:
) climbed almost 7 percent after the company released bullish
fourth-quarter financial results.
Shares of apparel retailer Guess? (NYSE:
) lost around 7 percent after the company's fiscal fourth-quarter
) was trading up around 16 percent heading into the closing bell.
The micro-cap stock is down better than 92 percent over the last
three months after its only marketed product was recalled.
Jabil Circuit (NYSE:
) lost more than 4 percent after releasing its second-quarter
earnings results and providing weak Q3 guidance.
(c) 2013 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment
advice. All rights reserved.
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