Mid-Afternoon Market Update: Markets Show Strength as Prothena Shares Plummet

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Toward the end of trading Tuesday, the Dow traded up 0.61 percent to 16,548.94 while the NASDAQ surged 0.79 percent to 4,106.63. The S&P also rose, gaining 0.51 percent to 1,878.02.

Leading and Lagging Sectors In trading on Tuesday, energy shares were relative leaders, up on the day by about 1.41 percent. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included Stone Energy (NYSE: SGY ), up 9 percent, and Westmoreland Coal Co (NYSE: WLB ), up 7.8 percent. Industrials services shares gained by just 0.02 percent in Tuesday's trading.

Top losers in the sector included Chart Industries (NASDAQ: GTLS ), Jacobs Engineering Group (NYSE: JEC ), and ABB (NYSE: ABB ).

Top Headline Merck & Co (NYSE: MRK ) reported a 7% rise in its first-quarter profit. Merck's quarterly profit surged to $1.71 billion, or $0.57 per share, compared to a year-ago profit of $1.59 billion, or $0.52 per share. Excluding certain items, Merck earned $0.88 per share, up from $0.85 per share Its revenue dropped 4% to $10.26 billion versus $10.67 billion. However, analysts were estimating earnings of $0.79 per share on revenue of $10.43 billion. Merck reiterated its full-year earnings forecast of $2.15 to $2.47 per share.

Equities Trading UP Zillow (NASDAQ: Z ) rose on Tuesday's session, gaining 12.13 percent to $102.15 after the a 13G filing from after the close Monday showed a 9.5 percent stake in the company from Tiger Management.

Shares of Orbital Sciences (NYSE: ORB ) got a boost, shooting up 15.38 percent to $30.66 after the company and Allian Techsystems' (NYSE: ATK ) Aerospace and Defense Groups agreed to combine to create Orbital ATK.

Banco Santander (Brasil) SA (NYSE: BSBR ) shares were also up, gaining 12.46 percent to $6.50 on Q1 results. The company reported Q1 recurring net income of 1.427 billion reais ($637 million).

Equities Trading DOWN Shares of Gogo (NASDAQ: GOGO ) were 28.56 percent to $13.12 following news that AT&T (NYSE: T ) intended to launch high-speed 4G in-flight connectivity service.

Prothena Corporation (NASDAQ: PRTA ) shares were down as well, falling 28.00 percent to $27.13 after the company released some materials from its coming symposium presentation.

Coach (NYSE: COH ) was down, falling 9.78 percent to $45.49 after the company reported downbeat quarterly sales. The company reported Q3 earnings of $0.68 per share on revenue of $1.10 billion.

Commodities In commodity news, oil traded up 0.27 percent to $101.11, while gold traded down 0.19 percent to $1,296.50.

Silver traded down 0.38 percent Tuesday to $19.52, while copper fell 0.68 percent to $3.07.

Eurozone European shares were higher today.

The Spanish Ibex Index surged 1.31 percent, while Italy's FTSE MIB Index rose 2.15 percent.

Meanwhile, the German DAX surged 1.48 percent and the French CAC 40 rose 0.83 percent while U.K. shares gained 0.91 percent.

Economics The Federal Open Market Committee begins its two-day policy meeting today.

The ICSC-Goldman same-store sales index gained 1.6% in the week ended April 26 versus the prior week.

The Johnson Redbook Retail Sales Index dropped 0.3% in the first three weeks of April versus March.

The S&P/Case-Shiller home price index rose 0.76% in February, versus economists' expectations for a 0.80% gain. On a year-over-year basis, the index climbed 12.9% in February.

The Conference Board's consumer confidence index came in at 82.30 in April, versus a revised 83.90 in March. However, economists were expecting a reading of 83.00.

© 2014 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.



This article appears in: Investing , Economy , Futures , International

Referenced Stocks: WLB , GTLS , ABB , ATK , COH

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