Active broad-market exchange-traded funds at mid-day:
SPDR S&P 500 (
iShares Russell 2000 Index (
iPath S&P 500 VIX Short Term Futures (
Financial Select Sector SPDR (
iShares MSCI Emerging Markets Index (
Broad Market Indicators
Broad-market exchange-traded funds, including SPY, IWM, IVV and
others, are weaker. Actively traded PowerShares QQQ (QQQ) is down
U.S. stocks remain weak despite the U.S. Commerce Department's
report that new homes sales for May rose to its highest level in
two years. Stocks have failed to crawl out of a Monday slump as
investors lack enthusiasm ahead of the European Union summit later
in the week, weighed by concerns that EU leaders may not do enough
to spur regional growth and come up with solutions to resolve the
ongoing debt crisis. Such worries may be justified - Spain earlier
today made a formal request for bank aid, and Cyprus applied for an
EU bailout following a downgrade of its credit rating by Fitch.
Winners and Losers
Select Financial Sector SPDRs (
) is down 2.5%. Direxion Daily Financial Bull 3X shares (FAS) is
down 6.6% while its bearish counterpart, FAZ, is up 6.6%.
Active stocks in the sector are seeing weakness: Bank of America
(BAC), down 4%; Goldman Sachs (GS) down 2.7%; Morgan Stanley (MS)
down 5.2%; and Citigroup (C), down 4.9%.
Fidelity National Financial (FNF) is down 1.6% after it
announced that it has signed an agreement to merge J. Alexander's
(JAX) with a subsidiary of American Blue Ribbon Holdings in a
transaction that values JAX at about $72 million. American Blue
Ribbon is a newly formed majority owned subsidiary of FNF. JAX
shares in the meantime are up around 16%, earlier reaching a new
year high of $11.76.
Credit Suisse (CS) is down to near year lows after Reuters
reported that the bank may shore up its capital by issuing CHF6
billion ($6.26 billion) of convertible bonds or CoCos ahead of
schedule and will stick with current chief Brady Dougan in part
because of a lack of alternatives.
Deutsche Bank (DB) is down 5% after shares were downgraded to
Sector Perform from Outperform at RBC Capital. Price target is
lowered to $38 from $45.
Tech actives continue to slide downward in mid-day action: Apple
(AAPL) down 1.5%; Microsoft (MSFT) down 3%; Intel (INTC) also down
3%; Google (GOOG) down 2%; Cisco (CSCO) down 1%; and Yahoo (YHOO)
Outperforming the sector, Quest Software (QSFT) is up 5% and
reached a new 52-week high of $27.75 after it announced the receipt
of a proposal from a strategic bidder to acquire all of the
outstanding shares of Quest common stock for $27.50 per share in
cash. The company's board of directors determined that the proposal
constitutes a Superior Proposal, as such term is defined in the
Agreement and Plan of Merger dated March 8, as amended on June 19,
among Quest and affiliates of Insight Venture Management, LLC and
Sony (SNE) and Panasonic (PC) confirmed that they have signed an
agreement regarding the joint development of next-generation OLED
(organic light-emitting diode) panels and modules for TVs and
large-sized displays. Sony and Panasonic plan to jointly develop
next-generation OLED panels and modules by each utilizing their
core and printing technologies. SNE is down bear 3% while PC is
Research In Motion (RIMM) is down 7% to $9.12 after sinking to a
new 52-week low of $9.03. Earlier, a report on Reuters said that
the company is planning to split into two, separating its handset
manufacturing division from its messaging network. Citing a report
by the Sunday Times, Reuters stated that the company could break
off its handset division as a separate listed company. It could
also be sold, to buyers such Amazon (AMZN) or Facebook (FB). The
messaging network could also be sold or opened up to Apple (AAPL)
or Google (GOOG), the report added. RIMM is also considering an
alternative option of selling a stake to another company like
Microsoft (MSFT), the report further said.
ETFs are also lower: iShares Dow Jones US Technology ETF (IYW)
is down 2.2%; iShares S&P North American Technology ETF (IGM),
down 2.3%; iShares S&P North American Technology-Software Index
(IGV), down 2.3%; and Technology Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLK), down
SPDR S&P Semiconductor (XSD) down 3.5%; Semiconductor Sector
Index Fund (SOXX) is down 3%.
SPDR S&P International Technology Sector ETF (IPK) is
Vanguard Industrials (VIS) has lost earlier gains and is now
down nearly 2%; iShares Trust Dow Jones U.S. Industrial Sector
Index Fund (IYJ) is off 2%; and Select Sector SPDR-Industrial (XLI)
is down near 2%.
General Electric (GE) is down 1.6% after announcing that GE
Healthcare has invested $7.5 million in Nanosonics Limited, an
Australian-based company that develops technology for infection
control, to develop and distribute Trophon EPR, an ultrasound
transducer disinfecting system. The investment is part of extending
the companies' strategic partnership, which began in 2006, when GE
healthcare worked with Nanosonics to support the validation of the
Dow Jones U.S. Energy Fund (IYE) is down 2.5% while Energy
Select Sector SPDR (XLE) is down 2.6%.
BP (BP) is down 2% after it reported that its wholly owned
subsidiary, Exploration, has received approval from the Minister of
Mines and Energy in Namibia for a 30% interest in British oil firm
Serica's Luderitz Basin License 0047. The interest, which was
assigned by Serica, results from the farm-in by BP to Serica's
License offshore Namibia which was announced in March this year.
Under the terms of the farm-in, BP has agreed to earn a 30%
interest in the Licence by meeting the full cost of a 3D seismic
survey over an area of up to 4,150 square kilometres across the
Crude is down 2%. United States Oil Fund (USO) is down near year
Gold is up 1.2% while silver is up about 2%. Precious-metal
funds are mostly higher, with SPDR Gold Trust (GLD) up 0.8% and
iShares Silver Trust (SLV), up more than 2%.
ETFs in the consumer space are trading lower: Consumer Staples
Select Sector SPDR (XLP) is down 0.7%; iShares Dow Jones US
Consumer Goods (IYK), down 1%; and Vanguard Consumer Staples ETF
(VDC), down 0.7%.
SPDR S&P Retail (XRT) is also weaker, down 1.7%; PowerShares
Dynamic Retail (PMR), down 1.6% and Market Vectors Retail ETF
(RTH), now down 1.2% after earlier hitting new year highs.
The Hershey Company (HSY) is off 1.3%. The company earlier
reaffirmed it expects full year 2012 sales to increase 7% to 9%,
including the Brookside acquisition. Reported EPS is expected to be
$2.82 to $2.92 per share, with adjusted EPS up 10% to 12%. Adjusted
EPS is targeted at $3.11 to $3.17 per share. The analyst consensus
is $3.20 per share, according to Capital IQ.
Power Play -
ETFs in the space are weaker at mid-day: Health Care SPDR (XLV)
is down more than 1%; iShares NASDAQ Biotechnology Index (IBB),
down 1.5%; Vanguard Health Care ETF (VHT), down more than 1%; and
iShares Dow Jones US Healthcare (IYH), down 1.3%.
Lexicon Pharmaceuticals (LXRX) has trimmed its earlier gains of
12% - that saw it reach new year highs - and is now up 3% after it
today reported positive results from its Phase 2b trial of LX4211,
an investigational, oral, dual inhibitor of sodium glucose
transporters 1 and 2 (SGLT1 and SGLT2). In the study, LX4211 showed
substantial, dose-dependent, statistically-significant reductions
in hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) in patients diagnosed with
poorly-controlled type 2 diabetes who were concurrently treated
with metformin, an established diabetes therapy.
Ventrus Biosciences (VTUS) is down near 60% and hit a new
52-week low of $4.85. The company reported that its Phase 3,
randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial of
iferanserin (VEN 309) in patients with hemorrhoidal disease did not
meet its endpoints.
Bristol Myers Squibb (BMY) and Pfizer (PFE), are both lower,
down 4% and 1%, respectively, after the companies said they
received a request for additional information from the U.S. Food
and Drug Administration (FDA) regarding ELIQUIS (apixaban), the
investigational drug both companies are co-developing for
prevention of stroke and systemic embolism in patients with
nonvalvular atrial fibrillation.