Mid-Day ETF Update: ETFs, Stocks Give Up Earlier Gains as Mixed Earnings Results Weigh on Sentiment; Apple Settles Below $400 to New 52-Week Low

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Active broad market exchange-traded funds at mid-day:

SPDR S&P 500 ( SPY ): -0.26%

iPath S&P 500 VIX Short Term Futures TM ( VXX ): +3.6%

ProShares Trust II ( UVXY ): +7%

iShares Russell 2000 Index ( IWM ): -0.3%

Financial Select Sector SPDR ( XLF ): -0.6%

Broad Market Indicators

Broad-market exchange-traded funds, including SPY, IWM, IVV and others, were weaker. Actively traded PowerShares QQQ (QQQ) was down 1%.

U.S. stocks have reversed course, giving up earlier gains which were spurred by the report that jobless claims for the week totaled 352,000, in line with forecasts. Continuing claims fell to 3.068 million from 3.103 million. Market sentiment turned gloomy as solid earnings from companies such as Verizon (VZ) and Pepsico (PEP) were overshadowed disappointing results from eBay (EBAY) and UnitedHealth (UNH). Apple (AAPL) weighed on the tech sector and on the broader market, settling below $400 at new 52-week lows. In economic data news, U.S. leading indicators for the month of March declined 0.1% - the first time in the last seven months. The Philadelphia manufacturing index also decreased in April to 1.3 from 2 the month before.

Winners and Losers

Financial -

Select Financial Sector SPDRs ( XLF ) was down 0.6%. Direxion Daily Financial Bull 3X shares (FAS) was down 1.4%. Its bearish counterpart, FAZ, was up 1.5%.

Among financial stocks, Morgan Stanley (MS) was down nearly 4% after reporting Q1 net revenues were $8.5 billion compared with $8.9 billion a year ago. Income from continuing ops was $0.50 per share, vs. a year ago loss of $0.05. Excluding Debt-related credit spreads, EPS was $0.61, down from $0.71 per share last year. Analysts expected revenues of $8.35 billion and earnings per share of $0.57 for the quarter.

Energy -

Dow Jones U.S. Energy Fund (IYE) was up 1.35% and Energy Select Sector SPDR (XLE) was up 1.4%.

In sector news, Noble Corp. (NE) was up 5%, reversing losses in Wednesday's after hours when the offshore drilling company reported Q1 earnings $0.59 per diluted share, above analyst estimates of $0.51 per share, and higher compared prior year earnings of $0.47 per diluted share. Revenues of $971 million were shy of analyst estimates of $973.8 million, and higher compared to $798 million in Q1 2012.

Commodities -

Crude was up 0.99%; natural gas was up 3.92%. United States Oil Fund (USO) was up 1.5%. United States Natural Gas Fund (UNG) was up 4.7% and hit year highs.

Following gold's slump earlier this week - its worst decline in three decades - gold producers and owners of gold mines are facing the possibility that their operations will be shuttered, according to a report on Bloomberg. The report said that gold producers were largely ignored as stocks in markets around the world recovered in the past two years, with investors turning exchange-traded funds that track bullion.

Among these gold producers on the FTSE Gold Mines Index (FTMIGMI), Barrick Gold Corp. (ABX) and Newmont Mining Corp. (NEM) have lost a combineed $169 billion in market value since bullion peaked in 2011, the report added. ABX shares were up 1.13% on the NYSE while NEM shares were up 1.70% on the same index.

Gold was up 0.37%. Silver was down 0.44%. Among rare metal funds, SPDR Gold Trust (GLD) up 1.15%. iShares Silver Trust (SLV) was up 0.16%.

Healthcare -

Healthcare ETFs were in the red at mid-day: Health Care SPDR (XLV), down 0.93%; Vanguard Health Care ETF (VHT), down 0.9%; and iShares Dow Jones US Healthcare (IYH), down 0.8%. Biotech ETF iShares NASDAQ Biotechnology Index (IBB) was also lower, down 1%.

In corporate news, Theravance Inc. (THRX) was up 15% and posted new 52 week highs after the company said late Wednesday a Food and Drug Administration advisory panel recommended the full agency approved the company's inhaler for treating chronic lung disease. The FDA is expected to announce its decision on the Breo Ellipta inhaler by May 12.

Consumer -

Consumer ETFs were mostly lower, but at the higher end of their 52-week ranges: Consumer Staples Select Sector SPDR (XLP), down 0.02%; iShares Dow Jones US Consumer Goods (IYK), down 0.25%; and Vanguard Consumer Staples ETF (VDC), down 0.1%.

In sector news, Travelzoo (TZOO) has spiked 11%, adding slightly to pre-market gains, after the company reported Q1 adjusted EPS of $0.36, beating the analyst consensus of $0.34 per share on Capital IQ. Revenue was $42.2 mln, vs. expectations of $40.5 mln.

Power Play -

Technology -

The tech sector continues to see losses in mid-dayt action, dragged down by Apple (AAPL), which slipped below $400 again and touched a fresh new 52-week low of $393.37. The sector could see continued trading action into the after hours session when tech giants Microsoft (MSFT), IBM (IBM) and Google (GOOG) release their financial reports.

Tech ETFs were weaker: Technology Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLK), down 0.72%; iShares Dow Jones US Technology ETF (IYW), down 0.84%; iShares S&P North American Technology ETF (IGM), down 1.04%; and iShares S&P North American Technology-Software Index (IGV), down 0.84%.

Among semiconductor ETFs, SPDR S&P Semiconductor (XSD) was down 1.06% and Semiconductor Sector Index Fund (SOXX) was 0.18%.

SPDR S&P International Technology Sector ETF (IPK) was up 0.33%.

In sector news, Verizon Communications (VZ) shares were up 3.5%, touching a new year high of $51.67. The company reported Q1 earnings of $0.68 per share, better than the Capital IQ consensus of $0.66. Revenues were $29.42 billion, just below the analyst estimate of $29.54 billion. In the same period last year, the company reported EPS of $0.59 on revenues of $28.24 billion.



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.

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This article appears in: Investing , Commodities

Referenced Stocks: IWM , SPY , UVXY , VXX , XLF

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As of 4/17/2014, 04:07 PM