Mid-day Glance: As America Heads To Polls, Markets Head North

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As America heads to the polls, the markets head north, with blue chips United Technologies ( UTX ), Boeing ( BA ) and Caterpillar ( CAT ) leading the gainers.

However, although the U.S. Presidential Election has just got underway and we may not not know the winner until the early hours of Wednesday, some discussions have already turned to how government - be it under Obama or Romney - will deal with the so-called 'fiscal cliff', the more than $600 billion in tax hikes and spending cuts that take effect in January.

On the economic front, Corelogic reported the housing market's first month-over-month decline since February. While September home prices dipped 0.3% vs. August 2012, home prices increased year-over-year by 5% in September vs. September 2011, representing the biggest increase since July 2006.

The nation's job market has been a key weight in the 2012 campaign season, and the Labor Department today said that U.S. employers posted 100,000 less jobs in September. It suggested hiring is likely to remain modest in the coming months.

With equities, U.S. sectors are all trading higher with conglomerates as the lone +1% gainer. Capital goods, energy and technology are all up more than 0.50%. In commodities, both energy and metals are higher at midday.

Crude oil for December delivery was up $0.55 to $86.20 a barrel. December natural gas was up $0.02 to $3.58 per 1 million BTU.

December gold futures was up $8.40 at $1,691.60 per ounce. December silver was up $0.03 to $31.16 per ounce. December copper was up $0.01 at $3.48 per pound.

Here's where the markets stood at mid-day:

Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI) up 83.84 (+0.64%) 13,195.78

S&P 500 (^INX) up 5.85 (+0.41%) 1,423.11

Nasdaq Composite Index (^IXIC) up 5.40 (+0.18%) 3,005.06

NYSE Composite (^NYA) up 5.40 (+0.44%) 8,276.41

GLOBAL SENTIMENT

Nikkei 225 Index down 0.36%

Hang Seng Index down 0.28%

Shanghai China Composite Index down 0.38%

FTSE 100 Index up 0.65%

DAX up 0.69%

NYSE SECTOR INDICES

NYSE Financial Sector Index (^NYK) up 23.10 (+0.47%) at 4,894.37

NYSE Energy Sector Index (^NYE) up 75.90 (+0.60%) at 12,696.49

NYSE Healthcare Sector Index (^NYP) up 9.35 (+0.12%) at 7,881.20

UPSIDE MOVERS:

(+) NVGN (+79.3%) Shares of pharmaceutical company Novogen are up around 80%, but drifting off the day's 52-week high of $4.74. MEI Pharma, a San Diego-based subsidiary of NVGN, says it has raised $27.5 million.

(+) ROSG (+16.8%) Rosetta Genomics is up 17% after saying that the New York State Department of Health has given the company final approval for its miRview lung assay following conditional approval issued in June. With this final approval, ROSG can continue to offer the miRview lung assay in all 50 U.S. states, it says.

(+) JIVE (+15%) Jive Software is up 15% after late yesterday reporting Q3 revenue of $28.9 million vs. the Capital IQ analyst estimate of $28.79. JIVE posted a loss per share for Q3 at $0.09, better than the Street view calling for a loss of $0.11. The company guided Q4 revenue in the range of $30.0 million - $31.5 million, and loss per share in the range of $0.15 - $0.17. The revenue estimate straddles the Street view, but falls short of the current expectation of a $0.09 EPS loss.

(+) SYKE (+12.6%) Sykes is up nearly 13% after reporting Q3 revenue of $280.5 million, better than the analyst consensus of $267 million on Capital IQ. EPS was $0.31, vs. expectations of $0.27 per share. For Q4, the company expects revenue in the range of $300 to $305 million and EPS of $0.28 to $0.33, vs. the Street view of $272 million in revenue and earnings of $0.31.

DOWNSIDE MOVERS:

(-) SREV (-35.5%, hit new year lows) Servicesource International is down 35% after the stock was downgraded to Equalweight from Overweight at Morgan Stanley. Price target information was not available.

(-) MKTG (-30%, hit new year lows) Responsys is down 30% after the stock was downgraded by Credit Suisse to a Neutral rating from an Outperform rating. Price target information was not available.

(-) VVUS (-22.9%) VIVUS is down more than 20% after reporting Q3 revenue of $41,000, up from zero last year. Net loss was $0.40 per share, vs. a year ago loss of $0.10 per share.

(-) MMYT (-21.5%, hit new year lows) Make My Trip is down 24% after reporting FQ2 results. In the quarter MMYT reported adjusted diluted EPS of $0.03 versus $0.04 in the comparable quarter. Revenue for the recent quarter was $45.7 million compared to $43.8 million in the same quarter last year. Capital IQ analysts were expecting EPS of $0.05. Revenue was above the $23.72 million analyst forecast.



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: BA , CAT , UTX

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