Mid-Day Update: Stocks Near Day's Lows as Q4 GDP Growth Misses Expectations


Stocks are lower today, sagging after U.S. gross domestic product figures for Q4 were lower than expected and several large companies reported weak financial results.

Fourth quarter GDP grew 2.8%, and for the full year rose 1.7%, the Commerce Department reported. Economists polled by Bloomberg and other news organization, on average, predicted 3.0% growth.

Auto-maker Ford ( F ) and Procter & Gamble ( PG ) reported lackluster financial results, joined by Chevron ( CVX ) after the oil and gas company missed Sreet EPS estimates.

Ford is lower after reporting Q4 earnings of $0.20 per share, short of the $0.25 per share analyst consensus on Thomson Reuters. Revenues were $34.6 billion, better than the analyst average of $32.0 billion in sales. Procter & Gamble was trading either side of even today after reporting Q4 sales in line with Street estimates. Q1 revenues guidance also is in line with expectation but core EPS is seen in the range of $0.91 to $0.97 per share. The Street is at $1.06 per share.

Chevron ( CVX ) is lower after today reporting Q4 earnings of $2.58 per share, missing both year-ago comparisons and the Thomson Reuters mean of $2.84 a share. Revenues also missed, coming in at $58.03 billion, below the 70.96-billion Street call.

But to the upside today, Solutia ( SOA ) has been up as much as 40%, setting a new 52-week high, after receiving a $3.4 billion buyout offer today from Eastman Chemical ( EMN ).

Also helping offset the downbeat news somewhat, the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan's index on consumer sentiment rose to 75.0 in January from 69.9 the month before, reaching its highest level since February 2011. It also was better the preliminary January reading of 74.0 and topped the median forecast of 74.1 among economists polled by Reuters.

Commodities are higher. Crude oil for March delivery is up 44 cents at $110.14 a barrel, near the mid-point of today tight trading range. Brent contracts are up 88 cents to $111.67 a barrel. February gold is up $5.50 at $1,731.80 an ounce in Comex trade. But Natural gas is lower again, with the March contract losing about 5 cents to $2.555 per 1 million British Thermal Units in NYMEX trade today following a 12-cent reversal yesterday.

Among precious metal ETFs, the Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF is up 1.70% to $56.17 with the SPDR Gold Trust up 0.71% to $167.62. The iShares Silver Trust is ahead 0.40% to $32.50.

Among the energy ETFs, the United States Oil Fund is up 0.86% to $38.68. The United States Natural Gas Fund is down 4.89% to $5.64.

Here's where the markets stand at mid-day.

NYSE Composite Index down 25.08 (0.32%) at 7,858.82.

Dow Jones Industrial Average down 88.51 (0.70%) at 12,646.12.

S&P 500 down 4.84 (0.17%) at 2,810.12.

NASDAQ Composite up 5.21 (0.19%) at 2,810.49.


Nikkei down 0.09%.

Hang Seng up 0.31%.

Shanghai Composite closed.

FTSE-100 down 1.07%.


NYSE Energy down 0.54% at 12,866.25 .

NYSE Financial down 0.23% at 4,414.72.

NYSE Health Care down 0.43% at 7,118.17.

NYSE Arca Tech 100 down 0.36% at 1,174.27.


(+)DWCH, (+34.5%, hits year highs) Q1 revenues rise 50%, EPS more than doubles to $0.09.

(+)CPHD, (+20%) Blows past Q4 estimates, Guides FY12 above Street


(-)RVBD, (-21%) Weak Q1 outlook; Q4 profit no help.

(-)DV, (-8.4%) Q2 EPS $0.08 below consensus estimates; sales decline 5%.

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.

Copyright (C) 2014 MTNewswires.com. All rights reserved. Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited.

This article appears in: Investing , Commodities

Referenced Stocks: CVX , EMN , F , PG , SOA

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