U.S. markets were mixed Tuesday mid-day after investors hurdled
global economic turmoil in the pre-market session and focused on a
slew of positive economic reports. While stocks initially surged as
Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke on Capital Hill defended the Fed's bond
buying program and low interest rates, the major indices see-sawed
Overseas, markets crashed after an Italian election pointed
toward a narrow victory for the center-left coalition in the latest
election. If this result holds, fears are that political gridlock
in the Italian Senate could derail the country's austerity
measures, and spread economic turmoil through the entire euro zone.
The election jarred U.S. stocks Monday as the Dow and S&P
bottomed at their biggest single day declines of the year.
At home, the Case-Shiller index showed housing prices increased
6.8% year-over year, notching higher than expectations. The FHFA
housing price index was also up month over month, above Street
In corporate news, Home Depot (
) increased near the stock's 52-week high after the home retailer
reported strong year-end results, reflecting a housing rebound. The
company reported a 7% gain in same-store sales for Q4.
) said it is trimming about 4,000 jobs, or about 1.5% of its
Consumer confidence rose in February. The Conference Board's
index showed that confidence jumped to 69.0 from 58.6 in January.
Economists had pegged the index to touch 62.3.
The Commerce Department reported a rise of 15.6% in new home
sales last month to an annual rate of 437,000, the highest mark
since July 2008 and above economist forecasts for a
seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 384,000.
U.S. sectors were mixed Tuesday mid-day, with cons.
non-cyclical, energy, financial, healthcare and transportation in
Commodities were mixed at mid-day. Crude oil for April delivery
was down $0.11 to $93 a barrel. March natural gas was down $0.007
to $3.41 per 1 million BTU. In metals, April gold futures were up
$2.40 to $1,589.00 per ounce. March silver was down $0.137 at
$28.85 per ounce in electronic trade. March copper was down $0.002
at $3.54 per pound.
Here's where the markets stood at mid-day:
Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI) up 56.79 (+0.41%) to
S&P 500 (^INX) up 0.64 (+0.04%) to 1,488.49
Nasdaq Composite Index (^IXIC) down 0.63 (-0.02%) to
NYSE Composite (^NYA) down 2.43 (-0.03%) to 8,716.97
Nikkei 225 Index down 2.26%
Hang Seng Index down 1.32%
Shanghai China Composite Index down 1.40%
FTSE 100 Index down 1.35%
DAX down 2.29%
NYSE SECTOR INDICES
NYSE Financial Sector Index (^NYK) down 10.47 (-0.20%) at
NYSE Energy Sector Index (^NYE) down 25.69 (-0.20%) at
NYSE Healthcare Sector Index (^NYP) down 33.03 (-0.40%) at
(+) SLCA (+25.94%, below new 52-week high) Reported Q4 net
income of $0.41 per basic and diluted share, compared with net
income of $0.20 per basic and diluted share for the same period in
2011, and topping estimates of $0.32. Revenues totaled $118.8
million for Q4 compared with $83.6 million for the same period in
2011, an improvement of 42.1%, and surpassing expectations of
(+) AUXL (+2.82%, near 52-week low) Reported Q4 revs of $172.5
mln, in line with the analyst consensus on Capital IQ. EPS was
$1.83, vs. expectations of $1.71 per share on a normalized basis
and GAAP EPS of $1.84 per share, according to Capital IQ.
(+) ARWR (+11.53%, near 52-week low) Published the latest
results on the study of its RNAi-based candidate ARC-520 in the
Journal of Molecular Theory. Data from ARWR's latest study
demonstrated multi-log reductions in hepatitis B viral DNA and
proteins lasting over 30 days after a single injection in animal
(-) FSGI (-23.37%) Entered into definitive stock purchase
agreements with institutional investors as part of an approximate
$90 million recapitalization.
(-) HSII (-20.29%, near 52-week low) Reported a Q4 GAAP loss of
$0.02 per share, ex one-time items, versus the Capital IQ consensus
of $0.18. Revenues were $103.87 mln, versus the analyst estimate of
(-) VSI (-18.92%) Reported Q4 2012 adjusted net income was $0.40
per share, up from $0.31 a year prior and on par with the $0.40 per
share analysts expected. Net sales in Q4 2012 were $218.9 million
compared to $214.9 million in the same period of the prior year,
and lower than the $223.9 million analysts had expected.