The Dow Jones Industrials Average is trading near its lowest
level in over a month following a negative reaction to bearish
manufacturing data and mixed corporate earnings. Although the
housing data was strong, and leading indicators continue to
increase, Wall Street found enough excuses to book profits on
Thursday, taking a much more defensive posture into next week's
Federal Open Markets Committee meeting.
The trading session kicked off after the Labor Department
reported that initial jobless claims rose 1,000 during the week
ended Jan. 18 to 326,000 new claims, lagging estimates expecting
330,000 claims. Housing market data also was mostly bullish with
sales of existing home rising an expected 1.0% in December to a
seasonally adjusted annual pace of 4.87 million homes, its highest
level in seven years. Separately today, the Federal Housing Finance
Agency reported just a 0.1% rise in home prices during November,
down from 0.5% gain in the prior month.
Earlier Latest data from China indicated that the planet's
second largest economy may be beginning to slow, while an index of
U.S. purchasing managers showed a modest contraction in activity to
a 53.7 reading in January, trailing the market consensus looking
for a 55.0 reading this month.
Finally, leading economic indicators increased 0.1%, matching
expectations, but slower than the 0.8% pace in November.
Crude oil was up $0.32 to $97.13 per barrel. Natural gas was up
$0.10 to $4.65 per 1 million BTU. Gold was up $20.00 to $1,258.60
an ounce, while silver was up $0.21 to $20.05 an ounce. Copper was
up $0.05 to $3.29 per pound.
Among energy ETFs, the United States Oil Fund was up 0.64% to
$34.78 with the United States Natural Gas Fund was up $1.42 $22.80.
Amongst precious-metal funds, the Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF
was up $2.42 to 23.65 while SPDR Gold Shares were up 1.81% to
$121.36. The iShares Silver Trust was up 1.21% to $19.26.
Here's where the markets stand at mid-day:
NYSE Composite Index down 99.69 (-0.96%) to 10,269.20
Dow Jones Industrial Average down 191.85 (-1.17%) to
S&P 500 down 19.31 (-1.05%) to 1,825.55
Nasdaq Composite Index down 39.52 (-0.93%) to 4,203.48
Nikkei 225 Index down 0.79%
Hang Seng Index down 1.51%
Shanghai China Composite Index down 0.47%
FTSE 100 Index down 0.78%
CAC 40 down 1.02%
DAX down 0.92%
NYSE SECTOR INDICES
NYSE Energy Sector Index down 0.85%
NYSE Financial Sector Index down 1.33%
NYSE Healthcare Sector Index down 0.57%
(+) SILC (+19.6%) Posted Q4 EPS of $0.94 on revenue of $25.4
million, beating the Street view of EPS of $0.56 on revenue of
(+) JFBI (+18.8%) Agreed to be bought by North Carolina
bank-holding company HomeTrust Bancshares Inc. (
) for $8.00 a share
(+) FFIV (+6.7%) Janney Capital Markets raised its investment
rating on the stock to buy from neutral.
(-) HRC (-13.8%) Reported lower-than-expected financial results
for Q1 ended Dec. 31, 2013, and lowered its outlook for FY14.
(-) CBLI (-34.5%) Terminated negotiations related to the
company's proposal for further development of Entolimod as a
medical radiation countermeasure.
(-) ACAT (-17.3%) Fiscal Q3 earnings fall short, cuts FY