Stocks are lower for the second session in a row after new data
showed the US economy grew slower than analysts had expected, and
reports from two tech names failed to inspire investor
The U.S. economy grew at a slightly faster 1.9% clip in Q1
compared to 1.8% revealed in the initial reading, although a touch
shy of Wall Street expectations for a revised 2%. In Europe, just
as progress on Greek aid cheered investors, a suspension in Italian
banking share trade rattled markets anew.
Trading in Italian bank stocks was suspended Friday after a
sudden drop in share prices, MarketWatch reports. A spokeswoman for
Borsa Italiana said the suspension was temporary and was triggered
by "technical problems about volatility."
In earnings, Oracle (ORCL) is down after the company reported a
rise in fiscal Q4 profit that topped analyst expectations. However,
traders look to be focusing on the report's details. Hardware sales
dropped during the quarter in contrast to Oracle's previous
forecast of a rise of up to 12%.
On its conference call, ORCL said it expects Q1 revenue growth
in the range of of 9% to 12%. Non-GAAP EPS is seen in the range of
$0.45 to $0.48 per share. The Street is at 9% revenue growth and
earnings of $0.46 per share. Earlier, the company reported Q4
revenue of $10.77 bln, just ahead of the analyst consensus of
$10.74 bln on Thomson Reuters. EPS $0.75, vs. expectations of $0.71
Also, Micron (MU) is lower after it reports late Thursday Q3
sales of $2.13 billion, below the analyst consensus of $2.36
billion on Thomson Reuters. EPS was $0.07 per share, vs.
expectations of $0.16 per share.
Elsewhere in company news:
NYSE Euronext (NYX) and Deutsche Boerse AG will pay $910 million
in dividends to shareholders to settle lawsuits challenging the
$9.53 billion buyout of the parent company of the New York Stock
Exchange, according to court papers, Bloomberg reports.
Shares of Abbott Laboratories (
) are down even as new data showed that an experimental drug from
Abbott and Reata Pharmaceuticals reversed declining kidney function
in diabetics, the companies said in a statement. The stude showed
that bardoxolone bolstered kidney performance by about 30
) gains after the WSJ reports that it is in exclusive talks with
Providence Equity Partners. The acquisition may happen next week,
the WSJ said.
) says it will make a US$306 million strategic investment in Qunar,
which will make BIDU the majority shareholder. The parties
currently expect that the transaction will close in Q3.
Pfizer (PFE) and Pain Therapeutics (
) shares are lower as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration delayed
approval of a new pain killer for the second time. The companies
announced that a complete response letter was received from the
U.S. Food and Drug Administration on the resubmission to the new
drug application for REMOXY (oxycodone) Extended-Release Capsules
CII. Pfizer said it is working to evaluate the issues described in
the letter and plans to have further discussions with FDA around
Bank of Ireland Plc (
) slips after it says it may raise a total of 2.5 billion euros
from its offer to swap subordinated debt for equity or cash,
according to Glas Securities, Bloomberg reports.
Commodities are down. August gold contracts are down 0.65% to
$1,511 an ounce while August crude oil contacts are down 0.23% to
$90.78 a barrel.
In energy ETFs, the United States Oil Fund (USO) is down 1.17%
to $35.59 and the United States Natural Gas fund (UNG) is down
0.01%, to $10.70.
In precious metal ETFs, the SPDR Gold Trust (GLD) is down 0.87%
at $147.04. Market Vectors Gold Miners (GDX) is down 1.98% to
$52.94. iShares Silver Trust (SLV) is down 1.08% to $34.
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