Neither rain, nor sleet, nor bad economic data can stop the 2013
bull run, as U.S. stocks are trading up in slighlty range-bound
fashion, with the Dow and S&P 500 continuing to make fresh
all-time highs at mid-day.
Market participants have had a slew of economic data to digest
this morning, including April housing starts, initial jobless
claims and the consumer price index. Despite most of the numbers
falling well short of expectations, early selling pressure has
dissipated, with all three major U.S. equity indexes trading in the
black at mid-day.
Prior to the market open, it was reported that construction on
new U.S. homes dropped 16.5% in April to a seasonally adjusted
annual rate of 853,000. Economists polled by MarketWatch had
expected construction starts in April to decline to a rate of
965,000 from a prior March estimate of 1.036 million.
Meanwhile, on the domestic labor front, the U.S. Labor
Department reported that initial jobless claims climbed by 32,000
last week to 360,000. Economists surveyed by MarketWatch had
expected claims to rise to 330,000 from a revised 328,000 in the
In addition, the Labor Department reported that the April
consumer price index fell by a seasonally adjusted 0.4%, as lower
energy costs offset an increase in food prices. Economists were
expecting a 0.3% decline. Meanwhile, inflation over the past 12
months dipped 1.1% in April, its lowest level since November
Overseas, Asian markets ended mixed despite news that Japan's
economy grew at an annual rate of 3.5% in the first three months of
2013. The expansion was much higher than the 2.7% increase expected
by analysts. Meanwhile in Europe, bourses turned lower following
the release of the disappointing U.S. economic data.
Commodities were mixed at mid-day. Oil was up $1.06 per barrel
at $95.36, while natural gas continued to back off its recent bull
run, down $0.132 at $3.938 per million BTUs.
Gold was down $11.40 per ounce at $1,384.30, while silver was
dipping $0.043 at $22.615. Copper was up $0.035 at $3.30.
Here's where the markets stood at mid-day:
NYSE Composite down 14.50 (-0.15%) to 9,536.83
Dow Jones Industrial Average up 6.99 (+0.05%) to 15,282.68
S&P 500 down 0.28 (-0.02%) to 1,658.50
Nasdaq Composite Index up 9.91 (+0.28%) to 3,481.53
Nikkei 225 Index down 0.39%.
Hang Seng Index up 0.17%.
Shanghai China Composite Index up 1.22%.
FTSE 100 down 0.07%.
DAX down 0.02%.
CAC 40 down 0.018%.
NYSE SECTOR INDICES
NYSE Energy Sector Index (^NYE) up 15.84 (+0.12%) at
NYSE Financial Sector Index (^NYK) down 13.36 (-0.23%) to
NYSE Healthcare Sector Index (^NYP) down 46.40 (-0.49%) to
(+ ) RGDX (+16.1%) Stock jumped after company said it had
entered into an agreement with health insurer Blue Shield of
California to join all of Blue Shield of California's provider
(+) EGLE (+55%, hit new 52-week high) Issue surges to a new
52-week high of $5.93 after the company reported Q1 earnings of
$0.08 per share, versus the Capital IQ consensus of $2.05 loss per
share, if comparable. Revenues were $72.2 million, versus the
analyst estimate of $32.99 million. In the same period last year,
the company reported EPS of $1.11 on revenues of $52.6 million.
(+) SCTY (+11.4%) Continued its ascent after the company
announced a lease financing agreement with Goldman Sachs (
) to fund more than $500 million in solar power projects. The
financing makes it possible for homeowners, businesses, government
and other non-profit organizations to install solar panels with no
upfront cost. The agreement was initiated in 2012, and expanded at
the end of April, according to SCTY.
(-) PP (-6.2%, hit new 52-week low) Shares continue to tumble
after the company Wednesday issued estimates for Q3 showing a
significant decline in earnings, touching a new 52-week low of
$2.40. The company reported better-than-expected Q2 revenue of
$1.50 billion versus estimates of $1.48 billion and earnings at an
as expected $0.01 for Q2 2013. However, estimates for Q3 2013 are
for revenue to fall to $1.46 billion and earnings to show a loss of
$0.03 per share.
(-) NCT (-2.8%, hit new 52-week low) Stock plunges to new
52-week low of $5.55 after the company says the spin-off of New
Residential Investment Corp. was successfully completed on May 15.
Starting Thursday, New Residential will begin trading on the New
York Stock Exchange under the symbol NRZ.
(-) VVUS (- 3%) Issue slipped after it earlier priced its
offering of $220 million of 4.50% convertible senior unsecured
notes due May 1, 2020 in a private placement.