Active broad-market exchange-traded funds at mid-day:
SPDR S&P 500 (
): +0.51%, touching a new 52-week high
iShares MSCI Emerging Markets Index (
iPath S&P 500 VIX Short Term Futures TM (
): -2.73%, with a new 52-week low
Financial Select Sector SPDR (
): +0.82%, hit new 52-week highs
iShares Silver Trust (
Broad Market Indicators
Broad-market exchange-traded funds, including SPY, IWM, IVV and
others, are firmer. Actively traded PowerShares QQQ (QQQ) is up
U.S. stocks are higher, lifted by news of a possible merger
between Office Depot (ODP) and OfficeMax (OMX), whose shares
continue to log gains in the session. The National Association of
Homebuilders February index was at a reading of 46, missing
expectations of 48, according to Briefing.com. Earnings remain in
focus, with Dell (DELL) and Herbalife (HLF) set to release their
results in the after hours session.
Winners and Losers
Select Financial Sector SPDRs (
) is up 0.82%, with a new 52-week high of $17.92. Direxion Daily
Financial Bull 3X shares (FAS) is up 1.79%, with a new 52-week high
of $155.52. Its bearish counterpart, FAZ, is down 1.63%, with a new
52-week low of $11.40.
Among financial stocks, American International Group Inc. (AIG)
is up 0.91%. The company commenced cash tender offers for the
maximum principal or liquidation amount of certain of AIG's junior
subordinated debentures denominated in sterling and euros tendered
up to an aggregate purchase price of $325 million; certain of AIG's
junior subordinated debentures denominated in U.S. dollars tendered
up to an aggregate purchase price of $650 million; and the capital
securities issued by three statutory trusts controlled by
SunAmerica Financial Group Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of AIG
(SAFG), that hold junior subordinated debentures issued by SAFG and
guaranteed by AIG and senior debentures originally issued by
SunAmerica Inc. and assumed by AIG, tendered up to an aggregate
purchase price of $275 million.
are firmer: Technology Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLK), up 0.40%;
iShares Dow Jones US Technology ETF (IYW), up 0.40%; iShares
S&P North American Technology ETF (IGM), up 0.50%, with a new
52-week high of $71.81; and iShares S&P North American
Technology-Software Index (IGV), up 0.37%.
Among semiconductor ETFs, SPDR S&P Semiconductor (XSD) is up
1.10% and Semiconductor Sector Index Fund (SOXX) is up 0.77%.
SPDR S&P International Technology Sector ETF (IPK) is
In sector news, Yandex (YNDX) is down 9.46% after the company
reported Q4 earnings of $0.26 per share, versus the Capital IQ
consensus of $0.28. Revenues were $290.4 mln, versus the analyst
estimate of $285.75 mln. The company said it expects to achieve
full-year ruble-based revenue growth of 28% to 32% in 2013, on a
like-for-like basis, excluding the revenue associated with
Yandex.Money from 2012 and 2013 results
Dow Jones U.S. Energy Fund (IYE) is up 0.67% and Energy Select
Sector SPDR (XLE) is up 0.78%, nearing its 52-week high.
In sector news, Pacific Ethanol (PEIX) is up 3.38% after the
company said it has signed a multi-year agreement with Chromatin,
Inc., a provider of crop breeding technology, sorghum seed
products, to produce, deliver and use locally grown sorghum in the
production of ethanol. The agreement will cover up to 30,000 acres
of Chromatin sorghum to be grown over multiple years and supplied
Crude was down 1.67%; Natural gas was up 2.79%. United States
Oil Fund (USO) is down 0.14%. United States Natural Gas Fund (UNG)
is up 3.21%.
Gold was down 1.98% and silver was down 3.01%. Among rare metal
funds, SPDR Gold Trust (GLD) is down 0.30%; iShares Silver Trust (
) is down 1.56%.
Healthcare ETFs are in positive territory and posting new
52-week highs: Health Care SPDR (XLV), up 0.35%, with a new 52-week
high of $43.58; Vanguard Health Care ETF (VHT), up 0.35%, also
touching a new 52-week high of $78.26; and iShares Dow Jones US
Healthcare (IYH), up 0.33%, reaching a new 52-week high of $91.13.
Biotech ETF iShares NASDAQ Biotechnology Index (IBB) is down
In corporate news, Novogen (NVGN) is steady higher, now up
135.02%, trimming earlier gains of some 150%. Results from the
company's clinical trial of drug CS-6 showed that the experimental
anti-ovarian cancer drug was highly active against ovarian cancer
Power Play -
Consumer ETFs are higher, touching new 52-week highs: Consumer
Staples Select Sector SPDR (XLP), up 0.80, with a new 52-week high
of 37.96; iShares Dow Jones US Consumer Goods (IYK), up 0.64% with
a new 52-week high of $81.94; and Vanguard Consumer Staples ETF
(VDC), up 0.83%, with a new 52-week high of $95.63.
In M&A news, OfficeMax (OMX) and Office Depot (ODP) are
still surging higher following a Wall Street Journal report
yesterday that the two companies are in advanced talks to merge.
The report says the deal is expected to be stock-for-stock, though
precise terms couldn't be learned, including what percentage of a
merged group shareholders of each company would own. OMX is up
22.23%, with a new 52-week high of $14.08, while ODP is up 11.87%
with a new 52-week high of $6.10.