Active broad-market exchange-traded funds as Tuesday's regular session opened:
SPDR S&P 500 ( SPY ): +0.2%
SPDR Select Sector Fund - Financial ( XLF ): +0.5%
iShares MSCI Emerging Index Fund ( EEM ): +0.6%
VanEck Vectors Gold Miners ETF ( GDX ): -1.2%
iPath S&P 500 VIX Short Term Futures ETN ( VXX ): -0.2%
Broad Market Indicators
Broad-market exchange-traded funds, including SPY, IWM and IVV were inching higher. Actively traded PowerShares QQQ (QQQ) was up 0.2%.
U.S. stocks opened Tuesday's regular session, lifted by upbeat earnings from retailers Wal-Mart (WMT), Macy's (M), Home Depot (HD) and Lumber Liquidators (LL).
Several Federal Reserve officials will be speaking today. Philadelphia Fed President Patrick Harker will be speaking at 12 pm ET, and San Francisco Fed President John Williams at 3:30 pm ET. Minneapolis Fed President Neel Kashkari already gave a talk at a Minnesota Financial Planning Association meeting earlier.
Looking ahead, the preliminary "flash" readings of manufacturing and services Purchasing Managers' Indices for February will both be reported at 9:45 am ET. The services report is expected to rise to 55.8 from the 55.6 January final reading, while the manufacturing input is seen at 55.3 from a final 55.0 reading.
Power Play: Health Care
Health Care SPDR (XLV) and other health care funds Vanguard Health Care ETF (VHT) and iShares Dow Jones US Healthcare (IYH) were higher at the open. Biotechnology fund iShares NASDAQ Biotechnology Index (IBB) was up 0.2%.
Eyegate Pharmaceuticals (EYEG) rose 35% after it signed a licensing agreement with Valeant Pharmaceuticals (VRX) which grants Valeant exclusive, worldwide commercial and manufacturing rights to the EyeGate II Delivery System and EGP-437 combination product candidate for the treatment of post-operative pain and inflammation in ocular surgery patients. Under the license agreement, EyeGate received an upfront cash payment and has the potential to receive certain development-based milestone payments, as well as additional milestone payments based on the achievement of certain cumulative and annual sales milestones. Additionally, EyeGate will receive royalties on Valeant's net sales of the product. The amount of the upfront payment and ongoing milestone payments was not disclosed.
Winners and Losers
Select Financial Sector SPDRs ( XLF ) was up 0.5%. Direxion Daily Financial Bull 3X shares (FAS) was up 1% and its bearish counterpart, FAZ was down 1.8%.
FelCor Lodging Trust (FCH) was up 13.8% after Ashford Hospitality Trust (AHT) submitted a non-binding proposal to acquire the company for a total consideration of $9.27 per share. Separately, Ashford, which owns 4.5% of the outstanding common shares of FelCor, nominated a slate of seven independent directors for election to FelCor's board at the 2017 Annual Meeting of Stockholders.
Tech funds Technology Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLK), iShares Dow Jones US Technology ETF (IYW), iShares S&P North American Technology ETF (IGM) and iShares S&P North American Technology-Software Index (IGV) were firmer. SPDR S&P International Technology Sector ETF (IPK) was flat.
Among semiconductor ETFs, SPDR S&P Semiconductor (XSD) was also quiet and Semiconductor Sector Index Fund (SOXX) was up 0.7%.
Superconductor Technologies (SCON) was up 1.4% after it has been awarded a U.S. Patent for a key aspect of the RCE-CDR system architecture used in manufacturing its proprietary superconducting wire Conductus. "This patent reinforces the sustainable production advantages of our HTS wire manufacturing process," stated Jeff Quiram, CEO of Superconductor Technologies.
Dow Jones U.S. Energy Fund (IYE) was up 0.7% and Energy Select Sector SPDR (XLE) were up 0.8%.
Freeport-McMoran (FCX) was down 3.8% after it said it has been unable to reach a deal with the Indonesian national government regarding the company's copper and gold mining and smelting operations in that nation, and that it will consequently reduce operations. Freeport said the Indonesian government passed regulations in 2017 that breach an existing contract, and make operations unfeasible. Freeport said it "has been unable to export concentrates and is proceeding with its plan to suspend investments in Papua, reduce its production by approximately 60% from normal levels and implement cost savings plans involving significant reductions in its work force and spending levels with local suppliers."
Crude was up 2%. United States Oil Fund (USO) was up 1.9%. Natural gas was down 5% while United States Natural Gas Fund (UNG) was down 4.5%.
Gold was up 0.8%. SPDR Gold Trust (GLD) was up 0.6%. Silver was down 1.1% while iShares Silver Trust (SLV) was down 0.6%.
Consumer staples funds Consumer Staples Select Sector SPDR (XLP), Vanguard Consumer Staples ETF (VDC), and iShares Dow Jones US Consumer Goods (IYK) were higher.
Consumer Discretionary Select Sector SPDR (XLY) and retail funds SPDR S&P Retail (XRT), PowerShares Dynamic Retail (PMR) and Market Vectors Retail ETF (RTH) were also in positive territory.
Macy's (M) was up 2.2% after the omnichannel retail company forecast full-year adjusted EPS between $3.37 and $3.62. Analysts had predicted $3.04, according to Capital IQ data. Adjusted EPS decreased to $2.02 in the quarter ended Jan. 28, from $2.09 a year earlier. That topped the $1.95 average estimate of analysts surveyed by Capital IQ. Q4 sales fell 4% to $8.52 billion, missing the analyst consensus of $8.61 billion.
The company also anticipates full-year sales to be down between 3.2% and 4.3%. Analysts had predicted sales to drop 4.1% on average. Macy's also expects comparable sales on an owned basis to decline between 2.2% and 3.3%, with comparable sales on an owned plus licensed basis to decline between 2% and 3%.
The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.
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