Financial Sector Update for 03/06/2018: STL,WASH,WLH,CCT

Top Financial Stocks

JPM +0.12%

BAC +0.03%

WFC -0.76%

C -0.47%

USB +0.29%

Financial stocks were slightly higher shortly before the closing bell on Tuesday, recouping their morning gains, with the NYSE Financial Sector Index was rising just over 0.3% this afternoon while financial companies in the S&P 500 Index were adding nearly 0.5% in value. The Philadelphia Housing Sector Index was hanging on to a nearly 1.2% advance.

In economic news:

Factory orders fell 1.4% during January, coming in 0.1 percentage points higher than expert opinion, in the final report of a mixed to soft month for manufacturing metrics. Excluding transportation equipment, the decline narrowed to 0.5% following gains of 0.8% and 0.4% during the final two months of 2017. Non-durable goods continue to hold up well, with orders rising 0.8%, while durable orders fell 3.6% although that was 0.1 of a percentage point below the flash reading for that component last week. which is 1 tenth less weak than last week's advance report for this component. Shipments of core capital goods, which excludes defense items and aircraft, slipped 0.1%, reversing a positive 0.1% initial reading for the component while orders of core capital goods were revised 0.1 percentage points lower to a 0.3% decline following a 0.5% drop in December.

The U.S. Senate also is set to vote Tuesday on a rollback of key provisions of the Dodd-Frank regulations enacted by lawmakers almost a decade ago to keep financial-service companies from making the risky investments that helped trigger the 2008-09 financial crisis. President Donald Trump also is scheduled to take questions from reporters at 3:30 p.m. ET, according to the White House.

Among financial stocks moving on news:

+ Sterling Bancorp ( STL ) was higher in late Tuesday trading, pushing out to a nearly 5% gain and a session high of $25.38 a share, after the bank holding company said it was acquiring Advantage Funding Management Co. for an undisclosed amount. Privately held Advantage provides commercial vehicle and transportation financing services and had a total of $458 million in outstanding loans and leases on Dec. 31, 2107. The purchase is expected to close in April.

In other sector news:

+ William Lyon Homes ( WLH ) held on for a slim late-day gain, previously Tuesday rising almost 2% to a session high of $26.05 a share, after disclosing plans for a $350 million private placement of senior notes due 2023. Net proceeds will be used to help fund the homebuilder's scheduled Q1 acquisition of RSI Communities and three other real estate assets as well repaying all $150 million of the company's 5.75% senior notes due 2019.

- Washington Trust Bancorp Inc. ( WASH ) drifted lower after Tuesday completing its executive transition, with Edward Handy III becoming board chairman and chief executive officer and taking over for Joseph MarcAurele following his March 2 retirement. Handy previously was president and chief operating officer of Washington Trust since November 2013 and is being replaced in those former positions by Mark Gim.

- Corporate Capital Trust ( CCT ) was narrowly lower Tuesday afternoon, paring most of a nearly 3% decline to a session low of $15.50 a share after reporting Q4 net investment income of $0.38 per share, down from $0.39 per share during the same quarter last year and also trailing the three-analyst consensus expecting $0.40 per share in net investment income. Total investment income rose to $106.8 million from $101.8 million during the year-ago period.

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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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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