Midday Update: Stocks Trim Gains, But Respect Technical Supports

Wall Street has surrendered a portion of its morning advance but remains in positive territory following a rebound for oil coupled with strength in European equities. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was staying above 17,600 while the Nasdaq Composite remained over its 200-day moving average as shares of materials and technology companies were outperforming the rest of the industry sectors in the S&P 500, offsetting losses for health care stocks.

The new earnings season kicks off after today's close with Alcoa's financial results. Investors are bracing for lackluster earnings as a result of the sluggish global economy coupled with impact the strengthening dollar will have on the aluminum company's Q1 profits.

Europe's bourses were all higher thanks largely to a rally in Italian banks ahead of a meeting between the Italian Treasury, central bank and the country's largest lenders this week to hammer out a bail-out package. Gains spilled into the broader markets driving the STOXX 50 and German Dax higher.

Crude oil was up 72 cents to $40.43 per barrel. Natural gas was down 8 cents to $1.91 per 1 million BTU. Gold was up $16.40 to $1,260.10 per ounce, while silver was up 50 cents to $15.89 per ounce. Copper was up 1 cent to $2.09 per pound.

Among energy ETFs, the United States Oil Fund was up 2.29% to $10.26 with the United States Natural Gas Fund was up 3.86% to $6.49. Among precious-metal funds, the Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF was up 5.04% to 22.52 while SPDR Gold Shares were up 1.55% to $120.27. The iShares Silver Trust was up 3.59% to $15.15.

Here's where the U.S. markets stood at mid-day:

NYSE Composite Index up 48.00 (+0.47%) to 10,167.69

Dow Jones Industrial Average up 62.08 (+0.35%) to 17,639.04

S&P 500 up 4.98 (+0.24%) to 2,052.58

Nasdaq Composite Index up 14.60 (+0.30%) to 4,865.29


Nikkei 225 Index down 0.44%

Hang Seng Index up 0.35%

Shanghai China Composite Index up 1.64%

FTSE 100 Index down 0.07%

CAC 40 up 0.22%

DAX up 0.63%


NYSE Energy Sector Index up 0.64%

NYSE Financial Sector Index up 0.77%

NYSE Healthcare Sector Index down 0.12%


(+) MNKD (+22.14%) Will hold an analyst call on April 19 to discuss U.S. commercialization strategy for Afrezza

(+) HTS (+10.06%) To be acquired by Annaly Capital Management ( NLY ) for $1.5 billion

(+) VKTX (+7.43%) Announced positive results from VK2809 Phase 1b study

(+) CANF (+5.16%) Announced statistically significant pre-clinical data on erectile dysfunction drug candidate CF602


(-) OMEX (-58.18%) Mexican authorities denied its application for an environmental license for the Don Diego dredging and phosphate sand extraction project

(-) INSY (-22.99%) Expects weak preliminary estimated revenue from Subsys for Q1 2016

(-) MDXG (-11.01%) Reported lower-than-expected Q1 revenue

(-) HTZ (-8.98%) Lowered Q1 and FY16 revenue per available car day

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

Copyright (C) 2016 All rights reserved. Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited.

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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