Markets

Midday Update: Wall Street Cashes In as Profitable Quarter-End Comes to a Close

The major averages were flat to slightly lower on Friday, wedged into razor-thin ranges, as quarter-end profit-taking threatens a four-day winning streak for the Nasdaq and S&P 500. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was slightly in the red on losses in the energy and banking sector.

Friday's economic data gave investors a reason to pause as well with indications that consumer spending has slowed and confidence has ebbed.

Personal income increased an as-expected 0.4% in February, following a revised 0.5% gain the month prior. Spending, however, was higher by just 0.1%, missing +0.2% expectations, and down from a 0.2% gain in January.

The Chicago purchasing managers index rose to 57.7 in March from 57.4 the month prior, beating 57.0 estimates. But a consumer sentiment index from the University of Michigan dropped slightly to 96.9 from the initial read of 97.6.

Euro-zone markets were higher and ended the quarter in the plus column for a third straight quarter, buoyed by upbeat labor market and retail sales data from Germany. The UK's FTSE-100, however, slipped into the red, but also closed the quarter higher, its longest quarterly winning streak in six years.

Crude oil was down $0.04 to $50.32 per barrel. Natural gas was unchanged at $3.20 per 1 million BTU. Gold was up $0.90 to $1,248.90 an ounce, while silver was down $0.01 to $18.20 an ounce. Copper was down $0.02 to $2.65 per pound.

Among energy ETFs, the United States Oil Fund was up 0.02% to $10.57 with the United States Natural Gas Fund was down 0.26% to $7.55. Amongst precious-metal funds, the Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF was up 1.75% 22.95 while SPDR Gold Shares were up 0.21% to $118.72. The iShares Silver Trust was up 0.41% to $17.22.

Here's where the markets stand at mid-day:

US MARKETS

NYSE Composite Index was down 5.32 points (-0.05%) to 11,514.52

Dow Jones Industrial Index was down 37.64 points (-0.18%) to 20,690.44

S&P 500 was down 0.31 points (-0.01%) to 2,367.80

Nasdaq Composite Index was up 6.84 points (-0.12%) to 5,921.23

GLOBAL SENTIMENT

FTSE 100 was down 46.60 points (-0.63%) to 7,322.92

DAX was up 56.44 points (+0.46%) 12,312.87

CAC 40 was up 32.87 points (+0.65%) to 5,122.51

Nikkei 225 was down 153.96 points (-0.81%) to 18,909.26

Hang Seng Index was down 189.50 points (-0.78%) to 24,111.59

Shanghai China Composite Index was up 12.28 points (0.38%) to 3,222.51

NYSE SECTOR INDICES

NYSE Energy Sector Index was down 41.47 points (-0.36%) to 10,802.76

NYSE Financial Sector Index was down 14.55 points (-0.20%) to 7,234.17

NYSE Healthcare Sector Index was down 7.83 points (-0.07%) to 12,755.28

UPSIDE MOVERS

(+) AKTX (+47.29%) FDA grants Fast Track designation for Coversin to treat paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria

(+) TRR (+45.82%) To be acquired by Mountain Capital for $17.55 per share

(+) SORL (+16.22%) Q4 EPS and revenue rose significantly from year ago, beating estimates

(+) FMC (+13.22%) Acquired portion of DuPont's ( DD ) crop protection business while selling substantially all of its health and nutrition business to DuPont

DOWNSIDE MOVERS

(-) DRIO (-23.37%) Prices 1.5 million share offering at 22.1% discount

(-) BLRX (-20.87%) Prices $25 million offering at 26% discount

(-) AKER (-17.32%) Announces private placement of 1.4 million shares at $1.40 per share

(-) CTSO (-17.27%) Announced plans for underwritten public offering

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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