Stock Market News for April 29, 2016

Benchmarks finished in the red on Thursday following a continuing slump in Apple's stocks. Moreover, Bank of Japan's decision not to reduce interest rates further or introduce any new stimulus measures also had a negative impact on investor sentiment. Meanwhile, for the first time the Dow fell more than 1% since Feb 23 and more than 200 points since Feb 11.

For a look at the issues currently facing the markets, make sure to read today's Ahead of Wall Street article

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) decreased 1.2%, or 210.79 points, to close at 17,830.76. The S&P 500 fell 0.9% to close at 2,075.81. The tech-laden Nasdaq Composite Index closed at 4,805.29, losing 1.2%. The fear-gauge CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) increased 10.5% to settle at 15.22. A total of around 8.1 billion shares were traded on Thursday, higher than the last 20-session average of 6.9 billion shares. Decliners outpaced advancing stocks on the NYSE. For 63% stocks that declined, 33% advanced.

Shares of Apple Inc. ( AAPL ) slumped 3.1% after activist investor Carl Icahn sold his entire stake in Apple following the company's inability to boost sales. The tech giant registered its sixth straight session declining stretch for the first time in three years. Icahn, who held a 45.8% stake in Apple, stated that he no longer hold any position in Apple. Icahn said his decision to exit Apple was mainly because of "China's attitude" towards the company.

Slump in Apple's shares had a negative impact on the Technology Select Sector SPDR (XLK), which fell 1.3% and was one of the biggest decliner among the S&P 500 sectors. Some of its major components including Verizon Communications Inc. ( VZ ), Visa Inc. ( V ), Intel Corporation ( INTC ), Alphabet Inc. ( GOOGL ), Microsoft Corporation ( MSFT ) and Broadcom Limited ( AVGO ) decreased 1.3%, 2%, 2.3%, 2% and 2.3%, respectively.

Information technology stocks within the S&P 500 lost 1.4%. Key stocks, including Cisco Systems, Inc. ( CSCO ), Visa Inc. ( V ), Oracle Corporation ( ORCL ) and International Business Machines Corporation ( IBM ) fell 2.4%, 1.4%, 1.3% and 2.3%, respectively.

Moreover, Bank of Japan (BOJ) kept its interest rates unchanged and announced no new stimulus measures to control the yen's movement. Consequently, the yen increased almost 4% against the dollar to 108.12 yen. Stronger yen dragged the Nikkei 225 3.6% lower, which in turn had an adverse impact on global markets.

In economic news, the "advance" estimate by the Bureau of Economic Analysis showed that first quarter output of goods and services increased at an annual rate of 0.5%, lower than the consensus estimate of 0.6% increase. This is the slowest pace at which GDP has increased in the first quarter in two years. First-quarter GDP was also less than the 2015 fourth quarter GDP of 1.4%.

The U.S Department of Labor reported that seasonally adjusted initial claims increased 9,000 to 257,000 in the week ending April 23. Initial claims were less than the consensus estimate of 260,000. Additionally, the 4-week moving average remained at its lowest level since December 1973.

In company news, shares of Facebook, Inc. ( FB ) increased 7.2% after first quarter revenues soared 52% year-over-year to $5.382 billion. Revenues also beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $5.234 billion. Further, Facebook's adjusted earnings of 57 cents per share outpaced the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 44 cents.

Additionally, DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc's ( DWA ) shares jumped 24.1% after a Comcast Corporation ( CMCSA ) division NBCUniversal decided to acquire the company for $3.8 billion. Rise in Facebook and DreamWorks Animation's shares had a positive impact on key U.S. indexes.

Separately, St. Jude Medical Inc's ( STJ ) shares jumped 25.6% after Abbott Laboratories ( ABT ) agreed to acquire the company for $25 billion in cash and stock, or $85 per share. St. Jude Medical was the biggest advancer among the S&P 500 companies, while Harman International Industries Incorporated ( HAR ) was the biggest decliner. Harman International's shares slumped 13.3% after its fiscal third quarter non-GAAP earnings and revenues of $1.36 per share and $1.628 billion missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.44 and $1.698 billion, respectively.

Further, Ford Motor Co's ( F ) shares increased 3.2% after announcing first quarter earnings of $0.68 per share, outpacing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $0.43. Revenues of $37.7 billion beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $36.10 billion.

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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.

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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