Stocks Advance on Positive Earnings, Strong Housing Data, Geo-Political Calm

Stocks were trading higher again Tuesday, with market-friendly economic data and upbeat financial results carrying the Nasdaq Composite index to a 14-year high and the Dow Jones Industrial Average above its 50-day moving average for the first time in 14 days. With geo-political pressures waning, risk-adverse investors were abandoning gold and U.S. government bonds for equities, driving the 10-year Treasury note 3 basis points cheaper and gold back below $1,300 per ounce.

Further evidence that the housing market is recovering back to its pre-recession levels was illustrated by a 16% gain in housing starts in July - more than double what Wall Street was expecting - to a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 1.093 million. June housing starts was revised higher by 52,000 to 945,000.

But even as the economy continues to strengthen, inflationary pressures remain almost non-existent. Consumer prices rose only 0.1% during July, while prices excluding food and fuel rose just 0.2%, both matcjing analyst expectations.

Positive earnings results also were fueling today's market gains, with better-than-expected quarterly results from Aeropostale ( ARO ), Dick's Sporting Goods ( DKS ) and Dow component stock Home Depot ( HD ), encouraging early gains and driving consumer discretionary stocks higher.

In Europe, missed UK inflation data buoyed the FTSE-100 as expectations for the Bank of England to raise interest rates is pushed out further in respect of lackluster economic data and lack of inflation. Coupled with Monday's triple-digit gain in U.S. blue-chips, equity indices across the continent all closed in the green.

Crude oil was down $0.64 to $95.87 per barrel. Natural gas was up $0.10 to $3.92 per 1 million BTU. Gold was down $3.50 to $1,295.40 an ounce, while silver was down $0.24 to $19.40 an ounce. Copper was down $0.01 to $3.12 per pound.

Among energy ETFs, the United States Oil Fund was down 0.69% to $34.82 with the United States Natural Gas Fund was up 2.75% to $21.43. Amongst precious-metal funds, the Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF was down 0.60% to 26.78 while SPDR Gold Shares were down 0.24% to $124.66. The iShares Silver Trust was down 1.15% to $18.66.

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

NYSE Composite Index up 34.00 (+0.31%) to 10,920.51

Dow Jones Industrial Average up 76.08 (+0.45%) too 16,914.82

S&P 500 up 8.63 (+0.44%) to 1,980.37

Nasdaq Composite Index up 12.73 (+0.28%) to 4,521.04


Nikkei 225 Index up 0.83%

Hang Seng Index up 0.67%

Shanghai China Composite Index up 0.26%

FTSE 100 Index up 0.56%

CAC 40 up 0.56%

DAX up 0.96%


NYSE Energy Sector Index up 1.53%

NYSE Financial Sector Index up 0.19%

NYSE Healthcare Sector Index up 0.17%


(+) SKH (+20.65%) Beat earnings estimates, but missed on revenue.

(+) ARO (+22.99%) Former CEO returned to lead the firm, revised earnings outlook above analyst expectations.

(+) HGSH (+81.76%) Bags first shanty area rebuilding project agreement.


(-) RDEN (-23.97%) Swung to larger than expected fiscal Q4 loss, revenue falls.

(-) LOCO (-9.07%) Analyst give lackluster ratings.

(-) ONTY (-17.99%) Form 8-K showed that EMR 63325-009 did not meet endpoint.

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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