U.S. equity markets opened mixed this morning with the DJIA and the S&P 500 higher, and the Nasdaq lower, dragged down by concern over the earnings of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) (more coverage here). Apple’s troubles, though, may be traced more accurately to options trading (more coverage here). In Europe, preliminary PMI readings were better if still not positive (more coverage here). Unemployment levels in Spain reached an all-time high (more coverage here). In Asia Chinese PMI came in higher than expected (more coverage here) and Japan’s trade deficit was wider than expected. In the U.S., new claims for unemployment benefits fell sharply (more coverage here). The S&P 500 briefly topped 1,500 this morning for the first time in more than five years.
The U.S. dollar index rose 0.02% today, now at 79.941. The GSCI commodity index is down 0.3% at 661.98, with commodities prices mixed again today. WTI crude oil closed up 0.8% today, at $95.95 a barrel following a rise in crude stocks (more coverage here). Brent crude trades up 0.5% at $113.28 a barrel. Natural gas is down 2.8% today at about $3.45 per million BTUs after this week’s storage report (more coverage here). Gold settled down 1% today at $1,669.90 an ounce.
The unofficial closing bells put the DJIA up 46 points to 13,825.33 (0.33%), the NASDAQ fell more than 23 points (-0.74%) to 3,130.38, and the S&P 500 was flat at 1,494.82.
There were a several analyst upgrades and downgrades today, including Procter & Gamble (NYSE: PG) started as ‘neutral’ at Credit Suisse; Emerson Electric Co. (NYSE: EMR) raised to ‘buy’ at Deutsche Bank; CVS Caremark Corp. (NYSE: CVS) removed from U.S. Focus List at Goldman Sachs; Randgold Resources Ltd. (NASDAQ: GOLD) raised to ‘buy’ at BofA/ML; and Tiffany & Co. (NYSE: TIF) cut to ‘hold’ at Canaccord Genuity.
Earnings reports since markets closed last Friday resulted in several price moves today, including these: Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) is down 12% at $452.53 (more coverage here); Amgen Corp. (NASDAQ: AMGN) is down 0.5% at $82.63; SanDisk Corp. (NASDAQ: SNDK) is up 3.2% at $49.19 (more coverage here); F5 Networks Inc. (NASDAQ: FFIV) is up 4.9% at $103.60; Noble Corp. (NYSE: NE) is down 5.4% at $37.70; NVR Inc. (NYSE: NVR) is up 2% at $1,001.58 after posting a new 52-week high of $1,023.99 earlier today; Western Digital Corp. (NASDAQ: WDC) is up 2.2% at $48.08 after posting a new 52-week high of $49.42 earlier today; 3M Corp. (NYSE: MMM) is up 0.2% at $99.68 after posting a new 52-week high of $99.80 earlier today (more coverage here); Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. (NYSE: BMY) is up 2.6% at $35.82; Lockheed Martin Corp. (NYSE: LMT) is down 2.6% at $93.56; Raytheon Inc. (NYSE: RTN) is down 3% at $56.49; Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) is up 0.9% at $11.46 after posting a new 52-week high of $11.62 earlier today (more coverage here); Union Pacific Corp. (NYSE: UNP) is down 0.7% at $134.35; United Continental Holdings Inc. (NYSE: UAL) is up 1.3% at $25.33 after posting a new 52-week high of 26.36 earlier today; and Xerox Corp. (NYSE: XRX) is up 2.6% at $7.78.
After markets close today and before they open tomorrow morning we are scheduled to hear from AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T), Juniper Networks Inc. (NASDAQ: JNPR), Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT), Starbucks Corp. (NASDAQ: SBUX), Halliburton Co. (NYSE: HAL), Honeywell International Inc. (NYSE: HON), Kimberly-Clark Corp. (NYSE: KMB), and Weyerhaeuser Corp. (NYSE: WY).
Some standouts from today include the following stocks:
Netflix Inc. (NASDAQ: NFLX) is up 42.5% at $147.16 after posting a new 52-week high of $149.17 earlier today. The video distribution firm posted much better earnings than expected and grew subscriber numbers significantly. More coverage here.
Swift Transportation Co. (NYSE: SWFT) is up 28.7% at $13.16 after posting a new 52-week high of $13.24 earlier today. The trucking company posted strong earnings last night.
Stay tuned for Friday. We have noted the following event on the schedule (all times Eastern):
- 10:00 a.m. – New home sales