24/7 Wall St. Closing Bell -- May 31, 2012 (CSTR, ARBA, SCMR, CLF, OVTI, CIEN, JOY, MOV, MY, MOD, SIRI, AONE, END)

The three major US stock indexes opened lower this morning as investors were disappointed at the downward revision to first-quarter US GDP growth from 2.2% to 1.9%. A better-than-expected showing by US retailers in May didn’t influence stocks at all because the data on unemployment benefits claims, job cuts, and employment were considerably weaker than expected (our coverage here). The US dollar index has slipped today, now down -0.01% at 83.011. The GSCI commodity index is down about -2.3% at 603.28, with commodities prices mixed. WTI crude oil closed down -1.5% at $86.53/barrel, ending the month down -17% with the biggest monthly drop since December 2008 (more coverage here). Brent crude trades down -1.4% at $102.01/barrel. Natural gas rose 0.66% today to $2.43/thousand cubic feet. Gold settled down -0.1% today, at $1,564.20/ounce.

The unofficial closing bells put the DJIA down nearly 24 points to 12,395.87 (-0.19%), the NASDAQ fell about 10 points (-0.35%) to 2,827.34, and the S&P 500 fell -0.22% or nearly 3 points to 1,310.46.

There were several analyst upgrades and downgrades today, including Coinstar Inc. (NASDAQ: CSTR) raised to ‘buy’ with a price target of $71 at Canaccord Genuity; Ariba Inc. (NASDAQ: ARBA) and Sycamore Networks Inc. (NASDAQ: SCMR) both cut to ‘sell’ at Argus; Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. (NYSE: CLF) raised to ‘buy’ at BofA/ML; and OmniVision Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ: OVTI) raised to ‘overweight’ with a target price of $21 at JPMorgan.

Earnings reports since markets closed last night have led to some price changes as of the last half hour of trading today: Ciena Corp. (NASDAQ: CIEN)is up 14.7% at $13.62; Joy Global Inc. (NYSE: JOY) is down -4.6% at $56.17; and Movado Group Inc. (NYSE: MOV) is down -1.7% at $27.98.

On Thursday, we are scheduled to get earnings reports from China Ming Yang Wind Power Group Ltd. (NYSE: MY) and Modine Manufacturing Co. (NYSE: MOD) among others.

Other standouts from today include the following stocks:

Sirius XM Radio Inc. (NASDAQ: SIRI) is up about 1% at $1.91. Liberty Media Corp. (NASDAQ: LMCA) is trying to gain control of the satellite radio company. More coverage here.

A123 Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: AONE) is down -6.1% at $1.07. The lithium-ion battery maker has filed a “going concern” notice with the SEC. More coverage here.

Endeavor International Corp. (NYSE: END) is up 71% at $10.04. The oil & gas producer increased its interest in a producing North Sea field. Our coverage here.

Stay tuned for Friday. We have noted the following events on the schedule for tomorrow (all times Eastern):

  • 8:30 a.m. – Non-farm payroll report
  • 8:30 a.m. – Personal income and spending report
  • 9:00 a.m. – PMI manufacturing index
  • 10:00 a.m. – ISM manufacturing index
  • 10:00 a.m. – Construction spending

Paul Ausick

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