24/7 Wall St. Closing Bell -- July 6, 2012: Weak Job Numbers, No Love for Software

The three major US stock indexes opened sharply lower this morning following a tepid report on US job growth. The US economy managed to create just 80,000 jobs in June, below the consensus estimate of 100,000 (more coverage here). A warning on earnings from software company Informatica Corp. (NASDAQ: INFA) pushed down share prices for almost every kind of software maker (more coverage here). In Europe, Germany reported better-than-expected industrial production growth (more coverage here) but yields on Spanish rose to near 7% (more coverage here).

The US dollar index rose today, now up 0.7% at 83.395. The GSCI commodity index also rose slightly, up 0.3% at 620.15, with commodities prices mostly lower today. WTI crude oil dropped -3.2% today, closing at $84.45/barrel. Brent crude trades down -2.71% at $97.97/barrel. Natural gas is down -5.6% today to $2.78/thousand cubic feet. Gold settled down -1.9%, at $1,1,578.90/ounce.

The unofficial closing bells put the DJIA down more than 124 points to 12,772.32 (-0.96%), the NASDAQ fell nearly 39 points (-1.3%) to 2,937.33, and the S&P 500 fell -0.94% or nearly 13 points to 1,354.68.

There were several analyst upgrades and downgrades today, including AstraZeneca (NYSE: AZN) cut to ‘hold’ at Jefferies; Avon Products Inc. (NYSE: AVP) cut to ‘neutral’ at Bank of America; Seagate Technology PLC (NASDAQ: STX) cut to ‘neutral’ and target price cut to $27 at Robert W. Baird; Toll Brothers Inc. (NYSE: TOL) cut to ‘underperform’ at FBN Securities; and Aviva plc (NYSE: AV) raised to ‘hold’ at SocGen.

There were no earnings reports of note today. On Monday, the new earnings season kicks off with Alcoa Inc. (NYSE: AA) reporting after the markets close. Other companies reporting on Monday include Healthcare Services Group Inc. (NASDAQ: HCSG) and Yum! Brands Inc. (NYSE: YUM).

Some standouts from today include the following stocks:

Informatica Corp. (NASDAQ: INFA) is down -27.8% at $31.33 after posting a new 52-week low of $28.12 earlier today. The data integration software maker delivered an earnings warning after markets closed last night. More coverage here.

LaCrosse Footwear Inc. (NASDAQ: BOOT) is up 81% at $19.88, after posting a new 52-week high of $20 earlier today. The company is being acquired by Japan’s ABC-MART Inc. for $138 million. More coverage here.

Navistar International Corp. (NYSE: NAV) is down -15.1% at $24.43. The maker of heavy engines and trucks will incur higher costs to meet federal emissions requirements.

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

  • 11:30 a.m. – 3- and 6-month bill auction
  • 3:00 p.m. – Consumer credit report

Have a great weekend!

Paul Ausick

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