Mid-Afternoon Market Update: Markets Remain in the Red, DryShips Posts Strong Rally
Toward the end of trading Thursday, the Dow traded down 0.54 percent to 14,433.96 while the NASDAQ dropped 0.89 percent to 3,225.34. The S&P also fell, dropping 0.68 percent to 1,548.83.
The S&P 500 seems to be stalling at 1,562 before heading lower this morning, with support set at 1,550, and 1,540 below.
The Dow also seems to be stalling, slowing down at the 14,547 and heads lower to test 14,450 support with 14,400 support below that.
Next, the Russell looks to have resistance at 952, while gapping down to test its 945 support, with 939 acting as a level below that.
Finally, the NASDAQ looks set to test its 3,258 resistance, and gap lower this morning to test its support at 3,212.
Yesterday, Oracle (NASDAQ: ORCL) reported downbeat fiscal third-quarter results.
Oracle's quarterly earnings came in at $2.5 billion, or $0.52 per share, versus $2.5 billion, or $0.49 per share, in the year-ago period. Its adjusted earnings came in at $0.65 per share.
Its revenue fell 1% to $8.96 billion from $9.04 billion. However, analysts were expecting earnings of $0.66 per share on revenue of $9.38 billion.
Analysts including Evercore Partners and CLSA also downgraded the stock following the news.
Equities Trading UP
ACADIA Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: ACAD) shot up 29.09 percent to $8.58 after phase III pimavanserin study data.
Shares of SUPERVALU (NYSE: SVU) got a boost, shooting up 12.59 percent to $4.72 after the company completed the sale of five retail grocery banners in a stock deal valued at $3.3 billion.
DryShips (NASDAQ: DRYS) has gained 7.81 percent to $2.07 on little more than technical indicators, as the shipping sector has posted a rally all day.
Equities Trading DOWN
Scholastic (NASDAQ: SCHL) shares tumbled 14.58 percent to $26.54 after the company reported a wider fiscal third-quarter loss.
Oracle (NASDAQ: ORCL) was also down, falling 9.19 percent to $32.48 after the company reported downbeat fiscal third-quarter results.
Shares of Guess' (NYSE: GES) were down 6.46 percent to $25.21 after the company issued downbeat forecast.
In commodity news, oil traded down 1.37 percent to $92.22, while gold traded up 0.42 percent to $1,642.30.
Silver traded up 1.37 percent Thursday to $29.22, while copper dropped 0.22 percent to $3.43.
European shares were weaker on the PMI data overnight as well as continued uncertainty over Cyprus' bailout; the Mediterranean nation continues talks with Russian creditors today and no deal has been reached yet.
Germany's manufacturing sector showed a renewed contraction after two months of expansion as the manufacturing PMI fell to 48.9 from 50.3 on expectations of a rise to 50.5.
The Spanish Ibex Index tumbled 0.77 percent and the Italian FTSE MIB Index dipped 0.50 percent. The STOXX Europe 600 Index dropped 0.71 percent, London's FTSE 100 Index fell 0.66 percent, French CAC 40 Index fell 1.14 percent and German DAX 30 index declined 0.89 percent.
US jobless claims rose 2,000 to 336,000 in the week ended March 16. However, economists were expecting claims to increase to 340,000. Continuing claims gained 5,000 to 3.05 million in the week ended March 9.
US home prices rose 0.6% in January, according to the Federal Housing Finance Agency.
The US flash manufacturing PMI increased to 54.9 in March, versus 54.3 in February.
The Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index declined to minus 33.9 in the week ended March 17, versus a prior reading of minus 31.6.
USA Philadelphia Fed Manufacturing Index for March 2.00, versus estimates of -3.00. The prior reading was -12.50.
USA Existing Home Sales for Feb rose 0.8% to 4.98 million, versus estimates of 5.0 million.
USA Leading Indicators for Feb 0.50%, versus economists' estimates of 0.40%. The prior reading was revised from an initial 0.20% to 0.50%.
Natural gas supplies declined 62 billion cubic feet for the week ended March 15, the Energy Information Administration reported. However, analysts were expecting a fall between 67 billion and 71 billion cubic feet.
© 2014 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.