Market Overview

Mid-Afternoon Market Update: U.S. Stocks Turn Positive; Crude Oil Up 1.7%

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Toward the end of trading Tuesday, the Dow traded up 0.19 percent to 20,689.19 while the NASDAQ rose 0.04 percent to 5,897.11. The S&P also rose, gaining 0.04 percent to 2,359.86.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

Tuesday afternoon, the basic materials sector proved to be a source of strength for the market. Leading the sector was strength from Endeavour Silver Corp (NYSE: EXK) and DRDGOLD Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE: DRD).

In trading on Tuesday, cyclical consumer goods & services shares fell 0.43 percent. Meanwhile, top losers in the sector included Acuity Brands, Inc. (NYSE: AYI), down 14 percent, and J C Penney Company Inc (NYSE: JCP), down 8 percent.

Top Headline

Acuity Brands, Inc. (NYSE: AYI) reported weaker-than-expected results for its second quarter on Tuesday.

Acuity Brands reported Q2 earnings of $1.77 per share on revenue of $804.7 million. Analysts expected earnings of $1.83 per share on revenue of $828 million.

Equities Trading UP

Benitec Biopharma Ltd (ADR) (NASDAQ: BNTC) shares shot up 44 percent to $4.41. Benitec Biopharma disclosed that the key pre-clinical data on oculopharyngeal muscular dystrophy has been published in Nature Communications.

Shares of General Communication, Inc. (NASDAQ: GNCMA) got a boost, shooting up 63 percent to $33.43 after Liberty Interactive Corporation (NASDAQ: LVNTA) announced plans to acquire General Communication for $1.12 billion.

Conn's Inc (NASDAQ: CONN) shares were also up, gaining 32 percent to $11.18 after the company reported better-than-expected earnings for its fourth quarter.

Equities Trading DOWN

Seadrill Ltd (NYSE: SDRL) shares dropped 58 percent to $0.706. Seadrill and its banking group agreed to extend a series of key dates as part of restructuring efforts.

Shares of Adeptus Health Inc (NYSE: ADPT) were down around 30 percent to $1.30. Medical Properties Trust disclosed that it has agreed in principle with Deerfield Management to restructuring in bankruptcy to Adeptus Health.

Kate Spade & Co (NASDAQ: KATE) was down, falling around 14 percent to $19.60 after it was reported the company would spend more time to negotiate the Coach Inc (NYSE: COH) offer.

Commodities

In commodity news, oil traded up 1.7 percent to $51.10 while gold traded up 0.27 percent to $1,257.40.

Silver traded up 0.51 percent Tuesday to $18.31, while copper rose 0.58 percent to $2.62.

Eurozone

European shares closed higher today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 gained 0.20 percent, the Spanish Ibex Index rose 0.35 percent, while Italy’s FTSE MIB Index rose 0.07 percent. Meanwhile the German DAX gained 0.21 percent, and the French CAC 40 climbed 0.30 percent while U.K. shares rose 0.54 percent.

Economics

The U.S. trade deficit declined around 10 percent to $43.6 billion in February. Analysts were expecting a deficit of $44.8 billion.

The Johnson Redbook Retail Sales Index rose 1.1 percent year-over-year for the first five weeks of March.

U.S. factory orders rose 1 percent for February, versus economists’ expectations for a 1 percent growth.

Federal Reserve Governor Daniel Tarullo is set to speak in Princeton, N.J. at 4:30 p.m. ET.

Posted-In: News Eurozone Commodities M&A Global Intraday Update Markets Movers

 

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