Market Overview

Mid-Afternoon Market Update: Crude Oil Down 1.5%; Phoenix New Media Shares Spike Higher


Toward the end of trading Wednesday, the Dow traded up 0.08 percent to 22,016.21 while the NASDAQ gained 0.04 percent to 6,335.68. The S&P also rose, gaining 0.04 percent to 2,465.59.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

Wednesday afternoon, the basic materials shares climbed by 1.09 percent. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included Olympic Steel, Inc. (NASDAQ: ZEUS), up 7 percent, and Aluminum Corp. of China Limited (ADR) (NYSE: ACH), up 7 percent.

In trading on Wednesday, energy shares fell by 0.76 percent. Meanwhile, top losers in the sector included Whiting Petroleum Corp (NYSE: WLL), down 6 percent, and Zion Oil & Gas, Inc. (NASDAQ: ZN) down 7 percent.

Top Headline

Target Corporation (NYSE: TGT) reported better-than-expected earnings for its second quarter and issued a strong forecast for the full year.

Target reported that it earned $1.23 per share in the quarter on revenue of $16.429 billion; analysts were expecting the retail chain to earn $1.19 per share on revenue of $16.3 billion. Comparable sales for the entire company rose 1.3 percent in the quarter while the digital channel saw its comparable sales grow by 32 percent.

Looking forward, Target expects to earn 75–95 cents per share in the third quarter versus analysts expectations of $0.77 per share. For the full fiscal year, the company expects to earn $4.34 to $4.54 per share versus expectations for $4.39 per share.

Equities Trading UP

Urban Outfitters, Inc. (NASDAQ: URBN) shares shot up 19 percent to $19.94 after the company reported stronger-than-expected results for its second quarter.

Shares of Phoenix New Media Ltd ADR (NYSE: FENG) got a boost, shooting up 29 percent to $3.70. Phoenix New Media reported Q2 net income of $3.7 million on revenue of $58 million.

Intec Pharma Ltd (NASDAQ: NTEC) shares were also up, gaining 14 percent to $5.53. Intec Pharma priced 10.6 million share offering at $4.70 per share.

Equities Trading DOWN

Micronet Enertec Technologies Inc (NASDAQ: MICT) shares dropped 11 percent to $0.820. Micronet Enertec reported a Q2 adjusted loss of $0.18 per share.

Shares of RAIT Financial Trust (NYSE: RAS) were down 9 percent to $1.09. FBR Capital downgraded RAIT Financial Trust from Buy to Neutral.

Rave Restaurant Group Inc (NASDAQ: RAVE) was down, falling around 18 percent to $1.65. RAVE Restaurant reported a $5 million equity rights offering.


In commodity news, oil traded down 1.5 percent to $46.84 while gold traded up 0.26 percent to $1,283.00.

Silver traded up 1.41 percent Wednesday to $16.95, while copper rose 2.62 percent to $2.9585.


European shares closed higher today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 gained 0.69 percent, the Spanish Ibex Index rose 0.60 percent, while Italy’s FTSE MIB Index surged 1.21 percent. Meanwhile the German DAX climbed 0.71 percent, and the French CAC 40 gained 0.71 percent while U.K. shares rose 0.67 percent.


Housing starts declined 4.8 percent to an annual rate of 1.16 million in July. However, economists were expecting a 1.22 million rate.

Domestic crude supplies dropped 8.95 million barrels for the week ended August 11, the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported. Analysts projected a fall of 3.06 million barrels. Gasoline stockpiles gained 22,000 barrels, while distillate stockpiles rose 702,000 barrels last week.

The Federal Open Market Committee released minutes of its latest meeting.


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