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Market Overview

Mid-Morning Market Update: Markets Open Higher; Advance Auto Parts Earnings Beat Views


Following the market opening Wednesday, the Dow traded up 0.32 percent to 25,043.98 while the NASDAQ climbed 0.63 percent to 7,279.79. The S&P also rose, gaining 0.43 percent to 2,728.01.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

Wednesday morning, the energy shares climbed 0.63 percent. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included Ballard Power Systems Inc. (USA) (NASDAQ: BLDP), up 6 percent, and Isramco, Inc. (NASDAQ: ISRL), up 4 percent.

In trading on Wednesday, utilities shares rose by just 0.1 percent. Meanwhile, top losers in the sector included Vectren Corp (NYSE: VVC), down 2 percent, and Atlantic Power Corp (NYSE: AT) down 1.5 percent.

Top Headline

Advance Auto Parts, Inc. (NYSE: AAP) reported stronger-than-expected earnings for its fourth quarter.

The company said it earned $0.77 per share in the fourth quarter on revenue of $2.04 billion versus expectations of $0.63 per share on revenue of $2.02 billion.

Advance Auto Parts expects FY 2018 sales of $9.1 billion to $9.4 billion, versus analysts’ estimates of $9.5 billion.

Equities Trading UP

LivePerson, Inc. (NASDAQ: LPSN) shares shot up 11 percent to $14.57 after the company reported Q4 results and issued FY18 forecast. LivePerson also named Chris Greiner as CFO.

Shares of Chefs' Warehouse Inc (NASDAQ: CHEF) got a boost, shooting up 8 percent to $20.92 as the company reported upbeat Q4 results.

Quad/Graphics, Inc. (NASDAQ: QUAD) shares were also up, gaining 17 percent to $25.86 after the company reported upbeat Q4 earnings. The company also announced the acquisition of Ivie & Associates.

Equities Trading DOWN

Tile Shop Hldgs, Inc. (NASDAQ: TTS) shares dropped 28 percent to $6.10 after the company reported weaker-than-expected Q4 results.

Shares of QTS Realty Trust Inc (NYSE: QTS) were down 22 percent to $34.35. QTS Realty reported a Q4 loss of $0.29 per share on revenue of $118.9 million. The company also reported a strategic restructuring to accelerate growth and profitability.
Aegean Marine Petroleum Network Inc. (NYSE: ANW) was down, falling around 22 percent to $3.45 after the company announced plans to acquire HEC Europe for $367 million and reported preliminary earnings for the fourth quarter.


In commodity news, oil traded down 0.53 percent to $61.46 while gold traded down 0.05 percent to $1,330.60.

Silver traded down 0.26 percent Wednesday to $16.47, while copper fell 0.48 percent to $3.198.


European shares were mostly lower today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 fell 0.47 percent, the Spanish Ibex Index declined 0.93 percent, while Italy’s FTSE MIB Index dipped 0.56 percent. Meanwhile the German DAX dropped 0.70 percent, and the French CAC 40 fell 0.39 percent while U.K. shares rose 0.10 percent.


The MBA's index of mortgage application activity declined 6.6 percent for the latest week.

The Johnson Redbook Retail Sales Index dropped 0.7 percent during the first two weeks of February versus January.

The IHS Markit's flash manufacturing PMI climbed to 55.9 in February, compared to previous reading of 55.5. However, economists were projecting a reading of 55.4. The services index rose to 55.9 in February versus 53.3. Economists expected a reading of 53.80.

Sales of existing homes dropped 3.2 percent at an annual rate of 5.38 million for January. However, economists expected a rate of 5.61 million.

The Treasury is set to auction 5-year notes at 1:00 p.m. ET.

The Federal Open Market Committee will issue minutes of its latest meeting at 2:00 p.m. ET.

Minneapolis Federal Reserve Bank President Neel Kashkari is set to speak in Minneapolis at 8:15 p.m. ET.


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