Market Overview

Mid-Day Market Update: Nanometrics Rises On Earnings Beat; Esperion Therapeutics Shares Drop

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Midway through trading Wednesday, the Dow traded down 0.14 percent to 24,066.62 while the NASDAQ climbed 0.01 percent to 7,130.96. The S&P also fell, dropping 0.20 percent to 2,649.41.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

On Wednesday, the energy shares rose 0.61 percent. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included Aegean Marine Petroleum Network Inc. (NYSE: ANW), up 16 percent, and Emerge Energy Services LP (NYSE: EMES) up 12 percent.

In trading on Wednesday, consumer staples shares tumbled 1.28 percent.

Top Headline

Apple Inc (NASDAQ: AAPL) reported better-than-expected earnings for its second-quarter earnings.

The world’s largest company, the tech giant delivered second-quarter earnings of $2.73, beating estimates by 3 cents. Sales came in at $61.1 billion, slightly above estimates.

Apple also announced a new $100 billion buyback plan and raised its quarterly dividend by 16 percent from 63 cents per share to 73 cents per share. Apple issued third-quarter sales guidance of $51.5 billion-$53.3 billion, against a $52 billion estimate.

Equities Trading UP

HC2 Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: HCHC) shares shot up 38 percent to $7.15 after the company disclosed that BeneVir Biopharm agreed to be purchased by J&J's Janssen Biotech for up to $1.04 billion.

Shares of MACOM Technology Solutions Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: MTSI) got a boost, shooting up 18 percent to $20.65 after reporting upbeat quarterly results.

Nanometrics Incorporated (NASDAQ: NANO) shares were also up, gaining 26 percent to $33.30 after reporting better-than-expected Q1 earnings.

Equities Trading DOWN

Command Security Corporation (NYSE: MOC) shares dropped 16 percent to $2.4148 after the company reported a loss of a significant contract.

Shares of Esperion Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: ESPR) were down 31 percent to $48.560 after reporting a wider-than-expected Q1 loss. Esperion disclosed that top-line results from pivotal Phase 3 long-term safety study of bempedoic acid met primary endpoint.

Heat Biologics, Inc. (NASDAQ: HTBX) was down, falling around 35 percent to $2.73. The nano-cap biotechnology saw its stock soar 87 percent throughout Monday's session and was higher by more than 120 percent at one point. There was no company specific news to support the volatility, but the movement could be attributed to recent trader interest in "low float stocks." In Heat Biologics case, there are approximately 5.6 million shares outstanding.

Commodities

In commodity news, oil traded up 0.40 percent to $67.52 while gold traded down 0.04 percent to $1,306.30.

Silver traded up 1.66 percent Wednesday to $16.395, while copper rose 0.95 percent to $3.0665.

Eurozone

European shares were higher today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 rose 0.63 percent, the Spanish Ibex Index rose 1.09 percent, while Italy’s FTSE MIB Index rose 1.19 percent. Meanwhile the German DAX rose 1.51 percent, and the French CAC 40 climbed 0.16 percent while U.K. shares rose 0.30 percent.

Economics

Private-sector employers added 204,000 jobs in April, Automatic Data Processing Inc. reported. Economists expected a gain of 190,000 jobs.

Crude supplies increased 6.2 million barrels for the week ended April 27, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said. However, analysts expected a gain of 1.8 million barrels. Gasoline stockpiles rose 1.2 million barrels, while distillate stockpiles slipped 3.9 million barrels for the week.

The Federal Open Market Committee will announce its policy decision at 2:00 p.m. ET.

 

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