Market Overview

Mid-Afternoon Market Update: Dow Surges 250 Points; Micron Shares Gain On Upbeat Earnings


Toward the end of trading Thursday, the Dow traded up 0.97 percent to 25,995.60 while the NASDAQ climbed 1.44 percent to 7,839.87. The S&P also rose, gaining 1.17 percent to 2,857.18.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

Thursday afternoon, the information technology shares climbed 2.5 percent. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included StoneCo Ltd (NASDAQ: STNE) up 12 percent, and Western Digital Corporation (NASDAQ: WDC) up 10 percent.

In trading on Thursday, financial shares fell 0.1 percent.

Top Headline

Conagra Brands Inc (NYSE: CAG) reported stronger-than-expected earnings for its third quarter.

Conagra reported quarterly earnings of $0.51 per share on sales of $2.707 billion. However, analysts were expecting earnings of $0.49 per share on sales of $2.78 billion.

Conagra said it expects 2019 EPS of $2.03 to $2.08 versus the $2.05 analyst estimate..

Equities Trading UP

Spi Energy Co Ltd (NASDAQ: SPI) shares got a boost, shooting up 64 percent to $4.2894 after the company announced an amendment to its 2017 merger agreement with Thermi Sun which will delay the acquisition no later than May 20th.

Shares of Sorrento Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ: SRNE) shot up 39 percent to $4.84 after the company presented at Oppenheimer's healthcare conference in New York on Wednesday.

Micron Technology, Inc. (NASDAQ: MU) shares were also up, gaining 10 percent to $43.96 after the company reported upbeat earnings for its second quarter on Wednesday.


Equities Trading DOWN

Staffing 360 Solutions Inc. (NASDAQ: STAF) shares dropped 23 percent to $1.6731 after the company reported worse-than-expected Q4 revenue results.

Shares of Oragenics Inc (NYSE: OGEN) were down 26 percent to $0.6450 after the company priced an offering consisting of 1 share of stock and warrants to purchase 2 shares of stock at $0.75 per unit.

Biogen Inc (NASDAQ: BIIB) was down, falling around 30 percent to $225.65 after the company said it will discontinue an ongoing Alzheimer's drug study. Biogen and its partner Japan-based Eisai said they will discontinue an ongoing global Phase 3 trial of its therapy aducanumab. The investigational compound was meant to slow the progression of Alzheimer's by reducing amyloid plaques present in the brain.


In commodity news, oil traded down 0.1 percent to $60.19 while gold traded up 0.5 percent to $1,307.90.

Silver traded up 1 percent Thursday to $15.465, while copper fell 0.4 percent to $2.9105.



European shares closed mostly lower today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 dropped 0.04 percent, the Spanish Ibex Index fell 0.53 percent, while Italy’s FTSE MIB Index rose 0.2 percent. Meanwhile the German DAX dropped 0.46 percent, and the French CAC 40 slipped 0.07 percent while U.K. shares rose 0.88 percent.


Initial jobless claims dropped 9,000 to 221,000 in the latest week. However, economists were projecting claims to reach 226,000.

The Philadelphia Fed's manufacturing index rose to 13.7 in March, versus a reading of - 4.1 in February.

The index of leading economic indicators rose 0.2 percent for February.

Domestic supplies of natural gas dropped 47 billion cubic feet for the week ended March 15, the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported. However, analysts projected a fall of 48 billion cubic feet.

Data on money supply for the recent week will be released at 4:30 p.m. ET.



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