Market Overview

Mid-Day Market Update: Crude Oil Down 2.5%; Avid Bioservices Shares Fall After Q3 Results

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Midway through trading Wednesday, the Dow traded down 4.4% to 23918.37 while the NASDAQ fell 3.63% to 8041.71. The S&P also fell, dropping 3.94% to 2,768.63. South Korea confirmed a total of 7,755 coronavirus cases, while Italy reported a total of at least 10,000 confirmed cases and 631 deaths. Mainland China reported 24 additional confirmed cases with 22 new deaths. In total, there are at least 121,000 cases of COVID-19 worldwide with over 4,300 deaths.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

Health care shares slipped by just 3% on Wednesday. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included Co-Diagnostics, Inc. (NASDAQ: CODX), up 64%, and Inovio Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: INO), up 33%.

In trading on Wednesday, real estate shares tumbled 5%.

Top Headline

United Natural Foods, Inc. (NYSE: UNFI) reported better-than-expected results for its second quarter on Wednesday.

United Natural Foods reported second-quarter earnings of 32 cents per share, which beat the analyst consensus estimate of 27 cents. The company reported quarterly sales of $6.138 billion, which missed the analyst consensus estimate of $6.14 billion.

United Natural Foods sees fiscal year 2020 adjusted EPS at 85 cents to $1.45 versus the $1.30 estimate and sales of $23.5-$24.3 billion versus the $24.13 billion estimate.

Equities Trading UP

Tiziana Life Sciences PLC (NASDAQ: TLSA) shares shot up 159% to $5.31 after the company announced plans to expedite development of fully human anti-Interleukin-6-Receptor monoclonal antibody, a 'potential treatment of certain patients infected with coronavirus COVID-19.'

Shares of Co-Diagnostics, Inc. (NASDAQ: CODX) got a boost, shooting 81% to $12.46 after dropping around 30% on Tuesday.

Vir Biotechnology, Inc. (NASDAQ: VIR) shares were also up, gaining 17% to $35.02. Vir Biotechnology announced research collaboration with The National Institutes of Health Vaccine Research Center on antibodies against coronaviruses.

Equities Trading DOWN

Avid Bioservices, Inc. (NASDAQ: CDMO) shares tumbled 26% to $4.4550 after the company reported worse-than-expected Q3 EPS and sales results. The company cut FY20 sales guidance.

Shares of Sophiris Bio, Inc. (NASDAQ: SPHS) were down 51% to $0.2852. Sophiris Bio said the Nasdaq Officer of General Counsel informed the company that the Nasdaq Hearing Panel has determined to delist its shares from the Nasdaq. Trading in the company's shares are to be suspended, effective at the open of business March 12.

Fulgent Genetics, Inc. (NASDAQ: FLGT) was down, falling 28% to $11.04 after the company reported worse-than-expected Q4 sales.

Commodities

In commodity news, oil traded down 2.5% to $33.50, while gold traded down 0.6% to $1,650.30.

Silver traded down 0.6% Wednesday to $16.86, while copper fell 0.9% to $2.50.

Euro zone

European shares were lower today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 slipped 0.97% the Spanish Ibex Index fell 1.24%, while Italy’s FTSE MIB Index fell 0.71% Meanwhile, the German DAX dropped 0.74%, and the French CAC 40 fell 0.63% while UK shares fell 1.36%.

Economics

The Consumer Price Index rose 0.1% for February, versus economists’ expectations for a 0.2% increase.

U.S. crude supplies gained 7.7 million barrels for the week ended March 6, the Energy Information Administration reported. However, analysts were expecting a gain of 2.5 million barrels. Gasoline supplies fell 5 million barrels for the week, while distillate supplies slipped 6.4 million barrels.

The Treasury is set to auction 10-year notes at 1:00 p.m. ET.

The U.S. Treasury budget report for February is scheduled for release at 2:00 p.m. ET.

 

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