Market Overview

Mid-Morning Market Update: Markets Up; Target Q4 Profit Falls

Mid-Morning Market Update: Markets Up; Target Q4 Profit Falls
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Following the market opening Wednesday, the Dow traded up 0.22 percent to 13,931.00 while the NASDAQ rose 0.27 percent to 3,138.20. The S&P also rose, gaining 0.29 percent to 1,501.26.

Index Technicals:
The S&P 500 looks poised to retake the broken 1,497 support level, hitting an intraday high of 1,498.99 before heady back downwards. 1,460 should act as new support.

The DOW looks to find support at 13,775 while regaining its 20 EMA at 13,890.64, with 14,058 as its top end resistance and 13,660 as its support.

The Russell MACD looks to be rolling lower, with prices stalling at 894.24, while the EMA lies lower at 887.84.

The NASDAQ looks set to find support at its 50 EMA at 3,120.71, with its MACD rolling lower. A bearish cross of the 3,050 area should act as lower support.

Top Headline
Target (NYSE: TGT) reported a 2% drop in its fiscal fourth-quarter profit.

Target's quarterly profit declined to $961 million, from $981 million, in the year-ago period. Its per-share profit rose to $1.47 per share from $1.45 per share. Its sales climbed 6.8% to $22.37 billion. Excluding certain items, Target earned $1.65 per share, versus estimates of $1.47 per share.

Target expects FY13 adjusted profit of $4.85 to $5.05 per share and Q1 profit of $1.10 to $1.20 per share. However, analysts expected Q1 profit of $1.05 per share and full-year profit of $4.87 per share. Its gross margin declined to 27.8% from 28.4%.

Equities Trading UP
Dollar Tree (NASDAQ: DLTR) shot up 9.75 percent to $45.08 after the company reported a rise in its fourth-quarter profit.

Shares of Optimer Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: OPTR) got a boost, shooting up 12.97 percent to $12.11 after the company reported that it has commenced a process to explore strategic alternatives.

Guidewire Software (NASDAQ: GWRE)was also up, gaining 14.94 percent to $36.24 after the company's FQ2 earnings surpassed analysts' estimates.

Equities Trading DOWN
Accretive Health (NYSE: AH) shares tumbled 28.34 percent to $8.68 after the company postponed the release of its Q4 financial results.

First Solar (NASDAQ: FSLR) was also down, falling 15.43 percent to $26.52 after the company issued downbeat first-quarter forecast..

Shares of Cincinnati Bell (NYSE: CBB)were down 13.61 percent to $3.59, after the company's Q4 earnings missed analysts' expectations.

In commodity news, oil traded down 0.21 percent to $92.44, while gold traded down 0.59 percent to $1,605.90.

Silver traded down 0.48 percent Wednesday to $29.18, while copper dropped 0.24 percent to $3.58.

European shares were higher in early trade boosted by the confidence numbers despite the weak GDP report in the U.K. The latest update to British GDP was released, with the fourth quarter GDP figure being reiterated at a contraction of 0.3 percent. However, the index of services component was revised lower to -0.1 percent from 0.6 percent.

European business and consumer confidence remained strong in the latest Business and Consumer Confidence Survey despite headwinds such as the Italian elections. The index rose to 91.1 in February from 89.5 in January and beating expectations of a reading of 89.9.

The Spanish Ibex rose 0.33 percent, while the Italian MIB index gained 0.34 percent. The STOXX Europe 600 Index surged 0.15 percent, London's FTSE 100 Index gained 0.13 percent, French CAC 40 Index climbed 0.64 percent and German DAX 30 index rose 0.16 percent.

U.S. durable-goods orders declined 5.2% in January, versus economists' estimates of a 5.0% drop. Core durable goods orders climbed 1.9% in January, versus expectations for a 0.2% rise.

U.S. pending home sales surged 4.5% in January. The pending-home-sales index climbed to 105.9 in the month of January, versus 101.3 in December.

MBA Mortgage Applications declined 3.8% in the week ended February 22, versus a 1.7% drop in the prior week.

The Treasury is set to auction 7-year notes and the Fed's Richard Fisher is set to speak.

Posted-In: Earnings News Guidance Commodities Global Econ #s Economics Hot


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