Market Overview

U.S. Stocks Rise; Accenture Shares Decline On Weak Forecast

U.S. Stocks Rise; Accenture Shares Decline On Weak Forecast

Midway through trading Wednesday, the Dow traded up 0.32 percent to 17,109.62 while the NASDAQ surged 0.44 percent to 4,528.69. The S&P also rose, gaining 0.29 percent to 1,988.60.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

In trading on Wednesday, healthcare shares were relative leaders, up on the day by about 0.65 percent. Top gainers in the sector included Acorda Therapeutics (NASDAQ: ACOR), up 19 percent, and BioCryst Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: BCRX), up 8.3 percent.

Energy shares fell 0.36 percent on Wednesday. Top losers in the sector included Walter Energy (NYSE: WLT), down 7.1 percent, and Alpha Natural Resources (NYSE: ANR), off 5 percent.

Top Headline

KB Home (NYSE: KBH) reported weaker-than-expected fiscal third-quarter results.

The Los Angeles, California-based company posted quarterly earnings of $28.4 million, or $0.28 per share, versus $27.3 million, or $0.30 per share, in the year-ago quarter.

Its revenue climbed to $589.2 million from $549 million. However, analysts were expecting earnings of $0.40 per share on revenue of $646.76 million.

Equities Trading UP

Merrimack Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: MACK) shares shot up 9.87 percent to $7.90 on licensing deal with Baxter International (NYSE: BAX).

Shares of Acorda Therapeutics (NASDAQ: ACOR) got a boost, shooting up 19.22 percent to $34.99 after the company announced its plans to acquire Civitas Therapeutics.

Starz (NASDAQ: STRZA) shares were also up, gaining 5.75 percent to $31.28. Starz has retained LionTree Advisors to find a buyer, according to sources as reported by WSJ.

Equities Trading DOWN

Shares of GrafTech International (NYSE: GTI) were down 22.94 percent to $5.61 after the company lowered its FY14 forecast and announced several executive management changes.

KB Home (NYSE: KBH) shares tumbled 5.69 percent to $16.00 after the company reported weaker-than-expected fiscal third-quarter results.

Accenture plc (NYSE: ACN) was down, falling 1.41 percent to $78.48 after the company issued a weak outlook.


In commodity news, oil traded down 0.17 percent to $91.40, while gold traded down 0.12 percent to $1,220.50.

Silver traded down 0.47 percent Wednesday to $17.70, while copper rose 0.71 percent to $3.06.


European shares were mostly higher today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 gained 0.35 percent, the Spanish Ibex Index fell 0.08 percent, while Italy’s FTSE MIB Index surged 1.03 percent. Meanwhile, the German DAX gained 0.36 percent and the French CAC 40 climbed 0.66 percent while UK shares rose 0.01 percent.


The MBA reported that its index of mortgage application activity declined 4.10% in the week ended September 19.

Sales of new homes rose 18% to an annual rate of 504,000 in August. However, economists were projecting a sales rate of 430,000 in the month.

US crude supplies slipped 4.3 million barrels in the week ended Sept. 19, according to the Energy Information Administration. However, analysts were expecting a rise of 1 million barrels. Gasoline supplies fell 400,000 barrels, while distillate supplies rose 800,000 barrels.


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