Market Overview

Mid-Morning Market Update: Markets Edge Lower; Humana Profit Misses Estimates

Mid-Morning Market Update: Markets Edge Lower; Humana Profit Misses Estimates
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Following the market opening Friday, the Dow traded down 0.17 percent to 17,524.36 while the NASDAQ tumbled 0.43 percent to 4,618.44. The S&P also fell, dropping 0.11 percent to 2,028.99.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

In trading on Friday, energy shares were relative leaders, up on the day by about 0.86 percent. Top gainers in the sector included Solazyme (NASDAQ: SZYM), up 10.5 percent, and Goodrich Petroleum (NYSE: GDP), up 10.4 percent.

Healthcare shares fell by 0.65 percent on Friday. Top losers in the sector included Salix Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: SLXP), down 35.7 percent, and Allscripts Healthcare Solutions (NASDAQ: MDRX), off 14.3 percent.

Top Headline

Humana (NYSE: HUM) reported weaker-than-expected earnings for the third quarter.

The Louisville, Kentucky-based company posted quarterly earnings of $290 million, or $1.85 per share, compared to $368 million, or $2.31 per share, in the year-ago period.

Its revenue climbed 19% to $12.24 billion, while premiums surged 20%. However, analysts were projecting earnings of $2 per share on revenue of $12.35 billion.

Equities Trading UP

Sears Holdings (NASDAQ: SHLD) shares shot up 40.14 percent to $45.79 after the company said it is actively exploring REIT transaction involving 200 to 300 owned properties through a rights offering to holdings shareholders.

Shares of Zynga (NASDAQ: ZNGA) got a boost, shooting up 5.93 percent to $2.50 after the company beat Q3 revenue expectations and posted a loss in line with Wall Street's views. Analysts at Needham upgraded Zynga from Hold to Buy.

Lions Gate Entertainment (NYSE: LGF) shares were also up, gaining 3.24 percent to $33.10 after the company reported upbeat quarterly results.

Equities Trading DOWN

Shares of Salix Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: SLXP) were down 36.28 percent to $88.29 after the company reported downbeat Q3 results and appointed Timothy Creech as CFO. Analysts at Stifel Nicolaus downgraded Salix Pharma from Buy to Hold and removed the price target of $189.

Financial Engines (NASDAQ: FNGN) shares tumbled 26.51 percent to $30.00 after the company reported Q3 earnings of $0.23 per share on revenue of $72.80 million and appointed Lawrence Raffone as CEO.

Ubiquiti Networks (NASDAQ: UBNT) was down, falling 18.08 percent to $28.36 after the company reported weaker-than-expected FQ1 results and issued a downbeat Q2 outlook. Wunderlich lowered the price target on Ubiquiti Networks from $55.00 to $50.00.


In commodity news, oil traded up 0.69 percent to $78.45, while gold traded up 0.80 percent to $1,151.70.

Silver traded up 1.08 percent Friday to $15.58, while copper rose 0.93 percent to $3.05.


European shares were mostly lower today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 fell 0.23 percent, the Spanish Ibex Index dropped 1.21 percent, while Italy’s FTSE MIB Index declined 0.93 percent. Meanwhile, the German DAX fell 0.43 percent and the French CAC 40 declined 0.54 percent while UK shares climbed 0.47 percent.


The US economy added 214,000 jobs in October, while the unemployment rate declined to 5.8%. However, economists were projecting a gain of 231,000 nonfarm jobs in the month.

Data on consumer credit for September will be released at 3:00 p.m. ET.

Posted-In: Earnings News Guidance Upgrades Eurozone Futures Price Target Commodities


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