Mid-Morning Market Update: Markets Open Higher; Alcoa Profit Tops Views
Following the market opening Tuesday, the Dow traded up 0.99 percent to 16,560.87 while the NASDAQ climbed 1.49 percent to 4,707.32. The S&P also rose, gaining 1.04 percent to 1,943.69.
Leading and Lagging Sectors
On Tuesday, healthcare shares gained by 1.66 percent. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included Fluidigm Corporation (NASDAQ: FLDM), up 15 percent, and Horizon Pharma PLC (NASDAQ: HZNP), up 11 percent.
In trading on Tuesday, utilities shares tumbled by 0.55 percent. Meanwhile, top losers in the sector included Great Plains Energy Incorporated (NYSE: GXP), down 2 percent, and Pinnacle West Capital Corporation (NYSE: PNW), down 3 percent.
Alcoa Inc (NYSE: AA) reported better-than-expected earnings for the fourth quarter on Monday.
The company posted a quarterly loss of $500 million, or $0.39 per share, versus a year-ago profit of $159 million, or $0.11 per share. Excluding one-time items, the company earned $0.04 per share.
Its sales declined 18 percent to $5.2 billion. However, analysts were expecting earnings of $0.02 per share on sales of 5.3 billion.
Equities Trading UP
Intrawest Resorts Holdings Inc (NYSE: SNOW) shares shot up 29 percent to $9.07 after the company reported a Dutch auction to sell $50 million of stock between $9 and $10.
Shares of Super Micro Computer, Inc. (NASDAQ: SMCI) got a boost, shooting up 27 percent to $27.34 after the company issued a strong Q2 forecast.
Plains All American Pipeline, L.P. (NYSE: PAA) shares were also up, gaining 20 percent to $24.35. Plains All American reported a $1.5 billion private placement of 8% Perpetual Series A Convertible Preferred Units. The company also reported a quarterly cash distribution of $0.70 per limited partner unit.
Equities Trading DOWN
Skullcandy Inc (NASDAQ: SKUL) shares dropped 25 percent to $3.40 after the company announced Monday afternoon its fourth-quarter sales are now expected to be flat on a year-over-year basis. The company also lowered its Q4 earnings forecast.
Shares of HeartWare International Inc (NASDAQ: HTWR) were down 24 percent to $31.05 after the company provided a corporate update. The company reported preliminary Q4 revenue of $68 million.
Natural Health Trends Corp. (NASDAQ: NHTC) was down, falling around 13 percent to $18.00. Natural Health Trends expects Q4 revenue of around $73.6 million.
In commodity news, oil traded up 1.18 percent to $31.78, while gold traded down 0.77 percent to $1,087.80.
Silver traded down 0.37 percent Tuesday to $13.82, while copper rose 0.23 percent to $1.98.
European shares were higher today. The eurozone's STOXX 600 gained 1.64 percent, the Spanish Ibex Index rose 1.42 percent, while Italy's FTSE MIB Index jumped 1.71 percent. Meanwhile, the German DAX jumped 2.41 percent, and the French CAC 40 climbed 2.43 percent, while U.K. shares gained 1.79 percent.
The Federal Open Market Committee will release its latest Beige Book report at 2:00 p.m. ET.
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