Market Overview

Mid-Morning Market Update: Markets Edge Higher; Merck Profit Beats Views


Following the market opening Thursday, the Dow traded up 0.13 percent to 17,673.38 while the NASDAQ gained 0.06 percent to 4,728.57. The S&P also rose, gaining 0.11 percent to 2,053.31.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

On Thursday, the energy sector proved to be a source of strength for the market. Top gainers in the sector included Legacy Reserves LP (NASDAQ: LGCY), Ameresco Inc (NYSE: AMRC), and Denbury Resources Inc. (NYSE: DNR).

In trading on Thursday, cyclical consumer goods & services shares fell by 0.32 percent. Meanwhile, top losers in the sector included Zumiez Inc. (NASDAQ: ZUMZ), down 9 percent, and Titan International Inc (NYSE: TWI), down 7 percent.

Top Headline

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE: MRK) reported better-than-expected earnings for its first quarter, but missed analysts' sales estimates.

The company's earnings advanced 21 percent to $0.40 a share from $0.33 a share in the corresponding quarter of the last year. Excluding special items, Merck's earnings would have increased 4.7 percent to $0.89 a share from $0.85 a share in the comparable period.

The company's revenue fell 1 percent to $9.312 billion from $9.425 billion in the previous year quarter. However, analysts were expecting earnings of $0.85 per share on revenue of $9.46 billion.

Equities Trading UP

Synacor Inc (NASDAQ: SYNC) shares shot up 158 percent to $3.64 following AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) contract.

Shares of Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: AAWW) got a boost, shooting up 42 percent to $54.24 after the company disclosed that it would provide air cargo services to, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) to support package deliveries to its customers. The company also reported strong quarterly earnings.

Tutor Perini Corp (NYSE: TPC) shares were also up, gaining 22 percent to $18.36 after the company reported upbeat Q1 earnings.

Equities Trading DOWN

Roadrunner Transportation Systems Inc (NYSE: RRTS) shares dropped 30 percent to $7.20 after the company reported downbeat Q1 results and lowered its outlook for FY16.

Shares of Papa Murphy's Holdings Inc (NASDAQ: FRSH) were down 26 percent to $9.19 after the company reported weaker-than-expected quarterly results.

Pernix Therapeutics Holdings Inc (NASDAQ: PTX) was down, falling around 39 percent to $0.649. Pernix Therapeutics reported a Q1 loss of $0.42 per share on revenue of $32.469 million.


In commodity news, oil traded up 4.61 percent to $45.80 while gold traded up 0.92 percent to $1,286.10.

Silver traded up 1.79 percent Thursday to $17.61, while copper fell 0.98 percent to $2.17.


European shares were mostly higher today. The eurozone's STOXX 600 gained 0.26 percent, the Spanish Ibex Index rose 0.89 percent, while Italy's FTSE MIB Index gained 0.75 percent. Meanwhile, the German DAX gained 0.02 percent, and the French CAC 40 slipped 0.08 percent while U.K. shares fell 0.03 percent.


Initial jobless claims rose 17,000 to 274,000 in the last week of April. However, economists were expecting claims to reach 260,000 in the week.


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Posted-In: Earnings News Guidance Eurozone Commodities Global Intraday Update Markets