Market Overview

Mid-Morning Market Update: Markets Open Lower; Morgan Stanley Tops Q4 Estimates


Following the market opening Tuesday, the Dow traded down 0.33 percent to 19,820.99 while the NASDAQ declined 0.56 percent to 5,543.14. The S&P also fell, dropping 0.33 percent to 2,267.06.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

Utilities shares gained around 0.85 percent in trading on Tuesday. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included NRG Energy Inc (NYSE: NRG), and Brookfield Infrastructure Partners L.P. (NYSE: BIP).

In trading on Tuesday, healthcare shares fell by 0.87 percent. Meanwhile, top losers in the sector included Sucampo Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCMP), down 5 percent, and Sangamo Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ: SGMO), down 7 percent.

Top Headline

Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS) reported better-than-expected fourth quarter earnings and revenue, driven by strong performance at its sales, trading and M&A businesses.

Morgan Stanley reported fourth quarter EPS of $0.81 on revenue of $9 billion, topping Street view of $0.65 and $8.5 billion, respectively.

Equities Trading UP

Benitec Biopharma Ltd (ADR) (NASDAQ: BNTC) shares shot up 117 percent to $4.02 after the company disclosed that it has received Orphan Drug Designation in the European Union for BB-301 for the treatment of oculopharyngeal muscular dystrophy.

Shares of Forward Pharma A/S (NASDAQ: FWP) got a boost, shooting up 54 percent to $28.25 after Biogen Inc. (NASDAQ: BIIB) disclosed that it has entered into a settlement and license agreement with Forward Pharma.

Clayton Williams Energy, Inc. (NYSE: CWEI) shares were also up, gaining 36 percent to $141.74. Noble Energy, Inc. (NYSE: NBL) announced plans to acquire Clayton Williams Energy for $2.7 billion in cash and stock.

Equities Trading DOWN

Alcobra Ltd (NASDAQ: ADHD) shares dropped 50 percent to $0.950 after the company disclosed that its Phase 3 trial for MDX has missed the primary endpoint.

Shares of Globus Maritime Ltd (NASDAQ: GLBS) were down around 38 percent to $4.51 after the company disclosed that previously announced private placement and conversion of debt will not occur.

Christopher & Banks Corporation (NYSE: CBK) was down, falling around 33 percent to $1.41 after the company issued a weak Q4 sales forecast and reported the departure of President & CEO LuAnn Via. The company named Joel Waller as interim President and CEO.


In commodity news, oil traded up 1.67 percent to $54.04 while gold traded up 1.60 percent to $1,215.30.

Silver traded up 2.18 percent Tuesday to $17.13, while copper fell 1.80 percent to $2.64.


European shares were higher today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 rose 0.05 percent, the Spanish Ibex Index declined 0.03 percent, while Italy’s FTSE MIB Index climbed 0.54 percent. Meanwhile the German DAX slipped 0.02 percent, and the French CAC 40 fell 0.18 percent while U.K. shares fell 0.88 percent.


The Empire State manufacturing index dropped to 6.5 in January, versus a revised reading of 7.6 for December. Economists were expecting a reading of 8.5.

Federal Reserve Gov. Lael Brainard will speak in Washington, D.C. at 10:00 a.m. ET.

The Treasury is set to auction 3-and 6-month bills at 11:30 a.m. ET.

San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank President John C. Williams is set to speak at Sacramento State University in Calif. at 6:00 p.m. ET.


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Posted-In: Earnings M&A News Guidance Eurozone Commodities Global Intraday Update