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Market Overview

Mid-Afternoon Market Update: Dow Gains Over 50 Points; L Brands Shares Drop On Weak Forecast


Toward the end of trading Thursday, the Dow traded up 0.26 percent to 20,829.68 while the NASDAQ declined 0.41 percent to 5,836.78. The S&P also rose, gaining 0.12 percent to 2,365.56.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

Non-cyclical consumer goods & services shares climbed by 0.85 percent in trading on Thursday. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included GNC Holdings Inc (NYSE: GNC), and PharMerica Corporation (NYSE: PMC).

In trading on Thursday, basic materials shares fell by 1.33 percent. Meanwhile, top losers in the sector included Handy & Harman Ltd (NYSE: HNH), down 11 percent, and Tredegar Corporation (NYSE: TG), down 12 percent.

Top Headline

Hormel Foods Corp (NYSE: HRL) reported weaker-than-expected earnings for its first quarter and lowered its forecast.

Hormel Foods posted Q1 earnings of $0.44 per share on revenue of $2.3 billion. However, analysts were expecting earnings of $0.45 per share on revenue of $2.3 billion.

Hormel lowered its 2017 earnings forecast to $1.65 to $1.71 per share.

Equities Trading UP

Pernix Therapeutics Holdings Inc (NASDAQ: PTX) shares shot up 26 percent to $3.47 after receiving a favorable opinion in Zohydro® ER ANDA litigation.

Shares of KEMET Corporation (NYSE: KEM) got a boost, shooting up 20 percent to $10.18 as the company agreed to acquire NEC TOKIN Corporation.

AXT Inc (NASDAQ: AXTI) shares were also up, gaining 15 percent to $7.90 after reporting strong Q4 results.

Equities Trading DOWN

Ocean Rig UDW Inc. (NASDAQ: ORIG) shares dropped 25 percent to $0.805. Ocean Rig UDW reported a Q4 loss of $3.71 billion on revenue of $355.4 million.

Shares of Cyclacel Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ: CYCC) were down around 22 percent to $4.25. Cyclacel reported that its Phase 3 SEAMLESS study did not meet primary endpoint.

L Brands Inc (NYSE: LB) was down, falling around 16 percent to $49.04. L Brands reported upbeat earnings for its fourth quarter, but issued disappointing outlook for 2017.


In commodity news, oil traded up 1.53 percent to $54.41 while gold traded up 1.43 percent to $1,250.90.

Silver traded up 1.21 percent Thursday to $18.24, while copper fell 3.17 percent to $2.66.


European shares closed mostly lower today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 fell 0.14 percent, the Spanish Ibex Index rose 0.17 percent, while Italy’s FTSE MIB Index declined 0.35 percent. Meanwhile the German DAX dropped 0.42 percent, and the French CAC 40 fell 0.09 percent while U.K. shares fell 0.42 percent.


Initial jobless claims rose 6,000 to 244,000 in the latest week, versus a revised 238,000 in the previous week. Economists expected claims to reach 241,000 for the week.

The Chicago Fed National Activity Index dropped to -0.05 in January, versus a prior reading of 0.14. Economists were projecting a reading of 0.10.

U.S. crude supplies gained 600,000 barrels for the week ended February 17, the Energy Information Administration reported. Analysts expected a gain of 3.4 million barrels.

Data on money supply for the recent week will be released at 4:30 p.m. ET.


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