Market Overview

Mid-Afternoon Market Update: Dow Tumbles Over 900 Points; Comtech Telecommunications Shares Plummet

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Toward the end of trading Thursday, the Dow traded down 3.4% to 26170.42 while the NASDAQ fell 2.76% to 8,768.74. The S&P also fell, dropping 3.24% to 3,028.82. Coronavirus cases continued to rise outside China. South Korea confirmed 438 new coronavirus cases, while mainland China reported 139 new confirmed cases on March 4.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

Utilities shares slipped by just 1.8% on Thursday. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included Spark Energy, Inc. (NASDAQ: SPKE), up 1%, and PG&E Corporation (NYSE: PCG), up 1%.

In trading on Thursday, financial shares tumbled 5.3%.

Top Headline

Kroger Co (NYSE: KR) reported upbeat earnings for its fourth quarter.

Kroger reported fourth-quarter earnings of $0.57 per share, which beat the analyst consensus estimate of $0.55 per share. The company reported quarterly sales of $28.893, which slightly exceeded the analyst consensus estimate of $28.83 billion.

Kroger expects FY20 adjusted earnings of $2.30 to $2.40 per share.

Equities Trading UP

Cohen & Company Inc. (NYSE: COHN) shares shot up 41% to $5.65. The Israeli company posted a Q4 profit of $0.56 per share, versus a year-ago loss of $0.37 per share.

Shares of Can-Fite BioPharma Ltd. (NYSE: CANF) got a boost, shooting 23% to $1.92 after the company said it is exploring a collaboration to explore if its investigational asset Piclidenoson, being evaluated for autoimmune inflammatory disease, is effective against coronavirus following reports that rheumatoid arthritis drugs have been introduced for the treatment of the same.

Co-Diagnostics, Inc. (NASDAQ: CODX) shares were also up, gaining 22% to $14.61. Co-Diagnostics said demand, both domestic and international, surged for its COVID-19 detection kits in recent weeks, leading to increased product shipments. The increase comes after the FDA changed its policy Feb. 20 and the number of cases testing positive for the disease burgeoned worldwide.

Equities Trading DOWN

Amplify Energy Corp. (NYSE: AMPY) shares tumbled 30% to $2.9150 after the company reported Q4 results.

Shares of Comtech Telecommunications Corp. (NASDAQ: CMTL) were down 18% to $23.74. Comtech Telecomm reported upbeat earnings for its fourth quarter, while sales missed views. The company also lowered its FY20 forecast.

CalAmp Corp. (NASDAQ: CAMP) was down, falling 19% to $8.07. CalAmp lowered its Q4 sales guidance as a result of coronavirus and softer-than-expected dement for its MRM Telematics products.

Commodities

In commodity news, oil traded down 1.5% to $46.08, while gold traded up 1.5% to $1,668.20.

Silver traded up 0.8% Thursday to $17.385, while copper fell 0.6% to $2.571.

Euro zone

European shares closed lower today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 fell 1.43% the Spanish Ibex Index fell 2.55%, while Italy’s FTSE MIB Index dipped 1.78% Meanwhile, the German DAX dropped 1.51%, and the French CAC 40 fell 2.02% while UK shares fell 1.62%.

Economics

U.S. initial jobless claims fell 3,000 to 216,000 in the week ended February 29, versus analysts’ estimates for a reading of 215,000.

Non-farm labor productivity rose by an annualized 1.2% in the fourth quarter, versus a revised 0.3% decline in the prior three-month period. Unit labor costs rose an annualized 0.9% in the quarter.

U.S. factory orders fell 0.5% for January.

Domestic supplies of natural gas declined 109 billion cubic feet for the week ended February 28, the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported. However, analysts were expecting a drop of 105 billion cubic feet.

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

Dallas Fed President Robert Kaplan is set to speak at 6:30 p.m. ET.

Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis President Neel Kashkari will speak at 8:00 p.m. ET.

Federal Reserve Bank of New York President John Williams is set to speak at 8:45 p.m. ET.

 

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