Mid-Afternoon Market Update: Dow Surges 250 Points; VBI Vaccines Shares Climb

Toward the end of trading Thursday, the Dow traded up 0.89% to 28583.51 while the NASDAQ rose 0.08% to 11,675.19. The S&P also rose, gaining 0.50% to 3,495.96.

The U.S. has the highest number of coronavirus cases and deaths in the world, reporting a total of 5,823,680 cases with around 179,740 deaths. Brazil confirmed a total of over 3,717,150 COVID-19 cases with 117,660 deaths, while India reported a total of at least 3,310,230 confirmed cases and 60,470 deaths. In total, there were at least 24,194,500 cases of COVID-19 worldwide with over 826,360 deaths, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

Financial shares gained 1.7% on Thursday. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included Middlefield Banc Corp. MBCN, up 13%, and Colony Bankcorp, Inc. CBAN, up 7%.

In trading on Thursday, communication services shares fell by 1.4%.

Top Headline

Dollar General Corp. DG reported better-than-expected results for its second quarter.

Dollar General reported quarterly earnings of $3.12 per share, beating analysts’ estimates of $2.44 per share. The company reported sales of $8.68 billion, also surpassing expectations of $8.35 billion. The company also announced it has increased its buyback by $2 billion.

Equities Trading UP

VBI Vaccines Inc. VBIV shares shot up 37% to $4.3880 after Raymond James upgraded the company's stock from Outperform to Strong Buy and raised its price target from $8 to $9. VBI Vaccines, on Wednesday, reported preclinical coronavirus program data and selection of clinical candidates with potential as one-dose vaccines.

Shares of PEDEVCO Corp. PED got a boost, shooting 206% to $2.40 after the company delivered an open letter to the SandRidge Permian Trust, its unit holders, and the operator of its assets regarding an indication of interest to acquire the SandRidge Permian Trust and underlying assets.

BMC Stock Holdings, Inc. BMCH shares were also up, gaining 22% to $39.26. Builders FirstSource agreed to combine with BMC Stock Holdings in an all-stock merger.

Equities Trading DOWN

Maxeon Solar Technologies Ltd MAXN shares tumbled 49% to $19.36. SunPower and Maxeon Solar Technologies closed spin-off transaction.

Shares of Cocrystal Pharma, Inc. COCP were down 23% to $1.05. Cocrystal Pharma announced a public offering and purchase on a firm commitment basis of 14.29 million shares of common stock at $1.05 per share. The closing of the offering is expected to occur on or about Aug. 31.

Kaixin Auto Holdings KXIN was down, falling 30% to $0.6329. Renren announced initiation of legal proceedings by subsidiary Kaixin against non-controlling shareholders of three of its dealerships.


In commodity news, oil traded down 1.1% to $42.91, while gold traded down 0.9% to $1,934.40.

Silver traded down 1.5% Thursday to $27.04, while copper rose 0.4% to $2.9735.

Euro zone

European shares closed lower today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 fell 0.64%, the Spanish Ibex Index dropped 0.45%, while Italy’s FTSE MIB Index declined 1.44%. Meanwhile, the German DAX 30 declined 0.71%, French CAC 40 fell 0.64% and UK shares fell 0.75%.


The US economy contracted by an annualized 31.7% during the second quarter, versus analysts’ estimates for a 32.5% decline.

U.S. initial jobless claims dropped to 1.006 million in the week ended August 22, versus economists’ estimates for a reading of 1 million.

U.S. pending home sales increased 15.5% year-over-year in July, versus a revised 5.3% increase in the prior month.

Domestic supplies of natural gas climbed 45 billion cubic feet for the week ended August 21, the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported.

The Kansas City Fed's manufacturing index increased by 16 points to a reading of 23 in July.

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

Posted In: Mid-Afternoon Market UpdateEarningsNewsPenny StocksEurozoneCommoditiesGlobalIntraday UpdateMarkets