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Market Overview

Mid-Morning Market Update: Markets Open Lower; Kroger Posts Mixed Q4 Results

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Following the market opening Thursday, the Dow traded down 0.22% to 31,202.42 while the NASDAQ fell 1.6% to 12,790.20. The S&P also fell, dropping 0.56% to 3,798.34.

The U.S. has the highest number of coronavirus cases and deaths in the world, reporting a total of 28,761,390 cases with around 518,450 deaths. India confirmed a total of at least 11,156,920 confirmed cases and 157,430 deaths, while Brazil reported over 10,718,630 COVID-19 cases with 259,270 deaths. In total, there were at least 115,273,110 cases of COVID-19 worldwide with over 2,561,730 deaths, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

Energy shares rose 1.4% on Thursday. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included W&T Offshore, Inc. (NYSE: WTI), up 10%, and Centennial Resource Development, Inc. (NASDAQ: CDEV), up 6%.

In trading on Thursday, consumer discretionary shares fell 1.7%.

Top Headline

The Kroger Co. (NYSE: KR) reported better-than-expected earnings for its fourth quarter, while sales missed views.

Kroger posted quarterly adjusted earnings of $0.81 per share, beating analysts’ estimates of $0.69 per share. The company reported sales of $$30.70 billion, versus expectations of $30.86 billion.

Kroger said it sees FY21 adjusted EPS of $2.75-$2.95, versus analysts’ estimates of $3.36 per share.

 

Equities Trading UP

Five Prime Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: FPRX) shares shot up 78% to $37.94 after Amgen announced plans to acquire the company for $1.9 billion.

Shares of Severn Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ: SVBI) got a boost, shooting 27% to $10.67. Shore Bancshares and Severn Bancorp reported a merger agreement.

Veritiv Corporation (NYSE: VRTV) shares were also up, gaining 11% to $39.60. The company, on Wednesday, reported an increase in Q4 earnings and announced a $50 million buyback plan.

Check out these big movers of the day

Equities Trading DOWN

The Dixie Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: DXYN) shares tumbled 35% to $3.5315. Dixie Group reported FY20 sales of $315.9 million down from $374.6 million year over year.

Shares of Cohen & Company Inc. (NASDAQ: COHN) were down 34% to $27.25. Cohen shares climbed 134% on Wednesday after the company reported a strong rise in Q4 earnings and sales.

Vroom, Inc. (NASDAQ: VRM) was down, falling 26% to $32.52 after the company reported worse-than-expected Q4 earnings and issued weak Q1 EPS guidance.

Commodities

In commodity news, oil traded down 0.5% to $60.98, while gold traded down 0.2% to $1,711.80.

Silver traded down 1.8% Thursday to $25.91 while copper fell 4.7% to $3.9475.

Euro zone

European shares were lower today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 dropped 1%, the Spanish Ibex Index fell 0.4% and the German DAX 30 dropped 0.7%. Meanwhile, the French CAC 40 fell 0.5%, London’s FTSE 100 fell 1.2% and Italy’s FTSE MIB fell 0.8%.

The Eurozone construction PMI rose to 45.0 in February from 44.1 in the earlier month. The IHS Markit Germany construction PMI declined to 41 in February from 46.6 in January, while France construction PMI increased to 44 in February from 39.5.

Economics

US initial jobless claims rose to 745,000 in the week ended February 27, from the prior week's revised level of 736,000.

Nonfarm labor productivity declined by an annualized 4.2% in the last quarter, while unit labor costs increased an annualized 6%.

US factory orders rose 2.6% in January.

The Energy Information Administration’s weekly report on natural gas stocks in underground storage is scheduled for release at 10:30 a.m. ET.

The Treasury is set to auction 4-and 8-week bills at 11:30 a.m. ET.

Check out the full economic calendar here

 

Related Articles (COHN + CDEV)

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