Day Traders Diary
9/7/12Stocks got off to a mixed start after this morning's jobs data proved to be a disappointment. The anemic numbers turned into yet another argument in favor of additional easing while lower guidance from a technology bellwether contributed to a divergence in the major averages. The S&P 500 finished higher by 0.4% while the Nasdaq ended flat. Nonfarm payrolls were reported at 96K versus the 130K Briefing.com consensus. The prior reading was revised down to 141K from 163K. In addition, nonfarm private payrolls added 103K against the 144K consensus. Separately, the unemployment rate was reported at 8.1% versus the 8.3% consensus estimate as the dip in the unemployment rate was attributed to more people leaving the workforce. Major financials rallied after disappointing jobs data sparked another round of quantitative easing hopes. The SPDR Financial Select Sector ETF (XLF 15.68, +0.16) advanced 1.0% as Bank of America (BAC 8.80, +0.45) and Morgan Stanley (MS 17.08, +0.83) gained over 5.0% each. Other major names showed less robust advances as Citigroup (C 32.06, +0.94) and Goldman Sachs (GS 116.33, +2.79) added 3.0% and 2.5%, respectively. Meanwhile, European financials continued their exuberance for the second day in a row. Barclays (BCS 13.17, +0.86) and Deutsche Bank (DB 40.20, +2.59) jumped near 7.0% each. Stocks listed in the Dow underperformed the broader market as two notable components showed weakness. Kraft Foods (KFT 39.99, -2.32) slid 5.5% after providing an update on its planned spin-off. Beginning October 1, 2012 the company will separate into two entities. Kraft Foods Group which will hold the North America grocery business will begin trading under the ticker 'KRFT' while Kraft Foods will be renamed Mondelez International and trade under the symbol 'MDLZ.' Today's weakness came after the company announced it expects Kraft Foods full-year 2013 earnings at $2.60 per share. Meanwhile, technology companies within the index are slumped after Intel (INTC 24.19, -0.90) cut its third quarter guidance below consensus. The technology bellwether slid 3.6% while Cisco (CSCO 19.56, -0.16), Microsoft (MSFT 30.95, -0.39), and Hewlett-Packard (HPQ 17.42, -0.17) lost between 0.8% and 1.5%. Technology stocks outside of the Dow were also under pressure after Intel's guidance cut. Peer AMD (AMD 3.45, -0.21) slumped 5.7% while related names, NVIDIA (NVDA 13.40, -0.33) and Micron (MU 6.42, -0.25) slipped 2.4% and 3.8%, respectively.
The materials sector settled higher by 2.0% as it outperformed other sectors. Over the past two days, China announced plans to increase infrastructure spending which may bode well for basic materials demand. Iron and steel names showed biggest gains as Cliffs Natural Resources (CLF 39.91, +5.05) jumped 14.5%. Meanwhile, United States Steel (X 20.89, +1.68), AK Steel (AKS 5.78, +0.41), and Freeport-McMoRan (FCX 39.43, +3.09) posted advances near 8.0%. Within the healthcare space, biotechnology stocks weighed on the rest of the sector. The SPDR S&P Biotech ETF (XBI 91.59, -0.43) slipped 0.5%. Spectrum Pharmaceuticals (SPPI 12.01, -0.59) posted the biggest loss within the group as it finished lower by 4.7%. Meanwhile, Medivation (MDVN 105.65, -2.97) and Theravance (THRX 23.91, -0.28) fell 2.7% and 1.2%, respectively. On the upside, pharmaceutical company Peregrine (PPHM 4.50, +1.43) surged 46.6% after reporting that its Bavituximab drug has doubled the median overall survival rate in lung cancer patients who are taking part in the company's phase II trial. Internet radio provider Pandora (P 10.47, -2.10) slumped 16.7% after reports suggested Apple (AAPL 680.44, +4.17) may include internet radio on its devices and integrate the service into its iTunes store. Apple finished higher by 0.6% after marking a fresh all-time high at $681.50 while today's selling has dropped shares of Pandora back to levels last seen before its August 30 earnings report.
The Dow industrials closed up 14 points at 13,306, its highest since Dec. 2007. The Nasdaq Composite edged up by 0.6 point to 3,136, its highest since Nov. 2000, and the S&P 500 ended up 5 points higher at 1,437.92, its highest since Jan. 2008
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