Day Traders Diary


Today's session started on a positive note. The early gains were built on yesterday's comments from House Speaker Boehner which indicated he is hopeful a budget deal can be reached. However, the Speaker held another press conference today at which he said no "substantive progress" has been made. The immediate reaction to the remarks saw the S&P 500 fall to its flat line. The level held briefly before the index recovered four points to bring it near its opening level. At midday, the benchmark average is higher by 0.3%.

The technology space is one of the top performing sectors and the SPDR Technology Select Sector ETF (XLK 29.15, +0.13) is higher by 0.5%. The largest tech component, Apple (AAPL 589.00, +6.06) has been in focus recently. Today, the stock is higher by 1.1% as it attempts to return above its 200-day moving average in the $600 area.

Elsewhere, Intel (INTC 19.65, -0.44) is down 2.2% after Goldman lowered its price target for the stock to $16 from $20. Meanwhile, peer Advanced Micro Devices (AMD 2.04, +0.08) is higher by 4.1% as the company seeks to sell its campus in Austin, Texas.

Also of note, Research In Motion (RIMM 11.80, +0.70) is spiking 6.3% after Goldman upgraded the stock to 'buy' from 'neutral.' The maker of Blackberry phones has been on a strong run recently, gaining nearly 60% since the start of November.

As the end of the month nears, retailers are reporting their November same store sales. Out of the 16 companies which have already reported, only four beat their estimates. Of those four, Stein Mart (SMRT 8.47, +0.88) is having the best day. The stock trades higher by 11.6% after the company reported a 7.1% growth in same store sales. Meanwhile, expectations called for an uptick of 2.3%.

On the downside, Kohl's (KSS 45.91, -5.24) is sinking 10.3% after its same store sales declined by 5.6% on expectations of a 2.1% increase. Many retailers which missed their estimates blamed the softness on the aftereffects of Superstorm Sandy. As a result of the disappointing data, the SPDR S&P Retail ETF (XRT 63.37, -0.44) is off by 0.7%.

Jewelry store operator Tiffany (TIF 59.33, -4.40) is tumbling 6.9% after missing its Capital IQ earnings estimate by $0.14. Meanwhile, the jeweler's revenue of $852.70 million was largely in-line with expectations. However, Tiffany's guidance was a point of concern after the company lowered its earnings forecast and trimmed its sales growth expectations. The disappointing results are spilling over to other jewelers. Harry Winston Diamond (HWD 14.18, -0.14), Signet Jewelers (SIG 54.24, -0.09), and Blue Nile (NILE 38.42, -1.05) are all down between 0.2% and 2.7%.

Pending home sales for October increased by 5.2%, which was better than the 1.0% increase that had been expected among economists polled by Today's reading follows last month's uptick of 0.3%.

The latest weekly initial jobless claims count totaled 393,000, which was lower than the 395,000 that had been expected by the consensus. The tally was below the revised prior week count of 416,000. As for continuing claims, they fell to 3.287 million from 3.357 million.

The second estimate of third quarter GDP pointed to growth of 2.7%, up from the 2.0% observed in the preliminary reading. The upwardly revised increase is slightly lower than the 2.8% increase that economists polled by had expected. Also, the third quarter GDP Deflator was revised down, to 2.7%.

All comments contained herein are for informational purposes only, and should not be considered as a solicitation to buy or sell any security. The firm does not guarantee the accuracy or completeness of the information or make any warranties regarding results from it's usage.