As concerns over the coronavirus (also referred to as COVID-19) continue to dominate news headlines, cause volatility in the marketplace, and test investor confidence in securities markets, one thing remains unchanged - Leigh Baldwin & Co. and its commitment to assist clients through turbulent times. Along with the securities markets, we remain open and available to clients, ready to assist with any needs, questions, or concerns as they arise.
The major averages opened mixed this morning following disappointing data on the private jobs market ahead of the monthly employment report later in the week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 10 points to 10,955. The S&P 500 opened flat at 1,160 while the Nasdaq Composite fell 3 points to 2,395. On the earnings front, Monsanto is higher even though they missed estimates. Constellation Brands is also higher following earnings. Costco is lower even though they missed estimates. FBR made positive comments on a number of retailers including Ann Taylor, Abercrombie & Fitch, and Coldwater Creek. All three are higher. Family Dollar is modestly higher after announcing a share buyback. Kohls indicated they will be hiring more employees for the holidays. The stock is unchanged. More mergers keep getting announced. Robbins Myers is buying T-3 for $422 million. T-3 is jumping 16%. GE announced an acquisition before the bell for $3 billion. GE is trading up 1.5% to a five month high. The financials are acting better with the start of the fourth quarter. Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley are higher even though they had their numbers cut at Ticonderoga. In the tech sector, Apple is higher on an upgrade. Ipad sales seem to be performing well. After the first half an hour the Dow moved higher up 20 points. The Nasdaq remained stuck in the red. Through the morning the Nasdaq moved lower while the Dow succumbed to profit-taking. The commodities, financials, and a select number of other stocks continue to look good. Chevron and Freeport McMoRan are trading at new 52 week highs. In the afternoon all three major averages moved into the red. The recent high-flying techs are getting hit after a data storage company, Equinox lowered estimates. Equinox is down 33% while Salesforce.com and F5 Networks are both down over 8%. Research in Motion is down 3.5% on more rumors that Apple will allow Verizon to carry the Iphone next year. Verizon is higher even though the stock went ex-dividend today. In the last hour that resilient Dow battled back into the green. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 22 points at 10,967, led by a 2.4% gain in General Electric. The Nasdaq Composite tumbled 19 points, or 0.8%, to 2,380, with software firms particularly hard hit. The S&P 500 lost 78 cents to 1,159, with telecoms and tech leading declines.
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