June 2008 Archives

Closing Bell Report

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It was a mixed close for the markets despite a retreat in oil prices as earnings estimates and price targets for banks were cut.  The Dow added 4 points to 11,350 while Nasdaq tumbled 23 points to 2293.

On the upside

Hydrogenics Corp. (Nasdaq: HYGS) provided Shell Hydrogen with an integrated hydrogen fueling station.

A fund manager recommended Rediff.com (Nasdaq: REDF) on CNBC saying that the India based company was a good investment.

Record oil prices lifted shares of refiner Sunoco (NYSE: SUN) and petroleum company Goodrich Petroleum (NYSE: GDP).

On the downside

A rumor that Lehman Brothers (NYSE: LEH) will be sold to Barclays at a discount sent shares of the investment bank tumbling.

Russell Investments moved DeVry (NYSE: DV) from the small cap Russell 2000 index to the large cap Russell 1000.

Fitch Ratings warned that XL Capital's (NYSE: XL) investment grade ratings may be downgraded because it's 46% stake in bond insurer Security Capital Assurance (NYSE: SCA) exposes the company to mortgage related losses.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 3 to 2 on the NYSE and by nearly 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks plunged 8 points to 690.

Mid-Day Report

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Although the Bank for International Settlements warned of a prolonged downturn in the global economy, the markets traded mixed during the midday as oil prices eased.  The Dow gained 26 points to 11,372 while Nasdaq fell 14 points to 2301.

On the upside

The Food and Drug Administration issued Indevus Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: IDEV) an approval letter for its male hypogonadism treatment NEBIDO.

Robbins & Myers (NYSE: RBN) reported impressive third quarter earnings that surpassed expectations and lifted its full year guidance.

Petrohawk Energy (NYSE: HK) announced that its Haynesville Shale horizontal well is producing 16.8 million cubic feet of natural gas per day.

On the downside

Concerns that Shuffle Master's (Nasdaq: SHFL) secondary stock offering to raise approximately $86.3 million will dilute earnings more than expected sent shares of the gaming equipment maker tumbling.

Russell Investments moved Ambac Financial Group (NYSE: ABK) and PMI Group (NYSE: PMI) from the Russell 1000 index to the small cap Russell 2000.

First BanCorp (NYSE: FBP) announced that the cease and desist order issued by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York has been lifted.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a very narrow margin on the NYSE and by margin of more than 9 to 7 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks slipped a fraction to 698.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened mixed as investors continued to worry about higher oil prices stifling consumer spending and continued deterioration in the financial services sector.  The Dow added 8 points to 11,355 while Nasdaq lost 3 points to 2311.

On the upside

H&R Block (NYSE: HRB) posted higher revenues and a return to profitability as the nation's largest tax preparer focused on its core business and sold off its Option One mortgage business.

France Telecom (NYSE: FTE) dropped plans for a $42 billion takeover bid for TeliaSonera.  The combination would have created Europe's largest telecommunications company.

Late Friday, News Corp. (NYSE: NWS) and a private equity firm offered $60 a share in cash to buy out public shareholders of its subsidiary NDS Group PLC (Nasdaq: NNDS), a British company that makes technology for pay TV services.

On the downside

Shares of Ford (NYSE: F) and General Motors (NYSE: GM) fell ahead of their June sales reports.  Rumors swirled around the possibility of the automakers going bankrupt.

Shares of Wachovia (NYSE: WB) fell to a 25-year low as investors worried about the possibility of new capital diluting existing shareholders.

Shareholders approved the issuance of more stock to shore up mortgage insurer MGIC Investment Corp. (NYSE: MTG).

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a very narrow margin on the NYSE, but were edged out by margin of 10 to 9 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks slipped a fraction to 697.

Closing Bell Report

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Crude oil prices rose to settle at a record $140.21 a barrel sending the markets tumbling with the Dow dropping 107 points to 11,347.  Nasdaq slipped 6 points to 2316.

On the upside

Fisker Automotive's hybrid Fisker Karma, which is powered by Quantum Fuel Systems Technologies Worldwide's (Nasdaq: QTWW) Q-Drive hybrid engine, will be featured in the British publication CAR Magazine.

VeraSun Energy (NYSE: VSE) will introduce a new ethanol blend for flexible fuel vehicles.

Shares of Rite Aid (NYSE: RAD) recovered after yesterday's steep losses when the company reported a larger than expected loss.

On the downside

A shareholder group that owns nearly an 8% stake in Select Comfort (Nasdaq: SCSS) has demanded that the mattress maker act to improve shareholder value and has requested that chief executive William R. McLaughlin be removed from office.

D. A. Davidson analyst Tim Ramey downgraded Smithfield Foods (NYSE: SFD) while Standard & Poor's cut it ratings for the company citing challenging economic conditions.

An analyst downgraded International Game Technology (NYSE: IGT) over concerns that gambling revenue will fall as consumers grapple with soaring gas prices and an uncertain economy.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of 5 to 3 on the NYSE and by 3 to 2 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks eased a fraction to 698.

Mid-Day Report

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Record oil prices and consumer confidence at a 28 year low weighed down the markets during the midday with the Dow falling 40 points to 11,414.  Nasdaq lost 6 points to 2315.

On the upside

Andersons (Nasdaq: ANDE) raised its full year outlook due to strong results from its plant nutrient unit.

Online party supplies retailer Celebrate Express (Nasdaq: BDAY) agreed to be acquired by Liberty Media (Nasdaq: LINTA) in an all cash deal valued at approximately $31.1 million.

Finish Line (NYSE: FINL) swung to a profit for the first quarter that surpassed estimates as the company raised prices and controlled inventory.

On the downside

SunOpta (Nasdaq: STKL) chief executive Steve Bromley and chief financial officer John Dietrich have both been dismissed amidst an audit investigation.

Although Christopher & Banks (NYSE: CBK) reported greater than expected earnings for the first quarter, the women's apparel retailer forecast second quarter results well below estimates due to a challenging retail environment.

American Eagle Outfitters (NYSE: AEO) announced that its president and chief merchandising officer Susan McGalla will leave the company January 31, 2009 prompting a downgrade.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of 3 to 2 on the NYSE and by more than 5 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 3 points to 696.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened mixed as investors mulled over June consumer confidence numbers that sank to 28-year lows.  The Dow slipped 5 points to 11,448 while Nasdaq rose 3 points to 2324.

On the upside

Accenture (NYSE: ACN) posted higher quarterly earnings that beat expectations and raised its business outlook for the year due to strong demand for consulting and outsourcing services.

Shares of AZZ (NYSE: AZZ) surged after the maker of electronic components posted quarterly profits that doubled and raised its outlook for the year.

Shares of AK Steel (NYSE: AKS) rose after the company was added to the S&P 500.

On the downside

Shares of Yahoo (Nasdaq: YHOO) slipped as investors were mostly unimpressed with the latest reorganization and executive shuffle at the beleaguered Internet portal.

A Credit Suisse analyst downgraded shares of Nokia (NYSE: NOK) due to intense competition in the smartphone business.  Shares of Research in Motion (Nasdaq: RIMM) which makes the popular Blackberry mobile device remained under pressure due to yesterday's lowered guidance.

Steelcase (NYSE: SCS) reported lower profits.  The maker of office furniture raised its outlook, but it was still tempered by the slow U.S. economy.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 10 to 9 on the NYSE and were nearly even on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks rose a fraction to 699.

Closing Bell Report

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Crude oil prices surged briefly above the $140 a barrel mark after Libya announced a possible cut in oil production.  The markets skidded to close sharply lower with the Dow plummeting 358 points to 11,453 while Nasdaq plunged 80 points to 2321.

On the upside

Valence Technology's (Nasdaq: VLNC) auditor PMB Helin Donovan LLP gave the lithium battery maker a "going concern" qualification in its financial report which means that the company can operate indefinitely.

Fourth quarter earnings for America's Car-Mart (Nasdaq: CRMT) surged to surpass estimates by a wide margin as revenue rose.

AspenBio Pharma (Nasdaq: APPY) will begin clinical trials for its AppyScore Human Appendicitis diagnostic test.

On the downside

China Sunergy (Nasdaq: CSUN) priced its offering of convertible notes at a rate of $12.30 per American Depositary Share.

Rite Aid (NYSE: RAD) swung to a wider than expected loss for the first quarter and forecast fiscal 2009 results below estimates.

Chemtura (NYSE: CEM) announced that it is no longer seeking to sell itself but will continue exploring other options including the sale of certain units or entering a joint venture.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 5 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 4 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks plummeted 17 points to 700.

Mid-Day Report

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A series of downgrades in the financial sector as well as the automotive industry sent the markets reeling with the Dow plummeting 256 points to 11,556.  Nasdaq skidded 68 points to 2333.

On the upside

Keefe Bruyette upgraded City National (NYSE: CYN) saying that the company's solid customer base will help it outperform its competitors.

Rising gold prices lifted shares of Kinross Gold (NYSE: KGC) and Agnico Eagle Mines (NYSE: AEM).

Shares of Smith & Wesson (NYSE: SWHC) rose after the Supreme Court upheld an appellate court decision affirming a citizen's constitutional right to possess hand guns for self defense.

On the downside

Agria (NYSE: GRO) swung to a loss for the fourth quarter of 2007 as well as the first quarter of 2008 while 2007 full year earnings dropped.

OshKosh (NYSE: OSK) warned of a third quarter loss as the economy weakens.

Goldman Sachs analyst Patrick Archambault downgraded auto supplier Lear (NYSE: LEA) due to the troubled auto industry.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 5 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 4 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks plummeted 17 points to 700.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened sharply lower on renewed worries of higher oil prices and weak corporate earnings.   The Dow tumbled 170 points to 11,641 while Nasdaq surrendered 50 points to 2350.

On the upside

Photon Dynamics (Nasdaq: PHTN) received a $290 million offer in a bid by Israel's Orbotech (Nasdaq: ORBK) to expand its flat-panel display business.

Sprint Nextel (NYSE: S) reportedly sold out on its line of Instinct handsets made by Samsung.

The gold mining sector soared along with the price of gold.  Shares of Goldcorp (NYSE:GG) and Barrick Gold (NYSE: ABX) were snapped up by investors.

On the downside

Software giant Oracle (Nasdaq: ORCL) posted profits that beat estimates, but lowered its guidance due to softness in the U.S. economy.

Research In Motion (Nasdaq: RIMM) which makes the popular Blackberry mobile device reported earnings and revenues that doubled, but offered a modest forecast for the current quarter.

Shares of General Motors (NYSE: GM) plunged to a 30-year low after a Goldman Sachs analyst downgraded the car maker.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 3 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 3 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 8 points to 707.

Closing Bell Report

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The markets closed modestly higher after the Federal Reserve held interest rates steady.  The Dow added 4 points to 11,812 while Nasdaq soared 33 points to 2401.

On the upside

An analyst from C. L. King ugraded Spherion (NYSE: SFN).

WuXi Pharmatech (NYSE: WX) entered a joint venture with Covance (NYSE: CVD) to provide preclinical research services in China.

Genco Shipping (NYSE: GNK) extended the time charter for its Supramax vessel.

On the downside

Jefferies & Co. analyst Howard Rubel warned that declining civil aircraft orders will negatively impact BE Aerospace (Nasdaq: BEAV).

Third quarter earnings fell for Sonic (NYSE: SONC) as cold weather and higher prices hurt sales.

Robert W. Baird & Co. analyst William V. Power downgraded Syniverse Holdings (NYSE: SVR) saying that the merger of two clients will affect sales.  Verizon Communications will purchase Alltel in a deal valued at approximately $28.1 billion.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 5 to 2 on the NYSE and by more than 5 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks gained 8 points to 716.

Mid-Day Report

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Despite falling sales of new homes, the markets traded higher during the midday as investors await the Federal Reserve's rate decision.  The Dow climbed 73 points to 11,880 while Nasdaq leaped 40 points to 2408.

On the upside

Third quarter earnings for Jabil Circuit (NYSE: JBL) rose to surpass estimates as revenue climbed and expenses fell.

Dean Foods (NYSE: DF) raised its guidance for the second quarter as production costs declined.

Citigroup analyst Greg Ketron initiated coverage of Zions Bancorp (Nasdaq: ZION) with a Buy rating saying that the bank will be able to maintain its capital levels without diluting shareholders.

On the downside

LCA-Vision (Nasdaq: LCAV) warned that the volume of procedures in the second quarter will most likely drop by 40% as regulators seek to clarify risks associated with LASIK.

Rockwell Automation (NYSE: ROK) blamed disappointing growth for warning that the company will fall short of estimates for the third quarter as well as fiscal 2008.

Goldman Sachs downgraded Boeing (NYSE: BA) due to a decline in orders.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 3 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 5 to 2 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks climbed 10 points to 718.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened higher ahead of a decision on interest rates with economists expecting the Federal Reserve to stand pat.  The Dow rose 51 points to 11,858 while Nasdaq surged 30 points to 2398.

On the upside

MasterCard (NYSE: MA) agreed to make 12 quarterly payments of $150 million to American Express (NYSE: AXP) to settle an antitrust lawsuit.

Countrywide (NYSE: CFC) shareholders were expected to approve the proposed $4 billion buyout by Bank of America (NYSE: BAC) this morning.

Retailer Pier 1 Imports (NYSE: PIR) withdrew its offer to buy rival Cost Plus (Nasdaq: CPWM) for $88 million.

On the downside

Industrial parts manufacturer Rockwell Automation (NYSE: ROC) lowered its full-year profit guidance due to slowing sales in the U.S. and Europe.

Glass maker Apogee Enterprises (Nasdaq: APOG) reaffirmed its full-year outlook, but posted a decline in 1st quarter profits.

American Greetings (NYSE: AM) posted lower 1st quarter earnings.  The 2nd largest greeting card company in the U.S. blamed the results on higher costs from the launch of a new line of cards in Canada.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of 3 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks gained 9 points to 717.

Closing Bell Report

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Consumer confidence dropped as crude oil prices continued to rise weighing down the markets to a lower close with the Dow falling 35 points to 11,807.  Nasdaq tumbled 17 points to 2368.

On the upside

Credit Suisse initiated coverage of homebuilder Centex (NYSE: CTX) with an Outperform rating saying that the sector should improve by spring of 2009.

Grocery store chain Kroger (NYSE: KR) reported higher first quarter earnings that beat expectations.

A rally in the financial services sector lifted shares of Lehman Brothers (NYSE: LEH).

On the downside

Sonus Networks (Nasdaq: SONS) has opened a dialogue with its largest shareholder Legatum Capital to discuss shareholder complaints.

Virgin Mobile (NYSE: VM) announced a $79.99 monthly plan for unlimited calls, $20 less than similar plans offered by competitors.

UBS downgraded Capital Trust (NYSE: CT) sending shares of the real estate investment trust tumbling to a new 52-week low.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 5 to 2 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 3 points to 716.

Mid-Day Report

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The markets made modest gains during the midday despite sharply lower consumer confidence.  The Dow gained 24 points to 11,866 while Nasdaq eased a point to 2385.

On the upside

Speculation that record crude oil prices will trigger interest in nuclear energy lifted shares of Uranium Resources (Nasdaq: URRE).

CenturyTel (NYSE: CTL) announced that its quarterly dividend will increase by tenfold.

Credit Suisse initiated coverage of DR Horton (NYSE: DHI) with an Outperform rating.

On the downside

Shares of Web-tracking company comScore (Nasdaq: SCOR) plunged after an article on The Wall Street Journal's website reported that Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) was launching its own tracking service.

S&P cut its price target for AirTran Holdings (NYSE: AAI) and downgraded the airliner.

CNH Global (NYSE: CNH) announced a 5% surcharge on a number of products as steel and energy expenses soar.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 7 to 5 on the NYSE and by 5 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 3 points to 716.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower as consumer confidence fell sharply due to record home foreclosures and higher gasoline prices.  The Dow lost 89 points to 11,753 while Nasdaq tumbled 24 points to 2361.

On the upside

Kroger (NYSE: KR) posted higher 1st quarter profits as discounts drew budget shoppers to their stores.

Photography company Eastman Kodak (NYSE: EK) received a $581 million tax refund and announced a buyback of up to $1 billion in its stock.

Shares of Royale Energy (Nasdaq: ROYL) surged to a new record high as investors focused on promising drilling prospects and a company disclosure that it had returned to profitability.

On the downside

United Parcel Service (NYSE: UPS) warned that its 2nd quarter profits would be hurt by higher fuel prices and the weak U.S. economy.

Shares of bond insurer MBIA (NYSE: MBI) fell to its lowest levels in two decades due to the continued decline in business.

HealthSouth (NYSE: HLS) sold stock to J.P. Morgan Securities to pay debt and raise working capital.  Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 5 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 3 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks dropped 9 points to 710.

Closing Bell Report

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Oil prices continued rising to weigh down the markets to a moderately lower close with the Dow easing a fraction to 11,842.  Nasdaq tumbled 20 points to 2386.

On the upside

Speculation that record oil prices will spark interest in nuclear energy lifted shares of Uranium Resources (Nasdaq: URRE).

Halliburton (NYSE: HAL) will no longer attempt to acquire British oilfield contractor Expro International Group.

On CNBC, Jim Cramer called Cleveland-Cliffs (NYSE: CLF) a favorite stock pick.

On the downside

United Airlines parent UAL (Nasdaq: UAUA) announced the elimination of 950 pilots as part of its plan to offset record fuel expenses by reducing domestic capacity.

US Airways Group (NYSE: LCC) entered a code sharing alliance beginning June 25 with Air China.

In an appearance before Congress, Northwest (NYSE: NWA) CEO Doug Steenland testified that more regulation of commodities trading will contain skyrocketing crude oil prices.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 5 to 2 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks fell 6 points to 720.

Mid-Day Report

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The markets traded mixed during the midday ahead of the Federal Reserve's meeting tomorrow.  The Dow rose 13 points to 11,855 while Nasdaq lost 6 points to 2400.

On the upside

Barrier Therapeutics (Nasdaq: BTRX) will be acquired for approximately $148 million in cash by privately held Stiefel Laboratories.

Goodrich Petroleum (NYSE: GDP) will purchase a 50% non operated interest in Louisiana's Haynesville Shale site.

RBC Capital Markets analyst Kurt Hallead upgraded National Oilwell (NYSE: NOV) and lifted his price target for the oilfield services company saying that revenue is expected to rise.

On the downside

Circuit City (NYSE: CC) last week reported that first quarter losses widened due to lower sales and warned that second quarter losses will be greater than expected.

Pier 1 Imports (NYSE: PIR) disappointed with a wider than expected loss for the first quarter.

Capital Source (NYSE: CSE) reported that it sold $1.5 billion in mortgage backed securities at a loss of $36 million.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 5 to 3 on the NYSE and by nearly 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks slipped 2 points to 723.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened mixed with investors elated about mergers and acquisitions, but worried about volatile record high oil prices.  The Dow rose 10 points to 11,853 while Nasdaq dropped 4 points to 2401.

On the upside

Agriculture giant Bunge (NYSE: BG) announced a deal to buy Corn Products International (NYSE: CPO) in a stock deal worth about $4.4 billion

Disposal company Republic Services (NYSE: RSG) offered $6.07 billion in stock to buy Allied Waste Industries (NYSE: AW).

BCE Inc. (NYSE:BCE) known as Bell Canada received high court approval to proceed with the largest leveraged buyout in history, a $35 billion purchase by a pension fund.

On the downside

The Associated Press reported that Citigroup (NYSE: C) was about mid-way through cutting 10% of the 65,000 employees in its investment banking unit.

Shares of storage system provider Xyratex (Nasdaq: XRTX) pulled back from recent highs following an analyst downgrade due to valuation.

Shares of Motorola (NYSE: MOT) fell to a new 52-week low after an analyst downgraded the stock due to continued losses in handset market share in North America.

In the broad market, advancing issues barely edged out decliners on the NYSE but were outpaced by a margin of 5 to 4 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added a point to 727.

Closing Bell Report

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The markets skidded to a sharply lower close with the Dow plummeting 220 points to 11,843 as oil prices surged and analysts downgraded automakers.  Nasdaq plunged 56 points to 2406.

On the upside

Bank of the Ozarks (Nasdaq: OZRK) affirmed its earnings guidance.

SunTrust Banks (NYSE: STI) reassured investors that it will not lower its dividend or dilute shareholders by issuing more stock.

PolyOne (NYSE: POL) cited strong revenue for increasing its sales outlook for the second quarter.

On the downside

Altair Nanotechnologies (Nasdaq: ALTI) named interim president Terry Copeland to the position of president and chief executive, replacing former CEO Alan Gotcher.

Frontier Financial (Nasdaq: FTBK) cut its quarterly dividend from 18 cents per share to 6 cents per share payable on July 22 to shareholders of record July 8.

A disagreement between Live Nation's (NYSE: LYV) chairman Michael Cohl and chief executive Michael Rapino sparked rumors that Cohl may leave the concert promoter.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 4 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 5 to 2 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks plunged 12 points to 726.

Mid-Day Report

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Rebounding oil prices sent the markets tumbling during the midday with the Dow plummeting 146 points to 11,917.  Nasdaq skidded 46 points to 2416.

On the upside

Shares of Huntington Bancshares (Nasdaq: HBAN) rose even though the bank warned that its provision for credit losses will most likely be higher in the second quarter than in the first quarter.

William Blair upgraded ITT Educational Services (NYSE: ESI).

ShengdaTech (Nasdaq: SDTH) announced plans to purchase nitrogenous fertilizer company Jinan Fertilizer and to move its chemical operations to Jinan's facilities.

On the downside

Medis Technologies (Nasdaq: MDTL) plans to raise $29 million through the offering of common stock as well as five year warrants to purchase common stock.

Sohu.com (Nasdaq: SOHU) warned that advertising revenue growth will slow after the Beijing Olympics.

MF Global (NYSE: MF) announced the pricing of its convertible senior notes and its convertible preference shares.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 5 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 3 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks plummeted 15 points to 723.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened sharply lower on continued worries about oil prices and a stumbling financial services sector.  The Dow lost over 100 points to 11,960 while Nasdaq tumbled 23 points to 2439.

On the upside

Fifth Third Bankcorp (Nasdaq: FITB) bucked the selloff among banks following an analyst upgrade.

Money transfer services firm Western Union (NYSE: WU) announced a $1 billion stock purchase.

The price of gold rose lifting mining companies.  Investors snapped up shares of Barrick Gold (NYSE: ABX) and Newmont Mining (NYSE: NEM).

On the downside

Investors were particularly worried about Merrill Lynch (NYSE: MER) missing its earnings forecast with some analysts predicting a loss for the latest quarter.

Rumors continued to swirl around Yahoo (Nasdaq: YHOO) of a major management shakeup.

CVR Energy (NYSE: CVI) announced plans to offer $125 million in convertible senior notes due 2013.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of 4 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 3 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 10 points to 726.

Closing Bell Report

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China's announcement of an 18% increase in fuel prices sent oil prices tumbling to lift the market to a modestly higher close with the Dow adding 34 points to 12,063.  Nasdaq surged 32 points to 2462.

On the upside

In response to record fuel expenses, UAL Corp. (Nasdaq: UAUA) and Continental Airlines (NYSE: CAL) announced an initiative for global cooperation.

A lawsuit has been filed by 28 airline passengers to block to proposed merger between Delta Air Lines (NYSE: DAL) and Northwest Airlines (NYSE: NWA).

Cott (NYSE: COT) announced a restructuring plan to reduce costs by eliminating jobs while developing its private label soda business.

On the downside

BluePhoenix Solutions (Nasdaq: BPHX) forecast second quarter results below expectations.

Coventry Health Care (NYSE: CVH) blamed higher expenses for lowering its second quarter as well as its full year outlook prompting a downgrade.

Standard & Poor's Ratings Services downgraded WellCare Health Plans' (NYSE: WCG) counterparty credit rating saying that the company's surplus funds were lower than expected.

In the broad market, declining issues barely edged out advancers on the NYSE while advancers outpaced decliners by 7 to 5 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks gained 7 points to 738.

Mid-Day Report

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Despite a drop in jobless claims, the markets traded in negative territory with the Dow dropping 46 points to 11,983.  Nasdaq fell 8 points to 2421.

On the upside

In a deal valued at approximately $1.6 billion, investment firm The Blackstone Group (NYSE: BX) will take Apria Healthcare Group (NYSE: AHG) private.

Shares of PetroChina (NYSE: PTR) and China Petroleum & Chemical (NYSE: SNP) soared after China announced plans to raise the price of retail gasoline and diesel prices by 18%.

Friedman Billings cited Silicon Laboratories' (Nasdaq: SLAB) low valuation and upbeat business outlook for upgrading the chipmaker.

On the downside

Goldman Sachs analyst Mark Wienkes cut his price target for XM Satellite Radio Holdings (Nasdaq: XMSR) and Sirius Satellite Radio (Nasdaq: SIRI) saying that MP3 players and other technologies threaten both companies.

Pier 1 Imports (NYSE: PIR) blamed weak foot traffic for a wider than expected first quarter loss.

Capital Source (NYSE: CSE) announced plans to raise approximately $440 million through an offering of nearly 30 million shares of common stock.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 5 to 3 on both the NYSE and by 10 to 9 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 4 points to 734.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened mostly lower as investors mulled over the latest unemployment figures and a weak regional manufacturing report.  The Dow lost 27 points to 12,001 while Nasdaq dropped 8 points to 2421.

On the upside

Pantry (NYSE: PTRY) told analysts that overall results for the chain of convenience stores would be better than expectations.

Solar panel producer Evergreen Solar (Nasdaq: ESLR) announced two deals worth a total of $600 million through 2012.

Disease-management program administrator Healthways (Nasdaq: HWAY) posted higher 3rd quarter profits as the company signed more contracts.

On the downside

Coventry Health Care (NYSE: CVH) lowered its outlook for the year due to higher costs.  Analysts promptly downgraded the managed care provider.

Shares of chemical maker Huntsman (NYSE: HUN) tumbled as investors worried that Hexion Specialty Chemicals would withdraw its offer.

Circuit City (NYSE: CC) reported a wider loss for its latest quarter, but the results for the consumer electronics retailer was better than expected.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of 4 to 3 on both the NYSE and on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks eased a point to 729.

Closing Bell Report

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Rising oil prices and disappointing earnings sent the markets tumbling to a sharply lower close with the Dow plummeting 131 points to 12,029.  Nasdaq plunged 28 points to 2430.

On the upside

A Stifel Nicolaus analyst lifted his price target for Consol Energy (NYSE: CNX) citing rising coal prices.

Canadian Solar (Nasdaq: CSIQ) raised its revenue outlook for 2008 due to increased sales to German clients.

Jefferies & Co. initiated coverage of Penn Virginia (NYSE: PVA) with a Buy rating.

On the downside

Analysts were disappointed with Clarcor's (NYSE: CLC) second quarter results even though earnings rose to beat estimates by a penny.

Concerns of further losses in the financial sector sent shares of Regions Financial (NYSE: RF) tumbling.

Shares of SunTrust Banks (NYSE: STI) continued to fall after Goldman Sachs lowered its price target as well as its earnings outlook for the company.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of 5 to 2 on both the NYSE and on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks dropped 6 points to 731.

Mid-Day Report

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Disappointing earnings weighed down the markets during the midday with the Dow plunging 130 points to 12,030.  Nasdaq plunged 29 points to 2429.

On the upside

Health Care Service will purchase healthcare information technology services company MEDecision (Nasdaq: MEDE) for approximately $121 million in cash.

Although Commercial Metals (NYSE: CMC) reported lower third quarter earnings, the results surpassed expectations.

An analyst upgraded International Coal (NYSE: ICO) from Sell to Hold.

On the downside

Analysts downgraded BankUnited Financial (Nasdaq: BKUNA).

MF Global (NYSE: MF) warned that first quarter earnings will fall short of estimates and announced that the company must raise another $300 million to repay debt.

Carmax (NYSE: KMX) reported sharply lower first quarter earnings prompting the used car retailer to suspend its full year earnings and sales guidance.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 3 to 1 on the NYSE and by a margin of nearly 5 to 2 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks fell 7 points to 730.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower as investors mulled over the outlook for corporate earnings weighed down by record high oil prices.  The Dow lost 86 points to 12,073 while Nasdaq dropped 24 points to 2432.

On the upside

Shares of YRC Worldwide (Nasdaq: YRCW) rose after the trucking company reaffirmed its 2nd quarter guidance.

Analysts upgraded the railroad sector to lift shares of Union Pacific (NYSE: UNP) higher.

Chinese stocks surged overnight due to bargain hunting with shares of China Petroleum & Chemical Corp., or Sinopec (NYSE: SNP) leaping 10%.

On the downside

FedEx (NYSE: FDX) delivered a disappointing 4th quarter loss as the international package delivery company wrestled with a weak U.S. economy and soaring oil prices.

Fifth Third Bancorp (Nasdaq: FITB) slashed its divided and announced plans to raise at least $2 billion in capital to shore up its balance sheet.

Lindsay Corp. (NYSE: LNN), maker of irrigation products, posted higher 3rd quarter revenues and profits, but the results were well short of Wall Street expectations.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 3 to 1 on the NYSE and by a margin of nearly 3 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks dropped 9 points to 727.

Closing Bell Report

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A surge in producer prices weighed down the markets to a lower close with the Dow plunging 109 points to 12,160.  Nasdaq dropped 17 points to 2458.

On the upside

Lehman Brothers upgraded Denbury Resources (NYSE: DNR).

Chesapeake Energy (Nasdaq: CHK) will pay approximately $178 million to Goodrich Petroleum (Nasdaq: GDP) as part of a joint venture to develop two fields in Louisiana.

An administrative law judge recommended that New York's Public Service Commission reject Iberdrola's proposed $4.6 billion purchase of Energy East (NYSE: EAS).

On the downside

Medicis Pharmaceutical (NYSE: MRX) will pay $150 million in cash to acquire privately held LipoSonix.

Goldman Sachs cut its price target for Washinton Mutual (NYSE: WM) saying that the nation's banks will probably have to raise $65 billion due to the continuing credit crisis.

Alliance One International (NYSE: AOI) delayed filing its annual report saying that its financial statements are not complete.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of 7 to 5 on the NYSE and by a margin of more than 5 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks dropped 4 points to 737.

Mid-Day Report

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Soaring wholesales prices sent the markets tumbling during the midday with the Dow dropping 60 points to 12,209.  Nasdaq lost 3 points to 2471.

On the upside

Mentor Graphics (Nasdaq: MENT) rejected a buyout offer valued at approximately $1.45 billion from rival Cadence Design Systems (Nasdaq: CDNS).

Canadian Solar (Nasdaq: CSIQ) raised its revenue guidance for 2008 due to better than expected sales to German clients.

Longbow upgraded metal processing company Worthington Industries (NYSE: WOR).

On the downside

Networking equipment maker Infinera (Nasdaq: INFN) lowered its 2008 revenue growth guidance saying that demand in North America is expected to weaken.

Goldman Sachs cut its 2008 as well as its 2009 full year earnings outlook for Zions Bancorp (Nasdaq: ZION) and slashed its price target for the company.

Shares of SunTrust Banks (NYSE: STI) tumbled after Golman Sachs said that the nation's banks may have to raise up to $65 million.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 10 to 9 on the NYSE and by a margin of more than 7 to 5 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks held steady at 741.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower as wholesale prices grew modestly when adjusted for the volatile oil and food components.  Manufacturing output fell for the month of May to fan recessionary worries.  The Dow lost 22 points to 12,246 while Nasdaq edged down a point to 2473.

On the upside

Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS) posted a small drop in earnings due to higher fees from asset management and stock underwriting services.  The results easily surpassed investor's lowered expectations.

Wyeth (NYSE: WYE) and Elan Corp. (NYSE: ELN) reported mixed results for its mid-stage drug tests to treat Alzheimer's disease and planned to proceed with late-stage studies.

Genco Shipping & Trading (NYSE: GNK) announced the purchase of six drybulk newbuildings for $530 million to grow its current fleet of 28 drybulk vessels.

On the downside

Best Buy (NYSE: BBY) reported a small decline in 1st quarter profits as same-store sales rose 3.7%.  The better than expected results were tempered by a slower pace of store openings in China.

Adobe Systems (Nasdaq: ADBE) posted a sharp jump in 2nd quarter revenues and earnings.  However, some analysts that international growth may be slowing due to capital spending being diverted to higher oil prices.

The president and chief operating officer of Tween Brands (NYSE: TWB) stepped down and would not be replaced.  The company sells apparel to young girls.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of 10 to 9 on the NYSE, but were edged out by a margin of 5 to 4 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks gave up 2 points to 738.

Closing Bell Report

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It was a mixed close for the markets with the Dow tumbling 38 points to 12,269 as oil prices surged to a record high before retreating to close modestly lower.  Nasdaq climbed 20 points to 2475.

On the upside

Landry's Restaurants (NYSE: LNY) chief executive Tilman Fertitta offered $1.3 billion, including debt, to acquire the restaurant chain operator.

Wachovia Capital Markets analyst Andrew Casey cited Agco's (NYSE: AG) recent drop in its stock price for upgrading the farm and construction equipment maker.

Goldman Sachs upgraded GameStop (NYSE: GME) for its valuation.

On the downside

Administrative law judge Rafael Epstein recommended that regulators not approve Iberdrola's proposed $4.5 billion acquisition of Energy East (NYSE: EAS).

Hershey Trust Chairman LeRoy Zimmerman said that Hershey (NYSE: HSY) will not be sold.  The trust holds a majority of the company stock.

Shares of Fresh Del Monte (NYSE: FDP) tumbled after rival Chiquita (NYSE: CQB) warned of a significant third quarter loss.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 5 to 3 on the NYSE and by more than 7 to 5 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks climbed 7 points to 741.

Mid-Day Report

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The markets traded modestly higher during the midday even as crude oil prices spiked and Saudi Arabia may not be able to increase its oil production.  The Dow added 4 points to 12,311 while Nasdaq climbed 23  points to 2477.

On the upside

Energy Conversion Devices (Nasdaq: ENER) announced last week that it will offer 4.7 million shares of common stock and $225 million in convertible senior notes to raise capital to expand production.

AmTech Research upgraded Amkor Technology (Nasdaq: AMKR) to a Buy rating.

Bargain hunters lifted shares of Las Vegas Sands (NYSE: LVS), which tumbled last week when Goldman Sachs analyst Steven Kent removed the operator of hotels and casinos from his recommended stock list.

On the downside

Acadia Pharmaceuticals' (Nasdaq: ACAD) schizophrenia treatment ACP-104 failed a midstage clinical trial.

Credit Suisse downgraded Pilgrim's Pride (NYSE: PPC) saying that stagnant chicken prices along with rising feed costs will impact earnings.

Textron (NYSE: TXT) blamed disappointing earnings from its finance unit for lowering the high end of its second quarter guidance.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 5 to 4 on the NYSE and by nearly 10 to 9 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 2 points to 735.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened mixed as oil price surged to a record $140 a barrel.  The Dow lost 21 points to 12,283 while Nasdaq edged up 2 points to 2457.

On the upside

Lehman Brothers (NYSE: LEH) reported $2.8 billion in losses as more than $60 billion in mortgage-related securities remained at risk.  The results met expectations.

McClatchy (NYSE: MNI) announced plans to cut 10% of its workforce or 1400 positions in order to save $70 million a year.  Year-over-year advertising revenues had fallen by about 15% in May for the newspaper publisher.

Greenfield Online (Nasdaq: SRVY) received a $426 million cash offer from private investment firm Quadrangle Group.   The company provides marketing survey services on the Internet.

On the downside

Shares of Chiquita Brands International (NYSE: CQB) tumbled after the fresh fruit producer warned that it may report a loss in the 3rd quarter due to higher shipping costs and supply constraints in Central America and Ecuador.

Manufacturing conglomerate Textron (NYSE: TXT) lowered its 2nd quarter profit targets due to weaknesses at its finance unit.

Republic Services (NYSE: RSG) and Allied Waste Industries (NYSE: AW) contemplated a merger in a stock swap.  Analysts were lukewarm about the possibility.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of 7 to 6 on the NYSE and were even on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks held steady at 733.

Closing Bell Report

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Moderate inflation figures sent the markets surging to close sharply higher with the Dow jumping 166 points to 12,307.  Nasdaq leaped 50 points to 2455.

On the upside

Cowen & Co. analyst Rob Stone said that shares of Suntech Power Holdings (NYSE: STP) are undervalued and reiterated his Outperform rating for the solar electric products maker.

Goldman Sachs analyst David Feinberg lifted his rating for the waste sector and added Allied Waste (NYSE: AW) to his list of recommended stocks.  According to a Wall Street Journal article, Allied Waste is discussing a merger with Republic Services (NYSE: RSG).

Origin Agritech (Nasdaq: SEED) received approval to sell three varieties of hybrid corn seeds and one cotton seed that was genetically modified.

On the downside

The Democratic version of the Senate Medicare reform bill will require accreditation for advanced imaging providers, which will benefit Radian Group (NYSE: RDN).

Elpida Memory denied rumors that the Japanese company was seeking to take a stake in Qimonda (NYSE: QI).

A Goldman Sachs Group analyst said that Wachovia (NYSE: WB) should cut its dividend so that it can maintain capital.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 5 to 2 on the NYSE and by nearly the same on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks leaped 14 points to 734.

Mid-Day Report

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Retreating oil prices lifted the markets higher during the midday with the Dow climbing 82 points to 12,223.  Nasdaq surged 34 points to 2438.

On the upside

Impressive results prompted Perfect World (Nasdaq: PWRD) to boost its second quarter revenue guidance.

Shares of Lehman Brothers (NYSE: LEH) rose after BlackRock expressed confidence in the beleagured financial services firm.

Massey Energy (NYSE: MEE) will move from the S&P SmallCap 600 to the S&P 500, replacing OfficeMax (NYSE: OMX) which will move to the S&P SmallCap 600.

On the downside

While Maxygen (Nasdaq: MAXY) said that it has four patents related to its Maxy-G34 drug candidate, the biopharmaceutical warned that Amgen (Nasdaq: AMGN) may file suit for infringing on one of its patents.

Shares of Wachovia (NYSE: WB) tumbled over concerns of more credit losses.

S. A. C. Capital Advisors reported owning a 7.6% stake in Pilgrims Pride (NYSE: PPC).

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks soared 9 points to 729.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened higher after modest inflation numbers raised hopes that the Federal Reserve would not raise interest rates.  The Dow surged more than 100 points to 12,255 while Nasdaq soared 40 points to 2444.

On the upside

Shares of US Airways Group (NYSE: LLC) rose after the carrier announced plans to cut flights and add a $15 surcharge for passengers to check in their first bag.

The Knot (Nasdaq: KNOT) was upgraded by an analyst for the online wedding service provider's dominant position and strong product offering.

Analysts expectED Research in Motion (Nasdaq: RIMM) to grow its market share despite new offerings from competitors.

On the downside

Shares of Yahoo (Nasdaq: YHOO) collapsed following an announcement of no imminent sale to Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT).  A possible advertising partnership with Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) also failed to impress investors.

An analyst warned that Fifth Third Bancorp (Nasdaq: FITB) may cut its dividend by up to 50% and raise capital to shore up its balance sheet.

Investor dumped shares of Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling (NYSE: CCH) after the 2nd largest bottler for Coca-Cola (NYSE: KO) lowered its profit outlook due to slower growth in Europe and rising costs.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 3 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks jumped 10 points to 730.

Closing Bell Report

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The markets closed modestly higher as soaring crude oil prices tempered news of surprisingly upbeat May retail sales.  The Dow climbed 58 points to 12,142 while Nasdaq gained 10 points to 2404.

On the upside

Shuffle Master (Nasdaq: SHFL) reported second quarter earnings that surpassed estimates as revenue rose prompting Goldman Sachs analyst Steven Kent to lift his price target for the casino game machine maker.

Fourth quarter earnings for EnerSys (NYSE: ENS) surged to beat estimates prompting the industrial battery maker to boost its first quarter outlook.

Wachovia Capital Markets analyst Andrew Casey said that Cummins (NYSE: CMI) will benefit from the development deal between Caterpillar (NYSE: CAT) and Navistar International.

On the downside

Chindex International (Nasdaq: CHDX) blamed higher taxes and an adjustment for swinging to a fourth quarter loss.

KeyCorp (NYSE: KEY) will cut its dividend in half and announced plans to issue new stock in order to raise $1.5 billion after an unfavorable tax ruling.

US Airways (NYSE: LCC) blamed soaring fuel expenses for eliminating 1,700 jobs and lowering capacity by up to 8%.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 10 to 9 on the NYSE and by nearly 5 to 4 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 2 points to 720.

Mid-Day Report

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Upbeat May retail sales lifted the markets higher during the midday with the Dow soaring 122 points to 12,205.  Nasdaq climbed 23 points to 2417.

On the upside

Casey's General Stores (Nasdaq: CASY) reported lower fourth quarter earnings but the results surpassed expectations.  The convenience store operator also raised its quarterly dividend to 7.5 cents per share payable on August 15 to shareholders of record on August 1.

A surge in revenue boosted fourth quarter earnings for China Medical Technologies (Nasdaq: CMED) to beat estimates prompting the medical device maker to forecast full year results ahead of expectations.

Shares of MBIA (NYSE: MBI) rose after the bond insurer said that it will not direct $900 million to its bond insurance unit.

On the downside

National CineMedia (Nasdaq: NCMI) blamed weak demand for forecasting second quarter revenue that falls short of expectations.

Invitrogen (Nasdaq: IVGN) will acquire Applied Biosystems Group (NYSE: ABI) for $6.4 billion in cash and stock.

Analysts downgraded Archer Daniels Midland (Nasdaq: ADM) over concerns that flooding in the midwest has severely hampered corn crops.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 5 to 3 on the NYSE and by nearly 5 to 2 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks jumped 9 points to 727.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened higher on upbeat retail sales figures for the month of May driven by stimulus checks.  The Dow surged more than 150 points to 12,240 while Nasdaq leaped 32 points to 2426.

On the upside

Belgian brewer InBev offered $46 billion in cash to buy Anheuser-Busch (NYSE: BUD) to create the world's largest beer company.

Qualcomm (Nasdaq: QCOM) raised its outlook for the year due to higher demand for cellphone chips.

Continental Airlines (NYSE: CAL) lined up an initial payment in the amount of $413 million under its cobranded credit card deal with Chase Bank USA.

On the downside

Lehman Brothers (NYSE: LEH) purged two key executives as investors worried about mounting losses and rumors of account closures triggering the equivalent of a bank run.

KeyCorp (NYSE: KEY) cut its dividend in half and planned to raise $1.5 billion in order to cover charges from lease and residential construction portfolio losses.

Chindex International (Nasdaq: CHDX) posted higher revenues and earnings, but the China-based health care service provider missed targets.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 3 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks jumped 8 points to 726.

Closing Bell Report

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A drop in the nation's inventory of crude oil lifted oil prices into record territory once again sending the markets reeling to close sharply lower with the Dow plummeting 206 points to 12,084.  Nasdaq skidded 55 points to 2394.

On the upside

Nortel Networks (NYSE: NT) partnered with Alvarion (Nasdaq: ALVR) to provide long-range wireless access.

FTI Consulting (NYSE: FCN) will pay $88 million in cash to acquire business software maker Attenex.

Rising coal prices lifted shares of James River Coal (Nasdaq: JRCC).

On the downside

Centex (NYSE: CTX) must pay a fine of $1.485 million for polluting storm drains at construction sites in 34 states as well as the District of Columbia.

U. S. Airways Group (NYSE: LCC) warned that soaring fuel expenses will force airlines to cut capacity by 9% in the fourth quarter and by another 9% in 2009.  Additional fees may also be introduced to increase revenue.

UAL (NYSE: UAUA) announced a multiyear contract with United Technologies to regulary wash the engines of its airliners in order to lower fuel usage while reducing carbon emissions.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 4 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 7 to 2 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks tumbled 15 points to 718.

Mid-Day Report

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The markets continued to fall after the Energy Department reported lower oil inventories for last week.  The Dow tumbled 172 points to 12,117 while Nasdaq plummeted 35 points to 2413.

On the upside

Investors snapped up shares of The Mosaic Company (NYSE: MOS) whose crop nutrient and animal feed products could address the global food shortage.

Diodes (Nasdaq: DIOD) which makes semiconductor products raised its 2nd quarter revenue outlook.

Accentia Biopharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: ABPI) reported positive results for its drug treatment of indolent follicular non-Hodgkins lymphoma.

On the downside

Amerigroup (NYSE: AGP) suspended its guidance for the year.  Analyst promptly downgraded the health insurer.

Sonic (Nasdaq: SNIC) returned to profitability, but the maker of software for Blu-ray DVD players lowered its guidance.

Hooker Furniture (Nasdaq: HOFT) posted lower revenues and profits due to the housing slump cutting into consumer demand for furniture.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 3 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 5 points to 727.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower as investors worried about rebounding oil prices and the possibility of higher interest rates.  The Dow fell over 100 points to 12,185 while Nasdaq lost 25 points to 2423.

On the upside

Dutch office supplies distributor Corporate Express (NYSE: CXP) accepted the $2.7 billion offer to be acquired by Staples (Nasdaq: SPLS).

Grey Wolf (NYSE: GW) received a $1.6 billion cash and stock offer from Canada-based Precision Drilling Trust (NYSE: PDS).

Canadian fertilizer maker Agrium (NYSE: AGU) raised its 2nd quarter outlook due to strong demand for its products.

On the downside

Shares of Washington Mutual (NYSE: WM) fell to a new 52-week low as investors worried that the bank may report larger than expected losses.

Shares of Lehman Brothers (NYSE: LEH) fell as the troubled investment bank stepped up efforts to raise $6 billion in order to stabilize its balance sheet.

Lawn, garden and pet supplies maker Central Garden & Pet Company (Nasdaq: CENT) lowered its profit outlook due to rising costs.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 3 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 9 points to 723.

Closing Bell Report

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It was a mixed close for the markets even as oil prices retreated with the Dow adding 9 points to 12,290.  Nasdaq dropped 11 points to 2449.

On the upside

Goldman Sachs upgraded Arvinmeritor (NYSE: ARM) and lifted the price target for the industrial components supplier due to an upbeat outlook for 2009.

Wachovia Capital Markets upgraded Fresh Del Monte Produce (NYSE: FDP) after the company paid $403 million for two fruit companies in Costa Rica.

Dr. Sudhir Srivastava used Cardica's (Nasdaq: CRDC) C-Port Flex-A Anastomosis System for an innovative minimally invasive cardiac bypass surgery.

On the downside

Delta Airlines (NYSE: DAL) will cancel its connection contract with Pinnacle Airlines (Nasdaq: PNCL) saying that the regional carrier had poor on time performance.

Apple's (Nasdaq: AAPL) new 3G iPhone will not use Synchronoss Technologies' (Nasdaq: SNCR) account activation technology.

Falling gold prices weighed down shares of Kinross Gold (NYSE: KGC) and Agnico-Eagle Mines (NYSE: AEM).


In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 7 to 5 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks slipped 3 points to 733.

Mid-Day Report

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Investors mulled over higher oil prices and a weak financial services sector with the Dow losing 14 points to 12,265 while Nasdaq giving up 20 points to 2439.

On the upside

Employment screening company HireRight (Nasdaq: HIRE) was bought by US Investigations Services for $195 million in cash.

InterOil (AMEX: IOC) posted a positive drilling report at its Eastern Papua Basin site.

Shares of Pall Corp. (NYSE: PLL) rose after the maker of filers and purifiers posted higher 3rd quarter profits and raised its outlook.

On the downside

Credit card issuer CompuCredit (NYSE: CCRT) was charged by federal regulators for deceptive marketing practices.

Wireless Ronin Technologies (Nasdaq: RNIN) announced the resignation of its CFO.  The company makes software for digital signs.

Oil and natural gas exploration and production company Continental Resources (NYSE: CLR) was downgraded by an analyst due to valuation.


In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 3 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 4 points to 731.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower with the Dow losing 16 points to 12,264 while Nasdaq dropped 18 points to 2440.  The U.S. trade deficit soared to an all-time high due to record oil prices.

On the upside

Oil and natural gas producer XTO Energy (NYSE: XTO) offered $4.19 billion in cash and stock to acquire privately held Hunt Petroleum to increase production capacity in east Texas and Louisiana.

Equipment renter United Rentals (NYSE: URI) announced a stock buyback of up to 27.16 million of its shares for up to $679 million.

Shares of American Superconductor (Nasdaq: AMSC) surged after the wire manufacturer announced a $450 million contract from China-based Sinovel Wind Corp.

On the downside

Shares of CMGI (Nasdaq: CMGI) dropped after the supply-chain and inventory-management software provider swung to a loss in the 3rd quarter and lowered its revenue outlook.

Freddie Mac (NYSE: FRE) offered $3 billion in three-year notes and $3 billion in ten-year notes to be traded on the Luxembourg Stock Exchange.

Analysts downgraded investment bank Lehman Brothers (NYSE: LEH) whose woes weighed down the financial services sector.


In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 2 points to 732.

Closing Bell Report

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Despite a drop in oil prices, the markets closed mixed over concerns that banks may continue to post heavy losses.  The Dow climbed 71 points to 12,280 while Nasdaq tumbled 15 point to 2459.

On the upside

Aan upbeat article on Alcoa (NYSE: AA) appeared in the weekend edition of Barron's.

An Apache (NYSE: APA) official said that damage from a gas plant explosion last week will take months to repair.

Two of Ensco International's (NYSE: ESV) vice presidents exercised options.

On the downside

Lehman Brothers analyst Jason Goldberg slashed his earnings estimate for National City (NYSE: NCC) to a loss of 10 cents per share citing continued weakness in the housing market.

Shares of Ambac Financial (NYSE: ABK) and MBIA (NYSE: MBI) dropped after CreditSights analyst Rob Haines said that bond insurers may become insolvent if their capital levels fall.

Trina Solar (NYSE: TSL) stock continued to fall after warning last Friday that margins are expected to narrow due to high silicon expenses.


In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks dropped 5 points to 735.

Mid-Day Report

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The markets traded mixed during the midday with the Dow surging 101 points to 12,311 while Nasdaq dropped 12 point to 2462 as oil prices retreated and April pending home sales rose.

On the upside

Standard & Poor's Ratings Services cited Mosaic's (NYSE: MOS) improved finances for raising the potash maker's credit rating to investment grade.

BE Aerospace (Nasdaq: BEAV) will pay $1.05 billion in cash and stock to acquire Honeywell International's (NYSE: HON) Consumables Solutions business.

Goldman Sachs will provide CIT Group (NYSE: CIT) with a $3 billion financing facility.

On the downside

Jefferies & Co. downgraded Amylin Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: AMLN) after rival Novo Nordisk said that its experimental diabetes medicine liraglutide outperformed Amylin's Byetta.

UBS analyst Eric Wasserstrom cut his price target for Washington Mutual (NYSE: WM) saying that the mortgage lender's losses will total $27 billion into 2011.

Pier 1 Imports (NYSE: PIR) offered approximately $88 million in stock to acquire rival Cost Plus (NYSE: CPWM).


In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 10 to 9 on the NYSE and by nearly 5 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks eased a point to 739.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened mixed as oil prices retreated from last week's record highs.  The Dow rose 77 points to 12,287 while Nasdaq fell 11 point to 2462.

On the upside

McDonald's (NYSE: MCD) reported higher same-store sales in May citing a menu that focused on affordability and strong global sales.

Molecular diagnostics company Third Wave Technologies (Nasdaq: TWTI) received a $580 million cash offer from Hologic (Nasdaq: HOLX) which will fully finance the deal with debt.

Shares of Hilb Rogal & Hobbs (NYSE: HRH) surged on news that UK-based Willis Group (NYSE: WSH) offered $2.1 billion to buy the insurer.

On the downside

Beleaguered investment banker Lehman Brothers (NYSE: LEH) announced a $6 billion preferred stock offering which was at the high end of analysts' estimates.

Investors worried that Apple (NYSE: AAPL) may delay the launch of its new 3G-enabled iPhone due to component production delays.

A California jury found TASER International (Nasdaq: TASR) 15% responsible for the death of an individual subdued by the company's electronic stunning devices.


In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of 6 to 5 on the NYSE and by nearly 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added a point to 741.

Closing Bell Report

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Crude oil prices leaped nearly $11 to settle at a record $138.54 after Morgan Stanley warned that oil prices will surge to $150 per barrel by July 4.  The Dow plummeted 395 points to 12,210 while Nasdaq plunged 75 points to 2475.

On the upside

Higher revenue lifted full year earnings for Parlux Fragrances (Nasdaq: PARL).  The maker of perfume and other beauty products will introduce its Queen Latifah fragrance in 2009.

While first quarter earnings for C&D Technologies (NYSE: CHP) plunged, the results surpassed expectations.

Concho Resources (NYSE: CXO) will pay $565 million in cash to acquire the Texas and New Mexico oil and gas holdings of Henry Petroleum.

On the downside

Surging oil prices sent shares of airliners UAL (Nasdaq: UAUA) and AMR (NYSE: AMR) tumbling.

Shares of Washington Mutual (NYSE: WM) dropped over concerns that the capital it raised recently may still not be enough to cover loan losses.

Fitch Ratings downgraded MGIC Investment's (NYSE: MTG) debt rating saying that the mortgage industry will continue to disappoint.


In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 4 to 1 on both the NYSE and on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks plummeted 23 points to 740.

Mid-Day Report

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Surging oil prices sent the markets tumbling during the midday with the Dow plummeting 252 points to 12,352. Nasdaq skidded 42 points to 2508.

On the upside

Although fourth quarter earnings slipped for National Semiconductor (NYSE: NSM), the results surpassed estimates and the company forecast first quarter revenue ahead of expectations.

Chesapeake Energy (NYSE: CHK) reported two additional successful horizontal wells at its Haynesville Shale discovery, expects to complete two more by the end of the month and is seeking to expand its land holdings in the area.

Continental Resources (NYSE: CLR) named Brian Engel to the position of Vice President of Public Affairs.

On the downside

MRV Communications (Nasdaq: MRVC) may have to restate financials from 2002 through 2208 due to its past stock option practices.

First quarter earnings for Trina Solar (NYSE: TSL) more than doubled to beat expectations as solar module shipments surged but the solar power products company warned that margins will narrow as silicon costs rise.

Continental Airlines (NYSE: CAL) will reduce capacity in the fall by 11% and eliminate 3,000 positions.


In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 4 to 1 the NYSE and by more than 7 to 2 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks plunged 15 points to 748.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower as oil prices surged and unemployment claims unexpectedly increased.  The Dow tumbled more than 200 points to 12,385 while Nasdaq lost 35 points to 2514.

On the upside

The Federal Reserve approved the $4 billion stock purchase of Countrywide Financial (NYSE: CFC) by Bank of America (NYSE: BAC).

Inspire Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: ISPH) posted positive late stage trial results for its drug candidate treating cystic fibrosis.

Tumbleweed Communication (Nasdaq: TMWD) announced a $138 million deal to be acquired by Sopra Group, a French information technology company.   Shares of the e-mail and messaging security software provider surged toward the $2.70 per share target price.

On the downside

The SEC opened an investigation into American International Group (NYSE: AIG) for allegedly overinflating the value of subprime-related investment contracts known as credit default swaps.

Oil and gas producer GeoResources (Nasdaq: GEOI) placed a stock offering well below its current price.

Shares of Focus Media Holding (Nasdaq: FMCN) fell after the China-based advertising network lowered its guidance for the year due to advertisers' response to the recent earthquake and hesitation to spend.


In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 3 to 1 the NYSE and by nearly 3 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks dropped 9 points to 754.

Closing Bell Report

|

Surprisingly upbeat retail sales in May boosted the markets to a sharply higher close with the Dow leaping 214 points to 12,604.  Nasdaq jumped 47 points to 2550.

On the upside

Shares of Sequenom (Nasdaq: SQNM) continued to surge after announcing that its Down Syndrome test produced no false positives.

Two Delta Air Lines (NYSE: DAL) executives will meet with Northwest Airlines' (NYSE: NWA) pilot's union to discuss compensation after the two companies merge.

Petrohawk Energy (NYSE: HK) stock continued to climb after Lehman Brothers analyst Jeffrey Robertson upgraded the oil and gas producer and lifted his price target for the stock on Monday.

On the downside

Citizens Republic Bancorp (Nasdaq: CRBC) will raise $200 million through the offering of common stock and contingent convertible perpetual non-cumulative preferred stock.  The financial services company also announced a write-down of $47.1 million.

Smithfield Foods (NYSE: SFD) blamed the high cost of grain as well as low hog prices for sharply lower fourth quarter earnings that fell far short of analyst expectations.

J. P. Morgan downgraded Carpenter Technology (NYSE: CRS).

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 4 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 3 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks leaped 20 points to 763.

Mid-Day Report

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Better than expected retail sales lifted the markets higher during the midday with the Dow surging 166 points to 12,556.  Nasdaq leaped 37 points to 2540.

On the upside

French company Ipsen SA will acquire biopharmaceutical Tercica (Nasdaq: TRCA) in an all cash deal for $663 million.

Cowan & Co. upgraded Vertex Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: VRTX) after the company sold its  future royalty rights for $160 million in cash.

Nucor (NYSE: NUE) lifted its second quarter guidance as margins rose and overseas demand increased.

On the downside

Credit Suisse downgraded Regeneron Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: REGN) after the company reported disappointing results from a midstage clinical trial of its ovarian cancer treatment. 

Webster Financial (NYSE: WBS) plans to raise $225 million through the sale of convertible preferred stock.

Although Del Monte (NYSE: DLM) reported higher fourth quarter earnings, revenue fell short of estimates and the food company warned that profit in fiscal 2009 will drop due to increased energy and commodity expenses.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 3 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 5 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks soared 11 points to 755.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened higher on signs that jobs and retails sales may be firming up.  The Dow rose 59 points to 12,449 while Nasdaq climbed 17 points to 2520.

On the upside

Verizon Wireless, which is jointly owned by Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ) and Vodafone Group (NYSE: VOD), made a bid for Alltel, the 5th largest U.S. wireless carrier, for $27 billion from private equity firms, according to media reports.

LiveDeal (Nasdaq: LIVE) which operates online classified and yellow pages services implemented a partnership with Google's AdWords advertising platform.

Communications equipment maker ADC Telecommunication (Nasdaq: ADCT) posted lower 2nd quarter profits, but raised its outlook for the rest of the year.

On the downside

Vail Resorts (NYSE: MTN) posted higher revenues and earnings, but the results fell short of expectations. 

Shares of tax preparer Jackson Hewitt Tax Service (NYSE: JTX) fell after the company reported higher revenues and lower earnings due to rising expenses.  It also processed fewer tax returns.

Shares of Martek Biosciences (Nasdaq: MATK) pulled back from new highs after reporting revenues and earnings  that beat expectations, but lowered its outlook for the quarter due to production delay.  The company sells nutritional oils and dietary supplements as well as infant formula.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 3 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks rose 6 points to 750.

Closing Bell Report

|

The markets closed mixed as gasoline inventory rose while crude oil supplies fell.  The Dow dropped 12 points to 12,390 while Nasdaq soared 23 points to 2503.

On the upside

Higher sales lifted fourth quarter earnings for Bob Evans Farms (Nasdaq: BOBE) to surpass estimates while the restaurant operator forecast fiscal 2009 results ahead of expectations.

SAIC (NYSE: SAI) reported higher first quarter earnings that beat expectations and announced that the U. S. Army awarded the information technology company a contract worth up to $454 million to maintain a computer system.

SunOpta (Nasdaq: STKL) announced that it will build an organic soymilk production and packaging facility in Modesto, CA.

On the downside

Moody's Investors Service may downgrade bond insurers Ambac Financial (NYSE: ABK) and MBIA (NYSE: MBI) as the credit crisis continues.

Shares of oil refiner Sunoco (NYSE: SUN) fell as gasoline inventories rose while demand declined.

Shareholders of Solera Holdings (NYSE: SLH) will sell 5 million of their shares to the public.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 5 to 4 on the NYSE while advancers edged out decliners by more than 9 to 7 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 5 points to 744.

Mid-Day Report

|

The markets staged a mid-day rally due to signs that the service sector may be expanding again.  The Dow rose 85 points to 12,488 while Nasdaq surged 33 points to 2514.

On the upside

Yahoo (Nasdaq: YHOO) signed a multi-year deal to become Wal-Mart's (NYSE: WMT) primary marketing and sales channel for display and video advertising.

Shares of Sequenom (Nasdaq: SQNM) surged after the drug research firm reported that a prenatal test used to detect Down syndrome produced no false positives.

Analysts noted that a weak dollar and a roster of fuel efficient cars may drive import sales.  Shares of Toyota (NYSE: TM) and Honda Motors (NYSE: HMC) spiked.

On the downside

Shares of Indevus Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: IDEV) tumbled after the FDA delayed approval of the company's injectable testosterone drug candidate due to safety concerns.

Shares of Cogent Communications (Nasdaq: CCOI) fell to a new 52-week low on no specific news.

Analysts expected the latest industry report on oil stockpiles to show growth of 2.7 million barrels last week.  Shares of Western Refining (NYSE: WNR) lost ground.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of 6 to 5 on the NYSE and by nearly 4 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks rose 5 points to 744.

Opening Bell Report

|

The markets edged higher as investors mulled over easing oil prices and increased worker productivity.  The Dow added 10 points to 12,412 while Nasdaq rose 8 points to 2488.

On the upside

Shares of Guess (NYSE: GES) soared after the apparel retailer posted strong 1st quarter results and raised its outlook through 2009.

United Airlines (Nasdaq: UAUA) announced plans to cut capacity and workers in order to cope with record oil prices.

An analyst upgraded Koppers Holdings (NYSE: KOP) which makes coal-based and chemical products.

On the downside

Shares of Lehman Brothers (NYSE: LEH) remained under pressure as the investment bank sought new investors to shore up its balance sheet.  Meanwhile, financial services firm State Street (NYSE: STT) announced a $2.5 billion stock offering.

Hovnanian Enterprises (NYSE: HOV) posted its 7th consecutive quarterly loss amid slumping housing demand.

Information technology company Tibco Software (Nasdaq: TIBX) reported lower preliminary results late Tuesday.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of 4 to 3 on the NYSE and by a slim margin on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks held steady at 739.

Closing Bell Report

|

Concerns that interest rate cuts are over as well as worries about the effects that General Motors' plan to close four plants and cut 8,350 jobs will have on the economy sent the markets down to a sharply lower close.  The Dow plummeted 101 points to 12,403 while Nasdaq dropped 11 points to 2480.

On the upside

To expand its customer base, SanDisk (Nasdaq: SNDK) will focus on low cost personal computers and business laptops.

Shares of Royale Energy (Nasdaq: ROYL) surged although the company made no announcements.

Newpark Resources (NYSE: NR) named William D. Moss to the position of President of Newpark's Mats and Integrated Services business.

On the downside

American Oriental Bioengineering (Nasdaq: AOB) plans to raise $125 million through the sale of convertible preferred stock.

Shares of Wachovia (NYSE: WB) fell to close at a 52-week low after announcing the retirement of CEO Ken Thompson yesterday.

On Friday, Eastman Kodak (NYSE: EK) announced price increases of up to 20% on a number of products due to the soaring cost of raw materials.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 5 to 3 on the NYSE and by more than 9 to 7 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 2 points to 739.

Mid-Day Report

|

Investors disappointed with Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke's suggestion that recent interest rate cuts are enough to stimulate the economy sent the markets tumbling during the midday with the Dow plunging 124 points to 12,379.  Nasdaq plummeted 25 points to 2466.

On the upside

Smith International (NYSE: SII) will purchase W-H Energy Services (Nasdaq: WHQ) in a cash and stock deal valued at approximately $3.2 billion.

Second quarter earnings for NCI Building Systems (NYSE: NCS) more than doubled to surpass expectations as demand increased.

Agria (NYSE: GRO) will release cash and stock that has been placed in escrow to be used as incentives for management at Primalights III Agricultural Development, an affiliated entity of Agria.

On the downside

New Frontier Media (Nasdaq: NOOF) blamed disappointing video-on-demand revenue for fourth quarter earnings that fell short of estimates.  The adult entertainment company also suspended its dividend.

Layne Christensen (Nasdaq: LAYN) reported higher first quarter earnings due to record revenue but results of its water infrastructure segment disappointed.

In response to an injuction issued by a federal court, Tyson (NYSE: TSN) will voluntarily halt the use of the phrase "raised without antibiotics" in its poultry products.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by 4 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 4 points to 745.

Opening Bell Report

|

The markets opened higher as oil prices eased and factory orders rose in April.  The Dow added 31 points to 12,535 while Nasdaq surged 15 points to 2507.

On the upside

Dutch office supplies distributor Corporate Express NV (NYSE: CXP) received a higher hostile bid of $2.6 billion from Staples (Nasdaq: SPLS).

General Motors (NYSE: GM) announced plans to close four truck and SUV plants in the U.S., Canada and Mexico in order to focus on small car production and mulled over the future of its gas-guzzling Hummer vehicles.

Toll Brothers  (NYSE: TOL) posted a large 2nd quarter loss, but the results for the homebuilder beat expectations.

On the downside

Paint maker Sherwin-Williams (NYSE: SHW) lowered its revenue and profit outlook due to weak demand in the housing market and higher raw material costs.

Shares of Lehman Brothers Holdings (NYSE: LEH) fell following reports of a possible $4 billion raise.

An analyst initiated coverage of Riverbed Technology (Nasdaq: RVBD) with a low rating and a modest revenue outlook.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by 4 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 4 points to 745.

Closing Bell Report

|

Disappointing manufacturing data along with downgrades in the financial sector sent the markets tumbling to close sharply lower with the Dow skidding 135 points to 12,504.  Nasdaq plummeted 31 points to 2492.

On the upside

The Food and Drug Administration approved Abiomed's (Nasdaq: ABMD) implanted Impella 2.5 Cardiac Assist Device used to maintain bloodflow during and after surgery in heart failure patients.

Brigham Exporation (Nasdsaq: BEXP) announced the completion of two new wells that have lifted production to record levels.

Friedman, Billings, Ramsey analyst David Khani upgraded Massey Energy (NYSE: BTU) saying that coal prices will soar as demand greatly exceeds supply.

On the downside

Standard & Poor's downgraded its debt ratings for Lehman Brothers (NYSE: LEH) and Merrill Lynch (NYSE: MER) to negative citing the continuing credit crisis.

Brean Murray downgraded water and sewage services provider Companhia de Saneamento (NYSE: SBS).

The European Medicines Agency recommended approval for Merck's (NYSE: MRK) Gardasil to be used to prevent high-grade vaginal dysplastic lesions.


In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 11 to 5 on both the NYSE and on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks dropped 7 points to 741.

Mid-Day Report

|

Another drop in construction activity sent the markets tumbling during the midday with the Dow plummeting 192 points to 12,446.  Nasdaq plunged 46 points to 2477.

On the upside

Avant Immunotherapeutics' (Nasdaq: AVAN) cancer vaccine more than doubled the survival time of brain cancer patients.

Lehman Brothers analyst Jeffrey Robertson upgraded Petrohawk Energy (NYSE: HK) and lifted his price target for the company from $23 to $35 saying that the company's access to oil rich areas will increase its reserves.

Deutsche Bank analyst Paul Sankey upgraded Tesoro (NYSE: TSO) for its valuation.

On the downside

Harris (NYSE: HRS) announced that it is neither selling itself nor seeking to merge with another company prompting a downgrade.

Analysts expect Apple's (Nasdaq: AAPL) new iPhone to sell at a discounted rate with two year service contracts.

Air Transport Services Group (Nasdaq: ATSG) subsidiary ABX Air will layoff 6,000 employees if DHL selects UPS (NYSE: UPS) for air carrier services.


In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 5 to 2 on the NYSE and by more than 3 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks tumbled 11 points to 737.

Opening Bell Report

|

The markets opened lower with investors mulling over a weak construction spending report for April.  The Dow lost 90 points to 12,547 while Nasdaq fell 18 points to 2504.

On the upside

China Unicom (NYSE: CHU), that country's 2nd largest mobile operator, announced a $23.8 billion stock swap deal to aquire China Netcom Group.

Acorda Therapeutics (Nasdaq: ACOR) reported successful late-stage results for its multiple sclerorsis drug candidate.

Abiomed (Nasdaq: ABMD) received FDA approval to sell its Impella 2.5 heart pump, which the company claims to be the world's smallest heart pump.

On the downside

The board of Wachovia (NYSE: WB) voted to replace its chief executive Ken Thompson, the latest casualty in the banking industry.  Meanwhile, Washington Mutual (NYSE: WM) split the CEO and chairman roles as part of a new corporate governance plan.

Shares of ImClone Systems (Nasdaq: IMCL) fell with investors lukewarm about the latest set of trial data for its drug candidate that treats lung cancer and colorectal cancer.

Lions Gate Entertainment (NYSE: LGF) posted higher 4th quarter profits, but lost money for the year.


In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 3 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks dropped 7 points to 740.

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