August 2008 Archives

Closing Bell Report

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Slowing consumer spending along with a drop in personal income sent the markets tumbling to a sharply lower close with the Dow skidding 171 points to 11,544.  Nasdaq plummeted 44 points to 2368.

On the upside

After swinging to a second quarter loss, Jamba (Nasdaq: JMBA) announced cost cutting measures including the closure of underperforming stores and a change in its business strategy from corporate owned stores to franchising.

Novell (Nasdaq: NOVL) widened third quarter losses due to losses from auction rate securities but the software maker reported higher revenue that surpassed expectations.

OneBeacon Insurance Group (NYSE: OB) announced a quarterly dividend of 21 cents payable on September 24 to shareholders of record September 15.

On the downside

The Bank of China has reduced its holdings in securities issued by Fannie Mae (NYSE: FNM) and Freddie Mac (NYSE: FRE) by 25% since June 30.

FuelCell Energy (NYSE: FCEL) stock continued to fall after widening third quarter losses.

Shares of Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL) fell as customers complained of more flaws with the 3G iPhone.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 5 to 3 on both the NYSE and on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks tumbled 8 points to 739.

Mid-Day Report

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A drop in personal income sent the markets tumbling during the midday with the Dow plummeting 118 points to 11,597.  Nasdaq plunged 38 points to 2374.

On the upside

BFC Financial (NYSE: BFF) bought 2 million common shares of BankAtlantic (NYSE: BBX) in the open market over the last ten days.

QBE Insurance Group will pay approximately $56 million to acquire the Asian operations of mortgage insurer PMI Group (NYSE: PMI).

The Food and Drug Administration issued a complete response letter to BioDelivery Sciences International (Nasdaq: BDSI) for its painkiller patch BEMA Fentanyl.  The letter means that approval is almost guaranteed after some changes are made to the application.

On the downside

Although second quarter earnings more than doubled for Wind River Systems (Nasdaq: WIND), the software developer forecast third quarter results below estimates.

Magma Design Automation (Nasdaq: LAVA) widened first quarter losses as revenue dropped prompting the electronic design automation software company to lower its forecast for the full year.

Deutsche Bank Securities analyst Mark Wilde downgraded Domtar (NYSE: UFS) citing global pulp pricing pressure.

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 dropped 6 points to 742.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower as personal incomes fell in July while oil prices rose.  The Dow lost 65 points to 11,649.  Dell's weak results weighed down tech stocks and Nasdaq, which tumbled 29 points to 2382.

On the upside

Esterline Technologies (NYSE: ESL) posted earnings that beat estimates.  Analysts promptly upgraded the aerospace defense company.

Petsmart (Nasdaq: PETM) reported 2nd quarter results that surpassed expectations and reaffirmed its outlook for the year.

Puerto Rican bank Popular (Nasdaq: BPOP) sold its U.S. mortgages and servicing assets to affiliates of Goldman Sachs Group (NYSE: GS) for $700 million to take a $450 million loss.

On the downside

Dell (Nasdaq: DELL) posted lower profits that missed expectations.  Analysts promptly downgraded the computer maker.

Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) offered $486 million in cash to buy Greenfield Online, a Munich, Germany-based Web comparison shopping site.

Airline stocks retreated as oil prices rose.  Shares of UAL (Nasdaq: UAUA) and AMR Corp. (NYSE: AMR) drifted lower.

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 lost 6 points to 741.

Closing Bell Report

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The nation's economy expanded more than expected while jobless claims dropped to boost the markets to a sharply higher close with the Dow jumping 213 points to 11,715.  Nasdaq leaped 29 points to 2412.

On the upside

Investors snapped up shares of Circuit City (NYSE: CC) after the stock tumbled to a 20-year low yesterday.  The electronics retailer is considering selling itself.

Shares of Ambac Financial (NYSE: ABK) surged after rival bond insurer MBIA (NYSE: MBI) announced the receipt of $741 million in premiums as part of reinsurance deal.

Keefe, Bruyette & Woods analyst Frederick Cannon issued a client note suggesting that investors may be engaging in illegal naked short selling of FirstFed Financial (NYSE: FED), which may adversely be affecting the stock price.

On the downside

Rumors that Medicare may lower payments for implanting some of Cyberonics' (Nasdaq: CYBX) epilepsy devices sent shares of the implantable medical device maker tumbling.

China Telecom (NYSE: CHL) disappointed with lower first half earnings as mobile service prices dropped.

Dell (Nasdaq: DELL) blamed restructuring charges and lower prices for second quarter earnings that fell to miss expectations.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 7 to 2 on the NYSE and by more than 5 to 2 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks leaped 15 points to 748.

Mid-Day Report

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Better than expected economic growth in the second quarter lifted the markets higher during the midday with the Dow leaping 182 points to 11,685.  Nasdaq surged 21 points to 2403.

On the upside

Third quarter earnings for Origin Agritech (Nasdaq: SEED) surged as higher prices lifted revenue.

Bond insurer MBIA (NYSE: MBI) will receive $741 million in premiums as part of an agreement to take over $184 billion in municipal bonds that are now guaranteed by privately held Financial Guaranty Insurance Corporation.

Although Zale (NYSE: ZLC) swung to a fourth quarter loss, revenue rose to surpass estimates and the specialty retailer of fine jewelry forecast fiscal 2009 results above expectations.

On the downside

FuelCell Energy (Nasdaq: FCEL) blamed higher production costs for widening third quarter losses.

Second quarter earnings dropped for Williams-Sonoma (NYSE: WSM) due to the weak economy prompting the specialty home products retailer to cut its full year outlook.

GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE: GSK) will pay Valeant Pharmaceuticals (NYSE: VRX) $125 million as part of an agreement to jointly develop the epilepsy drug retigabine as well as other epilepsy treatments.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 5 to 2 on the NYSE and by nearly 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks gained 4 points to 737.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened higher following a better than expected Q2 growth report driven by one-time tax rebates to consumers.  The Dow surged nearly 100 points to 11,600 while Nasdaq rose 13 points to 2396.

On the upside

Caterpillar (NYSE: CAT) expected to be sold out of most of its heavy mining and power generation equipment through 2010 due to strong demand from China.

Upscale jeweler Tiffany & Company (NYSE: TIF) surprised investors with profits that doubled versus year-ago levels and an improved forecast for the 4th quarter.

Fannie Mae (NYSE: FNM) announced a shake up of its management team.  Shares of the beleaguered mortgage company opened higher for the 4th consecutive session.

On the downside

Shares of Sears Holdings (Nasdaq: SHLD) dropped as the department store retailer reported sharply lower profits and falling same-store sales due to sluggish consumer spending.

Shares of Gerber Scientific (NYSE: GRB) fell after the maker of specialty signs posted lower earnings on a small increase in revenues.

China Telecom (NYSE: CHL) reported a dip in profits as its fixed line business faced competition from mobile business rivals.   The company is also expanding quickly as a mobile carrier.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners 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 added a point to 734.

Closing Bell Report

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A bigger than expected increase for durable goods orders in July lifted the markets to a higher close with the Dow rising 90 points to 11,503.  Nasdaq climbed 20 points to 2382.

On the upside

Borders Group (NYSE: BGP) narrowed second quarter losses despite lower revenue as the book retailer restructures.

Shares of Frontier Oil (NYSE: FTO) and Tesoro (NYSE: TSO) climbed as the nation's inventory of crude oil dropped.

Although Chico's FAS (NYSE: CHS) reported sharply lower second quarter earnings, the results surpassed analyst estimates.

On the downside

Stifel Nicolaus analyst David Bishop downgraded BankUnited Financial (Nasdaq: BKUNA) saying that the bank has been unsuccessful in raising capital.

Standard & Poor's downgraded the debt rating of Cott (NYSE: COT) which keeps the Canadian soft drink company on credit watch.

Russia warned that it may lower imports of pork and chicken sending shares of chicken producer Pilgrim's Pride (NYSE: PPC) tumbling.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 3 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks soared 9 points to 733.

Mid-Day Report

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An upbeat durable goods report lifted the markets higher during the midday with the Dow soaring 105 points to 11,518.  Nasdaq leaped 25 points to 2387.

On the upside

Federal contractor SI International (Nasdaq: SINT) agreed to be acquired by British company Serco Group for approximately $423 million.

A group including the former chief executive of Rossignol, Bruno Cercley, offered approximately $147.6 million to purchase Quiksilver's (NYSE: ZQK) ski gear unit Rossignol.

Shares of home builders Lennar (NYSE: LEN) and KB Homes (NYSE: KBH) rose after Mad Money's Jim Cramer said that the housing slump will bottom out by the third quarter of 2009.

On the downside

Novartis (NYSE: NVS) decided not to file for regulatory approval of the nail fungus treatment the Swiss pharmaceutical developed with NexMed (Nasdaq: NEXM) after disappointing late stage trial results.

After twenty more patient deaths in a late stage clinical trial of its prostate cancer treatement GVAX, biotechnology company Cell Genesys (Nasdaq: CEGE) halted the study.

Although second quarter earnings for Solarfun Power Holdings (Nasdaq: SOLF) surged to top estimates, the Chinese solar cell maker warned that the average price of its photovoltaic modules will drop next year.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 3 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks jumped 11 points to 734.

Opening Bell Report

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The major indexes opened lower while the broad market moved higher as investors mulled over higher oil prices and an increase in demand for durable goods.  The Dow lost 26 points to 11,386.  Nasdaq slipped 2 points to 2359.

On the upside

Ricoh Co. of Japan offered $1.6 billion to acquire Pennsylvania-based IKON Office Solutions (NYSE: IKN), which sells and leases copiers, printers and other office machines.

Clothing retailer Talbots (NYSE: TLB) posted a 2nd quarter loss that doubled versus year-ago levels.  Company management pointed out that it was on track to cut costs and to close underperforming stores.

Shares of Fannie Mae (NYSE: FNM) and Freddie Mac (NYSE: FRE) started to rally for a 3rd consecutive session on hopes that the two troubled mortgage companies can avoid a government bailout.

On the downside

Shares of Amylin Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: AMLN) tumbled after the drug developer reported 4 deaths related to its diabetes drug treatment, a joint venture of Eli Lilly & Co. (NYSE: LLY).

Apparel retailer J. Crew Group (NYSE: JCG) posted 2nd quarter results that missed estimates and lowered its outlook for the rest of the year.

Airline stocks took a hit as oil prices rose.  Shares of UAL (Nasdaq: UAUA) and AMR Corp. (NYSE: AMR) fell sharply.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 5 to 4 on the NYSE and by a slim margin on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 2 points to 726.

Closing Bell Report

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It was a mixed close for the markets as sales of new homes rose while prices dropped.  The Dow gained 27 points to 11,413 while Nasdaq slipped 4 points to 2362.

On the upside

Mad Money's Jim Cramer recommended Clean Energy Fuels (Nasdaq: CLNE) saying that demand will rise with passage of the California Alternative Fuels Initiative .

RBC Capital Markets analyst Leo Mariani initiated coverage of natural gas and oil company Exco Resources (NYSE: XCO) with an Outperform rating.

Gro Group selected Converted Organics (Nasdaq: COIN) to supply seven of its major distributors with organic granular fertilizer.

On the downside

Pork producer Smithfield Foods (NYSE: SFD) blamed higher costs for swinging to a first quarter loss.

Lehman Brothers downgraded Nortel Networks (NYSE: NT) and slashed its full year earnings outlook for the networking solutions provider.

Standard & Poor's downgraded PMI Group (NYSE: PMI) due to the extended downturn of the housing market.

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 4 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 3 points to 724.

Mid-Day Report

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Hurricane threats lifted oil prices while weighing down the markets during the midday with the Dow slipping 5 points to 11,382.  Nasdaq lost 5 points to 2361.

On the upside

Greenfield Online (Nasdaq: SRVY) will terminate its agreement to be acquired by private investment firm Quadrangle Group after receiving a better offer from an undisclosed party.

Luxury handbag company Coach (NYSE: COH) announced plans to repurchase $1 billion in common shares prompting Goldman Sachs analyst Adrienne Shapira to lift her earnings estimates for 2009 through 2011.

Second quarter earnings tumbled for Chico's FAS (NYSE: CHS) due to the soft economy but the results topped analyst expectations.

On the downside

A judged recommended that the U. S. International Trade Commission ban imports of SiRF Technology Holdings (Nasdaq: SIRF) chips as well as products made with SiRF chips that infringe on Broadcom's (Nasdaq: BRCM) patents.

Corinthian Colleges (Nasdaq: COCO) narrowed fourth quarter losses as revenue and enrollment rose but revenue fell short of expectations.

Soft drink distributor Cott (NYSE: COT) blamed declining sales and rising expenses for lowering its 2008 profit guidance and retracting its 2009 outlook.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 7 to 5 on the NYSE and by more than 9 to 7 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 2 points to 723.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened higher as consumer confidence and new home sales rose in July.  The Dow added 33 points to 11,419 while Nasdaq rose 8 points to 2373.

On the upside

Shares of Fannie Mae (NYSE: FNM) and Freddie Mac (NYSE: FRE) rallied for a 2nd consecutive day on hopes that the mortgage companies can ride out the troubled housing market by tapping debt rather than a government bailout.

Daktronics (NasdaqL DAKT) posted higher 1st quarter profits citing strong demand for its large screen video displays.

Trading under $1 a share, mortgage lender Thornburg Mortgage (NYSE: TMA) reported sharply higher 2nd quarter profits due to one-time gains from the sale of assets.

On the downside

Close-out retailer Big Lots (NYSE: BIG) posted better than expected results and raised its outlook for the year.  However, investors took profits on the stock which had been trading near 52-week highs.

Chicken producer Sanderson Farms (Nasdaq: SAFM) reported a 3rd quarter loss as higher feed prices cut into profit margins.

Darden Restaurants (NYSE: DRI) blamed the economy for lower same-store sales at its Red Lobster, Olive Garden and LongHorn Steakhouse locations.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners 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 added 5 points to 725.

Closing Bell Report

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Plunging home prices and rising oil prices sent the markets tumbling to a sharply lower close with the Dow skidding 242 points to 11,386.  Nasdaq plummeted 49 points to 2366.

On the upside

Last week, Titanium Metals (NYSE: TIE) announced a quarterly dividend of 7.5 cents per share payable on September 24 to shareholders of record September 10.

Permian Basin Royalty Trust (NYSE: PBT) declared a cash distribution of 27.8952 cents per share payable on September 15 to shareholders of record August 29.

Shares of Elan (NYSE: ELN) rose after the Food and Drug Administration requested that the bitechnology company revise its warning label on its multiple sclerosis drug Tysabri rather than withdraw the drug.

On the downside

Hanger Othopedic Group (NYSE: HGR) will raise funds through the sale of up to 13.6 million shares of common stock.

Shares of Meritage Homes (NYSE: MTH) tumbled after the National Association of Realtors reported that the number of unsold properties surged in July to a record high.

Continued concerns about the health of financial institutions weighed down shares of Bank of America (NYSE: BAC), Washington Mutual (NYSE: WM), and Citigroup (NYSE: C).

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 7 to 2 on both the NYSE and on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks plunged 17 points to 721.

Mid-Day Report

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Rebounding oil prices sent the markets tumbling during the midday with the Dow plummeting 216 points to 11,412.  Nasdaq skidded 48 points to 2367.

On the upside

An appeals court ruled in Star Scientific's (Nasdaq: STSI) favor in the company's patent infringement lawsuit against RJ Reynolds Tobacco.

AgFeed Industries (Nasdaq: FEED) acquired four hog farms for an undisclosed sum in Southern China and may purchase up to ten more farms.  The hog farm company also affirmed its fiscal 2008 earnings outlook.

Freddie Mac (NYSE: FRE) sold $2 billion in three month and six month bills, allaying investor fears of a government takeover.

On the downside

The CEO of Quest Resource (Nasdaq: QRCP) Jerry Cash resigned after the Oklahoma Department of Securities launched an investigation into questionable fund transfers from the company to an entity controlled by Cash.

Second quarter earnings for A-Power Energy Generation Systems (Nasdaq: APWR) rose as revenue climbed to surpass estimates.  The company affirmed its 2008 earnings guidance.

Friedman Billings downgraded Talbots (NYSE: TLB) after rival AnnTaylor (NYSE: ANN) reported lower earnings.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 7 to 2 on both the NYSE and on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks plunged 19 points to 718.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower as oil prices edged higher while investors remained anxious about the financial services sector.  The Dow lost 95 points to 11,532 while Nasdaq dropped 25 points to 2389.

On the upside

LDK Solar (NYSE: LDK) announced that its China-based wafer plant reached a production milestone while boosting its forecast for 2009.

An analyst upgraded China Sunergy (Nasdaq: CSUN) as the outlook for solar cell demand improved.

General Motors (NYSE: GM) was the only Dow component whose shares were on the upside this morning.  Investors hoped that the government would extend loans to the auto industry to ride out the downturn.

On the downside

Canadian oil and natural gas driller Precision Drilling Trust (NYSE: PDS) offered $2.9 billion to buy Houston-based gas driller Grey Wolf (NYSE: GW), but only $1.12 billion will be in cash.

Broadcom (Nasdaq: BRCM) offered $192 million to acquire a unit from Advanced Micro Devices (NYSE: AMD) that makes chips for digital TV.

Shares of Healthways (Nasdaq: HWAY) tumbled after the disease-management program administrator lowered its forecast due to contract losses.

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 lost 5 points to 731.

Closing Bell Report

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The markets surged to close sharply higher with the Dow jumping 198 points to 11,628 as oil prices plunged and Fed chief Bernanke said that inflation should moderate.  Nasdaq leaped 34 points to 2415.

On the upside

Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL) launched its iPhone 3G in 21 countries to enlarge its potential client base to 660 million people.  Apple intends to sell 10 million iPhones by the end of the year.

United Airlines (Nasdaq: UAUA) announced price increases for food and that free meals will no longer be provided on international flights from Dulles to Europe.

The Wall Street Journal reported that Citigroup (NYSE: C) will reorganize it capital markets group.

On the downside

China BAK Battery (Nasdaq: CBAK) announced plans to sell 4.1 million shares of common stock in order to raise $16 million.

Denbury Resources (Nasdaq: DNR) will pay approximately $600 million to acquire a 91.4% interest in Conroe Field near Houston.

Gold Fields (NYSE: GFI) received a summons from Randgold and Exploration Company and African Strategic Investment claiming that a subsidiary formerly known as Western Areas Limited unlawfully sold shares owned by Randgold.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of 5 to 2 on both the NYSE and Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks soared 12 points to 738.

Mid-Day Report

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Retreating oil prices and comments by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke that the central bank will preserve price stability sent the markets surging during the midday with the Dow leaping 134 points to 11,564.  Nasdaq soared 19 points to 2400.

On the upside

Brean Murray Carret & Co. analyst Joanna Makris upgraded Blue Coat Systems (Nasdaq: BCSI) after the company reported first quarter results that met expectations.

China Sunergy (Nasdaq: CSUN) reversed year ago losses to report a profit for the second quarter as revenue surged.

Yingli Green Energy Holding (NYSE: YGE) announced plans to build a 10-megawatt solar power plant near Beijing, China.

On the downside

Moody's Investors Service downgraded Fannie Mae's (NYSE: FNM) and Freddie Mac's (NYSE: FRE) preferred stock and financial strength ratings.

Although Avanex (Nasdaq: AVNXD) swung to a profit for the fourth quarter, results fell short of estimates and the fiber optics company forecast first quarter revenue below expectations.

Perry Ellis International (Nasdaq: PERY) blamed higher expenses and lower sales for swinging to a loss for the second quarter and lowered its profit outlook for 2009.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 5 to 3 on both the NYSE and Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks gained 5 points to 730.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened higher as oil prices fell ahead of a speech by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke.  The Dow surged 140 points to 11,570 while Nasdaq climbed 20 points to 2400.

On the upside

Drugmaker King Pharmaceuticals (NYSE: KG) offered to buy Alpharma (NYSE: ALO) for $1.4 billion in order to expand its line of pain treatments.

Shares of Lehman Brothers Holdings (NYSE: LEH) rose on hopes that a suitor may emerge to buy the beleaguered investment bank.

Apparel retail chain operator Gap (NYSE: GPS) posted higher profits due to better inventory control. Analysts promptly upgraded the stock.

On the downside

Nordson (Nasdaq: NDSN) posted higher revenues and earnings for the 3rd quarter, but sales growth for the industrial sealant maker degraded more quickly than expected by analysts.

Verigy (Nasdaq: VRGY) lowered its outlook for the current quarter due to a sales shortfall at the maker of test equipment for semiconductors.

Shares of Pacific Sunwear of California (Nasdaq: PSUN) tumbled to a 10-year low after the teen retailer posted a 2nd quarter loss and offered a breakeven outlook for the rest of the year.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 3 to 1 on both the NYSE and Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks climbed 11 points to 736.

Closing Bell Report

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The markets closed mixed despite rebounding oil prices as fewer people than expected filed for unemployment benefits.  The Dow added 13 points to 11,430 while Nasdaq fell 9 points to 2380.

On the upside

Anti-wrinkle skin tightening device maker Thermage (Nasdaq: THRM) received an unsolicited acquisition offer valued at approximately $132.3 million.

RBC Capital Markets analyst Stephen D. Walker issued an investor note saying that production will increase for Kinross Gold (NYSE: KGC) in 2009.

IAC/InterActive (NYSE: IACID) completed the spin off of four separate businesses, home shopping network HSN Inc. (NYSE: HSNI), ticketing service Ticketmaster (NYSE: TKTM), time-share company Interval Leisure Group (NYSE: IILG), and lending and real estate business Tree.com (NYSE: TREE).

On the downside

Piper Jaffray analyst Mark Murphy downgraded Salesforce.com (NYSE: CRM) after the company forecast third quarter revenue below estimates.

Penn Treaty American (NYSE: PTA) provided a notification of breach to reinsurer Imagine International Reinsurance for business obligations prior to 2002.

Surging oil prices weighed down shares of US Airways Group (NYSE: LCC).

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 5 to 4 on the NYSE and by nearly 5 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks tumbled 6 points to 725.

Mid-Day Report

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A surge in oil prices weighed down the markets during the midday with the Dow falling 40 points to 11,378.  Nasdaq dropped 18 points to 2371.

On the upside

Although second quarter earnings for Dick's Sporting Goods (NYSE: DKS) slipped as same store sales fell, the results topped analyst expectations.

RBC Capital Markets upgraded Goldcorp (NYSE: GG) to Top Pick.

UBS upgraded Arch Coal (NYSE: ACI) to a Buy rating.

On the downside

Hot Topic (Nasdaq: HOTT) narrowed second quarter losses but same store sales dropped. The teen clothing retailer expects same store sales to continue falling in the third quarter.

Despite higher revenue, JDS Uniphase (Nasdaq: JDSU) widened fourth quarter losses.

While Synopsys (Nasdaq: SNPS) reported third quarter earnings that more than doubled, the electronic design automation software company forecast disappointing fourth quarter results prompting a downgrade.

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 plunged 8 points to 723.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower as tensions with Russia stoked higher oil prices while investors remained anxious about the financial services sector.  The Dow lost 48 points to 11,368 while Nasdaq tumbled 18 points to 2370.

On the upside

Food maker H.J. Heinz (NYSE: HNZ) posted higher 1st quarter revenues and earnings that beat expectations.  Global growth offset weakness in the U.S. food service business.

Apparel retail chain operator Limited Brands (NYSE: LTD) surprised analysts with 2nd quarter profits which beat expectations.   The company controlled expenses and offered a breakeven outlook for the rest of the year.

Children's Place Retail Stores (Nasdaq: PLCE) eked out a small profit in the 2nd quarter as revenues rose.  Analysts had expected continued losses.

On the downside

Shares of Burger King (NYSE: BKC) fell after the nation's 2nd largest hamburger chain posted better than expected results.  Analysts pointed out that the gains were partly due to one-time changes such as mandatory extended hours.

Barnes & Noble (NYSE: BKS) reported a small profit for the 2nd quarter blaming sluggish consumer spending for the shortfall.

Video game retailer GameStop (NYSE: GME) posted better than expected 2nd quarter results and raised its full-year outlook.  No analysts responded with an upgrade of the stock which is trading near its 52-week lows.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 2 to 1 on both the NYSE and Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks dropped 3 points to 728.

Closing Bell Report

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The markets recovered in the late afternoon to close higher as crude oil inventories climbed.  The Dow gained 69 points to 11,417 while Nasdaq added 5 points to 2389.

On the upside

XTO Energy (NYSE: XTO) declared a quarter dividend of 12 cents per common share payable on October 15 to shareholders of record September 30.

Student lender Sallie Mae (NYSE: SLM) will receive funds from a new government program guaranteeing loans to students.

Citigroup analyst Jim Suva affirmed his Buy rating for Research In Motion (Nasdaq: RIMM) and approved of the company's new BlackBerry Bold.

On the downside

Citi Trends (Nasdaq: CTRN) reported higher second quarter earnings as revenue rose but the stock price tumbled.

Moody's Investors Service downgraded recreational vehicle maker Fleetwood Enterprises (NYSE: FLE) as record gas prices hurt sales.

Activision Blizzard (Nasdaq: ATVI) completed its stock repurchase plan.  The company bought nearly 86,000 shares for approximately $2.3 million. 



In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 10 to 9 on the NYSE while decliners barely edged out advancers by a slim margin on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 2 points to 732.

Mid-Day Report

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Despite falling crude oil prices, the markets traded lower during the midday over fears that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will require a government bailout.  The Dow lost 13 points to 11,335 while Nasdaq dropped 9 points to 2376.

On the upside

VeriFone (NYSE: PAY) forecast third and fourth quarter earnings ahead of expectations and named Clinton Knowles as interim chief financial officer.

FirstFed Financial (NYSE: FED) lowered its exposure to adjustable rate loans and mortgage backed securities.

Ash Grove Cement purchased 2.2 million shares of Eagle Materials (NYSE: EXP) to acquire a 5% stake in the gypsum wallboard and cement company.

On the downside

Novatel (Nasdaq: NVTL) warned that second quarter results will fall short of estimates and forecast disappointing third quarter results prompting downgrades.

Goldman Sachs analyst Matthew Fassler downgraded OfficeMax (NYSE: OMX) after the office supplies retailer announced the abrupt resignation of chief finacial officer Don Civgin.

Shares of mortgage insurers Radian Group (NYSE: RDN) and PMI Group (NYSE: PMI) tumbled over investor fears that both Fannie Mae (NYSE: FNM) and Freddie Mac (NYSE: FRE) will require a government bailout.



In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 10 to 9 on both the NYSE and on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added a fraction to 730.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened higher, but quickly gave up their gains as investors worried about ongoing losses in the financial services sector.  The Dow fell 18 points to 11,331 while Nasdaq gave up a point to 2384.

On the upside

Monsanto (NYSE: MON) sold its line of cow hormones to drug maker Eli Lilly & Co. (NYSE: LLY) for $300 million.

Shares of Hewlett-Packard (NYSE: HPQ) rose after the computer and printer maker posted results that beat expectations.

China-based Suntech Power Holdings (NYSE: STP) raised its revenue forecast for the rest of the year due to increased shipments of solar cell modules.

On the downside

Shares of Fannie Mae (NYSE: FNM) and Freddie Mac (NYSE: FRE) continued its freefall to multi-year lows as a government bailout of the mortgage finance company becomes increasingly likely.

Rising oil prices weighed down the airline sector with shares of UAL (Nasdaq: UAUA) and AMR Corporation (NYSE: AMR) falling sharply.

Jack Henry & Associates (Nasdaq: JKHY) posted a lower 4th quarter profit to miss expectations.  The company provides computer systems to financial institutions.



In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of 5 to 4 on the NYSE, but were edged out by a narrow margin on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks held steady at 730.

Closing Bell Report

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A disappointing producer price report sent the markets tumbling to a sharply lower close with the Dow skidding 131 points to 11,349.  Nasdaq plummeted 33 points to 2384.

On the upside

Shares of coal producer Peabody Energy (NYSE: BTU) surged as crude oil prices rebounded.

Massey Energy (NYSE: MEE) priced its offering of senior notes and declared a quarterly dividend of 5 cents per share payable on October 14 to shareholders of record September 30.

Sirius XM Radio (Nasdaq: SIRI) announced that radio sports personality Chris "Mad Dog" Russo will anchor a program as part of a new sports talk channel.

On the downside

China TechFaith Wireless Communication Technology (Nasdaq: CNTF) blamed the weak economy for warning that sales have dropped and announced a restructuring of its management team along with the elimination of nearly half its staff.

Building Materials Holding (NYSE: BLG) blamed the slumping housing market for swinging to a second quarter loss as revenue plunged.

Citigroup (NYSE: C) announced a five year deal with Accion Texas to purchase up to $30 million in small enterprise loans.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 5 to 2 on both the NYSE and on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks plunged 12 points to 730.

Mid-Day Report

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Surging wholesale prices dampened investor enthusiasm to send the markets tumbling during the midday with the Dow plummeting 120 points to 11,359.  Nasdaq plunged 28 points to 2389.

On the upside

Hydrogenics' (Nasdaq: HYGS) fuel cells will power an extended back up system for APC data centers.

Federated Investors (NYSE: FII) announced a special cash dividend of $2.76 per share payable on September 15 to shareholders of record September 9 and will repurchase up to 5 million shares of common stock.

Xinhua Finance Media (Nasdaq: XFML) reported second quarter earnings that beat expectations as revenue rose sharply prompting the media company to boost its full year guidance.

On the downside

Shares of First Marblehead (NYSE: FMD) plunged as investors locked in profits.  Yesterday, the student lender announced that Goldman Sachs unit GS Capital Partners completed its investment of $132.7 million in the company.

Rumors that Lehman Brothers (NYSE: LEH) will sell its investment management unit sent shares of the financial services company tumbling.

Luxury retailer Saks (NYSE: SKS) disappointed by widening second quarter losses as sales dropped.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers 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 plunged 11 points to 731.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower as blue chip companies struggled amid worries of higher wholesale prices which surged in July.  The Dow tumbled 110 points to 11,368 while Nasdaq lost 22 points to 2394.

On the upside

WellCare Health Plans (NYSE: WCG) agreed to pay $35 million to the U.S. Attorney in Florida in what is being perceived by investors as the first step towards settling claims that the HMO overcharged for services due to accounting errors.

The airline sector remained aloft due to falling oil prices.  Shares of UAL (Nasdaq: UAUA) and Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV) rose.

On the downside

The Home Depot (NYSE: HD) posted drops in 2nd quarter revenues and earnings as the nation's largest home improvement retailer struggled with a weak housing construction market.

Target (NYSE: TGT) posted higher revenues, but lower same-store sales.  Meanwhile, profits fell as more customers failed to pay off their credit cards.

Staples (Nasdaq: SPLS) warned that its 2nd quarter results will be weaker than expected demand for office supplies in North America.

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 733.

Closing Bell Report

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Fears that the federal government will have to bail out Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac sent the markets skidding to a sharply lower close with the Dow plummeting 181 points to 11,479.  Nasdaq plunged 36 points to 2417.

On the upside

Dyax (Nasdaq: DYAX) reported positive test results from a late stage clinical trial of its genetic blood disorder treatment DX-88.

Barron's said that R. H. Donnelly (NYSE: RHD) stock will climb once the business stabilizes.

Standard & Poor's affirmed the ratings on collateralized debt obligations and other asset backed securities that are insured by Ambac Financial (NYSE: ABK) and MBIA (NYSE: MBI).

On the downside

The Food and Drug Administration reported two more deaths of patients taking Amylin Pharmaceuticals' (Nasdaq: AMLN) and Eli Lilly's (NYSE: LLY) diabetes drug Byetta.  Four additional patients developed pancreatitis.

Investors discounted rumors that disc drive maker Seagate Technology (NYSE: STX) will acquire flash memory card maker SanDisk (Nasdaq: SNDK).

Ladenburg Thalman analyst Richard Bove lowered his earnings estimates for Wells Fargo (NYSE: WFC) saying that loan losses will continue to climb.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 5 to 2 on the NYSE and by more than 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks plummeted 11 points to 742.

Mid-Day Report

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Financial services sector losses weighed on investors to send the markets down sharply during the midday with the Dow plunging 174 points to 11,486.  Nasdaq plummeted 29 points to 2424.

On the upside

Second quarter revenue surged for Focus Media Holding (Nasdaq: FMCN) to surpass estimates and the advertising network company to forecast third quarter results ahead of expectations.

Shares of plastic shoe maker Crocs (Nasdaq: CROX) surged after the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Trust disclosed that it owns 1 million shares of the company.

Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS) unit GS Capital Partners completed its $132.7 million investment in First Marblehead (NYSE: FMD).

On the downside

Salix Pharmaceuticals (NYSE: SLXP) raise cpaital through the sale of $50 million in senior convertible notes.

David Kotok of Cumberland Advisors said on CNBC that Wachovia (NYSE: WB) and Merrill Lynch (NYSE: MER) are in danger of failing.

Franklin Credit Management (Nasdaq: FCMC) warned of substantial losses for the second quarter.  Shares of Huntington Bancshares (Nasdaq: HBAN), which has over $1 billion of exposure at Franklin, dropped at the announcement.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 5 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks tumbled 7 points to 746.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened higher, but immediately lost ground as investors worried about rising oil prices and continued weakness in the financial services sector.  The Dow lost 49 points to 11,610 while Nasdaq fell 8 points to 2444.

On the upside

Shares of Lowe's (NYSE: LOW) edged higher after the nation's 2nd largest home improvement retail chain posted a smaller profit that still beat estimates.

Chinese solar power company Trina Solar (NYSE: TSL) posted 2nd quarter profits that doubled.

Shares of UnionBanCal (NYSE: UB) surged after Japanese bank Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (NYSE: MTU) raised its bid to buy the rest of the California bank for $3.5 billion.

On the downside

A Barron's article published over the weekend raised concerns about Fannie Mae (NYSE: FNM) and Freddie Mac (NYSE: FRE) which may need a government bailout since both companies may need to raise capital in amounts that exceed their current market capitalization.

Lehman Brothers (NYSE: LEH) may pre-announce its 3rd quarter results due to a possible larger than expected loss, according to the Wall Street Report.

Chinese online-game developer Perfect World (Nasdaq: PWRD) posted higher revenues and profits that missed expectations due in part to suspension of operations after the Sichuan earthquake.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 4 to 3 on the NYSE and by 5 to 4 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 3 points to 749.

Closing Bell Report

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Despite falling oil prices, the markets closed mixed as consumer confidence posted a disappointingly small gain.  The Dow climbed 44 points to 11,660 while Nasdaq slipped a point to 2453.

On the upside

Micromet (Nasdaq: MITI) reported upbeat early stage results for its experimental antibody drug blinatumomab when used in patients with incurable non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

Shares of Elan (NYSE: ELN) surged as bargain hunters snapped up the biotech.  The stock price plunged in recent weeks after reporting mixed results for its Alzheimer's treatment and the development of a rare and possibly fatal brain condition in two patients using the company's multiple sclerosis treatment Tysabri.

MGIC Investment (NYSE: MTG) sold its 24.25% share of Sherman Financial Group of $209.5 million.

On the downside

Cadence Design Systems (Nasdaq: CDNS) withdrew its unsolicited $1.6 billion offer to acquire rival Mentor Graphics (Nasdaq: MENT).

Shares of Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL) fell as a series of service problems and technical difficulties plague the company's 3G iPhone.

Investors locked in profits by selling shares of Penn Virginia (NYSE: PVA).  The stock price rose after an analyst upgrade on Tuesday.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of 10 to 9 on the NYSE while declining issues edged out advancers by 10 to 9 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks eased a point to 753.

Mid-Day Report

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The markets traded mixed during the midday despite retreating oil prices as consumer confidence rises less than expected.  The Dow gained 16 points to 11,632 while Nasdaq lost 3 points to 2450.

On the upside

SunPower (Nasdaq: SPWR) inked a deal with Pacific Gas & Electric (NYSE: PCG) to create a power supply on the scale of a traditional power plant using photovoltaic cells to produce energy.

Autodesk (Nasdaq: ADSK) reported second quarter earnings that topped estimates as revenue rose.  The design software and service company forecast full year results above expectations prompting an analyst upgrade.

Cypress Semiconductor (NYSE: CY) offered to purchase nearly $600 million in outstanding convertible senior notes.

On the downside

Discrete semiconductor products maker Vishay Intertechnology (NYSE: VSH) made an unsolicited $1.6 billion bid to purchase power management technology company International Rectifier (NYSE: IRF).

Uranium producer Cameco (NYSE: CCJ) disppointed with lower second quarter earnings as revenue dropped.

Shares of potash producer Mosaic (NYSE: MOS) tumbled as investors locked in profits.

In the broad market, declining issues barely outpaced advancers by a slim margin on both the NYSE and on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks slipped a point to 753.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened modestly higher as oil prices retreated and industrial output rose in July.  The Dow climbed 69 points to 11,685 while Nasdaq rose 2 points to 2456.

On the upside

J.C. Penney (NYSE: JCP) posted lower 2nd quarter revenues and earnings, but the results for the department store operator was better than expected due to cost-cutting efforts and fewer new stores.

Shares of Ambac Financial Group (NYSE: ABK) surged after ratings agency Standard & Poor's removed the bond insurer from a negative credit watch.

George Soros' hedge fund took a sizable stake in Lehman Brothers (NYSE: LEH) by purchasing shares in the open market.

On the downside

Shares of Harman International Industries (NYSE: HAR) tumbled after the audio and electronics manufacturer reported a sharp drop in 4th quarter earnings.  Analysts promptly downgraded the stock.

DeVry (NYSE: DV) posted higher profits due to increased enrollment at the for-profit education company, but the results missed expectations.

Real estate developer China Housing & Land Development (Nasdaq: CHLN) announced higher revenues and a drop in 2nd quarter earnings due to higher interest expense from convertible debt.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of 10 to 9 on the NYSE and by a slim margin on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost a fraction to 754.

Closing Bell Report

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The markets rebounded to close higher as bargain hunters snapped up shares of financial stocks.  The Dow gained 83 points to 11,616 while Nasdaq surged 25 points to 2454.

On the upside

Melco Crown Entertainment (Nasdaq: MPEL) narrowed second quarter losses as revenue surged.

General Motors (NYSE: GM) announced that the design of its electric Volt will be finalized in mid-September with prototypes ready by the end of the year.

Gannett (NYSE: GCI) blamed declining advertising sales for its plan to eliminate 1,000 positions.

On the downside

Citi Investment Research analyst Brian Chin downgraded Shaw Group (NYSE: SGR) saying that construction of nuclear power plants will not increase despite record oil prices.

Falling gold prices weighed down shares of Goldcorp (NYSE: GG) and Kinross Gold (NYSE: KGC).

A Citigroup Global Markets analyst downgraded McDermott International (NYSE: MDR) and slashed his price target for the engineering and construction company.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 5 to 3 on the NYSE and by 7 to 5 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks climbed 7 points to 754.

Mid-Day Report

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Bargain hunters lifted the markets higher during the midday with the Dow surging 102 points to 11,635.  Nasdaq climbed 20 points to 2448.

On the upside

PMI Group (NYSE: PMI) will sell its Australian mortgage insurance subsidiary for approximately $920 million to Australia's QBE Insurance Group.

Strong international growth lifted fourth quarter earnings for Estee Lauder (NYSE: EL) to top estimates.  The cosmetics maker expects international sales to continue expanding.

Invesco (NYSE: IVZ) will replace IAC/InterActive (Nasdaq: IACI) on the S&P 500 after market close on August 20.  IAC will split into four separate companies.

On the downside

Second quarter earnings for Flower Foods (NYSE: FLO) rose due to improved prices and greater volume but the results fell short of estimates.

Despite higher revenue, Spreadtrum Communications (Nasdaq: SPRD) reported lower second quarter earnings that missed expectations prompting the technology company to cut its guidance for the current quarter.

Robert W. Baird & Co. analyst Peter Lisnic downgraded LSI Industries (Nasdaq: LYTS) after the lighting company cut its full year guidance.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 5 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks gained 6 points to 754.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened modestly lower as investors worried about inflation and unemployment.  The Dow lost 20 points to 11,513 while Nasdaq slipped 2 points to 2427.

On the upside

Elizabeth Arden (Nasdaq: RDEN) swung to a 4th quarter loss and raised its outlook for 2009.  The adjusted results met expectations reflecting a one-time charge to begin a global licensing agreement with Liz Claiborne fragrances.

Shares of Ctrip.com International (Nasdaq: CTRP) soared after the China-based travel service provider posted higher revenues and earnings.

Analysts expected wheeled-shoe maker Heelys (Nasdaq: HLYS) to reject the $142.8 million acquisition offer from Skechers USA (NYSE: SKX).

On the downside

Shares of Power Medical Interventions (Nasdaq: PMII) tumbled after surgery equipment maker posted a loss that missed expectations.

Engine maker Briggs & Stratton (NYSE: BGG) set 2009 revenue and profit targets below Wall Street estimates.

Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE: WMT) posted a 17% increase in 2nd quarter profits due to cost-cutting and a product mix that attracted bargain shoppers.  Shares of the world's largest retailer slipped.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a slim margin on both the NYSE and Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost a point to 747.

Closing Bell Report

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Surging crude oil prices along with the first drop in retail sales in five months sent the markets tumbling to a lower close with the Dow plummeting 110 points to 11,533.  Nasdaq slipped 2 points to 2429.

On the upside

Excel Maritime Carriers (NYSE: EXM) impressed with second quarter earnings that surged to beat expectations as freight rates increased.  The dry bulk carrier doubled its quarterly dividend to 40 cents per share payable on September 15 to shareholders of record September 1.

Shares of potash producers Mosaic (NYSE: MOS) and Intrepid Potash (NYSE: IPI) surged after Dutch rival K+S reported earnings that leaped five times as demand soared.

Banc of America Securities upgraded Stone Energy (NYSE: SGY) after the company reported higher second quarter earnings that topped estimates.

On the downside

Ferro (NYSE: FOE) announced plans to sell $150 million in notes.


Crude oil prices surged $2.99 to settle at $116 per barrel sending shares of airline stocks AMR (NYSE: AMR) Continental (NYSE: CAL), and Northwest (NYSE: NWA) tumbling.

WellCare Health Plans (NYSE: WCG) warned of lower earnings and possible losses as expenses rise and membership demographics change.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 9 to 7 on the NYSE while advancers edged out decliners by more than 10 to 9 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 3 points to 748.

Mid-Day Report

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A drop in retails sales sent the markets tumbling during the midday with the Dow plummeting 167 points to 11,476.  Nasdaq plunged 22 points to 2409.

On the upside

Higher revenue lifted fourth quarter earnings for LED maker Cree (Nasdaq: CREE)  to beat expectations.  The company forecast first quarter results ahead of estimates.

Shares of Kinross Gold (NYSE: KGC) rose despite reporting sharply lower second quarter profit as expenses surged.  The price of gold jumped from year ago levels.

Dahlman Rose upgraded CONSOL Energy (NYSE: CNX).

On the downside

Liz Claiborne (NYSE: LIZ) swung to a second quarter loss as sales dropped prompting the company to cut its full year guidance.


Stifel Nicolaus downgraded Synovus Financial (NYSE: SNV) citing valuation concerns.

Although Energy Recovery (Nasdaq: ERII) swung to a profit for the second quarter, the company forecast disappointing third quarter results.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 9 to 7 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks fell 5 points to 740.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened mostly lower as retail sales fell in July for the first time in 5 months.  The Dow dropped 100 points to 11,540 while Nasdaq held steady at 2430.

On the upside

CVS Caremark (NYSE: CVS) offered $2.7 billion to acquire drugstore operator Longs Drugs Stores (NYSE: LDG).

Soft drink company Dr Pepper Snapple Group (NYSE: DPS) raised its outlook for 2008.  The company spun off from Cadbury Schweppes PLC in May.

Shares of Nvidia (Nasdaq: NVDA) rose on heavy volume after the chip maker posted a loss due to a one-time product warranty charge.   The results beat expectations as analysts upgraded the stock.

On the downside

Deere & Co (NYSE: DE) posted higher 3rd quarter profits and revenues driven by higher farm prices, but the results missed expectations.


Department store operator Macy's (NYSE: M) reported a slight decline in 2nd quarter earnings and lowered its full-year outlook due to slow consumer spending.

Shares of Tween Brands (NYSE: TWB) tumbled to an all-time low after the teen apparel retailer posted a 2nd quarter loss that missed estimates.  Analysts promptly downgraded the stock.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 2 to 1 on the NYSE, but were even on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost a fraction to 744.

Closing Bell Report

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Significant losses at financial institutions reignited credit crisis concerns to send the markets tumbling to a sharply lower close with the Dow plummeting 140 points to 11,642.  Nasdaq lost 9 points to 2431.

On the upside

The Motley Fool called ReneSola (NYSE: SOL) competitively priced when compared to its rivals.

Ethanol producer VeraSun Energy (NYSE: VSE) reported higher second quarter earnings that surpassed estimates as production increased.

Second quarter earnings for FairPoint Communications (NYSE: FRP) surged to top expectations.

On the downside

Altus Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: ALTU) reported disappointing preliminary results from a late stage clinical trial of its treatment for cystic fibrosis patients with pancreatic insufficiency, Trizytek, prompting a downgrade.

Although ACI Worldwide (Nasdaq: ACIW) reversed year ago losses to report a profit for the second quarter, the results fell short of estimates prompting the company to lower its full year outlook and announce job cuts.

Wachovia (NYSE: WB) announced that it added an additional $500 million to its legal reserves which increased its losses to nearly $9.1 billion for the second quarter.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 9 to 7 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks fell 6 points to 745.

Mid-Day Report

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Losses in the financial services sector weighed down the markets during the midday with the Dow dropping 59 points to 11,724.  Nasdaq added a fraction to 2440.

On the upside

Second quarter earnings rose for Fossil (Nasdaq: FOSL) to surpass estimates due to strong international sales.  The impressive results prompted the watch maker to raise its full year outlook.

JP Morgan upgraded airline stocks saying that retreating oil prices could lead to a return to profitability.  Shares of US Airways (NYSE: LCC), United Air lines parent UAL (Nasdaq: UAUA) and American Airlines parent AMR (NYSE: AMR) all rose.

Canaccord Adams initiated coverage of Canadian Solar (Nasdaq: CSIQ) last week with a Buy rating.

On the downside

Altus Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: ALTU) reported disappointing preliminary results from a late stage clinical trial of its treatment for cystic fibrosis patients with pancreatic insufficiency, Trizytek, prompting a downgrade.

Comverge (Nasdaq: COMV) blamed higher expenses for widening second quarter losses and lowered its full year revenue outlook.

Although second quarter revenue rose for Constellation Energy (NYSE: CEG), the company swung to a loss as natural gas prices soared.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 5 to 3 on the NYSE and by more than 7 to 5 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks fell 6 points to 745.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower as investors remained concerned about the financial services sector with the Dow falling 70 points to 11,711.  Nasdaq dropped 10 points to 2429.

On the upside

LDK Solar (NYSE: LDK) posted 2nd quarter earnings that tripled and raised its outlook for the current quarter.  The China-based maker of solar wafers was promptly upgraded by analysts.

Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group offered $3 billion to buy the remaining 35% stake in California's UnionBanCal Corp. (NYSE: UB).

Shares of Gap (NYSE: GAP) rose as the clothing retailer revealed its fall collection.

On the downside

Investment bank JPMorgan Chase (NYSE: JPM) lost $1.5 billion so far in the 3rd quarter due to mortgage-related writedowns.

Shares of Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS) fell after several analysts downgraded the investment bank.

Thomson Reuters (Nasdaq: TRIN) reported slowing growth as investment banks curtail information purchases.

Shares of Zoltek (Nasdaq: ZOLT) tumbled after analysts downgraded the carbon fiber maker due in part from the delay in wind-related contracts.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by 5 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 3 points to 748.

Closing Bell Report

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The markets closed modestly higher as crude oil prices retreated and gasoline prices eased.  The Dow climbed 48 points to 11,782 while Nasdaq soared 26 points to 2440. 

On the upside

Western Refining (NYSE: WNR) retained the services of Goldman Sachs to explore strategic alternatives for specific assets and may sell its refinery in Yorktown, Virginia.

Citigroup analyst Mark Mahaney expects sales of Amazon's (NYSE: AMZN) electronic book reading device Kindle to match iPod's first year sales.

U. S. District Court judge Lewis A. Kaplan dismissed a class action lawsuit filed on behalf of Parmalat shareholders against Bank of America (NYSE: BAC) and Citigroup (NYSE: C).

On the downside

U. S. International Trade Commission judged Carl C. Charneski ruled that SiRF Technology (Nasdaq: SIRF) infringed on six patents held by Broadcom (Nasdaq: BRCM).

Second quarter earnings for Darling International (NYSE: DAR) more than doubled but the stock price plunged.

Coeur d'Alene Mines (NYSE: CDE) blamed higher expenses for swinging to a second quarter loss.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 5 to 3 on the NYSE and by nearly 5 to 2 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks jumped 17 points to 751.

Mid-Day Report

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The markets traded sharply higher during the midday as easing energy demand weighed down crude oil prices.  The Dow surged 111 points to 11,845 while Nasdaq jumped 42 points to 2456. 

On the upside

Although MoneyGram International (NYSE: MGI) swung to a second quarter loss due to write downs, the company reported strong results from its money transfer business.  The company also announced a deal to triple the number of money transfer outlets in Canada.

Beazer Homes (NYSE: BZH) narrowed third quarter losses.

Citigroup analyst Kimberly Greenberger raised her second quarter earnings expectation for Gap (NYSE: GPS) saying that sales will improve as consumers purchase back to school items.

On the downside

The Food and Drug Administration requested more data from Cardiome Pharma (Nasdaq: CRME) for its abnormal heart rhythm drug Kynapid.

SandRidge Energy (NYSE: SD) swung to a loss for the second quarter and failed to provide more detailed information about its Pinon Field wells in west Texas.

Yamana Gold (NYSE: AUY) disappointed with lower second quarter earnings that fell short of expectations and announced that it is considering selling some higher cost assets .

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 5 to 3 on the NYSE and by 5 to 3 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks leaped 19 points to 753.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower with the Dow losing 34 points to 11,700 while Nasdaq slipped 2 points to 2412.  Oil prices rose as the conflict between Russian and Georgia widened.

On the upside

Waste Management (NYSE: WMI) raised its bid to acquire rival Republic Services (NYSE: RSG) to $6.7 billion making its harder for the latter to acquire Allied Waste Industries (NYSE: AW).

AgFeed Industries (Nasdaq: FEED) posted higher 2nd quarter earnings as the Chinese animal feed maker and pork producer raised its guidance for the rest of the year.

VeriChip Corp. (Nasdaq: CHIP), which makes radio-frequency identification systems, announced a one-time dividend from the sale of its Xmark subsidiary.

On the downside

Oil and gas producer Petrohawk Energy (NYSE: HK) announced a 25 million share offering.

Shares of Fuel Systems Solutions (Nasdaq: FSYS) gave up some of its gains from Friday's rally after reporting better than expected results.

Shares of Basin Water (Nasdaq: BWTR) tumbled after the water treatment company disclosed an accounting review.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a narrow margin on the NYSE, but were edged out by a slim margin on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks held steady at 734.

Closing Bell Report

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The markets surged to close sharply higher with the Dow skyrocketing 303 points to 11,734 as crude oil prices plunged $4.82 to settle at a three month low of $115.20 per barrel.  Nasdaq jumped 58 points to 2414.

On the upside

PowerSecure International (Nasdaq: POWR) reversed year ago losses to post a profit that topped analyst estimates as revenue surged.

US Airways Group (NYSE: LCC) announced a 10% discount on fares to nine European cities for trips that are booked online with a MasterCard.

After placing Continental Airlines (NYSE: CAL) on review in May, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services maintained its long-term and short-term credit rating for the airliner.

On the downside

Guidance Software (Nasdaq: GUID) widened second quarter losses and lowered its full year guidance due to disappointing sales.

SandRidged Energy (NYSE: SD) swung to a loss for the second quarter as expenses surged.

Fannie Mae (NYSE: FNM) disappointed with a second quarter loss that was three times the expected loss.  The company cut its dividend and announced higher mortgage fees.


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 jumped 21 points to 734.

Mid-Day Report

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Sharply lower oil prices boosted the markets during the midday with the Dow surging 189 points to 11,621.  Nasdaq soared 40 points to 2395.

On the upside

Gibraltar Industries (Nasdaq: ROCK) reported higher second quarter earnings that topped estimates and lifted its full year outlook prompting an upgrade.

Second quarter earnings for Fuel Systems Solutions (Nasdaq: FSYS) rose to beat expectations prompting the alternative fuel systems maker to boost its full year guidance.

FairPoint Communications (Nasdaq: FRP) reported sharply higher second quarter earnings.

On the downside

NextWave Wireless (Nasdaq: WAVE) widened second quarter losses as expenses rose.

Coeur d'Alene Mines (NYSE: CDE) blamed increased expenses for swinging to a second quarter loss.

Smart Balance (Nasdaq: SMBL) blamed stock based compensation expense for swinging to a second quarter loss.


In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 7 to 3 on both the NYSE and on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks jumped 15 points to 728.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened higher with the Dow jumping 192 points to 11,623 as oil prices fell below $116 per barrel.  Nasdaq surged 39 points to 2394.

On the upside

Concert promoter Live Nation (NYSE: LYV) reported lower second quarter earnings but revenue rose to surpass expectations.

Although Qwest Communications International (NYSE: Q) reported a slip in second quarter earnings, the results beat estimates prompting an upgrade.

Second quarter earnings for Sapient (Nasdaq: SAPE) surged above expectations as revenue climbed.

On the downside

Anadigics (Nasdaq: ANAD) slashed its third quarter revenue guidance citing weak demand.

Although Cogent Communications Group (Nasdaq: CCOI) narrowed second quarter losses as revenue rose, the results fell short of estimates and the Internet service provider slashed its full year outlook.

Generic drug maker Par Pharmaceutical (NYSE: PRX) swung to a second quarter loss due to pricing pressure and increased competition.


In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 5 to 2 on both the NYSE and on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks leaped 14 points to 728.

Closing Bell Report

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Disappointing retails sales and a surge in unemployment applications sent the markets tumbling to a sharply lower close with the Dow plummeting 225 points to 11,431.  Nasdaq plunged 23 points to 2356.

On the upside

TXCO Resources (Nasdaq: TXCO) reversed year ago losses to report a second quarter profit as revenue surged and announced that its test of a shale gas well was successful.

Higher prices and upbeat sales lifted second quarter earnings for OM Group (NYSE: OMG) to surpass expectations.

Second quarter earnings for Avis Budget Group (NYSE: CAR) tumbled but the results beat expectations.

On the downside

Although UTStarcom (Nasdaq: UTSI) narrowed second quarter losses, analyst downgraded the telecommunications equipment maker.

PMI Group (NYSE: PMI) swung to a loss for the second quarter due to increased payouts on defaults and higher loss reserves.

King Pharmaceuticals (NYSE: KG) reported sharply lower second quarter earnings that fell short of expectations due to increased competition from generic drugs.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 3 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks plunged 12 points to 713.

Mid-Day Report

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An unexpected gain in jobless claims along with mixed retails sales sent the markets tumbling during the midday with the Dow plunging 131 points to 11,525.  Nasdaq fell 7 points to 2372.

On the upside

Brookdale Senior Living (NYSE: BKD) narrowed second quarter losses and declared a quarterly dividend of 25 cents per share.

Petrohawk Energy (NYSE: HK) swung to a loss for the second quarter due to a significant derivative charge but revenue rose to top estimates.

Warnaco (NYSE: WRC) reported higher second quarter earnings that beat expectations and lifted its full year outlook as sales in Europe surged.

On the downside

MCG Capital (Nasdaq: MCGC) swung to a loss for the second quarter as revenue plunged.

Although InVentiv Health (Nasdaq: VTIV) reported higher second quarter earnings that beat expectations, the company cut its full year guidance.

Internet infrastructure services provider VeriSign (Nasdaq: VRSN) blamed a $98 million restructuring charge for widening second quarter losses.  An analyst downgraded the company.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 7 to 5 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks dropped 5 points to 721.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower as oil prices rose and retailers reported mixed results for July.  American International Group and Wal-mart Stores weighed on the Dow which fell 102 points to 11,554 while Nasdaq lost 9 points to 2369.

On the upside

Goodrich Petroleum (NYSE: GDP) posted an eightfold increase in losses due to derivatives losses as revenues doubled.  An analyst upgraded the stock due to valuation.

 J.C. Penney Co. (NYSE: JCP) raised its 2nd quarter earnings outlook as the retailer projected better demand for sale merchandise and a positive impact from its cost-cutting efforts.

Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co. announced a $2.4 billion buy-out of its publicly traded retirement savings company Nationwide Financial Services (NYSE: NFS).

On the downside

Wal-Mart (NYSE: WMT) reported a 3% gain in same-store sales for July, but the results were lower than analysts' expectations.  The world's largest retailer also forecast a modest 1-2% increase for August.

Teen apparel retailer Abercrombie & Fitch (NYSE: ANF) reported a 7% drop in same-store sales for July dragged down by weak foot traffic at its Hollister Co. store and Ruehl stores.

Shares of American International Group (NYSE: AIG) plunged after the world's largest insurer posted its 3rd straight quarterly loss and took another round of mortgage write-downs.

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 4 points to 721.

Closing Bell Report

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Retreating oil prices lifted the market to a higher close with the Dow climbing 40 points to 11,656.  Nasdaq surged 29 points to 2378.

On the upside

Internet survey company Greenfield Online (Nasdaq: SRVY) received an all cash acquisition offer from an unnamed party that is higher than the buyout bid from Quadrangle Group.

Ambac Financial (NYSE: ABK) surprised investors with sharply higher second quarter earnings due to accounting related gains.

Reliant Energy (NYSE: RRI) reversed year ago losse to report a profit for the second quarter.

On the downside

Although second quarter earnings surged for Priceline.com (Nasdaq: PCLN), international bookings showed weakness.

National Financial Partners (NYSE: NFP) disappointed with second quarter earnings and revenue that fell short of estimates.

Multi-Fineline Electronix (Nasdaq: MFLX) reversed year ago losses as revenue surged but the results fell short of expectations.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 9 to 7 on the NYSE and by 7 to 5 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks gained 5 points to 726.

Mid-Day Report

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Crude oil prices retreated as the nation's inventory of oil rose to lift the markets higher during the midday with the Dow gaining 15 points to 11,631.  Nasdaq climbed 20 points to 2369.

On the upside

BP (NYSE: BP) will invest $90 million in Verenium (Nasdaq: VRNM) to jointly develop next generation biofuels.  Analysts upgraded Verenium.

Citi Investment Research analyst John Hill added Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold (NYSE: FCX) to his list of top picks.

Shares of Frontier Oil (NYSE: FTO) climbed ahead of its earnings release tomorrow.

On the downside

Internap Network Services (Nasdaq: INAP) widened second quarter losses as expenses rose.  The company lowered its full year outlook prompting a downgrade.

An analyst downgraded Whole Foods Market (Nasdaq: WFMI) after the company reported lower third quarter earnings, cut its guidance and suspended its dividend.

Sprint Nextel (NYSE: S) announced plans to sell $3 billion in perpetual convertible preferred stock.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 5 to 4 on the NYSE and by nearly 10 to 9 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks eased a point to 720.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened lower with the Dow falling 60 points to 11,555 while Nasdaq lost 11 points to 2337.    Investors were rattled by a larger than expected loss at Freddie Mac which weighed down the financial services sector.

On the upside

Cisco Systems (Nasdaq: CSCO) posted slightly higher earnings as the network equipment maker warned of slowing demand among telecom carriers.

Fidelity National Information Services  (NYSE: FIS) reported higher revenues and lower earnings due to one-time charges related to its spin-off of Lender Processing Services (NYSE: LPS).

Shares of Ultra Petroleum (NYSE: UPL) leaped after the natural gas exploration companies posted record earnings that doubled versus year-ago levels.

On the downside

Freddie Mac (NYSE: FRE) posted a 2nd quarter loss that was three times greater than expected by analysts as the mortgage lender warned that its losses may continue to mount due to falling home prices.  Shares of Fannie Mae (NYSE: FNM) also dropped.

Time Warner (NYSE: TWX) reported lower 2nd quarter earnings and announced plans to split its AOL online operations and sell them as parts.

Shares of Lamar Advertising (Nasdaq: LAMR) fell after the outdoor advertising firm reported lower earnings and higher operating costs.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 2 to 1 on both the NYSE and Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 5 points to 715.

Closing Bell Report

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The markets surged to close sharply higher as investors interpreted the Federal Reserve's decision to hold interest rates steady as a vote of confidence in the economy.  The Dow leaped 332 points to 11,616 while Nasdaq jumped 64 points to 2350.

On the upside

Second quarter earnings fell for MGM Mirage (Nasdaq: MGM) due to lower room rates and less spending by visitors but revenue beat expectations.  The casino operator also announced that it has secured more than half the financing to build its $9.1 billion CityCenter project.

Shares of Fannie Mae (NYSE: FNM) surged ahead of its earnings release on Friday.  Analysts expect the company to report another loss.

Oil prices continued to fall lifting shares of United Air Lines parent UAL (Nasdaq: UAUA), American Airlines parent AMR (NYSE: AMR) and US Airways Group (NYSE: LCC) .

On the downside

Although Reliant Energy (NYSE: RRI) swung to a profit for the second quarter, the stock price fell.

Second quarter earnings plunged for Molson Coors Brewing (NYSE: TAP) as expenses soared.

While Tenet Healthcare (NYSE: THC) narrowed second quarter earnings, revenue fell short of estimates sending the stock price tumbling.


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 17 points to 721.

Mid-Day Report

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A better than expected report on service sector activity along with retreating oil prices boosted the markets higher during the midday with the Dow jumping 203 points to 11,487.  Nasdaq surged 38 points to 2324.

On the upside

Property and casualty insurer CastlePoint Holdings (Nasdaq: CPHL) agreed to be acquired for approximately $490 million by rival Tower Group (Nasdaq: TWGP).

Pilgrim's Pride (NYSE: PPC) declared a quarterly dividend of 2 1/4 cents per share payable on September 26 to shareholders of record September 12.

3Com (Nasdaq: COMS) cited better than expected sales in China for lifting its outlook for the current quarter.

On the downside

Global Industries (Nasdaq: GLBL) reported a loss for the second quarter and announced a plan to repurchase $100 million worth of common stock.

Health Management Associates (NYSE: HMA) disappointed with second quarter results that fell short of estimates.

Although second quarter earnings for Denbury Resources (NYSE: DNR) nearly doubled as oil prices surged, the results fell short of expectations.


In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 5 to 2 on the NYSE and by more than 2 to 1 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks leaped 10 points to 715.

Opening Bell Report

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The markets opened higher as investors embraced a better than expected service sector report as well as lower oil prices.  The Dow surged 104 points to 11,388 while Nasdaq leaped 20 points to 2306.

On the upside

Procter & Gamble (NYSE: PG) posted higher revenues and profits as the consumer products company raised prices in order to offset rising costs.

Lehman Brothers (NYSE: LEH) may be considering the sale of its entire investment banking unit, according a CNBC report.

Shares of II-VI (Nasdaq:IIVI) surged after the infrared optical components reported record revenues and earnings that surpassed expectations.

On the downside

American Superconductor (Nasdaq: AMSC) posted a wider loss on revenues that doubled, but the results missed analysts' estimates.

Rackable Systems (Nasdaq: RACK) reaffirmed its full year after reporting a smaller loss on declining revenues.  Analysts downgraded the server maker.

Midway Games (NYSE: MWY) reported a loss that exceeded its revenues as the video game maker continued to languish prior to the holiday season.


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 leaped 11 points to 715.

Closing Bell Report

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Despite falling crude oil prices, the markets closed lower as consumer spending slipped.  The Dow tumbled 42 points to 11,284 while Nasdaq plunged 25 points to 2286.

On the upside

Shares of Triad Guaranty (Nasdaq: TGIC) rose ahead of its earnings release after market close.

Ambac Financial (NYSE: ABK) stock continued to climb after the bond insurer on Friday announced an $850 million deal to to end its exposure to $1.4 billion in collateralized debt obligations.  The company will report second quarter earnings on Wednesday.

Bargain hunters lifted shares of Elan (NYSE: ELN), which plunged last week when the company announced potentially fatal side effects to its multiple sclerosis drug Tysabri.

On the downside

FreightCar America (Nasdaq: RAIL) blamed higher steel and aluminum expenses for swinging to a second quarter loss.

Shares of Walter Industries (NYSE: WLT) plunged on profit taking.  Last week, the company reported higher second quarter earnings that topped estimates and announced plans to open a new coal mine.

Engineering and construction services company KBR (NYSE: KBR) reported sharply lower second quarter income due to significant charges.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 2 to 1 on both the NYSE and Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks plunged 12 points to 704.

Mid-Day Report

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A dip in consumer spending in June weighed down the markets during the midday with the Dow falling 22 points to 11,304.  Nasdaq dropped 20 points to 2291.

On the upside

Simtek (Nasdaq: SMTK) agreed to be acquired by Cypress Semiconductor (NYSE: CY) for approximately $46 million in cash.

Motorola (NYSE: MOT) recruited Qualcomm (Nasdaq: QCOM) COO Sanjay Jha to lead its handset division and to share chief executive duties with Greg Brown.

Falling crude oil prices lifted shares of Continental Airlines (NYSE: CAL), American Airlines parent AMR (NYSE: AMR) and United Air Lines (Nasdaq: UAUA) .

On the downside

Charlotte Russe Holding (Nasdaq: CHIC) announced the resignation of chief financial officer Patti Johnson which prompted a downgrade.

Falling copper prices weighed down shares of Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold (NYSE: FCX).

Analysts downgraded Paetec Holding (Nasdaq: PAET) after the company reported disappointing preliminary seconod quarter revenue.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 2 to 1 on both the NYSE and Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks tumbled 9 points to 707.

Opening Bell Report

|
The markets opened lower as consumer spending fell in June with higher gasoline prices offsetting the government's stimulus payments to taxpayers.  The Dow lost 69 points to 11,257 while Nasdaq fell 17 points to 2293.

On the upside

Health insurer Humana (NYSE: HUM) posted a slight decrease in 2nd quarter profits, but raised its outlook for the year.

Church & Dwight (NYSE: CHD) reported higher 2nd quarter earnings and boosted its full-year forecasts due to successful consumer product launches.

PeopleSupport (Nasdaq: PSPT) received a $250 million offer from India-based outsourcing company Aegis BPO.

On the downside

Engineering and construction services provider KBR (NYSE: KRB) posted lower 2nd quarter profits due to one-time charges related to an unfavorable jury ruling on 3 projects undertaken while the company was still part of Halliburton (NYSE: HAL) in 2003.

Shares of Wachovia (NYSE: WB) fell after an analyst discredited the stock's recent rally due to short covering and pointed out that the bank still faced sizable mortgage losses.

Shares of Vertex Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: VRTX) continued to fall after rival Schering-Plough (NYSE: SGP) reported promising results for its hepatitus drug candidate.  Last week, Vertex had also lowered its forecast for the rest of the year.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 2 to 1 on both the NYSE and Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 5 points to 710.

Closing Bell Report

|
The markets closed lower as oil prices rebounded and unemployment rose.  The Dow fell 52 points to 11,326 while Nasdaq dropped 15 points to 2311.

On the upside

Fourth quarter earnings for VistaPrint (Nasdaq: VPRT) rose to surpass estimates as the online graphics design services company added new customers.

The Financial Times reported that ArcelorMittal may make a counteroffer for Alpha Natural Resources (NYSE: ANR), which has already agreed to be acquired by Cleveland-Cliffs (NYSE: CLF) in a deal valued at approximately $8.7 billion.

Innophos Holdings (Nasdaq: IPHS) reversed year ago losses to report a profit for the second quarter that topped analyst estimates.

On the downside

Winn-Dixie (Nasdaq: WINN) reported a preliminary loss for the fourth quarter.

Chesapeake (NYSE: CSK) widened second quarter losses due to increased expenses and one time items.

German steelmaker ThyssenKrupp AG denied rumors that the company was in discussions to acquire AK Steel (NYSE: AKS) .

In the broad market, advancing issues were on par with decliners on both the NYSE and on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 2 points to 716.

Mid-Day Report

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An increase in the unemployment rate along with flat manufacturing activity weighed down the markets during the midday with the Dow dropping 59 points to 11,319.  Nasdaq tumbled 19 points to 2307.

On the upside

Ambac (NYSE: ABK) will pay $850 million to settle its exposure to $1.4 billion in collateralized debt obligations.

Boyd Gaming (NYSE: BYD) reported lower second quarter earnings due to the weak economy but the results topped expectations and the casino operator increased its stock repurchase plan by $100 million.

Thoratec (Nasdaq: THOR) reported sharply higher second quarter earnings as revenue surged.

On the downside

TomoTherapy (Nasdaq: TOMO) disappointed with a second quarter loss amidst challenging economic conditions and lowered its full year outlook.

Sun Microsystems (Nasdaq: JAVA) blamed the weak economy as well as restructuring charges for sharply lower fourth quarter earnings and forecast disappointing first quarter results.

Paetec Holding (Nasdaq: PAET) warned that second quarter sales will fall short of estimates and full year results will also disappoint.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 9 to 7 on the NYSE and by nearly 10 to 9 on Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added a point to 716.

Opening Bell Report

|
The major indexes opened higher, but quickly gave up their gains as investors worried about rising unemployment.  The Dow fell 76 points to 11,301 while Nasdaq tumbled 33 points to 2292 due to a weak biotech sector.

On the upside

Peet's Coffee (Nasdaq: PEET) reported higher earnings that beat estimates.  Its shares immediately rallied from 52-week lows.

comScore (Nasdaq: SCOR) posted record revenues and earnings as the provider of digital audience measurements reportes strong demand for its products and services.

Shares of Innophos Holdings (Nasdaq: IPHS) leaped after the maker of specialty phosphates reported higher revenues and earnings as the company was able to pass the rising costs of phosphate rock and sulfuric acid onto its products.

On the downside

Shares of Biogen Idec (Nasdaq: BIIB) and Elan Corp. (NYSE: ELN) tumbled due to additional safety concerns about their multiple sclerosis therapy.

General Motors (NYSE: GM) reported a $15.5 billion loss in the 2nd quarter as declining revenues, labor unrest and restructuring costs put together the automaker's 3rd worst quarter in its history.

Chevron (NYSE: CVX) posted higher profits, but the results from the 2nd largest U.S. oil company missed expectations.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 2 to 1 on both the NYSE and Nasdaq.  The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 6 points to 708.

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