Mid-Morning Market Update: Markets Edge Lower; Morgan Stanley Beats Q4 Estimates

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Following the market opening Thursday, the Dow traded down 0.09 percent to 26,090.93 while the NASDAQ declined 0.19 percent to 7,284.67. The S&P also fell, dropping 0.04 percent to 2,801.39.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

Thursday morning, the telecommunications services sector proved to be a source of strength for the market. Leading the sector was strength from Turkcell Iletisim Hizmetleri A.S. (ADR) (NYSE: TKC ) and Internet Gold Golden Lines Ltd (NASDAQ: IGLD ).

In trading on Thursday, healthcare shares fell 0.38 percent. Meanwhile, top losers in the sector included Depomed Inc (NASDAQ: DEPO ), down 7 percent, and Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd (ADR) (NYSE: TEVA ) down 5 percent.

Top Headline

Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS ) reported better-than-expected results for its fourth quarter on Thursday.

Morgan Stanley posted adjusted earnings of $0.84 per share in the quarter on revenue of $9.50 billion which exceeded Wall Street’s expectations for $0.77 per share and $9.19 billion.

Equities Trading UP

Spi Energy Co Ltd (ADR) (NASDAQ: SPI ) shares shot up 24 percent to $1.08 after the company disclosed a strategic partnership with Hoofoo Inc., the hack-proof cryptocurrency hardware wallet.

Shares of Live Ventures Inc (NASDAQ: LIVE ) got a boost, shooting up 24 percent to $18.21. Live Ventures reported FY 2017 adjusted earnings of $2.94 per share on revenue of $152 million.

GNC Holdings Inc (NYSE: GNC ) shares were also up, gaining 45 percent to $5.04 after the company issued a strong earnings forecast for the fourth quarter. The company’s Q4 same store sales rose 5.7 percent.

Equities Trading DOWN

Innovative Industrial Properties Inc (NYSE: IIPR ) shares dropped 13 percent to $27.10. Innovative Industrial Properties priced 2.8 million share common stock offering at $26 per share for gross proceeds of $72.8 million.

Shares of Paratek Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ: PRTK ) were down 9 percent to $16.09. Paratek reported a common stock public offering of $50 million.

Alcoa Corp (NYSE: AA ) was down, falling around 7 percent to $52.76 after the company reported weaker-than-expected results for its fourth quarter on Wednesday.


In commodity news, oil traded up 0.09 percent to $64.03 while gold traded down 0.76 percent to $1,329.00.

Silver traded down 0.53 percent Thursday to $17.075, while copper rose 0.52 percent to $3.2055.


European shares were mixed today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 rose 0.01 percent, the Spanish Ibex Index slipped 0.38 percent, while Italy’s FTSE MIB Index gained 0.01 percent. Meanwhile the German DAX gained 0.33 percent, and the French CAC 40 fell 0.03 percent while U.K. shares fell 0.39 percent.


U.S. housing starts slipped 8.2 percent to an annual rate of 1.19 million in December. However, economists were estimating a 1.27 million rate.

The Philadelphia Fed manufacturing index declined to 22.20 in January, versus a prior reading of 27.90. Economists expected a reading of 25.00.

U.S. initial jobless claims dropped 41,000 to 220,000 in the latest week. However, economists were expecting claims to reach 250,000 last week.

The Energy Information Administration’s weekly report on natural gas stocks in underground storage is schedule for release at 10:30 a.m. ET.

The EIA’s weekly report on petroleum inventories will be released at 11:00 a.m. ET.

Data on money supply for the latest week will be released at 4:30 p.m. ET.

Cleveland Federal Reserve Bank President Loretta Mester is set to speak in New York at 6:05 p.m. ET.

© 2018 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.

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