With nearly a third of the companies in the S&P 500 reporting earnings this week, optimism remained high with several big players meeting or beating expectations. The slew of positive earnings reports sparked a rally across the indices, and, despite a slight pullback right before the bell, all ended the day with modest gains.
The markets opened with cautious optimism, as the previous day’s aftermarket report from Netflix (NFLX) had already sent shares up nearly 7 percent before open, which is how it closed the day as well. Facebook Inc (FB) received an upgrade from Credit Suisse, which sent shares up 2.92 percent and helped propel the tech-heavy Nasdaq’s big jump.
Besides Netflix, the other big earnings win came from Harley Davidson (HOG), who saw shares jump 6.41 percent on their earnings beat. However, the biggest news for the S&P came from Allergan (AGN), who skyrocketed 15.25 percent after fielding a buyout bid from a team comprised of activist investor William Ackman and the drug company Valeant. The S&P touched 1,885, or five points below its all-time high, before falling slightly before the close of trading.
From the Dow, Home Depot (HD) led the way, gaining 2 percent on an upgrade from BDO Capital. This offset a slightly underwhelming earnings report from McDonalds Corp (MCD), who shed 0.35 percent on the day.
Results for April 22, 2014
- Standard & Poor’s 500: +.43 percent to 1,880 points
- Dow Jones Industrial Average: +.39 percent to 16,514 points
- NASDAQ Exchange: +.96 percent to 4,161 points
Our Top Stories
- Aside from their earnings beat, Netflix also released a shareholder letter in which they came out firmly against the proposed Comcast-Time Warner merger.
- Industry analyst Jeff Kagan takes a closer look at the evolving “connected car” industry and who the major players in smartcars will likely be.
- Senior Editor Michael Teague examines the major developments this week in non-US oil and gas exploration, notably the ongoing drilling efforts taking place in the Arctic Circle and off the coast of Malaysia.
- Casey Research analyzes the difference between major crises that affect the market and what they perceive will be the real market catastrophe to top all catastrophes: the US debt level.
- Benjamin Cox delivers a lecture about how we could be looking at a future where copper supplies run drastically short.
- Soaring biotech ETFs may indicate that the 6-week correction for the industry's stocks is over.
- Marijuana stock GW Pharmaceuticals (GWPH) shot up after Morgan Stanley (MS) initiated coverage on the company with an “overweight” rating.
- Idera Pharmaceuticals (IDRA) led a big gain on the day for biotechs across the board, with technical factors being a likely motivating factor.