Equities Sector Coverage: Stocks Take Off As Europe Prepares to Act

Sector Recap |

RBS, LYG, ING, DB, BCS, CS, C, MS, BX, AIG, banks, euro, european union, eurozone, Mario Draghi, ECB, IMF, bond-buying, interest rates, debt crisisFirst Quarter Productivity fell more than expected, down 0.9% with labor costs up 1.3%. The Federal Reserve’s “beige book” of regional economic activity showed consumer spending was unchanged to up slightly in most regions, auto sales were strong, construction spending was picking up and capital spending plans were mostly positive. The Dow Jones Industrial Average traded up to 12,364.54 back above its 200-day simple moving average at 12,271. The NASDAQ traded up to 2840.80.

Asian stocks rebounded on Wednesday. The Nikkei 225 ended the day at 8,534 – up 1.81%. The Hang Seng ended the day at 18,521 – up 1.43%. European exchanges were higher on Wednesday. The FTSE 100 ended the day at 5,384 – up 2.36% on Friday. The DAX ended the day at 6,094 – up 2.09%. The CAC 40 ended the day at 3,058 – up 2.42%. The yield on the 10-Year US Treasury declined to 1.552% than rose to 1.671%.

Gold traded up from $1616.5 the Troy ounce to $1642.4 between the 50-day and 200-day simple moving averages at $1621.7 and $1685.2. Crude oil traded up from $84.03 per barrel to $86.27. The euro versus the dollar traded up from 1.2443 to 1.2571.


Chesapeake Energy (CHK) is in discussions to sell its 45.2% limited partner interest in Chesapeake Midstream (CHKM) and other pipeline assets to Global Infrastructure for over $4 billion. Mitcham Industries (MIND) missed Q1 EPS estimates by a penny with a miss on the revenue line. Continental Resources (CLR) has been upgraded to Buy from Hold at Jefferies. Forest Oil (FST) has been upgraded to Buy from Hold at Canaccord Genuity. Hess (HES) has been upgraded to Buy from Accumulate at Tudor Pickering. Dow components – Chevron (CVX) up 2.57%, Exxon Mobil (XOM) up 2.47%.

Energy Select Sector SPDR (XLE) was trading at $64.02 at 3:30 PM on Wednesday, up 2.40% on the day – down 7.39% year-to-date.


Midway Gold (MDW) has been initiated with a Buy rating at Stifel Nicolaus on the development assets in Nevada and Washington with total attributable resources of 4.8 million ounces of gold. Dow components – Alcoa (AA) up 1.57%, DuPont (DD) up 2.45%.

The Materials Select Sector SPDR (XLB) was trading at $34.09 at 3:30 PM on Wednesday, up 1.94% on the day – up 1.76% year-to-date.


Defense cuts may be on the horizon, Lockheed Martin (LMT) won a preliminary contract valued at up to $2.02 billion to build at least 42 interceptor missiles for the Pentagon's missile defense agency. PulteGroup (PHM) and Ryland Group (RYL) have been upgraded to Outperform from Neutral at Credit Suisse. Tata Motors (TTM) - The Indian auto maker has been upgraded to Hold from Sell at Deutsche Bank. Dow components – Boeing Co (BA) up 1.61%, Caterpillar (CAT) up 2.51%, General Electric (GE) up 1.97%, 3M Company (MMM) up 2.12%, United Technologies (UTX) up 3.13%.

The Industrial Select Sector SPDR (XLI) was trading at $34.16 at 3:30 PM on Wednesday, up 2.12% on the day – up 1.21% year-to-date.

Consumer Discretionary

Home Depot (HD) reaffirmed its sales and EPS guidance for 2012 and set new targets for an operating margin of 12% and return on invested capital of 24%. Coinstar (CSTR) has a deal with Starbucks (SBUX) to roll out thousands of Rubi coffee kiosks featuring Seattle's Best Coffee in groceries, drugstores and mass merchants. Vail Resorts (MTN) reported in-line FQ3 EPS with a beat on the revenue line. Oxford Industries (OXM) beat Q1 EPS estimates by a nickel with in-line revenue. Vera Bradley Inc (VRA) has been upgraded to Buy from Hold at KeyBanc with a price target at $26. Dow Components – Disney (DIS) up 1.29%, Home Depot up 3.03%, McDonalds (MCD) up 1.26%.

The Consumer Discretionary Select Sector SPDR (XLY) was trading at $42.84 at 3:30 PM on Wednesday, up 1.73% on the day – up 9.79% year-to-date.

Consumer Staples

Coinstar (CSTR) has a deal with Starbucks (SBUX) to roll out thousands of Rubi coffee kiosks featuring Seattle's Best Coffee in groceries, drugstores and mass merchants. Brown-Forman Group (BF.B) missed FQ4 EPS estimates by three cents with better than expected revenue. Bob Evans (BOBE) missed FQ4 earnings on all counts with flat revenue year over year. Net earnings rose 20% on fewer charges and improved operating margins. Same-store sales were down 0.6%, and Evans lowered guidance for the fiscal year. Mattress Firm (MFRM) beat earnings estimate on a per share basis but was short on the revenue line. Ulta Salon (ULTA) beat Q1 estimates on a 22% year over year. Dick's Sporting Goods (DKS) have been upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform with Wells Fargo. Dow components – Kraft (KFT) up 0.61%, Coca Cola (KO) up 1.37%, Procter & Gamble (PG) up 0.55%, Wal-Mart (WMT) up 0.34%.

The Consumer Staples Select Sector SPDR (XLP) was trading at $33.56 at 3:30 PM on Wednesday, up 0.99% on the day – up 3.29% year-to-date.

Health Care

Cyberonics (CYBX) beat FQ4 EPS estimates by three cents with better than expected revenue. NuVasive (NUVA) has been upgraded to Outperform from Sector Perform at RBC Capital. Dow Components – Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) up 0.42%, Merck (MRK) up 0.55%, Pfizer (PFE) up 0.93%.

The Health Care Select Sector SPDR (XLV) was trading at $36.14 at 3:30 PM on Wednesday, up 0.98% on the day – up 4.18% year-to-date.


Fannie Mae (FNMA.OB) named general counsel Timothy Mayopoulos as its new CEO. Mayopoulos was fired from Bank of America (BAC) on the just before their takeover of Merrill Lynch to make way for Brian Moynihan. Barclays (BCS) will likely recover around $1.5 billion of disputed assets related to the Lehman's bankruptcy, as a US federal judge ruled yesterday partially reversing a February 2011 decision. CIT Group (CIT) has been initiated with a Buy rating at Janney. First Republic Bank (FRC) has been initiated with an Outperform at Wells Fargo. FirstMerit Corp. (FMER) has been downgraded to Underperform from Neutral by Robert W. Baird with a price target reduced $2 to $13. Dow Components – American Express (AXP) up 2.06%, Bank of America (BAC) up 6.34%, JP Morgan Chase (JPM) up 2.53%, Travelers (TRV) up 0.72%.

The Financial Select Sector SPDR (XLF) was trading at $13.92 at 3:30 PM on Wednesday, up 2.50% on the day – up 7.08% year-to-date.

Information Technology

Ancestry.com (ACOM) surged 24% premarket after a Bloomberg report that the company is considering a sale and enlisted the help of tech banker Frank Quattrone to find buyers. American Superconductor (AMSC) beat FQ4 EPS estimates by six cents with in-line revenue. Facebook (FB) has been initiated with an Outperform at JPM Securities with a $37 price target. VeriSign (VRSN) has been initiated with an Outperform at Wells Fargo. Rackspace (RAX) has been downgraded to Hold from Buy at Jefferies. Symantec (SYMC) has been downgraded to Perform from Outperform at FBR Capital with the price target down to $16 from $20. Dow Components – Cisco Systems (CSCO) up 2.70%, Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) up 2.54%, IBM (IBM) up 2.15%, Intel Corp (INTC) up 2.12%, Microsoft (MSFT) up 1.91%.

The Technology Select Sector SPDR (XLK) was trading at $28.49 at 3:30 PM on Wednesday, up 1.89% on the day – up 10.18% year-to-date.

Telecommunication Services

Dow components – AT&T (T) up 0.82%, Verizon (VZ) up 0.95%.

The NASDAQ Telecommunications Index (IXTC) was trading at $179.97 at 3:30 PM on Wednesday, up 1.86% on the day – down 8.61% year-to-date.

Dominion Resources (D) up 1.15%, Edison International (EIX) up 0.84%, First Energy (FE) up 0.98%, PG&E Corp (PCG) up 1.69%, Southern Company (SO) up 1.43%.

The Utilities Select Sector SPDR (XLU) was trading at $36.35 at 3:30 PM on Wednesday, up 1.08% on the day – up 1.03% year-to-date.


DISCLOSURE: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors, and do not represent the views of equities.com. Readers should not consider statements made by the author as formal recommendations and should consult their financial advisor before making any investment decisions. To read our full disclosure, please go to: http://www.equities.com/disclaimer


Symbol Name Price Change % Volume
MMM 3M Company 212.53 0.31 0.15 449,193 Trade
CIT CIT Group Inc (DEL) 47.94 0.09 0.19 307,444 Trade
MTN Vail Resorts Inc. 212.08 1.43 0.68 53,162 Trade
LMT Lockheed Martin Corporation 280.95 0.52 0.18 177,351 Trade
PG Procter & Gamble Company (The) 89.70 0.67 0.75 1,430,649 Trade
GE General Electric Co 27.65 0.10 0.36 9,734,224 Trade
CVX Chevron Corporation 105.25 0.80 0.77 1,311,804 Trade
SO Southern Company (The) 50.20 -0.18 -0.36 1,207,716 Trade
PCG Pacific Gas & Electric Co. 68.59 -0.22 -0.32 615,312 Trade
CYBX Cyberonics Inc. n/a n/a n/a 0 Trade
AMSC American Superconductor Corporation 4.56 0.07 1.56 59,863 Trade
OXM Oxford Industries Inc. 61.96 0.53 0.86 19,766 Trade
FB Facebook Inc. 154.23 0.83 0.54 4,600,899 Trade
JNJ Johnson & Johnson 135.88 -0.17 -0.12 1,704,591 Trade
WMT Wal-Mart Stores Inc. 75.00 -0.52 -0.69 2,889,678 Trade
AA Alcoa Inc. 30.42 0.62 2.08 1,198,946 Trade
INTC Intel Corporation 34.18 -0.18 -0.52 7,307,025 Trade
IBM International Business Machines Corp 154.34 -0.06 -0.04 661,028 Trade
D Dominion Resources Inc. 79.08 0.15 0.19 776,367 Trade
TRV The Travelers Companies Inc. 128.07 -0.24 -0.19 230,449 Trade
WPX:CA Western Potash Corp. n/a n/a n/a n/a
BCS Barclays PLC 10.06 0.14 1.41 1,618,149 Trade
EIX Edison International 80.82 -0.07 -0.09 422,560 Trade
BOBE Bob Evans Farms Inc. 71.54 -0.75 -1.04 43,283 Trade
JPM JP Morgan Chase 87.16 0.14 0.16 3,766,160 Trade
AXP American Express Company 82.64 0.39 0.47 759,329 Trade
UTX United Technologies Corporation 122.35 0.18 0.15 603,819 Trade
FMER FirstMerit Corporation n/a n/a n/a 0 Trade
SYMC Symantec Corporation 28.72 -0.09 -0.31 1,643,779 Trade
VRA Vera Bradley Inc. 8.52 0.03 0.35 26,951 Trade
CSCO Cisco Systems Inc. 32.09 0.24 0.75 5,656,936 Trade
DIS Walt Disney Company (The) 104.01 -0.22 -0.21 2,997,333 Trade
VZ Verizon Communications Inc. 45.38 -0.04 -0.10 2,489,782 Trade
VRSN VeriSign Inc. 93.94 0.42 0.45 126,142 Trade
BAC Bank of America Corporation 22.89 -0.05 -0.20 25,380,839 Trade
MCD McDonald\'s Corporation 154.93 0.13 0.08 567,791 Trade
DD E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Co. 81.42 0.08 0.10 339,083 Trade
SBUX Starbucks Corporation 59.98 0.47 0.79 2,330,845 Trade
TTM Tata Motors Ltd Limited 34.13 -0.83 -2.37 350,553 Trade
CLR Continental Resources Inc. 30.85 0.44 1.45 1,191,391 Trade
HD Home Depot Inc. (The) 152.42 -3.06 -1.97 2,627,964 Trade
XOM Exxon Mobil Corporation 81.51 0.43 0.53 2,434,352 Trade
PFE Pfizer Inc. 34.08 0.02 0.06 5,576,901 Trade
PHM PulteGroup Inc. 24.37 0.33 1.37 996,735 Trade
DKS Dick\'s Sporting Goods Inc 38.77 0.18 0.47 564,567 Trade
FRC FIRST REPUBLIC BANK 99.50 -0.37 -0.37 156,195 Trade
HPQ HP Inc. 17.76 0.05 0.28 2,777,677 Trade
BA Boeing Company (The) 201.04 1.60 0.80 894,582 Trade
MRK Merck & Company Inc. (new) 66.21 0.19 0.28 2,508,558 Trade
FE FirstEnergy Corporation 29.09 -0.09 -0.31 687,886 Trade
KO Coca-Cola Company (The) 45.29 0.22 0.48 2,212,705 Trade
T AT&T Inc. 38.06 -0.04 -0.10 4,664,145 Trade
CAT Caterpillar Inc. 103.70 -0.14 -0.13 1,584,046 Trade
NUVA NuVasive Inc. 76.98 0.07 0.09 193,934 Trade
ULTA Ulta Salon Cosmetics & Fragrance Inc. 284.53 0.39 0.14 252,459 Trade
MSFT Microsoft Corporation 70.49 0.23 0.33 4,959,585 Trade
CHK Chesapeake Energy Corporation 4.54 0.04 0.79 10,617,096 Trade
MIND Mitcham Industries Inc. 4.09 -0.03 -0.73 3,450 Trade
RAX Rackspace Hosting Inc n/a n/a n/a 0 Trade
MFRM Mattress Firm Holding Corp. n/a n/a n/a 0 Trade


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