The Dow Industrial Average traded down from 12,299.11 to 12,140.17 staying well above its 50-day and 200-day simple moving averages at 11,908 and 11,942. The NASDAQ traded down from 2626.34 to 2586.85 below its 50-day and 200-day simple moving averages at 2616 and 2661.=
Asian stocks were lower on Wednesday with the Nikkei 225 ending the day at 8,424 – down 0.20% and the Hang Seng ending the day at 18,519 – down 0.59%. European stocks were mixed in early trading on Wednesday, but dipped into the red into their closes.
The FTSE 100 was closed at 5,507 – down 0.10%; the DAX ending the day at 5,771 – down 2.01%; and the CAC 40 ending the day at 3,071 – down 1.03%. The yield on the 10-Year US Treasury note traded lower in yield from 2.012 percent and 1.906 below its 50-day simple moving average at 2.031.
Gold traded down from $1595.0 the Troy ounce to $1550.9 trending below its 200-day simple moving average at $1621.8. Crude oil stayed above its 50-day and 200-day simple moving averages at $96.33 and $95.76 in a trading range from $101.71 down to $99.11. The euro versus the dollar traded lower from 1.3078 to 1.2915 staying above its January 2011 low at 1.2878.
A federal judge ended BP’s (BP) three-year probation for the negligent discharge of oil in Alaska in 2007. Endeavour International (END) is raised to Outperform from Market Perform at Rodman & Renshaw, with a $12.50 target price. Kodiak Oil & Gas (KOG) is cut to Market Perform from Outperform with a $10 target at Northland Securities. In afternoon trading: Shares of Endeavour International are up about 11.5%. Shares of Yingli Green Energy (YGE) are down about 8.5%. Shares of Trina Solar (TSL) are down about 7.25%.
Energy Select Sector SPDR (XLE) was trading at $68.45 at 4:00 PM on Wednesday, down 1.91% on the day – up 0.29% year-to-date.
In afternoon trading: Shares of Molycorp (MCO) are down about 14.5%. Shares of Rare Element (REE) are down about 13.25%. Shares of Zagg Inc. (ZAGG) are down about 13.25%. Shares of Stillwater Mining (SWC) are down about 7%. Shares of Horsehead Holding (ZINC) are down about 7%. Shares of Hecla Mining (HL) are down about 6.5%.
The Materials Select Sector SPDR (XLB) was trading at $33.09 at 4:00 PM on Wednesday, down 2.39% on the day – down 13.85% year-to-date.
Cascade Corporation (CASC) gets picked up with a Buy recommendation and $60 price objective at Global Hunter Securities. In afternoon trading: Shares of SatCon Technology (SATC) are up about 16.25%. Shares of EnerNOC Inc. (ENOC) are up about 12%. Shares of A-Power Energy Generation (APWR) are down about 14%. Shares of Pinnacle Airlines (PNCL) are down about 10.5%.
The Industrial Select Sector SPDR (XLI) was trading at $33.54 at 4:00 PM on Wednesday, down 1.58% on the day – down 3.81% year-to-date.
Samsung (SSNLF), Sharp (SHCAY) and five other Asian electronics companies have agreed to pay $552M to settle allegations of price-fixing on LCD screens. The New York Times Co. (NYT) announced it had agreed to sell its Regional Media Group, which owns 16 regional newspapers and various other publications, to privately-owned Halifax Media Holdings for $143M in cash ($150M in post-tax proceeds). Mattress Firm Holding Corp (MFRM) is a new Overweight at Barclays, while UBS and KeyBanc Capital both assign Buys. Starbucks (SBUX) is upgraded to Buy from Neutral at DA Davidson, which takes Dunkin Brands (DNKN) to Neutral from Underperform. In afternoon trading: Heavily Active Stocks: Shares of Ford Motor (F) are down about 2.75%. Shares of Sirius XM Radio (SIRI) are down about a quarter of a percent.
The Consumer Discretionary Select Sector SPDR (XLY) was trading at $38.87 at 4:00 PM on Wednesday, down 1.09% on the day – up 3.90% year-to-date.
In afternoon trading: Shares of Diamond Foods (DMND) are up about 5.25%. Heavily Active Stocks: Shares of Altria Group (MO) are up slightly. Shares of Walgreens (WAG) are down about 1.7%. Shares of Wal-Mart (WMT) are relatively unchanged. Shares of CVS Caremark (CVS) are up slightly.
The Consumer Staples Select Sector SPDR (XLP) was trading at $32.47 at 4:00 PM on Wednesday, down 0.49% on the day – up 10.78% year-to-date.
In afternoon trading: Shares of Antares Pharma (AIS) are up about 13.75%. Shares of Biosante Pharmaceuticals (BPAX) are down about 5%. Heavily Active Stocks: Shares of Pfizer (PFE) are down about 1%. Shares of Healthspring Inc. (HS) are down about a quarter of a percent.
The Health Care Select Sector SPDR (XLV) was trading at $34.50 at 4:00 PM on Wednesday, down 1.09% on the day – up 9.52% year-to-date.
A U.S. appeals court will review whether BofA’s (BAC) $8.5B MBS settlement should be sent back to a New York state court for approval; some institutional investors want the case to stay in federal court where it will be easier to negotiate higher payouts. A federal appeals court agreed to the SEC’s request to place an emergency hold on its fraud lawsuit against Citigroup (C). The regulatory agency made the request in order to ensure it can continue settling enforcement cases without requiring corporate defendants to address whether they did anything wrong, a practice which had recently been called into question by the court. Berkshire’s (BRK.A) General Re is interested in buying Tong Yang Life Insurance to tap into the promising South Korean market. Tong Yang’s majority stakeholder Vogo Fund is looking to sell its 60.7% stake worth ~937B won ($808.7M), and General Re has reportedly signed a confidentiality agreement to participate in the deal. A federal judge approved a $450M settlement between AIG (AIG) and rival insurers. The settlement addresses claims AIG had incorrectly reported the size of its workers’ compensation business in the 1980s and 1990s, which in turn allowed it to make smaller contributions to state-mandated pools for uninsured workers. Manning & Napier (MN) is a new Outperform at Wells Fargo and started with a Buy and $15 target at Stifel Nicolaus.
The Financial Select Sector SPDR (XLF) was trading at $12.87 at 4:00 PM on Wednesday, down 1.61% on the day – down 19.34% year-to-date.
Cavium (CAVM) became the latest chipmaker to issue a Q4 warning. The company now expects revenue of $56M-$57M for the quarter (below a $61.6M consensus). Samsung (SSNLF), Sharp (SHCAY) and five other Asian electronics companies have agreed to pay $552M to settle allegations of price-fixing on LCD screens. In afternoon trading: Shares of SemiLEDS (LEDS) are up about 18%. Shares of Sequans Communications (SQNS) are up about 17.5%. Shares of Powerwave Technologies (PWAV) are down about 11.75%. Shares of Motricity (MOTR) are down about 11.5%.
The Technology Select Sector SPDR (XLK) was trading at $25.34 at 4:00 PM on Wednesday, down 1.02% on the day – up 0.60% year-to-date.
In afternoon trading: Heavily Active Stocks: Shares of Sprint Nextel (S) are down about 3%, while shares of AT&T (T) are relatively unchanged and shares of Verizon (VZ) are down about a half of a percent. Shares of Frontier Communications (FTR) are down about 2.6%. Shares of Vodafone (VOD) are down about 1.5%.
The NASDAQ Telecommunications Index (IXTC) was trading at $195.62 at 4:00 PM on Wednesday, down 2.17% on the day – down 13.20% year-to-date.
NSTAR (NST) and Northeast Utilities (NU) are each initiated Overweight by Barclays. In afternoon trading: Heavily Active Stocks: Shares of Duke Energy (DUK) are down slightly. Shares of Genon Energy (GEN) are down about 1.5%. Shares of Southern (SO) are down about 0.3%. Shares of PPL Corp. (PPL) are down about 0.3%.
The Utilities Select Sector SPDR (XLU) was trading at $35.96 at 4:00 PM on Wednesday, down 0.36% on the day – up 14.74% year-to-date.
STOCKS: BP, END, KOG, YGE, TSL, MCO, REE, ZAGG, SWC, ZINC, HL, CASC, SATC, ENOC, APWR, PNCL, SSNLF, SHCAY, NYT, MFRM, SBUX, DNKN, F, SIRI, DMND, MO, WAG, WMT, CVS, AIS, BPAX, PFE, HS, BAC, C, BRK.A, AIG, MN, CAVM, LEDS, SQNS, PWAV, MOTR, S, T, VZ, FTR, VOD, NST, NU, DUK, GEN, SO, PPL