Wall Street Fights to Break Even on Mixed Earnings, Economic News

Michael Teague |

Wall Street FinancialsOrders for items meant to last more than three years were down nearly 6 percent in March, nearly doubling the drop that had been expected by economists. Aside from computers and electronics, up about 1 percent on the month, declines were registered in every other category of durable good.

The report comes ahead of Friday’s GDP reading that is expected to show 3 percent growth in the domestic economy in the first quarter of 2013.

After a fairly huge Tuesday, Wall Street cooled off a little, on the durable goods news, but more so as a result of somewhat disappointing news from both Apple (AAPL) and AT&T (T).

Apple’s earnings report, released during late trading on Tuesday, confirmed investor and analyst fears alike regarding the company’s slowing growth, to the extent that news of a $100 billion cash distribution plan seemed to elicit almost no excitement. Apple closed the day on a slight gain of 0.3 percent, to $407.31.

AT&T, meanwhile, broke even on earnings, but missed on revenue, with the help of a 3.4 percent decrease in Business services sales. The nation’s second largest provider of wireless services dropped over 5 percent on the day to close at $37.01.

The S&P 500 broke even at 1,578.79, with a number of tech stocks performing considerably well. First Solar (FSLR) was up 11.53 percent to close at $44.99, Broadcom Corp. (BRCM) up 7.19 percent to $35.35, Corning Inc. (GLW), the maker of Gorilla Glass, up 6.02 percent to $13.92, and NVIDIA Corp. (NVDA) up 3.87 percent to $13.42.

The index was weighted, however, by high-volume drops not only from AT&T, but also Juniper Networks, down 9.74 percent to $15.67, and Proctor & Gamble (PG) down 6.15 percent to $77.46.

The Dow closed on the day’s biggest percentage loss, dropping 0.29 percent to 14,676.30, propped up by gains from Microsoft (MSFT) who closed on a 4.16 percent gain to $31.78, Bank of America (BAC) up 1.99 percent to $12.31 on high volume, and General Electric (GE) up 2.37 percent to $22.01.

Aside from Proctor & Gamble and AT&T, the Dow was held back by Cisco Systems (CSCO) down 2.39 percent to close at $20.41, and Pfizer (PFE), down 1.34 percent to $30.66.

The Nasdaq posted a valiant 0.01 percent gain to close at 3,269.65, with solar stocks getting caught in the upward draft of Solar City. Real Goods Solar (RSOL) was up 18 percent to $1.90, and SunPower Corp (SPWR) was up 10.36 percent to $12.25, while DayStar Technologies (DSTI) was up 10.71 percent to $0.31.

Zynga (ZNGA) was up 5.31 percent to $3.35, while Blackberry (BBRY) jumped nearly 4 percent to close at $14.90.

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

Companies

Symbol Name Price Change % Volume
GLW Corning Incorporated 24.56 -0.32 -1.29 11,681,853
PG Procter & Gamble Company (The) 84.37 0.87 1.04 8,004,453
GE General Electric Co 31.78 0.25 0.79 31,227,376
AAPL Apple Inc. 113.95 1.83 1.63 34,402,627
NVDA NVIDIA Corporation 91.82 -1.66 -1.78 9,557,799
CSCO Cisco Systems Inc. 30.06 0.11 0.37 21,361,984
BAC Bank of America Corporation 23.09 0.14 0.61 130,590,406
SPWR SunPower Corporation 7.65 0.06 0.79 2,880,793
RSOL Real Goods Solar Inc n/a n/a n/a 0
FSLR First Solar Inc. 33.54 0.37 1.12 2,052,860
ZNGA Zynga Inc. 2.93 -0.08 -2.66 14,950,681
BRCM Broadcom Corp. n/a n/a n/a 0
OPY Oppenheimer Holdings Inc. Class A (DE) 18.70 0.10 0.54 47,666
T AT&T Inc. 40.38 -0.03 -0.07 17,105,180
BBRY BlackBerry Limited 7.81 -0.02 -0.26 3,247,210
MSFT Microsoft Corporation 61.97 0.96 1.57 27,349,356

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