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4:09 PM, Jul 21, 2009 --

  • NYSE up 13 (0.2%) to 6,154.31.
  • DJIA up 67 (0.8%) to 8,916.
  • S&P 500 up 3.4 (0.4%) to 954.58.
  • Nasdaq up 6.9 (0.4%) to 1,916.


GLOBAL SENTIMENT

  • Hang Seng flat
  • Nikkei up 2.73%
  • FTSE up 1.17%


UPSIDE MOVERS

(+) CAT profit skids but is better than Street expected, guidance improved.

(+) LVS gets analyst upgrade.

(+) INCY reaches deal with FDA on special protocol assessment.

(+) UAUA reports narrower-than-expected loss.

(+) PKG is bullish on Q3.

(+) JEF tops Q2 expectations.

(+) DD profit tumbles, but better than Street view.

DOWNSIDE MOVERS

(-) RF declines after results miss.

(-) TXN tops with evening results but shares slip.

(-) KO turns lower despite earnings beat.

(-) STT swings to loss.

(-) LXK misses with Q2 results, guides below Street.

MARKET DIRECTION

A late, Dow-led rally leaves all major indexes in the green Tuesday, following a mixed session earlier in the day. With Tuesday's close, a stock winning streak stretched to six days for the Dow industrials and 10 days for the Nasdaq Composite Index. So far, earnings results have given bulls the upper hand but some investors caution that some consolidation may be on tap before the market can go much higher.

Stocks gave up an early lead when a fresh bankruptcy warning emerged from small business lender CIT Group (NYSE:CIT) and clouded what had been mostly upbeat earnings results last night and today.

Blue-chips were the last to join a mid-day decline after opening higher on results from industrial bellwether Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT). The tech-heavy Nasdaq dipped deeper into negative territory despite a solid earnings report and strong guidance from Texas Instruments (NASDAQ:TXN) on Monday night.

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke told Congress rates would likely stay low for a while and that he sees some tenative signs of economic stabilization. Those comments had limited effect on the markets as Bernanke has detailed some of his outlook in a WSJ Op-Ed, but more testimony is ahead on Wednesday.

The Fed boss sought to assure investors and Congress that the Central Bank will be able to reel in its extraordinary economic stimulus and prevent a flare up of inflation once a recovery is firmly rooted. Still, any such steps will be far off in the future. The central bank's focus remains "fostering economic recovery," he said, according to an Associated Press report.

Caterpillar, a main driver of the Dow, reported Q2 EPS of $0.60 vs $1.14 a year earlier. Excluding redundancy costs, profit was $0.72 per share. The Thomson Reuters mean analyst estimate was for $0.22 per share. Sales and revenues of $7.975 billion were down 41% from $13.624 billion in Q2 2008. The Street looked for $8.86 billion.

The company is updating its outlook for 2009 by tightening the sales and revenues range and improving profit expectations. For sales and revenues, the range has been tightened to $32 billion to $36 billion. The 2009 profit outlook is a range of $0.40 to $1.50 per share including redundancy costs of about $0.75 per share. Excluding redundancy costs, profit is forecast to be between $1.15 and $2.25 per share. The Thomson Reuters mean analyst estimate is for $1.01 per share on $34.9 billion in revs.

Other noteworthy company news:

Regions Financial (NYSE:RF) reports a Q2 loss of $0.28 per share vs income of $0.30 per share a year earlier and deeper than the Thomson Reuters mean analyst estimate for a loss of $0.22 per share. The company said loan-loss provisions surged to $912 million from $309 million a year earlier.

Lexmark (NYSE:LXK) reports Q2 non-GAAP earnings of $0.55 per share, a nickel shy of the analyst mean on Thomson Reuters. Revs were $905 mln, below expectations of $916 mln.

Merck (NYSE:MRK) reports Q2 non-GAAP EPS of $0.83 per share, six cents better than the analyst mean on Thomson Reuters. Sales were $5.9 bln, ahead of expectations of $5.84 bln.

DuPont (NYSE:DD) reports Q2 profit fell 61% to an adjusted $0.61 per share, topping the Thomson Reuters mean analyst estimate for $0.53. Revenue dropped 24% to $7.09 billion. The Street looked for $7.15 billion.

Last evening, Texas Instruments (TXN) reported a decline in profit that wasn't as steep as analysts expected.

Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO) turned lower by mid-day despite rolling out page improvements sooner than expected.

Packaging Corp of America (NYSE:PKG) jumped on a bullish Q3 outlook. In that same space, International Paper (NYSE:IP) was higher on an upgrade at Deutsche Bank.

In mergers and acquisitions news, Exelon (NYSE:EXC) says it's dropping its bid for NRG Energy (NYSE:NRG).

Crude futures closed higher for a fifth straight session, climbing above $65 a barrel for the first time in more than two weeks before closing up 1.2% at $64.72 a barrel.

Source: Closing Update for Tuesday, July 21