Equities Update: Averages Up, Just Barely

by: Midnight Trader

4:16 PM, Dec 28, 2009 --

  • NYSE up 6 (0.1%) to 7,261.24.
  • DJIA up 27 (0.3%) to 10,547.
  • S&P 500 up 1 (0.1%) to 1,128.
  • Nasdaq up 5 (0.2%) to 2,291.


  • Hang Seng down 0.17%
  • Nikkei up 1.33%
  • FTSE closed


(+) FRE, FNM reportedly get gov't pledge of more support.

(+) CGEN reports discovery, experimental validation of new drug target.

(+) AMCS sold to Thoma Bravo for $5.35/share.

(+) VICL says Phase 3 trial gets positive review from safety board.

(+) CTIC adopts shareholder rights plan.

(+) PAR gains as Barron's says company is takeover target.


(-) AMR, DAL, UAUA see continued reaction to weekend bomb-attempt news.


The major averages end narrowly higher, preserving what's now a run of seven winning sessions.

Stocks continued to flicker in and out of positive territory in the final hour of trading. Security worries, at least in the short run, nicked airline stocks. But better-than-expected holiday shopping results partly extended the bullish sentiment that drove stocks to fresh 2009 highs last week.

Sales at U.S. retailers rose 3.6 percent for the period from November 1 to Christmas Eve, though gained only 1 percent when an extra shopping day this year was excluded, data from MasterCard Advisors unit SpendingPulse showed.

Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN) gained after saying customers bought more e-books than physical books for the first time ever on Christmas Day.

Airline stocks fell as investors react to news of a foiled attempt to blow up a U.S. plane on Christmas Day. United parent UAL (UAUA) is trading down 2.06% at last check. Delta (NYSE:DAL) is down 3.65% and American's AMR Corp. (AMR) down 3.38%.

A Nigerian man on a Northwest flight from Amsterdam to Detroit tried to blow up the aircraft an hour before landing on Friday. He was foiled by other passengers.

Then on Sunday, officials detained a passenger who caused a disruption aboard Northwest Airlines Flight 253 from Amsterdam, the same flight involved in Friday's terrorism attempt. The second episode did not involve terrorism.

No economic reports were scheduled for release on Monday, but the rest of the holiday-shortened week gets a bit busier, including Case-Shiller home prices for October and consumer confidence for December due out Tuesday, the Chicago purchasing managers' index on Wednesday and weekly jobless claims on Thursday to close out the year.

Crude oil ends up 0.9% at $78.77 a barrel, after earlier crossing above $79, to its highest in some four weeks.

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