On The Fly: Top stock stories for Monday
Stocks began the day in positive territory after the U.S. took measured military action in Syria, as opposed to making a major offensive. The market tacked on gains throughout the morning in a broad advance that saw each of the major averages up roughly 1% in early afternoon trading. The market drifted in a range in the afternoon as investors geared up for earnings from tech giant Netflix (NFLX) after the close ahead of a pickup in quarterly reports beginning tomorrow. ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., an advance report showed that retail sales increased 0.6% in March, breaking a string of three monthly declines. The headline increase was greater than expected, while the measure of retail sales excluding autos was up 0.2%, as expected. Business inventories rose 0.6% in February with sales 0.4% higher, as forecast. The NAHB housing market index fell 1 point to 69 in April, marking its fourth consecutive decline after hitting 74 in December. The Empire State manufacturing index fell 6.7 points to 15.8 in April. COMPANY NEWS: Bank of America (BAC) joined several of its mega-cap banking peers in reporting headline earnings and revenue that topped analysts' consensus expectations. Unlike JPMorgan (JPM), Wells Fargo (WFC) and Citi (C), which reported on Friday, BofA shares rose fractionally following its report... Shares of WPP (WPP) declined about 5% after reporting over the weekend that Sir Martin Sorrell has stepped down as CEO with immediate effect. Roberto Quarta, Chairman of WPP, becomes Executive Chairman until the appointment of a new CEO, while Mark Read and Andrew Scott have been appointed as joint Chief Operating Officers of WPP... Shares of pharmacy operators and pharmaceutical distributors jumped after CNBC reported that Amazon (AMZN) has shelved its plan to sell and distribute pharmaceutical products after weighing doing so last year. Following the report, CVS (CVS) rose 4%, Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) added almost 4%, AmerisourceBergen (ABC) was 2% higher, McKesson (MCK) jumped 3.5%, and Cardinal Health (CAH) gained 3%... Meanwhile, Tesla (TSLA) shares fell 3% after Reveal said that the car maker has been undercounting injuries sustained by workers at its Fremont, California factory. In response, Tesla said in a statement that the Reveal article "paints a completely false picture" and that the report was "an ideologically motivated attack by an extremist organization working directly with union supporters to create a calculated disinformation campaign against Tesla." MAJOR MOVERS: Among the noteworthy gainers was Eldorado Resorts (ERI), which surged 16% after it announced that it entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Tropicana Entertainment's (TPCA) gaming and hotels business in a cash transaction valued at $1.85B. Also higher was Navistar (NAV), which gained 10% after Bloomberg reported that Volkswagen (VLKAY) Truck & Bus is open to a takeover of the truck and engine maker. Among the notable losers were Acacia (ACIA) and Oclaro (OCLR), which dropped a respective 36% and 15% after the U.S. Department of Commerce banned American companies from selling, exporting or re-exporting components, software and technology to Chinese telecom equipment maker ZTE Corporation (ZTCOY). Also lower was Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMY), which fell 8% following the company's report of data about a combination treatment for certain forms of lung cancer and Merck's (MRK) update on its own cancer drug combo. INDEXES: The Dow rose 212.90, or 0.87%, to 24,573.04, the Nasdaq gained 49.63, or 0.7%, to 7,156.28, and the S&P 500 advanced 21.54, or 0.81%, to 2,677.84.