The S&P 500 made a new all-time closing high on a busy day for corporate earnings and a quiet day for economic data.
First, the scoreboard:
- Dow: 17,086.63, -26.9, (-0.1%)
- S&P 500: 1,987.01, +3.5, (+0.2%)
- Nasdaq: 4,473.70, +17.7, (+0.4%)
And now, the top stories of the day:
1) It was a busy morning for earnings, headlined by quarterly reports from PepsiCo and Boeing. PepsiCo reported earnings per share of $US1.32, beating expectations for $US1.23 and shares of the soft drink giant gained more than 2.5% for the day. Pepsi CEO Indra Nooyi, however, said that the company continues to operate in a, “challenging and volatile macro environment.” Boeing shares served as the worst performers in the Dow, falling more than 2% after the jetmaker reported quarterly revenue that disappointed. In the second quarter, the company’s operating margin also fell 2% to 7.5% from 9.5% in the prior year period.
2) Some other notable earnings announcements included Dow Chemical, which reported profit that beat expectations and saw shares gain more than 3%, and Whirlpool, which reported profit that missed expectations, as well as reduced its quarterly outlook, and shares of the home appliance maker finished roughly unchanged after falling earlier in the day.
3) The Mortgage Bankers Association’s weekly mortgage applications survey for the week ended July 18 showed mortgage applications rose 2.4% from a week ago. The refinance index also increase 4% from last week. Following the report, Quicken Loans vice president Bill Banfield said, “Consumer took action on the lowest mortgage rates we’ve seen since the beginning of 2013. The jump in application volume is a welcome change after a few sluggish weeks of mortgage activity.”
4) In stock news, Puma Biotechnology shares gained nearly 300% after the company last night reported positive results from a clinical trial of its breast cancer treatment. Puma’s management said it plans to filed for marketing approval for the treatment in the first half of next year. The surge was a massive boon for at least one hedge fund, Adage Capital based in Boston, which held more than 5.5 million shares of Puma as of its latest filing with the SEC.
5) General Motors announced another round of recalls, this time announcing six recalls involving 717,960 vehicles, though none of the recalls were related to ignition switches.
6) Earnings season rolls on today after the market close, with quarterly earnings reports expected from AT&T, Facebook, Gilead Sciences, and Qualcomm.
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