The major US stock-market indexes closed little changed on Thursday. But shares of insurers with business in Florida and other southeastern states got hammered as Hurricane Matthew approached the US.
First, the scoreboard:
- Dow: 18,266.45, -14.58, (-0.08%)
- S&P 500: 2,160.66, +0.93, (0.04%)
- Nasdaq: 5,307.95, -8.07, (-0.15%)
- Snap Inc. is reportedly planning an IPO. The Wall Street Journal reported that the company formerly called Snapchat is working on a public offering at a $25 billion valuation. The Information previously reported that it was looking to go public this year or early in 2017.
- Initial jobless claims fell more than expected last week, by 5,000 to 249,000. That’s just 1,000 more than the lowest level of this economic cycle reached in April. The four-week moving average of claims, which evens out some of the week-by-week volatility, fell by 2,500, to 253,500, the lowest level since December 8, 1973.
- Insurance stocks tanked as Hurricane Matthew approached the Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina coasts. Shares of Universal Insurance Holding, a Florida-based company, fell by more than 15%. The firm holds licenses to operate in nearly every state the hurricane is expected to impact. Heritage Insurance, also Florida-based, fell by as much as 11%.
- Twitter shares cratered 19% after Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff indicated that his company is unlikely to bid for the social network. During an investor meeting on Wednesday, Benioff did not give a yes or no response around a Twitter acquisition,” but “we come away thinking a deal is not likely to happen,” said Cowen & Co. analyst Derric Wood in a note on Thursday.
- Pfizer is selling its global infusion therapy business to ICU Medical for $1 billion in cash and stock. Pfizer will receive $600 million in cash and nearly $400 million in newly issued shares of ICU Medical, giving the drugmaker ownership of about 16.6% in the company.
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