Mid-Afternoon Market Update: Ra Pharmaceuticals Surges Following Acquisition News; Forescout Technologies Shares Fall

Toward the end of trading Thursday, the Dow traded up 0.74% to 26,540.26 while the NASDAQ rose 0.74% to 7,962.44. The S&P also rose, gaining 0.81% to 2,943.04.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

Financial shares climbed 1.7% on Thursday. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included Lloyds Banking Group plc LYG 5.74%, up 5%, and Barclays PLC BCS 4.98%, up 4%.

In trading on Thursday, utilities shares fell 0.1%.

Top Headline

Delta Air Lines, Inc. DAL 1.66% reported better-than-expected earnings for its third quarter.

Delta Air Lines reported third-quarter earnings of $2.32 per share, which beat the analyst consensus estimate of $2.26. The company reported total operating sales of $12.56 billion compared to the $12.6 billion estimate.

Delta sees fourth-quarter EPS at $1.20-$1.50 versus a $1.51 Estimate, as well as system capacity being up about 4.5% year over year.

Equities Trading UP

Ra Pharmaceuticals, Inc. RARX 100.66% shares shot up 100% to $45.40 after the company announced it will be acquired by UCB for $48 per share in cash.

Shares of Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. BBBY 21.43% surged 21% to $11.99 after the company announced Mark Tritton will succeed Mary Winston as CEO. He was also named President of the company. Telsey Advisory Group also upgraded the company's stock from Market Perform to Outperform and raised the price target from $14 to $16.

ProPetro Holding Corp. PUMP 18.61% was up, rising 21% to $9.53. Piper Jaffray upgraded the stock from Neutral to Overweight. OPEC cut its 2019 global oil demand growth forecast to 980,000 barrels per day.

Equities Trading DOWN

Forescout Technologies, Inc. FSCT 35.14% shares tumbled 36% to $25.25 after the company cut its Q3 sales guidance below analyst estimates.

Shares of PG&E Corporation PCG 27.26% were down 29% to $7.78 after the judge presiding over the company’s bankruptcy cleared the way for bondholders to come up with a restructuring plan. The company was stripped of its right to exclusively pitch a reorganization plan in court, escalating an an already heated battle over the largest utility bankruptcy in U.S. history. The damages, which are tied to the blazes that its equipment ignited, forced the company to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in January.

HEXO Corp. HEXO 24.18% was down, falling 22% to $2.88 after the company issued weak Q4 and FY19 sales guidance due to lower-than-expected product sell through. The company also withdrew its FY20 guidance.


In commodity news, oil traded up 1.5% to $53.39, while gold traded down 0.9% to $1,498.90.

Silver traded down 1.4% Thursday to $ 17.57, while copper rose 2% to $2.619.

Euro zone

European shares closed higher today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 rose 0.65%, the Spanish Ibex Index rose 1.25%, while Italy’s FTSE MIB Index rose 1.03%. Meanwhile, the German DAX gained 0.58%, and the French CAC 40 rose 1.33% while UK shares rose 0.28%.


The Consumer Price Index was flat for September, versus economists’ expectations for a 0.1% rise.

Initial jobless claims fell 10,000 to 210,000 last week. Economists were expecting a reading of 220,000.

Domestic supplies of natural gas climbed 98 billion cubic feet for the week ended October 4, the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported. However, analysts projected a gain of 97 billion cubic feet.

Data on money supply for the recent week will be released at 4:30 p.m. ET.

Cleveland Federal Reserve Bank President Loretta Mester will speak in University Heights, Ohio at 5:30 p.m. ET.

Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.

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