Mid-Day Market Update: Crude Oil Up Over 2%; Virtusa Shares Drop Following Downbeat Q4 Earnings


Midway through trading Thursday, the Dow traded up 1.08 percent to 25925.07 while the NASDAQ climbed 1.39 percent to 7,930.49. The S&P also rose, gaining 1.3 percent to 2,887.91.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

On Thursday, the financial shares climbed by 1.5 percent. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included PPDAI Group Inc. PPDF 6.16% up 8 percent, and Victory Capital Holdings, Inc. VCTR 6.1% up 5 percent.

In trading on Thursday, energy shares rose by just 0.6 percent.

Top Headline

Walmart Inc WMT 2.21% reported better-than-expected earnings in its first-quarter results, while sales missed views.

Walmart reported quarterly earnings of $1.13 per share, which beat the analyst consensus estimate of $1.02 by 10.78 percent. This is a 0.88 percent decrease over earnings of $1.14 per share from the same period last year. Walmart reported quarterly sales of $123.9 billion, which missed the analyst consensus estimate of $125.03 billion. This is a 0.99 percent increase over sales of $122.69 billion the same period last year.

Equities Trading UP

Iovance Biotherapeutics Inc IOVA 28% shares got a boost, shooting up 32 percent to $14.86. Iovance Biotherapeutics announced new interim data from its clinical studies of tumor-infiltrating lymphocyte, or TIL, therapy LN-145 in patients with advanced cervical cancer, which showed an objective response rate, or ORR, of 44 percent, and a disease control rate of 89 percent. Merck's Keytruda, which was used as a reference, had a 14 percent ORR. Meanwhile, updated results from Cohort 2 in the ongoing innovaTIL-01 study of lifileucel in advanced melanoma showed an ORR of 38 percent and a disease control rate of 76 percent.

Shares of KEMET Corporation KEM 14.79% shot up 15 percent to $19.08 after the company reported better-than-expected Q4 EPS and sales results.

MacroGenics, Inc. MGNX 10.26% shares were also up, gaining 11 percent to $17.98. MacroGenics announced additional details of the results from the Phase 3 SOPHIA study of margetuximab in patients with HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer who have been previously treated anti-HER2-targeted therapies, which showed that the study met the sequential primary endpoint of progression-free survival.

Equities Trading DOWN

Cellectar Biosciences, Inc. CLRB 24.65% shares dropped 26 percent to $2.08 after reporting a $10 million financing.

Shares of Virtusa Corporation VRTU 19.19% were down 18 percent to $ 44.24 after the company reported worse-than-expected Q4 EPS results, and issued weak Q1 and FY20 guidance.

EDAP TMS S.A. EDAP 15.82% was down, falling around 17 percent to $3.7962 after the company reported worse-than-expected Q1 sales results.

Commodities

In commodity news, oil traded up 2.1 percent to $63.33 while gold traded down 0.9 percent to $1,285.60.

Silver traded down 1.5 percent Thursday to $14.59, while copper rose 0.8 percent to $2.7645.

Eurozone

European shares were higher today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 climbed 1.1 percent, the Spanish Ibex Index rose 1.2 percent, while Italy’s FTSE MIB Index rose 1.1 percent. Meanwhile the German DAX climbed 1.51 percent, and the French CAC 40 rose 1.16 percent while U.K. shares rose 0.71 percent.

Economics

U.S. housing starts rose 5.7 percent to an annual rate of 1.24 million in April, while home-builder permits increased 0.6 percent to 1.3 million rate.

Initial jobless claims fell 16,000 to 212,000 last week. However, economists were expecting a reading of 220,000.

The Philadelphia Fed's manufacturing index increased to 16.6 in May, versus a reading of 8.5 in April.

Domestic supplies of natural gas climbed 106 billion cubic feet for the week ended May 10, the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported. However, analysts expected a gain of 101 billion cubic feet.

Data on money supply for the recent week will be released at 4:00 p.m. ET.

Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.

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