On The Fly: Top stock stories at midday
Stocks began the session in negative territory, taking their lead from European markets that were lower overnight. The Dow's 10-session win streak appears to be in jeopardy, though the blue chip index remains within striking distance of positive ground with about four hours left in the trading day. The consumer confidence reading suggested Americans remain optimistic about the economy while investors heard President Trump reiterate his campaign promises of tax cuts and reform at the CPAC convention. ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., new home sales bounced 3.7% to a 555,000 unit rate in January, below forecast. Consumer confidence fell to 96.3 in the final read from the University of Michigan survey after the index hit 98.5 in January. COMPANY NEWS: Shares of HP Enterprise (HPE) have dropped 8% after the company reported better than expected fourth quarter earnings but worse than expected sales, citing soft demand for servers and storage hardware. The information technology solutions vendor also lowered its full-year outlook, prompting some downgrades from Wall Street analysts... Also lower after earnings is J.C. Penney (JCP), which slipped over 6% after the retailer reported quarterly revenue and same-store sales that fell short of expectations. The company also announced plans to close up to 140 stores over the next few months. Separately, higher-end peer Nordstrom (JWN) jumped more than 5% after its earnings per share topped expectations and said the impact of a recent critical tweet from U.S. President Donald Trump was "negligible." MAJOR MOVERS: Among the notable gainers was Foot Locker (FL), which advanced more than 9% after the athletic store's earnings for the quarter topped expectations. Also higher was Applied Optoelectronics (AAOI), which gained almost 29% after the company's fourth quarter results beat estimates expectations. Additionally, RH (RH) rose about 30% following better than expected quarterly earnings per share and revenue. Among the noteworthy losers was Acacia Communications (ACIA), which slid 13% after the networking company gave disappointing guidance. Also lower was B&G Foods (BGS), which slipped almost 7% after the company missed Street estimates. Additionally, Splunk (SPLK) dropped about 3% as its outlook fell short of consensus expectations. INDEXES: Near midday, the Dow was down 46.78, or 0.22%, to 20,763.54, the Nasdaq was down 11.27, or 0.19%, to 5,824.23, and the S&P 500 was down 4.34, or 0.18%, to 2,359.47.