Stocks end mixed as market continues to wait on stimulus deal
The major averages finished out Friday mixed for the day, and down for the week, amid the continued stimulus stalemate in Washington. While many of the first round of earnings reports have been solid, the big test in that regard will come next week, when the volume of reporting will increase. Intel (INTC) was a drag on the tech sector with its post-earnings slide ahead the real fireworks coming in the space when Apple (AAPL), Amazon (AMZN), Facebook (FB) and Alphabet (GOOGL) all report earnings next Thursday.
ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., flash PMIs from Markit showed continued expansion and posted their best levels since early 2019. The manufacturing PMI ticked up 0.1 point to 53.3 in October, while the preliminary services index bounced 1.4 points to 56.0 in October. In energy news, Baker Hughes reported that the U.S. rig count is up 5 from last week to 287 with oil rigs up 6 to 211.
In stimulus news, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told reporters that the White House has "offered comprises" in talks with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi over COVID-19 relief. "The speaker, on a number of issues, is still dug in," Mnuchin added. "If she wants to compromise, there will be a deal."
TOP NEWS: Shares of Intel (INTC) dropped 10.6% following the company's September quarter report last night. BofA analyst Vivek Arya downgraded Intel to Underperform from Neutral with a price target of $45, down from $60, after its "weak" results, telling investors that he is concerned that the company offered no plan or update on fixing its manufacturing challenges. Arya, who was among many on Wall Street to cut their price targets for Intel, further points to increasing competition from the "nimbler" Nvidia (NVDA) and AMD (AMD).
In other earnings news, American Express (AXP) issued a mixed report this morning, with earnings that missed consensus and revenue that beat it. "While our business continues to be significantly affected by the impacts of the pandemic, our third quarter results have increased our confidence that our strategy for managing through the current environment is the right one," said Chairman and CEO Stephen Squeri. AmEx shares fell 3.6% following the results.
Gilead Sciences (GILD) announced last night that the Food and Drug Administration has granted a full approval for Veklury, or remdesivir, for the treatment of patients with COVID-19 requiring hospitalization. "Previously authorized by the FDA for emergency use to treat COVID-19, Veklury is now the first and only approved COVID-19 treatment in the United States," Gilead noted.
Meanwhile, AstraZeneca (AZN) confirmed that its late-stage trial of a COVID-19 vaccine candidate in the U.S. can resume. "The FDA reviewed all safety data from trials globally and concluded it was safe to resume the trial," the company reported. Additionally, the Washington Post reported that Johnson & Johnson's (JNJ) COVID-19 vaccine candidate trial will resume soon.
MAJOR MOVERS: Among the noteworthy gainers was Mattel (MAT), which rose 9.6% after reporting better than expected quarterly results and providing a "positive" outlook for Q4 and fiscal 2020. Also higher were Barclays (BCS) and Capital One (COF), which gained a respective 5.9% and 1.6% after reporting quarterly results.
Among the notable losers was Seagate (STX), which declined just over 2% after reporting quarterly results and providing Q2 guidance. Also lower after reporting quarterly results were Limelight Networks (LLNW) and Bloomin' Brands (BLMN), which fell 32% and 8.3%, respectively, after reporting quarterly results.
INDEXES: The Dow fell 28.09, or 0.099%, to 28,335.57, the Nasdaq gained 42.28, or 0.37%, to 11,548.28, and the S&P 500 advanced 11.90, or 0.34%, to 3,465.39.
Keywords: fly intel, wall street, top stories, stocks