On The Fly: Top stock stories for Friday
Stocks on Wall Street finished a quiet day mixed. The Nasdaq posted a small gain and the S&P and Dow slid as oil prices, and energy-related stocks, underperformed following a report that OPEC and Russia may raise their production ceiling. Outside of energy and additional trade headlines, the news flow was very slow as investors began to leave early for the long Memorial Day weekend. ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., durable goods orders fell 1.7% in April, versus a forecast for them to have fallen 1.3% from the prior month. New orders for nondefense capital goods excluding aircraft rose 0.8%, topping the 0.4% rise in that figure that was expected. The University of Michigan's consumer sentiment index for May declined to 98.0 in the final reading for the month. It had been expected to hold steady at 98.8. In energy news, July West Texas Intermediate crude fell $2.83, or 4%, to settle at $67.88 a barrel following a report that OPEC and Russia are discussing a possible increase in production. COMPANY NEWS: Gap's (GPS) shares closed 14.6% lower after the company reported an earnings miss due to challenges at its namesake brand. Another retailer faring better was Foot Locker (FL), which rose 20.2% after reporting better than expected results aided by Nike (NKE) retaking market share... Shares of Herbalife Nutrition (HLF) fell 9.5% after Icahn Enterprises (IEP) disclosed that it is tendering about a quarter of the shares it currently owns to be repurchased by the company. However, Carl Icahn said he still believes the company is well-positioned for the future and noted he will remain Herbalife's largest holder. MAJOR MOVERS: Among the notable gainers was Quest Diagnostics (DGX), which gained 4.9% after the company and UnitedHealthcare (UNH) announced a long-term strategic partnership. Also higher were a number of airline operators including American Airline (AAL), Southwest (LUV) and Delta (DAL) in response to the decline in oil prices. Among the noteworthy losers following their earnings reports were Ross Stores (ROST) and Autodesk (ADSK), which fell 6.8% and 4.4%, respectively. Also lower was Fiat Chrysler (FCAU), which slid 2% after the carmaker announced it is recalling an estimated 4.8M U.S.-market vehicles to upgrade software to address a problem with their cruise-control function. INDEXES: The Dow fell 58.67, or 0.24%, to 24,753.09, the Nasdaq gained 9.42, or 0.13%, to 7,433.85, and the S&P 500 declined 6.43, or 0.24%, to 2,721.33.