This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
TheStreet Open House

Stocks Fall for Second Straight Day

Stocks in this article: ^DJI^GSPC^IXICBAWMTHPQTSLANYTCHKSWY

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Major U.S. equity indices slumped for a second straight day Thursday after jobless claims rose and data on general business conditions came in soft. Stocks also suffered from Wednesday's selloff that had resulted from the Federal Reserve's release of the minutes from its January meeting.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average dipped 47 points, or 0.3%, to 13,881.

Breadth within the Dow was negative, with losers outpacing winners 21 to nine. Bank of America (BAC), Intel (INTC) and Home Depot (HD) led decliners on the blue-chip index.

Boeing (BA), Wal-Mart (WMT) and Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) were the top gainers.

Boeing is expected to detail Friday its plan to return the grounded Dreamliner jet to service, according to a report by The Wall Street Journal. Shares added 1.7%.

Wal-Mart announced quarterly earnings from continuing operations of $1.67 a share on revenue of $127.1 billion. Analysts expected profit of $1.57 a share on revenue of $128.9 billion. Shares of the world's largest retailer tacked on 1.5%.

Hewlett-Packard reported a profit of 82 cents a share on revenue of $28.4 billion. Analysts predicted the tech company would post earnings of 71 cents a share on revenue of $27.79 billion during its fiscal first quarter. Shares increased more than 5% in after-hours trading.

Volumes were heavy on the exchanges as investors traded 4.23 billion shares on the New York Stock Exchange and 2.04 billion shares on the Nasdaq. Decliners were ahead of advancing issues by a 2.2-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and by a 2.3-to-1 ratio on the tech-heavy index.

The S&P 500 shed 10 points, or 0.6%, to 1,502. The Nasdaq fell 33 points, or 1%, to 3,131.

Shares of Apple (AAPL) slipped 0.6% on Thursday after Greenlight Capital's David Einhorn hosted a conference call about the iPhone manufacturer's proposal to eliminate preferred stock.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on Thursday that the consumer price index for January remained unchanged from the prior month's flat reading. Economists polled by Thomson Reuters were expecting inflation to rise 0.1%. The core rate, excluding food and energy, climbed 0.3%.

The Labor Department said Thursday that initial jobless claims for the week ended Feb. 16 rose 20,000 to a seasonally adjusted 362,000, up from a revised 342,000 claims the week before. Economists expected claims to rise 355,000. The four-week moving average rose to 360,750 from the previous average of 352,750.

"It's a bit of a non-event. The short-term numbers are all over the place and we still have the lingering effects of Superstorm Sandy," said Marty Leclerc, chief investment officer at Barrack Yard Advisors.

The National Association of Realtors said Thursday that existing-home sales rose to an annual rate of 4.92 million in January. A consensus of economists polled by Thomson Reuters were looking for an annual rate of 4.9 million in January. December's downwardly revised annual rate was 4.9 million.

"The most interesting thing from the existing-home sales report is that inventories are so low ... there's not as many distressed homes on the market for sale, so I think those are both good signs," said Brad Sorensen, market and sector research director at Charles Schwab. "Some people have been on the sidelines who may want to sell their house, so I think we'll start to recognize that maybe they can get more of the price they were looking for."

The Philadelphia Fed said its business index printed at minus 12.5, a sign of contraction. The survey shows general business conditions and economists were looking for a reading of about 1. January's reading came in at minus 5.8. The survey said new orders took a hit, as the number came in at minus 7.8, while the labor market showed slight improvement with a reading of 0.9.

Minutes from the Fed's policy-making wing Wednesday suggested that central bankers were becoming more open to the idea of backing away from the massive $85 billion a month in open-ended Treasuries and mortgage-backed securities purchases that the central bank has been making.

Stocks dropped Wednesday as the prospect of less monetary easing raised questions as to what a Fed exit of continued monetary stimulus may mean for equity markets.

The Fed's less-than-thrilling announcement battered global stock markets. The FTSE 100 in London closed off 1.6% on Thursday, and the DAX in Frankfurt dropped 1.9%.

Asian markets closed with deep losses on Thursday as Japan's Nikkei average fell 1.4% overnight to finish at 11,309. Hong Kong's Hang Seng tumbled 1.7% to 22,907.

1 of 2

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 17,360.27 +164.85 0.96%
S&P 500 0.00 -2.75 -0.14%
NASDAQ 4,625.4470 +59.3090 1.30%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs