Updated from 2:36 p.m. EDT with new stock pricesSmall-cap stocks rose along with the major indices after the release of a positive retail sales report and a decline in crude prices. The Russell 2000 was up 0.24% at 719.61 and the S&P SmallCap 600 climbed 0.17% to 379.92. Shares of Palm ( PALM) rose 10.7% to $6.96. The Sunnyvale, Calif., provider of mobile computing solutions said it inked a deal with Verizon Wireless to sell its Centro phone. Starting Friday, the phone will be available for Verizon's 67 million wireless customers, Palm said. Meanwhile, Talbots ( TLB) continued climbing Thursday, a day after the retailer received a $50 million term-loan credit facility commitment, bringing its borrowing capacity to $215 million. The Hingham, Mass., company also reaffirmed its previous 2008 earnings outlook of 47 cents to 52 cents a share. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters are looking for 41 cents a share. The stock surged 24.7% higher to $10.75 Thursday. On the losing side, National CineMedia ( NCMI - Get Report) fell 24.7% to $13.90 after Soleil downgraded the stock to hold from buy. On Wednesday, the Centennial, Colo., company, which sells advertising to movie theaters, forecast second-quarter revenue between $83 million and $86 million. The Street is looking for $100 million in revenue. News of a weak corn harvest and a call by presidential hopeful Sen. John McCain to end subsidies for the industry hurt ethanol stocks. Pacific Ethanol ( PEIX - Get Report) lost 14.4% to $2.38. Analyst downgrades further contributed to the ethanol selloff. Brookings, S.D.-based Verasun Energy ( VSE) dropped 12.6% to $4.66 on a Citigroup downgrade to sell. Westchester, Ill.'s Corn Products International ( CPO) gave up 10.3% to $41.40 on a BMO Capital Markets downgrade to market perform from outperform.
More from Investing
From Harley to Snap: Top 7 Stocks to Watch this Week
They include sizzling household names -- such as McDonald's and Facebook -- and regional banks -- such as First Commonwealth -- and they are all names to keep an eye on this week as earnings come in.