Another slippery slide for crude oil sent the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average into the red, while a biotech rally boosted the Nasdaq.
On Wednesday, June 21, the S&P 500 declined 0.05%, and the Dow fell 0.25%. The Nasdaq added 0.75%. The Dow and S&P 500 secured closing records on Monday, June 19.
Crude oil prices retreated further into a bear market on Wednesday, after having fallen more than 20% from a late February high. Crude plunged more than 2% on Tuesday, June 20, on worries over global oversupply and ballooning production.
Crude fell even after a steeper decline in domestic stockpiles than anticipated. Crude stockpiles dropped by 2.5 million barrels over the past week, according to the Energy Information Administration. Analysts anticipated a decline of 2.1 million barrels. Gasoline supplies fell, while distillates climbed.
West Texas Intermediate crude closed down 2.3% to end a t $42.53 a barrel, the lowest since August
"Bottom line is that there is too much oil on the market, which could be a function of slowing business conditions in emerging markets and, to a lesser extent, the U.S.," said Brian Sozzi over on our premium site for investors, Real Money. Get his insights with a free trial subscription.
The energy sector was the worst performer on Wednesday. Major decliners include Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM) , Schlumberger Ltd. (SLB) , Chevron Corp. (CVX) , Halliburton Co. (HAL) and Royal Dutch Shell PLC (RDS.A) , while the Energy Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLE) decreased 1.68%.
The health care sector rose on high hopes for eased regulations in the industry. The Trump administration is reportedly drafting an executive order to ease regulatory burdens on drugmakers to drive down drug prices, according to The New York Times. Biotech companies including Biogen Inc. (BIIB) , Alexion Pharmaceuticals Inc. (ALXN) , and Sarepta Therapeutics Inc. (SRPT) were all higher, while the iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology Index ETF (IBB) increased 4%.
Existing home sales for May in the U.S. rose at a better clip than anticipated. Sales of previously owned homes increased 1.1% to a seasonally adjusted annual pace of 5.62 million. Analysts anticipated a pace of 5.55 million.
The Federal Reserve could begin to unwind its $4.5 trillion balance sheet as soon as September, Philadelphia Fed President Patrick Harker said on Wednesday, the latest in a string of hawkish Fed commentary. Harker said in comments with The Financial Times that he backed a "pause" in hiking rates while the Fed addresses its balance sheet.
It has been a busy week of Fed speeches in the days following the central bank's decision to raise interest rates for the second time in a year. The Fed hiked rates by 25 basis points at its meeting on Wednesday, June 14, a decision widely anticipated. The central bank views softening inflation trends as merely transitory and anticipates another interest rate hike before the year is out.
Computer software company Adobe Systems Inc. (ADBE) reported stronger-than-expected second-quarter earnings. The San Jose-based company reported earnings of $1.02 a share on revenue of $1.77 billion., topping analysts' forecasts for earnings of 95 cents on revenue of $1.73 billion. Adobe said revenue from its digital media segment rose to $1.21 billion, with Creative revenue increasing to a record $1.01 billion.
"This truly was a beat across the board and we would expect Adobe to continue its momentous run as the company is the unmatched leader in the market for digital content creation." wrote Jim Cramer and the AAP team. Adobe is a holding in Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS Charitable Trust Portfolio.
FedEx Corp. (FDX) also beat quarterly earnings and sales estimates over its recent quarter. The package delivery company earned $3.75 a share over its fourth quarter, swinging from a loss of 26 cents a share a year earlier. Adjusted earnings of $4.25 a share roared past estimates of $3.87. Sales of $15.7 billion exceeded analysts' target of $15.6 billion.
Red Hat Inc. (RHT) surged 10% after beating earnings estimates and bumping its full-year guidance higher. The tech company earned an adjusted 56 cents a share, 3 cents higher than anticipated. Sales of $676.8 million exceeded consensus of $648 million. Red Hat anticipates full-year earnings of $2.66 to $2.70 a share, higher than a previous range of $2.60 to $2.64.
Winnebago Industries Inc. (WGO) rose 14% after reporting an increase in third-quarter profit. The camper van company earned 61 cents a share, 8 cents higher than a year earlier and above consensus of 57 cents a share. Revenue of $476.4 million came in higher than anticipated.
La-Z-Boy Inc. (LZB) rose 21% after topping earnings estimates over its recent quarter. The reclining chair company earned 57 cents a share over its fourth quarter, higher than 45 cents a share in the year-ago quarter. Analysts anticipated earnings of 46 cents a share. Revenue dipped 1%, though came in higher than expected. Same-store sales increased 2.4%.
Etsy Inc. (ETSY) increased 1.5% after announcing plans to cut 140 jobs, or 15% of its workforce. The latest cuts are in addition to the 90 job cuts announced in May. The online crafts store anticipates severance costs of $6 million to $8.8 million.
Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (AMD) surged 10% as it continued to benefit from the unveiling of details on its new super processing chip, Epyc. AMD listed Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co. (HPE) , Dell Technologies Inc. (DVMT) , AsusTek Computer Inc. (ASUUY) and Lenovo Group Ltd. (LNVGY) as clients debuting products featuring its processor.
A Goldman Sachs note Wednesday said that Nike Inc. (NKE) is considering selling its products directly through Amazon.com Inc. (AMZN) , sending current retail partners Foot Locker Inc. (FL) and Dick's Sporting Goods Inc. (DKS) tumbling. Nike rival Under Armour Inc. (UA) already has a relationship with Amazon.
Travis Kalanick, the founder of Uber Technologies Inc., resigned as CEO of the ride-sharing company under pressure from investors and just days after he was asked to take a leave of absence in the wake of a report into allegations of discrimination and bullying at the startup. Venture capital firm Benchmark, whose partner Bill Gurley is one of Uber's largest shareholders and sits on its board, as well as investors First Round Capital, Lowercase Capital, Menlo Ventures and Fidelity Investments, all pressed Kalanick to quit, according to a report from Reuters.
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