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Active broad-market exchange-traded funds in Thursday's regular session:

iShares MSCI Emerging Index Fund ( EEM ): -2.5%

SPDR S&P 500 ( SPY ): -1.7%

SPDR Select Sector Fund - Financial ( XLF ): -3.4%

iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN ( VXX ): +10%

ProShares UltraPro Short QQQ ( SQQQ ): +2.5%

Broad Market Indicators

Broad-market exchange-traded funds, including IWM and IVV were lower. Actively traded PowerShares QQQ (QQQ) was down 0.80%.

US stocks were lower at session's half after the arrest of a Chinese official in Canada reportedly at the behest of US officials sparked fears that the fragile reprieve in trade tensions between Washington and Beijing may fall through.

Huawei Technologies' Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou was arrested in Canada and may be extradited to the US on suspicions of breaching the trade embargo on Iran. Meng is the daughter of the founder of the smartphone and telecoms equipment maker, who's also a former high-ranking official in the Chinese military.

In economic news, the ADP National Employment Report showed that private-sector companies added 179,000 jobs in November, topping the 175,000 expected by analysts as October data was revised down to an increase of 225,000 from the previously reported 227,000. The government's comprehensive labor market report is expected on Friday.

Power Play: Consumer

Consumer Staples Select Sector SPDR (XLP) was down 1.2% and Vanguard Consumer Staples ETF (VDC) and iShares Dow Jones U.S. Consumer Goods (IYK) were lower.

Meanwhile, Consumer Discretionary Select Sector SPDR (XLY) was down 1% while retail funds SPDR S&P Retail (XRT) and Market Vectors Retail ETF (RTH) were weaker.

Signet Jewelers (SIG) fell 17% to their lowest level since May after the company posted a fiscal Q3 adjusted loss of $1.06 per share, wider than the loss of $0.20 per share in the comparable period a year ago. Analysts polled by Capital IQ expected a loss of $1.10 per share. For the quarter ended Nov. 3, total revenue of $1.19 billion was up from $1.16 billion in the same period a year ago. That topped the Street projection of $1.16 billion. Same store sales were up 1.6% versus the prior-year quarter. The company guided fiscal Q4 adjusted earnings in the range of $4.35 to $4.59, straddling the Street estimate of $4.54. The company expects full-year revenue in the range of $2.17 billion to $2.22 billion, compared with the Street projection of $2.21 billion. Signet expects Q4 same store sales to be down 1.5% to up 1%.

Signet revised its full-year adjusted earnings guidance for 2019 to a range of $4.15 to $4.40 from a prior range of $4.05 to $4.40. The new guidance straddles the Street projection of $4.24. The company revised its full-year 2019 revenue guidance to a range of $6.26 billion to $6.31 billion from a prior range of $6.20 billion to $6.30 billion. The new guidance is within to exceeding the Street estimate of $6.27 billion. The company expects full-year 2019 same store sales to be flat to up 1%. It previously said it expected same store sales to be down 1.5% to flat.

Winners and Losers


The Select Financial Sector SPDRs ( XLF ) was down 3%. Direxion Daily Financial Bull 3X shares (FAS) was down 6.1% and its bearish counterpart Direxion Daily Financial Bear 3X shares (FAZ) was up 6%.

Bank of N.T. Butterfield & Son (NTB) fell more than 1% after it said its board of directors has approved a new share repurchase program pursuant to which the bank is authorized to purchase up to 2,500,000 ordinary shares of the bank through Feb. 29, 2020. This new share repurchase program follows the completion of the bank's prior share repurchase program, which commenced on April 1, 2018, pursuant to which the bank repurchased the full authorized amount of 1 million ordinary shares of the bank at an average price of $40.15 per ordinary share.


Technology Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLK) was down 1.3% and other tech funds iShares Dow Jones US Technology ETF (IYW) and iShares S&P North American Technology ETF (IGM) were in the red.

Among semiconductor ETFs, SPDR S&P Semiconductor (XSD) was down 1.9% and Semiconductor Sector Index Fund (SOXX) was down 2.1%.

SecureWorks (SCWX) was down marginally after earlier reporting fiscal Q3 adjusted earnings of $0.06 per diluted share, compared with a $0.04 loss per share a year ago and above the $0.05 average loss estimate from analysts polled by CapIQ. Net revenue rose to $133.1 million from $117.1 million a year ago, beating the $130.6 million consensus. The company said it was introducing full-year fiscal 2020 revenue estimates of $565 to $575 million, versus the $568 million market consensus.


Dow Jones US Energy Fund (IYE) was down 3.5% and Energy Select Sector SPDR (XLE) was down 3.4%.

Patterson-UTI Energy (PTEN) fell nearly 7% after it said it had an average of 185 drilling rigs operating in November. This compares with an average of 181 drilling rigs operating in October. For the two months ended Nov. 30, the company had an average of 182 drilling rigs operating. Average drilling rigs operating posted in the company's monthly reports represent the average number of the company's drilling rigs that were operating under a drilling contract.


Crude was down 3.4%. United States Oil Fund (USO) was down 3.2%. Natural gas rose 2.4% while United States Natural Gas Fund (UNG) was down 3.2%.

Gold was up 0.3%. SPDR Gold Trust (GLD) was down marginally. Silver was down 0.3%, while iShares Silver Trust (SLV) was down 0.4%.

Health Care

Health Care SPDR (XLV) was down 2% while other health care funds including Vanguard Health Care ETF (VHT) and iShares Dow Jones U.S. Healthcare (IYH) were lower. Biotechnology fund iShares NASDAQ Biotechnology Index (IBB) was down 0.4%.

Supernus Pharmaceuticals (SUPN) fell nearly 14% after it outlined positive topline results from each of two phase 3 studies of SPN-812, aimed to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, in children. Supernus said both trials were successful in achieving the primary endpoint, with SPN-812 at daily doses of 100 mg and 200 mg or at 200 mg and 400 mg. Robust statistical significance in improvement in the symptoms of ADHD from baseline to end of study as measured by the ADHD Rating Scale-5 was achieved. Both active doses in each study were well tolerated. The company said it expects to report topline data from another phase 3 study, of adolescents treated with SPN-812, by the end of December. Topline data from another phase 3 trial of adolescents are expected by the end of Q1 2019. Supernus also said it expects to submit a New Drug Application for SPN-812 in Q2 2019 and to launch the drug, pending Food and Drug Administration approval, in H2 2020.

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