Stocks are seeing modest weakness in early trading on Wednesday after moving notably higher over the past several sessions. The major averages have all moved to the downside, although selling pressure has remained relatively subdued.
New home sales in the U.S. unexpectedly showed a substantial decrease in the month of March, according to a report released by the Commerce Department on Wednesday, with sales falling to their lowest level in eight months. The report said new home sales plunged 14.5 percent to an annual rate of 384,000 in March from the revised February rate of 449,000.
Biotechnology company Biogen Idec, Inc. Wednesday reported 12 percent increase in the first-quarter profit, reflecting 51 percent growth in revenues, driven mainly by strong sales of multiple sclerosis or MS drug Tecfidera. Adjusted earnings missed analysts' estimates, while sales topped view. Further, the company lifted its fiscal 2014 forecast.
Airline operator Delta Air Lines, Inc., the first of the large US airlines to report first-quarter results, reported Wednesday a profit that soared from last year, reflecting lower fuel expenses and improved revenues. Adjusted earnings per share topped analysts' expectations, while quarterly revenues matched their estimates.
Aerospace and defense giant Boeing Co. on Wednesday reported a 13 percent decline in profit for the first quarter from last year, as higher revenues were more than offset by costs related to retirement plan changes. However, both revenue and adjusted earnings per share for the quarter beat analysts' expectations. Looking ahead to fiscal 2014, Boeing raised its outlook for core earnings.
Following the strong upward move seen over the past few sessions, stocks may give back some ground in early trading on Wednesday. The major index futures are currently pointing to a modestly lower open for the markets, with the Dow futures down by 6 points.
Eurozone private sector started the second quarter on a solid footing with activity growth the fastest in nearly three years in April, but firms continued to slash prices, fueling fears that deflationary pressures are intensifying. The purchasing managers survey's composite output index rose to 54.0 in April from 53.1 in March, data from Markit Economics showed Wednesday.
Researchers have developed a new process to produce large volumes of high quality graphene, described as a wonder material. The new method was developed by a research team led by Prof Jonathan Coleman of AMBER, the Science Foundation Ireland funded materials science center headquartered at Trinity College, Dublin. Graphene is a single-atom thick sheet of carbon. It is extremely light and str
Policymakers of the Bank of England unanimously decided to maintain the key bank rate at a historic low of 0.50 percent and monetary stimulus at GBP 375 billion, the minutes showed Wednesday. Members said economic recovery is building momentum, but they had a range of opinions about the amount of slack remaining within the economy and medium-term inflation outlook.
Consumer goods giant Procter & Gamble Co. reported Wednesday a profit for the third quarter that grew 2 percent, despite a small sales drop, reflecting improved operating margins amid lower expenses. Core earnings per share topped analysts' expectations, while quarterly sales missed their estimates. The company also reaffirmed its core earnings and organic sales growth guidance for fiscal 2014.
Defense contractor Northrop Grumman Corp. (NOC) Wednesday said profit for the first quarter increased significantly from the prior year, helped by some tax benefit, even as sales declined. Further, the company lifted its earnings forecast for the year.
U.K. Chancellor George Osborne achieved his budget deficit target for 2013/14 as buoyant economic growth boosted tax receipts. Data from the Office for National Statistics on Wednesday showed that net borrowing totaled GBP 107.7 billion in the fiscal year ended March 2014, the lowest since the 2008/2009 financial crisis.
Wall Street's resilience may give way to fears, especially with the major averages running up quite nicely in recent sessions, thanks to strong earnings and economic data. The major U.S. index futures point to a narrowly mixed opening. Weak manufacturing data released by China has rendered the mood cautious....
European stocks edged lower on Wednesday as investors took some profits off the table following the previous session's rally. Traders are also digesting a slew of earnings reports and data out of China, which showed that activity in the Chinese manufacturing sector contracted for a fourth straight month...
Anglo-Dutch publishing and events company Reed Elsevier Plc. Wednesday said its first-quarter underlying revenue growth rates, excluding the impact of biennial exhibition cycling, were broadly consistent with 2013. The company also said its fiscal 2014 outlook remains unchanged.