After moving mostly higher in early trading on Tuesday, stocks have given back ground over the course of the trading session. A negative reaction to news of new European sanctions against Russia contributed to the pullback by the markets.
Consumer confidence in the U.S. improved for the third consecutive month in July, according to a report released by the Conference Board on Tuesday, with the consumer confidence index jumping to its highest level in almost seven years.
Stocks have moved mostly higher in early trading on Tuesday after ending the previous session roughly flat. The major averages have climbed into positive territory, although there does not seem to be much conviction behind the upward move.
Diversified media company New York Times Co. reported Tuesday a profit for the second quarter that more than halved from last year, as an increase in circulation revenues failed to offset slumping ad sales. Both adjusted earnings per share from continuing operations and quarterly revenues came in below analysts' expectations.
Satellite radio services provider Sirius XM Holdings Inc. Tuesday reported a decline in second-quarter profit, on higher expenses. Revenue climbed 10 percent as subscriber additions increased from last year. The firm also raised its outlook for 2014.
Reynolds American, Inc. on Tuesday reported a 7 percent increase in profit for the second quarter from last year, as higher cigarette and moist-snuff pricing as well as a one-time benefit helped offset lower cigarette volume. Adjusted earnings per share beat analysts' expectations, while revenue missed their estimates. The company raised the lower end of its earnings outlook for fiscal 2014.
Home prices in major U.S. metropolitan areas continued to increase at a slower pace in the month of May, Standard & Poor's revealed in a report released on Tuesday. The report said the S&P/Case-Shiller 20-City Composite Home Price Index increased at an annual rate of 9.3 percent in May compared to the 10.8 percent growth reported for April.
Phablet, a cute blend of smart phone and a tablet, is showing magnificent growth in market share in the recent quarters. Sales surveys project that phablet market will explode in next years and total shipment will exceed 120 million by 2018, from a mere 20 million in 2013.
Wynn Resorts Limited (WYNN) Tuesday reported increased profit for the second quarter that topped estimates, but revenues fell short of expectations. The stock fell over 3 percent in pre-market trading.
Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer, Inc., which was aspiring to buy British drug maker AstraZeneca Plc, reported Tuesday a profit for the second quarter that plunged 79 percent from last year, which reflected hefty gains from animal health business sales. Total revenues declined 2 percent, as it continued to be hurt by generic competition for major drugs.
Package delivery giant United Parcel Service Inc. on Tuesday reported a 58 percent decline in profit for the second quarter from last year, as higher revenues were offset by a one-time charge related to post-retirement liabilities. Adjusted earnings per share for the quarter missed analysts' expectations, while revenues missed their estimates. Looking ahead, UPS lowered its 2014 earnings outlook.
After ending the previous session roughly flat, stocks are likely to move to the upside in early trading on Tuesday. The major index futures are currently pointing to a higher open for the markets, with the Dow futures up by 44 points.
Healthcare giant Merck & Co. Inc. reported Tuesday a second-quarter profit that more-than-doubled from last year, mainly on lower one-time charges and AstraZeneca-related gain, despite weak sales. Adjusted earnings per share and top line topped analysts' estimates. Further, the company lifted its fiscal 2014 forecast for earnings, and backed sales view.
U.K. mortgage approvals increased more-than-expected to a 4-month high in June, recovering from a temporary slowdown caused by mortgage lending regulations. After four months of decline, approvals for house purchases increased to 67,196 in June from 62,007 in May, the Bank of England data showed Tuesday. It was forecast to rise to 63,000. The latest figure was the highest since February.
Diversified healthcare benefits company Aetna, Inc. Tuesday reported higher second-quarter profit on 25 percent growth in revenues. Results also benefited from acquisition of Coventry Health Care. Medical membership increased from last year, and the health insurer lifted its outlook for the full year.