Tech Staying Very Strong (AMZN, WHR, BRCM, STX, MGAM, SBLK)
Stocks had a strong start to the month, buoyed by the IFF saying it’s close to finalizing a Greek debt deal. Tech continues to be very strong, with the S&P Tech Index near an 11-year high. On the downside, though, the economic data was a little below expectations, bellwether Amazon.com (AMZN) turned in a very disappointing quarter, and the market closed well off its highs from earlier in the day. The market remains in bull mode for now.
The Gaming and Slot-Machine Stocks Index was the top performing tickerspy Index on the day, led by Multimedia Games Holding (MGAM) with a 35% gain. The Dry Bulk Shipping Stocks Index was the day’s worst performing tickerspy Index, with Star Bulk Carriers (SBLK) down -4%.
Stocks rose on the day, led by a 34-point, or 1.2%, increase in the Nasdaq to 2,848. The Dow climbed 84 points to 12,716, while the S&P jumped 12 points to 1,324. Oil slipped -87 cents to $97.61 a barrel, while gold rose $9.30 to $1,747.10 an ounce.
In economic news, the ADP Employer Services survey of private employers showed 170,000 private sector jobs were added last month, below the 182,000 economists expected. The Labor Department reports January jobs data on Friday. The ISM’s manufacturing index for January, meanwhile, rose to 54.1 from 53.1. Economists had expected a January reading of 54.5. Readings above 50 indicate expansion.
Shares of e-commerce giant Amazon.com plunged -7.7% after the company said it may post of first-quarter loss and that it expects revenue of $12-$13.4 billion for the quarter. Analysts were expecting sales of $13.42 billion. In the fourth quarter, Amazon earned $177 million, or 38 cents per share, well below the year-earlier profit of $416 million, or 91 cents per share. Revenue increased 35% to $17.4 billion. Analysts had expecting a profit of 17 cents on sales of $18.3 billion.
Shares of Whirlpool (WHR) surged 13.5% after the appliance maker said its fourth-quarter profit jumped 20% to $205 million, or $2.62 per share, from $171 million, or $2.19 per share, a year earlier. Revenue dropped -3% to $4.91 billion. On an adjusted basis, Whirlpool earned 32 cents compared with 43 cents a year earlier. The company forecast an adjusted 2012 profit of $6.50-$7.00 per share, which was above the $5.85 consensus.
Shares of chipmaker Broadcom (BRCM) jumped 8.1% after the company said its adjusted fourth-quarter profit topped Wall Street estimates. For the quarter, Broadcom earned $254 million, or 45 cents per share, compared with $266 million, or 47 cents per share, a year earlier. On an adjusted basis, the company earned 68 cents. Revenue fell -6% to $1.82 billion. Analysts had expected a profit of 64 cents on revenue of $1.81 billion. Twenty-one pros held Broadcom in their portfolios at the end of Q4 and nearly 500 tickerspy members own the stock in their portfolios.
Shares of hard drive maker Seagate Technology (STX) soared 20.8% after the company reported a fiscal second-quarter profit of $563 million, or $1.28 a share. Revenue climbed 17.5% to $3.2 billion. On an adjusted basis, Seagate earned $1.32 a share, beating the $1.08 a share analysts expected. Nearly 20 pros held Seagate in their portfolios at the end of Q4 and nearly 460 tickerspy members own the stock in their portfolios.
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