News Column

Stocks Continue To Show A Lack Of Direction In Mid-Day Trading -US Commentary

June 30, 2014

WASHINGTON (Alliance News) - With traders seemingly reluctant to make any significant moves, stocks have shown a lack of direction throughout the trading day on Monday. The major averages have spent the day bouncing back and forth across the unchanged line.

Currently, the major averages are turning in a mixed performance. While the Dow is down 16.82 points or 0.1% at 16,835.02, the Nasdaq is up 9.41 points or 0.2% at 4,407.34 and the S&P 500 is up 0.26 points or less than a tenth of a % at 1,961.22.

The choppy trading on Wall Street partly reflects continued uncertainty about the outlook for the markets ahead of the release of some key economic data later in the week.

Traders are likely to keep a close eye on the Labor Department's monthly jobs report, which is scheduled to be released on Thursday due to the holiday on Friday.

Reports on manufacturing and service sector activity, private sector employment, and international trade may also attract some attention in the coming days.

Meanwhile, traders have largely shrugged off a report from the National Association of Realtors showing a sharp jump in pending home sales in May.

NAR said its pending home sales index jumped 6.1% to 103.9 in May from 97.9 in April, while economists had expected the index to rise by about 1.0%.

A pending home sale is one in which a contract was signed but not yet closed. Normally, it takes four to six weeks to close a contracted sale.

A separate report from MNI Indicators showed that Chicago business activity expanded at a slower than expected pace in the month of June.

MNI said its Chicago business barometer fell to 62.6 in June from 65.5 in May. While a reading above 50 indicates continued growth, economists had expected the barometer to edge to down to 64.0.

Among individual stocks, shares of MannKind (MNKD) have moved sharply higher on the day after the biopharmaceutical company received FDA approval for its inhalable diabetes treatment Afrezza.

Online media giant Yahoo (YHOO) has also moved to the upside on the day after Piper Jaffray upgraded its rating on the company's stock to Overweight from Neutral.

On the other hand, shares of American Apparel (APP) have under pressure on news that the retailer has adopted a so-called "poison pill" as it battles with ousted chief executive and founder Dov Charney.

Sector News

Most of the major sectors are showing only modest moves in mid-day trading, contributing to the lack of direction being shown by the broader markets.

While some strength is visible among railroad, semiconductor, and housing stocks, defense and commercial real estate stocks have moved to the downside on the day.

Other Markets

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region turned in a mixed performance during trading on Monday. Japan'sNikkei 225 Index rose by 0.4%, while Hong Kong'sHang Seng Index edged down by 0.1%.

The major European markets also ended the day mixed. While the German DAX Index crept up by 0.2%, the French CAC 40 Index and the UK'sFTSE 100 Index fell by 0.3% and 0.2%, respectively.

In the bond market, treasuries have moved modestly higher after seeing early weakness. As a result, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, is down by 1.1 basis points at 2.521%.

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Source: Alliance News

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