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Stocks Close Mixed Amid Earnings; Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) Rises

 January 16, 2013 04:28 PM

(By Balachander) U.S. stocks ended on a mixed note amid worries about global economic growth as investors digested earnings reports from major banks as well as a batch of economic data.

The S&P 500 Index inched 0.02 percent higher to end at 1,472.63. The Dow Jones Industrial Average retreated 0.17 percent to finish at 13,511.23. The Nasdaq Composite Index rose 0.22 percent to close at 3,117.54.

The World Bank late Tuesday lowered its growth forecast for 2013 to 2.4 percent from 3 percent expansion projected earlier, citing slow recovery in developed nations.

On the U.S. data front, a report showed that core consumer price index rose 0.1 percent in December, below expectations on an increase of 0.2 percent. The headline index was unchanged.

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Industrial production in the U.S. rose 0.3 percent in December after a revised 1.0 percent rise in November, the Federal Reserve reported.

The National Association of Home Builders said housing market index for January came in at 47 in January, unchanged from December, while economists expected the index to rise to 48.

Beige Book, which gathers anecdotal information on economic conditions from each of the 12 Federal Reserve districts, showed that economic activity has expanded since the previous report, with all twelve districts characterizing the pace of growth as either modest or moderate. 

Hot Stocks Of The Day: AAPL, GS, BA, GM, HPQ, CMG, NTRS, GNW, STZ, WEN, CRS

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) jumped 4.15 percent to reverse a three-day drop. Pacific Crest downgraded the stock to "sector perform" from "outperform". Stifel Nicolaus lowered price target to $725 from $825.

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Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (NYSE: GS) gained 4.18 percent after the company said its fourth-quarter profit almost tripled, while its earnings per share surpassed Street view by a wide margin, driven by strong revenues from investment banking and market making businesses.

Boeing Co. (NYSE: BA) dropped 3.57 percent amid reports that All Nippon Airways and Japan Airlines grounded their 787 Dreamliners for safety checks.

General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) retreated 4.22 percent after the auto giant said its 2013 pretax profit will "rise modestly" amid modest auto sales growth.

Hewlett-Packard (NYSE: HPQ) rose 4.11 percent after The Wall Street Journal reported the company has "received expressions of interest" for its struggling Autonomy and EDS units.

Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. (NYSE: CMG) lost 5.51 percent after the restaurant operator guided fourth-quarter earnings below market expectations.

Northern Trust Corp. (NASDAQ: NTRS) fell 5.74 percent after the company's fourth-quarter results trailed market expectations.

Genworth Financial Inc. (NYSE: GNW) surged 8.86 percent after the company announced a plan for its U.S. mortgage insurance business which reduces linkages and dependencies with the holding company.

Constellation Brands Inc. (NYSE: STZ) added 6.15 percent. Buckingham Research initiated the stock with a "buy" rating and price target of $46.

Carpenter Technology Corp. (NYSE: CRS) declined 3.56 percent after the maker of specialty metals forecast second-quarter earnings below consensus.

Wendy's Co. (NASDAQ: WEN) rose 3.67 percent after the quick-service hamburger company guided fiscal 2013 earnings above Wall Street view and reported a jump in quarterly earnings. 

Global Markets

European markets closed mixed, with Germany's DAX up 0.20 percent to close at 7,691.13. France's CAC40 gained 0.30 percent to finish at 3,708.49. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 fell 0.22 percent to end at 6,103.98.

Among Asian markets, China's Shanghai Stock Exchange Composite Index fell 0.70 percent to close at 2,309.50. Japan's Nikkei 225 tumbled 2.56 percent to finish at 10,600.44. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index slipped 0.10 percent to end at 23,356.99. India's BSE Sensex ended 0.85 percent lower at 19,817.63.   

Commodity & Currency Scan

Crude oil futures added 0.98 percent to $94.19 per barrel while natural gas futures shed 0.67 percent to $3.43 per million metric British thermal units. Gold futures fell 0.18 percent to $1,680.80 per ounce and silver futures inched up 0.02 percent to $31.54 per ounce.

In the currency market, the euro fell 0.17 percent against the U.S. dollar to 1.3283. The British pound lost 0.40 percent against the greenback to 1.6001, and the dollar declined 0.45 percent against the Japanese yen to 88.3900.

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