Markets battled tooth-and-nail to hang on for a fifth consecutive day of gains, and got a little help from the headlines — but while one index did manage to stay above water, another followed the Nasdaq’s lead from yesterday in ending its streak.
The list of good news items included a better-than-expected drop in initial jobless claims, a narrowed trade deficit and a surprise decline in wholesale inventories. In addition, inflation in China fell to 1.8% — the lowest rate in two-and-a-half years, according to a report issued by the government’s National Bureau of Statistics.
In the end, the Nasdaq climbed 0.25% to 3,018, leading the way on gains. The S&P 500 held on to close up fractionally at 1,402, and the Dow finished with a mild loss, ending at 13,145.
However, amid the middling day was a number of bad, bad earnings reports.
Leading the way down on earnings was Monster Beverage (NASDAQ:MNST) who saw its shares fall around 10% Thursday after the energy-drink group announced earnings and revenues after the bell Wednesday that were improved from last year, but missed Wall Street estimates.
Telephone operations company Windstream (NASDAQ:WIN) took a turn downward after announcing Q2 net income was down, despite a doubling of revenue year-over-year. This marks the fifth consecutive quarter in which WIN’s margins have declined. Shares traded down nearly 7.5%.
Auto parts retailer Advance Auto Parts (NYSE:AAP) posted Q2 results that missed on both the top and bottom lines, and cut its profit estimates for the remainder of the year. Investors pushed the shares down just shy of 4% on the day. Competitors O’Reilly Automotive (NASDAQ:ORLY) and Pep Boys (NYSE:PBY) sank a respective 2% and 1%.
Retailer Kohl’s (NYSE:KSS) posted second-quarter results that beat estimates, but sales were weaker than expected, sending shares lower by just over 1% on the day. The retailer also cut its forecast for the quarter and said it expects same-stores sales growth during the quarter to come in at a range of flat to 2%. Retailers were mixed on the day; among notable moves were J.C. Penney (NYSE:JCP), up over 3%, and Sears (NASDAQ:SHLD), which shed more than 3%.
- Robbins & Myers (NYSE:RBN): Up 27.4% ($12.83) to $59.63.
- Alpha Natural (NYSE:ANR): Up 15.1% (95 cents) to $7.25.
- James River Coal (NASDAQ:JRCC): Up 13% (29 cents) to $2.52.
- Briggs & Stratton (NYSE:BGG): Down 4.9% (87 cents) to $16.80.
- Dean Foods (NYSE:DF): Down 4.3% (75 cents) to $16.71.
- Groupon: Down 4% (28 cents) to $6.65.
Marc Bastow is an Assistant Editor at InvestorPlace.com. As of this writing, he did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.