Fed Sinks Markets in Mere Minutes — Thursday’s IP Market Recap

by Marc Bastow | January 3, 2013 5:09 pm

IPMarketRecap Fed Sinks Markets in Mere Minutes    Thursday's IP Market Recap[1]A roller-coaster day was punctuated by a big drop at 2 p.m. sharp, when a release of the Federal Reserve meeting’s minutes put a damper on Thursday’s trading session.

Several members of the Fed expressed concerns about the growing size of the Reserve’s balance sheet, and suggested an end to the central bank’s bond-buying program sooner than investors expect. The news drove the major indices lower, with the Nasdaq ending down 0.38% to 3,100.57, the S&P falling by 0.21% to 1,459.37, and the Dow Jones off 0.16% to 13,391.36.

Family Dollar (NYSE:FDO[2]) was one of the day’s biggest losers, shedding 13% after reporting disappointing earnings and a weak outlook for the remainder of the year. The news sent competitors Dollar General (NYSE:DG[3]) and Dollar Tree (NASDAQ:DLTR[4]) down too, though fractionally.

Limited Brands (NYSE:LTD[5]) was among retailers reporting December same-store sales[6] Thursday. LTD shares fell nearly 6% after the Victoria’s Secret owner’s results fell short of forecasts, while Gap Inc. (NYSE:GPS[7]) gained 2% on better-than-expected sales and the announcement of a $1 billion stock buyback plan.

However, Wall Street wasn’t all bad Thursday.

SunPower (NASDAQ:SPWR[8]) sure didn’t notice the down day. SPWR shares flared by 48% after Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK.A[9], BRK.B[10]) announced it was investing between $2 billion and $2.5 billion in two of the solar company’s projects. The news sent the sector’s stocks charging, with Trina Solar (NYSE:TSL[11], +18.1%) and First Solar (NASDAQ:FSLR[12], +7.6%) among notable gainers.

Shares of Spam producer Hormel (NYSE:HRL[13]) headed higher after announcing it was buying the Skippy peanut butter brand[14] from Unilever (NYSE:UL[15]) for $700 million and announced a 13% increase in its dividend. Hormel shares gained 3%; UL finished down almost 1%.

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT[16]) purchased privately held R2 Studios[17] in a move to take advantage of R2′s home-connectivity technologies. MSFT also spent the day teasing the possible release date of its Xbox 720 system[18] to coincide with June’s Electric Entertainment Expo. Neither piece of news excited investors as shares slid more than 1%.

Lastly, Burger King (NYSE:BKW[19]) is making another run at McDonald’s (NYSE:MCD[20]) by changing its menu[21] with the first change to its chicken offerings. Instead of selling chicken tenders, BKW will switch to chicken nuggets … a disappointment to those perfectly content with the tenders.

Three Up

Three Down

Marc Bastow is an Assistant Editor at InvestorPlace.com. As of this writing, he was long MSFT.

Endnotes:
  1. [Image]: http://www.investorplace.com/hot-topics/investorplace-market-recap/
  2. FDO: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=FDO
  3. DG: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=DG
  4. DLTR: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=DLTR
  5. LTD: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=LTD
  6. retailers reporting December same-store sales: http://investorplace.com/2013/01/santas-mixed-bag-retails-december-sales/
  7. GPS: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=GPS
  8. SPWR: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=SPWR
  9. BRK.A: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=BRK.A
  10. BRK.B: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=BRK.B
  11. TSL: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=TSL
  12. FSLR: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=FSLR
  13. HRL: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=HRL
  14. buying the Skippy peanut butter brand: http://investorplace.com/2013/01/hormel-foods-buys-skippy-peanut-butter-shares-jump/
  15. UL: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=UL
  16. MSFT: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=MSFT
  17. purchased privately held R2 Studios: http://investorplace.com/2013/01/microsoft-acquires-home-technology-startup/
  18. release date of its Xbox 720 system: http://investorplace.com/2013/01/microsoft-teases-xbox-720-launch/
  19. BKW: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=BKC
  20. MCD: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=MCD
  21. changing its menu: http://investorplace.com/2013/01/burger-king-changes-up-its-chicken/
  22. VRNG: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=VRNG
  23. HLF: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=HLF
  24. ROST: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=ROST
  25. RMBS: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=RMBS
  26. GME: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=GME
  27. UNH: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=UNH

Source URL: http://investorplace.com/2013/01/thursdays-ip-market-recap-adp-hrl-ul-spwr-brk-a-brk-b/
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