“Sell in May and go away” indeed!
Wednesday’s ADP jobs report showed a slowdown in hiring for April helped set the tone for the first day of the new month, and a mid-afternoon report from the Fed indicating it will continue purchasing bonds to move the economy forward did little to slow the momentum.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average tumbled 0.94% to close at 14000.95, the S&P 500 fell 0.93% to 1582.70 and the Nasdaq lost 0.89% to finish at 3299.13.
Immediately thereafter, investors focused their attention to Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), which reported first-quarter earnings. FB reported revenue improvement of 38% year-over-year to $1.46 billion, beating estimates, though profits of 12 cents per share were flat against last year’s Q1 and a cent below Wall Street estimates. Those results prompted an indifferent response in early after-hours trading.
Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) was once again a bellwether of sentiment for the market, as it fell about 3.5% after its successful sale of a record $17 billion in debt securities late Tuesday evening.
The rest of the tech sector also took a breather. Blackberry (NASDAQ:BBRY) declined more than 3% as investors still appear to be spooked by CEO Thorsten Heins’ discouraging comments about the tablet market. Movement in shares of Cisco (NASDAQ:CSCO, -2.7%), IBM (NYSE:IBM, -1.4%), and Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ, -1.3%) helped to drag down the Dow.
T-Mobile US ( — the merged entity of T-Mobile USA and MetroPCS (NYSE:PCS) — made its debut on the New York Stock Exchange and shot up 16%.
On the earnings front, Humana (jumped up nearly 5% to lead the S&P 500 after delivering strong first-quarter profit on lower benefit expenses and increased membership. And Genworth Financial (improved by more than 2% after reporting profits had more than doubled.
Earnings notables for Thursday include Kellogg (NYSE:K), Kraft Foods (NASDAQ:KRFT), and LinkedIn (NYSE:LNKD).
- James River Coal (NASDAQ:JRCC): Up 29.1% (48 cents) to $2.20.
- Advanced Micro Devices (NYSE:AMD): Up 13.8% (39 cents) to $3.21.
- NCR (NYSE:NCR): Up 7.1% ($1.94) to $29.21.
- Cray (NASDAQ:CRAY): Down 17% ($3.60) to $17.56.
- Krispy Kreme Doughnuts (NYSE:KKD): Down 7.5% ($1.03) to $12.63.
- JDS Uniphase (NASDAQ:JDSU): Down 7.3% (98 cents) to $12.52.
Marc Bastow is an Assistant Editor at InvestorPlace.com. As of this writing he is long AAPL.