Despite the mixed message on the employment front, hope for an end to the Greek debt debacle — albeit a tough one — was relatively inspiring to traders on Wednesday. Even with the intraday pullback following the strong open, the S&P 500 managed to close up 0.7%, at 2,077.42.
Delta Air Lines, Inc. (NYSE:DAL), Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR) and Continental Resources, Inc. (NYSE:CLR), however, couldn’t get any traction, ending the session in the red despite the market’s modest advance.
Here’s the deal.
Continental Resources (CLR)
Another bad day for oil prices meant another rough day for oil stocks. Continental Resources led the charge with its 5% loss, though Halliburton Company (NYSE:HAL) was a close second with its 3.5% plunge.
In fact, given the high volume behind its pullback, HAL arguably dished out more overall pain, even as CLR shareholders felt the pain more acutely. Crude oil fell a stunning 3.7% to a close near $57.20 per barrel … the lowest close since mid-April.
The prompt for oil’s pullback was two-fold. The first of those prods was a report from the U.S. Energy Information Administration indicating crude oil inventories ticked higher last week for the first time in a couple of months. At the same time, discussions regarding Iran’s budding nuclear program took an encouraging turn, suggesting renewed stability in the Middle East, removing a threat to the global oil supply.
Delta Air Lines (DAL)
Much like Continental Resources wasn’t the only energy stock to tank today in the wake of crude oil’s stumble, Delta Air Lines wasn’t the only air carrier stock to crash.
The catalyst was news that the Department of Justice was opening an investigation of Delta Air Lines as well as peers and competitors American Airlines Group Inc. (NASDAQ:AAL), Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE:LUV), and United Continental Holdings Inc. (NYSE:UAL) to determine if the four carriers colluded with one another in an effort ensure airfares remained artificially high.
DAL was off some 2%, while UAL was off 2.5% and AAL was off roughly 3%.
Last but not least, the Dick Costolo era at Twitter is ending on a bit of a sour note… with TWTR shares falling more than 2% on this, his last day as CEO.
The media can get most of the blame for the setback, although observers only pointed out the truth about TWTR. TheStreet.com, for instance, merely reported that SunTrust analyst Robert Peck quickly dismissed yesterday’s reprised rumors that Twitter was a takeout target.
And Cowen and Co. analyst John Blackledge simply pointed out in a report published today that the microblogging platform was apt to see a growth headwind through early 2016. Blackledge expects to see a decline in Q2’s active user base, and reeled in his revenue outlook for the second half of 2015.
Editor’s Note: Performance data has been corrected for DAL.
As of this writing, James Brumley did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.
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