In what is becoming an all-too-familiar story, U.S. markets sank again today, as the headline that seemingly showed an unexpectedly weak jobs report still had investors concerned about further Fed rate hikes.
The Labor Department reported 151,000 jobs were created last month, well below the 190,000 expected by the street, but the internal components such as hours worked and average hourly earnings improved enough to raise concerns for a rate hike by December.
In the oil markets, Baker Hughes Incorporated (NYSE:BHI) reported U.S. oil rig counts at 467, down 31 from the previous week. Oil prices were fairly stable until the afternoon, so the drop in stocks could not really be blamed on oil today. By day’s end, oil had dropped 2.7%.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended the day down 1.3%, but the S&P 500 and Nasdaq were far weaker, the former off 1.9% and the latter just crushed by 3.3%.
But even on the worst days, some stocks still hold up well. Tyson Foods, Inc. (NYSE: TSN), Estee Lauder Companies Inc (NYSE: EL) and Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ: SYMC) are some who trumpeted their latest earnings, and in doing so, made our list of three of today’s best stocks.
Tyson Foods, Inc. (TSN)
TSN stock gained nearly 10% today after announcing first-quarter 2016 earnings of $1.15 a share, on $9.2 billion in revenue. The Springdale, Ark.-based food company beat the analysts’ estimates of 89 cents a share, but fell below revenue estimates for $10.1 billion.
The stellar results were attributed to reductions in feed costs and investing more in the company’s core products.
In addition, Tyson repurchased $300 million worth of shares of TSN stock, and the board of directors has just approved another $50 million worth of shares for acquisition.
TSN is guiding for $3.85 to $3.95 a share for all of 2016, an increase over its previous forecast for $3.50 to $3.65 a share.
Estee Lauder Companies Inc (EL)
Estee Lauder investors smelled some sweet profits today after the cosmetics company posted adjusted second-quarter 2016 earnings of $1.22 a share on revenue of $3.13 billion. The EPS easily surpassed the analysts’ estimates for $1.09 a share on $3.08 billion.
Estee Lauder also increased its sales guidance from a range of 8% to 10% to one of 9% to 10% for the fiscal year that ends on June 30. However, it also reduced guidance on EPS from a range of $3.10 to $3.17 to one of $3.07 to $3.12.
EL finished the day up better than 4.5%.
Symantec Corporation (SYMC)
Symantec was surging today on a double dose of good news. On Thursday, after the closing bell, SYMC reported third-quarter 2016 adjusted earnings of 22 cents a share, 4 cents better than the Zacks consensus estimates.
In addition, revenue of $909 million was slightly ahead of forecasts for $906 million. But EPS declined 21% and revenue was off 6.3% from a year ago. The company cited unfavorable foreign currency exchange rates as the culprit.
But the good news did not end there. Symantec also reported it has been given $500 million for a strategic investment by Silver Lake. In return, the SYMC board of directors has authorized a $500 million share buyback plan, a special dividend of $4 a share and $2.3 billion in repurchases going forward.
Symantec will also have a new board member in Ken Hao, the managing partner for Silver Lake. SYMC closed 3% higher on heavy volume of 23 million shares, which is more than three times its normal volume.
As of this writing, Ethan Roberts did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.
More From InvestorPlace
- 10 Stocks to Buy for Double-Digit Returns in 6 Months
- 5 Stocks to Buy for February
- 6 Battered Stocks That Could TRIPLE by 2020