As has been the case for most of the last several days, the market’s advance seemed like a laboring, grinding one, with traders seemingly trying to talk themselves into their purchases. A gain is a gain nonetheless though, and today’s gain of 0.54% for the S&P 500 index left it at 2,473.83. That was a record close on the same day it made a record high.
Not every stock was able to hope on board that bullish bandwagon though. W W Grainger Inc (NYSE:GWW), CSX Corporation (NASDAQ:CSX) and United Continental Holdings Inc (NYSE:UAL) shareholders were all sitting on the wrong side of the table today, hearing bad news that dunked each stock.
Here’s what investors need to know.
United Continental Holdings Inc (UAL)
United Continental Holdings, known by most as United Air, may still be paying the price for booting a passenger from a plane in April in a way that quickly became an unwanted spectacle. The airline cautioned UAL shareholders today that its third-quarter results wouldn’t be as strong as hoped (and investors weren’t expecting much).
The specifics: For the quarter ending in September, the company’s revenue per available seat mile is likely to be flat after rising 2.1% during the second quarter of the year. The weak figure suggests tepid demand for air travel, leading to a Q3 profit of somewhere between $2.73 and $3.13 per share. Analysts were collectively expecting United Continental to report a profit of $3.16 per share of UAL.
UAL ended the day down 5.9% in response to the news.
CSX Corporation (CSX)
United Continental wasn’t the only transportation name to deliver pain to its investors today. Railroad company CSX told its shareholders its third quarter and beyond weren’t assured to be as strong.
The grim outlook marred an otherwise encouraging second-quarter report. For the quarter ending in June, CSX turned $2.93 billion worth of revenue into a profit of 55 cents per share. Both figures were up from year-ago levels, and both were better than analysts were expecting.
The prod for the 5.1% plunge CSX shares suffered today was two-fold. Weighing in was concern that the U.S. auto market was slowing, crimping a key source of railroads’ revenue. The larger concern for CSX shareholders today, though, was a suggestion from relatively new (and railroad turnaround veteran) CEO Hunter Harrison that he wouldn’t be at the helm on a long-term basis.
W W Grainger Inc (GWW)
Last but not least, supply outfit W W Grainger shares tumbled 7% today on news that it’s losing a key employee, and in spite of the fact that its second-quarter earnings were better than anticipated.
For the period ending in June, Grainger earned $2.74 per share on sales of 2.615 billion. The top line rolled in less than the expected $2.622 billion, but the bottom line was better than estimates of $2.62.
Despite the earnings beat, profits were still down year-over-year, and GWW shareholders were shocked to learn CFO Ron Jadin will be stepping down at the end of the year. While everyone is replaceable, his exit will come at a time when the struggling company doesn’t need a disruption.
As of this writing, James Brumley did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.