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Stocks Lower As Market Mulls Tax Cut, Sprint News | Stock News & Stock Market Analysis

Stock indexes stopped sliding in afternoon trading Monday but remained lower, as political uncertainties appeared to roil investors.

XAutoplay: On | OffThe Dow Jones industrial average fell 0.3%, with some of its components looking sick.

Merck (MRK) continued to tumble, gapping down to another loss of 6%. The pharmaceutical company is now trading at its lowest level since May 2016. Merck started collapsing Friday, after it reported disappointing Q3 sales and it withdrew its application in Europe for an advanced lung cancer treatment.

Cisco Systems (CSCO) fell below the 34.20 buy point of the Oct. 20 breakout. General Electric (GE) is headed for its sixth consecutive loss and is at the lowest price since the August 2015 flash crash. The industrial giant has been trending lower all year, and management is considering shedding some businesses to cut billions in costs.

The Nasdaq composite was down 0.1% and the S&P 500 0.3%. But small caps and the transportation sector lagged considerably, with the Russell 2000 index and Dow transports down more than 1%. Volume was lower compared with the same time Friday.

Stocks appeared to weaken on news that a proposed cut in corporate taxes under discussion in the House of Representatives would be phased in, with the rate falling to 20% by 2022.

Sprint (S), which had been in a trading halt, slid 10% in heavy trading after a report said Softbank, Sprint’s largest shareholder, called off a merger between Sprint and T-Mobile (TMUS). T-Mobile shares on the Nasdaq were down nearly 4%.

Trucking stocks were broadly lower, and Heartland Express (HTLD) was in worse shape than most. The stock sank deeper below the 50-day moving average in heavy volume for a second straight day. The company missed profit expectations Friday.

TAL Education (TAL), which has dropped out of the IBD 50, fell 3% in big volume and looks cemented below its 50-day line.

A few energy and utility stocks broke out, a sector that showed strength in today’s market as crude price stretch a climb that has taken oil to the highest price since early March.

PBF energy (PBF), a New Jersey-based refinery company, rose above the 28.41 buy point of a cup with handle, but volume was mediocre. Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ) edged above the 34.59 entry of a flat base in volume 70% more than average.

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