Wall Street enters new month on moderate slide
U.S. stocks enter November with some negative momentum, despite strong gains for the major averages in both September and October. The Dow, the S&P 500, and the Nasdaq ended October with their first two-day losing streaks in more than three weeks, though futures are pointing to a higher open this morning. The Dow and S&P 500 are both slightly negative for the week so far, but could post their fourth consecutive week of gains with a positive session.
U.S. automakers will be out with their October sales numbers throughout the morning, with Edmunds.com looking for a 12.7 percent increase from a year ago. GM, Ford, Chrysler, and Toyota are all expected to post double-digit gains for the month. Also on the calendar for today: the October ISM manufacturing index at 10 a.m. ET, expected to come in at 55.0, down from September's 56.2.
The October employment report was originally due to come out this morning, but instead will be issued next Friday, November 8, because of the recently concluded government shutdown.
Dow component Chevron (CVX) highlights a very light earnings calendar this morning, with quarterly numbers from Church & Dwight (CHD), Madison Square Garden (MSG), NextEra Energy (NEE), and Washington Post (WPO) also out.
AIG (AIG) leads this morning's list of stocks to watch, reporting third quarter profit of 96 cents per share, two cents above estimates. Revenue was light, however, and the insurer reported an underwriting loss in its property and casualty business.
Apple (AAPL) will begin selling its new iPad Air model in U.S. stores beginning today.
First Solar (FSLR) earned $2.28 per share for the third quarter, excluding certain items, well above estimates of 99 cents. Revenue also beat estimates by a wide margin, but the maker of solar equipment cut its 2013 revenue guidance below analyst forecasts. However, the company has been cutting costs as well, and is raising its 2013 earnings forecast.
Fluor Corp. (FLR) reported third quarter profit of $1.05 per share, one cent above estimates, with revenue falling short of consensus. The engineering firm is, however, predicting 2014 earnings above Street consensus, boosted by a growing amount of oil and gas industry business.
Newmont Mining (NEM) beat estimates by 14 cents in the third quarter with earnings of 46 cents per share, excluding certain items. The mining company saw higher production levels and lower cost compared to a year earlier.
Barrick Gold (ABX) announced a $3 billion secondary stock offering, and plans to use the proceeds to reduce debt.
Wal-Mart (WMT) is putting holiday deals online a month early, with special deals available starting after midnight tonight.
The Container Store (TCS) will begin trading today on the New York Stock Exchange today, after pricing 12.5 million shares at $18 each in its initial public offering. That was above the original expected range of $14 to $16 per share, which was subsequently raised earlier this week to between $17 and $18.