This fifth trading week of 2012 comes to a close with investors sending stocks higher on strong employment data.
Hi. I'm Kristin Bianco. Welcome to the 'Weekly Market Wrap' for Friday February 3, 2012.
The S&P 500, NASDAQ, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average were all higher for the week.
Crude oil futures are lwoer this week, trading around $97.21 per barrel on Friday afternoon.
Gold futures are little changed this week, to around $1738.62 an ounce in afternoon trading.
In notable economic news this week, the Labor Department said companies hired 243,000 employees in January, the most in nine months, pushing the unemployment rate down to 8.3 percent.
In corporate news this week, Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM) announced that its profit for the fourth quarter increased by two percent, mainly due to higher prices for crude oil. The company reported earnings of $9.4 billion, or $1.97 per share, versus $9.25 billion, or $1.85 per share, in the same period last year. Revenue increased by 16 percent to $121.61 billion.
Minneapolis-based Target (NYSE:TGT) impressed Wall Street this morning with a stronger-than-expected increase to revenue in January. The company reported sales increased 4.3% at stores open for longer than one year, easily topping the 2.1% expected by analysts.
Beazer Homes USA (NYSE:BZH) reported net income of $0.7 million, or diluted earnings per share of $0.01 versus a loss in the first quarter of fiscal 2011 of $48.3 million, or $0.65 per share. Revenue came in at $188.5 million, compared to $109 million in fiscal 2011.
Shares of BZH are up approximately 4%.
M/I Homes (NYSE:MHO) posted a net loss of $3 million, or $0.16 per share. In 2010's fourth quarter, the Company reported a net loss of $11.1 million, or $0.60 per share.
Dow Chemical (DOW)announced that excluding items, the company reported earnings of 25 cents per share, missing analysts' estimates of 30 cents. Revenues also disappointed Wall Street, with the modest 2% increase coming as the result of a 5% company wide price increase.
This is the 'Weekly Market Wrap' for Friday February 3. Please join us on Monday for the 'Week Ahead Market Report."
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