This sixteenth trading week of 2012 comes to a close with investors pushing stocks higher amidst mixed economic data and earnings reports.
Hi. I'm Sayoko Murase. Welcome to the 'Weekly Market Wrap' for Friday April 20, 2012.
The S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average are higher for the week, while the Nasdaq is slightly lower.
Crude oil futures are slightly higher in afternoon trading, to around $103.61 per barrel.
Gold futures are lower this week, to $1642.83 an ounce in afternoon trading.
In notable economic news this week, the Labor Department reported that there were 386,000 new claims for for unemployment benefits filed last week. According to the National Association of Realtors, sales of existing homes fell 2.6% in March.
In corporate news this week, Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) reported quarterly earnings that beat analyst estimates due to aggressive cost cutting, as well as strong revenues in iits investment banking and trading businesses. The company earned $2.1 billion, or $3.92 per share, versus $4.38 per share in teh same period last year. Analysts had expected a profit of $3.55 per share. The company also announced that it was raising its quarterly dividend to 46 cents from 35 cents.
Halliburton (NYSE:HAL) announced on Wednesday that first-quarter profit increased by 22.7 percent. Net income was $627 million, or 68 cents per share versus $511 million, or 56 cents per share, in the same period a year ago. Revenue increased by 30 percent to $6.87 billion.
MetLife (NYSE:MET) announced that it lost $94 million, or 9 cents per share, during the fiscal quarter that ended on March 31, versus a net income of $701 million, or 66 cents per share, in the same period last year. Most of the loss was the result of declining derivative values. The company lost $1.98 billion on derivatives in the first quarter versus $315 million in the same period last year. Revenue for the quarter increased by seven percent, to $16.69 billion from $15.61 billion in the same period last year.
E-Trade Financial (NASDAQ:ETFC) announced that it earned 13 cents per share, beating analyst estimates of 9 cents per share. Revenue was $489.4 million, versus analyst estimates of $472.5 million. Loan-loss provisions fell by 41 percent to $72 million from the fourth quarter.
GE (NYSE:GE) reported that it earned $3.03 billion, or 29 cents per share, down from $3.43 billion, or 31 cents per share, in the same period last year. The results included a $200 million charge for exiting its Irish mortgage business. Excluding one-time items, earnings were 34 cents per share, exceeding analyst estimates of 33 cents per share. Revenue fell 8.2 percent to $35.2 billion, but was above the $34.7 billion that analysts had expected.
This is the 'Weekly Market Wrap' for Friday April 20, 2012. Please join us on Monday for the 'Week Ahead Market Report."
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