After Market: Biotechs Boost Nasdaq to Milestone 4,000 Mark - Briefly

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Monday, it was the Nasdaq's turn to bask in the spotlight. After the Dow and the S&P 500 topped key levels last week, the Nasdaq moved above 4,000 for the first time in 13 years. But like the other indexes, its rally ran out of steam near the close. And despite big gains over the past few years, the Nasdaq is still 21 percent below its Internet bubble peak.

The Dow Jones industrial average (^DJI) gained 8 points, but the Standard & Poor's 500 index (^GPSC) fell 2, while Nasdaq composite index (^IXIC) added 3 points, closing at 3994. The Nasdaq is primarily known for its heavy load of tech stocks, but biotechs led the way Monday.
Wall Street
AP
DaVita (DVA) Healthcare jumped 9 percent and Fresenius Medical (FMS) rose 7 percent after the government said it would not cut kidney dialysis payments be nearly as much as expected. ARIAD Pharmaceuticals (ARIA) soared 36 percent. The stock has been on a wild ride over the past month -- ever since the FDA issued a warning about serious side effects tied to its cancer drug. And Orexigen (OREX) jumped 9 percent. The company reported that its weight loss drug performed well in a trial of 10-thousand patients. The company says the test achieved its goal and it will resubmit an application to the FDA.

Among the big tech stocks on the Nasdaq, Apple (AAPL) and Amazon (AMZN) both gained about 1 percent, but social media stocks are getting hit. Facebook lost 3 percent, Yelp dropped nearly 7 percent, and Twitter fell 4.5 percent. Twitter is back below $40 a share, and near its IPO price.

Among the Dow stocks, Caterpillar (CAT) gained 2 percent as Bank of America/Merrill Lynch upgraded the stock to a 'buy.' But Boeing (BA) fell 2 percent after issuing a safety warning about engines made by General Electric (GE) for the 787 Dreamliner and other models.

Walmart (WMT) edged higher after saying its CEO is retiring. He'll be succeeded by the head of the company's international division.

Finally, in a classic case of buy on the rumor, sell on the news, shares of Lions Gate (LGF) slid 10 percent even though its "Hunger Games" sequel turned into a blockbuster in its first weekend in the theaters.

What to Watch Tuesday:
  • The Commerce Department releases third-quarter gross domestic product at 8:30 a.m. Eastern time.
  • Standard & Poor's releases S&P/Case-Shiller index of home prices for September and the third quarter at 9 a.m.
  • The Conference Board releases the Consumer Confidence Index for November at 10 a.m.
These major companies are due to report quarterly corporate earnings:
  • Barnes & Noble (BKS)
  • Brown Shoe Co. (BWS)
  • Chico's FAS (CHS)
  • Cracker Barrel Old Country Store (CBRL)
  • Hewlett-Packard (HPQ)
  • Hormel Foods (HRL)
  • Tiffany & Co. (TIF)
  • TiVo (TIVO)
  • Zale (ZLC)
-Produced by Drew Trachtenberg.


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