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Mid-Morning Market Update: Markets Mostly Higher; Dollar General Profit Beats Views

Following the market opening Thursday, the Dow traded up 0.50% to 28472.17 while the NASDAQ fell 0.28% to 11,631.85. The S&P also rose, gaining 0.06% to 3,480.86.

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Following the market opening Thursday, the Dow traded up 0.50% to 28472.17 while the NASDAQ fell 0.28% to 11,631.85. The S&P also rose, gaining 0.06% to 3,480.86.

The U.S. has the highest number of coronavirus cases and deaths in the world, reporting a total of 5,823,680 cases with around 179,740 deaths. Brazil confirmed a total of over 3,717,150 COVID-19 cases with 117,660 deaths, while India reported a total of at least 3,310,230 confirmed cases and 60,470 deaths. In total, there were at least 24,194,500 cases of COVID-19 worldwide with over 826,360 deaths, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

Financial shares gained 1.4% on Thursday. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included Colony Bankcorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:CBAN), up 9%, and Amalgamated Bank (NASDAQ:AMAL), up 5%.

In trading on Thursday, communication services shares fell by 1.1%.

Top Headline

Dollar General Corp. (NYSE:DG) reported better-than-expected results for its second quarter.

Dollar General reported quarterly earnings of $3.12 per share, beating analysts’ estimates of $2.44 per share. The company reported sales of $8.68 billion, also surpassing expectations of $8.35 billion. The company also announced it has increased its buyback by $2 billion.



Equities Trading UP

VBI Vaccines Inc. (NASDAQ:VBIV) shares shot up 50% to $4.801 after Raymond James upgraded the company's stock from Outperform to Strong Buy and raised its price target from $8 to $9. VBI Vaccines, on Wednesday, reported preclinical coronavirus program data and selection of clinical candidates with potential as one-dose vaccines.

Shares of PEDEVCO Corp. (NYSE:PED) got a boost, shooting 109% to $1.64 after the company delivered an open letter to the SandRidge Permian Trust, its unit holders, and the operator of its assets regarding an indication of interest to acquire the SandRidge Permian Trust and underlying assets.

SunPower Corporation (NASDAQ:SPWR) shares were also up, gaining 25% to $11.10. SunPower and Maxeon Solar Technologies closed spin-off transaction.


Equities Trading DOWN

Maxeon Solar Technologies Ltd (NASDAQ:MAXN) shares tumbled 48% to $19.38. SunPower and Maxeon Solar Technologies closed spin-off transaction.

Shares of Quidel Corporation (NASDAQ:QDEL) were down 37% to $139.99. Quidel, last week, said it concluded Sofia SARS antigen investigation from Vermont.

Fulgent Genetics, Inc. (NASDAQ:FLGT) was down, falling 31% to $30.80.

Commodities


In commodity news, oil traded down 0.4% to $43.21, while gold traded down 0.2% to $1,947.80.

Silver traded down 0.4% Thursday to $27.34, while copper fell 0.2% to $2.9555.


Euro zone


European shares were lower today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 fell 0.3%, the Spanish Ibex Index dropped 0.8%, while Italy’s FTSE MIB Index declined 0.7%. Meanwhile, the German DAX 30 declined 0.4%, French CAC 40 fell 0.5% and UK shares fell 0.2%.


Economics

The US economy contracted by an annualized 31.7% during the second quarter, versus analysts’ estimates for a 32.5% decline.

U.S. initial jobless claims dropped to 1.006 million in the week ended August 22, versus economists’ estimates for a reading of 1 million.

U.S. pending home sales increased 15.5% year-over-year in July, versus a revised 5.3% increase in the prior month.

The Energy Information Administration’s weekly report on natural gas stocks in underground storage will be released at 10:30 a.m. ET.

The Kansas City Fed's manufacturing index for August is scheduled for release at 11:00 a.m. ET. Analysts expect the index slipping to 2 in August, versus a previous reading of 3.

The Treasury is set to auction 4-and 8-week bills at 11:30 a.m. ET.

Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond President Thomas Barkin is set to speak at 12:30 p.m. ET.

The Treasury will auction 7-year notes at 1:00 p.m. ET.

Data on money supply for the latest week will be released at 4:30 p.m. ET.