Home Wealth  Money Bearish Tone Hits Stocks Late In Week

Bearish Tone Hits Stocks Late In Week

Posted: Nov. 19th, 2011  |  By Forbes

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The S&P 500, the Dow Jones Industrial Average, and the Nasdaq are all lower for the week.

Crude oil futures are lower this week, trading around $97.45 per barrel on Friday afternoon.

Gold futures are lower for the week in afternoon trading, to around $1723.79 an ounce.

In notable economic news this week, the economy added 80,000 jobs in the month of October, and unemployment was 9 percent, according to the Labor Department. The weekly jobless claims reports for the past three weeks fell by 5,000 to 388,000.

In corporate news this week, Merck (nyse: MRK - news - people ) reported disappointing results of a study of an investigational heart drug at an American Heart Association event over the weekend. Merck said the study of vorapaxar, which is designed to prevent thrombosis and other cardiovascular events, failed to meet a primary endpoint of in a study in patients with acute coronary syndrome. The drug did not result in a statistically significant reduction in the first occurrence of any component of the composite of cardiovascular death, myocardial infarction, stroke, recurrent ischemia and urgent coronary revascularization, when added to the standard of care.

Sanofi's Genzyme (nasdaq: GENZ - news - people ) said a phase 3 trial of its multiple sclerosis treatment Lemtrada showed the drug met both primary endpoints. The drug reduced relapse rated as well as worsening of disability in a study as compared to Pfizer (nyse: PFE - news - people )'s Rebif.

Wal-Mart (nyse: WMT - news - people ) reported fiscal third quarter earnings this week. The world's largest retailer said net income totaled $3.34 billion, or $0.96 per share, compared to $3.44 billion, or $0.95 per share, when there were more shares outstanding. Earnings from continuing operations totaled $0.97 per share, just short of analyst estimates. Net sales rose 8.2%, to $109.5 billion, just ahead of analyst estimates. Same-store sales rose 1.3% at the company's US Wal-Mart stores. Wal-Mart said it is looking for full-year earnings of $4.45 to $4.51 per share, below analyst estimates at the low end.

Urban Outfitters (nasdaq: URBN - news - people ) reported a dip in its third quarter. Profits fell to $50.7 million, or $0.33 per share, from $73.1 million, or $0.43 per share, in last year's third quarter. The apparel retailer said revenue rose 6% in the third quarter, to $610 million. Per-share results were just ahead of analyst estimates, but revenue fell short. Same-store sales fell 7% overall, and were comprised of a 14% increase in sales at the company's Free People brand, flat sales at Urban Outfitters, and a 7% decline at Anthropologie stores.

The largest home improvement retailer in the nation, Home Depot (nyse: HD - news - people ) (HD) posted third quarter earnings today that rose to $934 million, or $0.60 per share, from $834 million, or $0.51 per share, last year. Revenue rose about 4%, to $17.3 billion, on a 4.2% increase in same-store sales. Results were ahead of analyst estimates. Home Depot hiked its full year earnings forecast as well, to earnings of $2.38 per share, from a prior forecast of $2.34. Home Depot also declared a quarterly dividend of $0.29 per share, up 16% from its previous dividend.

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