Stocks Trade Mixed, Declines in IBM and UnitedHealth Pull the Dow Lower

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Here Are 3 Hot Things to Know About Stocks Right Now

  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average slumped after IBM  (IBMGet Report) posted lighter-than-expected first-quarter revenue and mixed guidance, while UnitedHealth Group (UNHGet Report) tumbled for a second day on concerns regarding the debate over Medicare-for-all proposals.
  • Qualcomm (QCOMGet Report) surged after settling its ended its long-running dispute with Apple (AAPLGet Report) .
  • Shares of Sprint Corp. (SGet Report) and T-Mobile US (TMUSGet Report) fell after a report suggested the Justice Department won’t approve their merger as currently structured.

Wall Street Overview

Stocks were mixed Wednesday after IBM’s  ( IBMGet Report)  earnings report disappointed Wall Street and managed-care companies tumbled after UnitedHealth Group ( UNHGet Report)  was down for a second day on concerns regarding the debate over Medicare-for-all proposals.
IBM reported  lighter-than-expected first-quarter revenue and mixed guidance. The stock fell 3% to $140.86. UnitedHealth declined 2.3%.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 31 points, or 0.12%, to 26,420, the S&P 500 – which has closed higher in 12 of the past 13 trading sessions – dropped 0.1% and the Nasdaq rose 0.1%.  

Qualcomm (QCOMGet Report) surged 16% to $81.75 after the company said it ended its long-running dispute with Apple (AAPLGet Report) over royalty payments for the chipmaker’s smartphone equipment. The settlement ends all litigation between the two companies and includes an unspecified payment from Apple to Qualcomm. Shares of Apple rose slightly to $200.32.

Morgan Stanley ( MSGet Report)  advanced nearly 1% to $47.42 after the company said first-quarter profit fell 9% from a year ago. Net income declined to $2.43 billion, or $1.39 a share. Excluding an unexpected tax benefit of 6 cents a share, the firm earned $1.33 a share, beating the average analyst estimate of $1.17.

Netflix  (NFLXGet Report)  said it added 9.6 million paid streaming subscribers in the first quarter, beating guidance of 8.9 million, but its outlook for the second quarter disappointed and the stock fell 1.4% on Wednesday.

Shares of Sprint Corp. (SGet Report) and T-Mobile US (TMUSGet Report) fell after a report suggested the Justice Department won’t approve their merger as currently structured. Justice Department officials are balking at approving the $26.5 billion acquisition of Sprint by T-Mobile over antitrust concerns, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing unnamed sources. Sprint was down 3.2% to $5.80, while T-Mobile fell 1.7% to $72.84.

Shares of United Continental Holdings ( UALGet Report) gained 3.8% to $88.36 after the parent company of United Airlines reported first-quarter earnings that surpassed analysts’ forecasts and reiterated its full-year guidance. 

Shares of railroad transportation company CSX (CSXGet Report) rose 4.2% to $79.04 after the company reported strong first-quarter earnings, thanks to increases in freight delivery traffic and declining costs. 

In economic news, the U.S. trade deficit fell for the second straight month in February, dropping 3.4% to $49.4 billion, the lowest since June. Exports climbed 1.1% to $209.7 billion. Imports rose 0.2% to $259.1 billion. The goods deficit with China dropped 28.2% to $24.8 billion. Exports to China rose 18.2% to $8.4 billion. Imports from China fell 20.2% to $33.2 billion.

“President Trump will be happy with the update,” said David Madden, a market analyst at CMC Markets U.K. “The reduction in the trade gap was partially down to a surge in aircraft sales, and in light the Boeing disaster, the number might look different next month.”