Mid-Day Market Update: Dow Jumps Over 500 Points; Osmotica Pharmaceuticals Shares Slide

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Midway through trading Thursday, the Dow traded up 1.51% to 34,938.25 while the NASDAQ rose 1.64% to 14,739.43. The S&P also rose, gaining 1.41% to 4,425.22.

The U.S. has the highest number of coronavirus cases and deaths in the world, reporting a total of 44,059,040 cases with around 707,780 deaths. India confirmed a total of at least 33,894,310 cases and 449,850 deaths, while Brazil reported over 21,516,960 COVID-19 cases with 599,350 deaths. In total, there were at least 236,571,580 cases of COVID-19 worldwide with more than 4,829,760 deaths, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

Materials shares gained by 2.2% on Thursday. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included Loop Industries, Inc. (NASDAQ:LOOP), up 8% and Nexa Resources S.A. (NYSE:NEXA) up 11%.

In trading on Thursday, energy shares rose by just 0.1%.

Top Headline

Conagra Brands, Inc. (NYSE:CAG) reported better-than-expected results for its first quarter.

Conagra Brands reported quarterly adjusted earnings of $0.50 per share, beating analysts’ estimates of $0.49 per share. The company’s quarterly sales came in at $2.65 billion versus expectations of $2.54 billion.

Conagra Brands reaffirmed FY22 earnings guidance of $2.50 per share.

Equities Trading UP

Cyren Ltd. (NASDAQ:CYRN) shares shot up 20% to $0.5861 after the company announced Nasdaq granted its request for a 180-day extension to regain compliance with Nasdaq’s minimum bid price requirement.

Shares of Merus N.V. (NASDAQ:MRUS) got a boost, shooting 35% to $27.05 as the company presented early clinical data on MCLA-158 and preclinical data on zenocutuzumab at AACR-NCI-EORTC Virtual International Conference on Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics.

New Fortress Energy Inc. (NYSE:NFE) shares were also up, gaining 26% to $33.36 after the company issued gas supply and economic guidance.

Check out these big movers of the day

Equities Trading DOWN

Osmotica Pharmaceuticals plc (NASDAQ:OSMT) shares tumbled 38% to $1.90 as the company priced its secondary public offering of 14 million shares and warrants to purchase up to 14 million shares at $2.5/piece.

Shares of ORIC Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:ORIC) were down 23% to $14.61 after the company presented initial clinical data from Phase 1b trial of ORIC-101 in combination with enzalutamide and preclinical data on ORIC-114 at AACR-NCI-EORTC.

Prelude Therapeutics Incorporated (NASDAQ:PRLD) was down, falling 30% to $20.17. Prelude Therapeutics announced presentation of data from multiple programs at AACR-NCI-EORTC Virtual International Conference.

Commodities

In commodity news, oil traded up 0.3% to $77.63, while gold traded down 0.1% to $1,760.80.

Silver traded up 1% Thursday to $22.745 while copper rose 1.8% to $4.2230.

Euro zone

European shares were higher today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 rose 1.6%, the Spanish Ibex Index jumped 2.1% and the German DAX 30 climbed 1.7%. Meanwhile, the London’s FTSE 100 gained 1.3%, French CAC 40 jumped 1.8% and Italy’s FTSE MIB gained 1.6%.

Retail sales in Italy rose 0.4% over a month during August, while industrial production in Germany dropped 4% in August. French current account deficit shrank to EUR 1.3 billion in August from a revised gap of EUR 3.4 billion a month ago, while trade deficit narrowed to EUR 6.67 billion from a revised EUR 7.08 billion. The Halifax House Price Index in the UK surged 7.4% year-over-year in September.

Economics

US-based employers reported 17,895 job cuts during the month of September, according to the Challenger job-cut report.

US initial jobless claims dropped to 326,000 in the week ending October 2nd, compared to a seven-week high level of 364,000 in the prior period.

US natural-gas supplies climbed 118 billion cubic feet last week, the Energy Information Administration said.

Data on consumer credit for August will be released at 3:00 p.m. ET.

Check out the full economic calendar here