The stock markets in the United States ended their three-day losing streak on Tuesday. The markets gained as investors were bullish on health insurance and hospital equities prior to the release of employment data from the Department of Labor on Friday and the start of corporate earnings reporting for the fourth quarter this week.

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The ADP Research Institute is scheduled to release its payrolls survey and the Federal Reserve will also release the minutes of its December meeting tomorrow. Last month, the Federal Reserve said it would reduce its $85 billion monthly bond-buying program given the faster-than-expected improvement of the economy.

The bond buying program of the Federal Reserve helped the S&P 500 to move higher. The index gained 173% from its 12-year low in 2009, according to Bloomberg. Policy makers consider the employment situation in the country as one of the factors in tapering its stimulus.

John Lynch, chief investment officer at Wells Fargo Private Bank, told Bloomberg, “Equities are the place to be. Everyone’s waiting on the Fed minutes tomorrow and the jobs report on Friday could be a driver of further confidence.”

On the other hand, Francis Savary, chief investment officer at Reyl & Cie. in Geneva opined, “Sentiment is still very high. The key question now will be to see if earnings growth really does come through. When you have less liquidity in the system and good economic numbers to support the recovery, it’s time for companies to deliver.”

U.S. Markets

  • Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA)- 16,530.94 (+0.64%)
  • S&P 500- 1,837.88 (+0.61%)
  • NASDAQ- 4,153.18 (+0.96%)
  • Russell 2000- 1,158.24 (+0.96%)

European Markets

  • EURO STOXX 50 Price EUR- 3,110.96 (+1.36%)
  • FTSE 100 Index- 6,755.45 (+0.37%)
  • Deutsche Borse AG German Stock Index DAX- 9,506.20 (+0.83 %)

Asia Pacific Markets

  • Nikkei 225- 15,814.37 (-0.59%)
  • Hong Kong Hang Seng Index- 22,712.78 (+0.13%)
  • Shanghai Shenzhen CSI 300 Index- 2,238.00 (-0.03%)

Stocks in Focus

The stock price of Pharmacyclics, Inc. (NASDAQ:PCYC) rose almost 20% to $125.90 per share after the company announced that an Independent Data Monitoring Committee (IDMC) unanimously recommended the early stop of the Phase 3 Resonate study of its cancer drug, Imbruvica because it demonstrated significant improvement in overall survival and had acceptable safety profile.

The shares of UnitedHealth Group Inc. (NYSE:UNH) gained more than 3% to $76.51 per share. Deutsche Bank analysts Scott Fidel and Shawn Bevec raised their rating for the stock from Hold to Buy. The analysts noted that the insurance company practiced a more conservative approach to the public healthcare exchanges under ObamaCare and they perceive lower downside risk from it.

The stock value of Tenet Healthcare Corp (NYSE:THC) increased nearly 5% to $46.10 per share after the analysts at Credit Suisse issued an Outperform rating for the company.