The stock markets in the United States ended the trading session with mixed results today. The Russell 2000 rallied 1% driven by speculation that the recent sell off was overplayed and the alleviation of concerns regarding stimulus plan of the European Central Bank (ECB).

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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) was down by 0.02%; the S&P 500 did not gain at 1,946.17 points while the NASDAQ rose 0.18%.

In a telephone interview with Bloomberg, Walter Hellwig of BB&T Wealth said, “The market turned back here recently because some of these stocks have gotten too oversold. There was some disappointment with Draghi in that he didn’t seem to be quite as aggressive in what he was saying about QE.”

The markets suffered a significant decline over the past few days due to the recent disappointing economic data in the United States and Europe and the geopolitical conflicts. Investors were also concerned about the possibility that the Federal Reserve would increase the interest rates earlier than expected.

[drizzle]The Department of Labor is scheduled to release its job report, which would provide further signs regarding the U.S. economy. Economists estimated that the economy added 215,000 jobs in the labor market and the unemployment rate at around 6.1%.

Today, the agency reported that the number of people who filed for unemployment benefits last week declined, an indication that the labor market continues to improve.

Chad Morganlander of Stifel Nicolaus & Co said, “There are perhaps market speculators who think tomorrow’s report could beat expectations.” He added, “There’s an improving trend in the economy that’s trying to breathe life into these markets.”

On the other hand, Gary Black of Calamos investments opined that they are using the weakness of the market to buy equities that were beaten over the past week. He said, “People will come back to the market once they realize Europe is not falling off a cliff and the U.S. economy is still pretty strong, but not so strong as to get the Fed to raise interest rates early. We’re using this weakness to buy into names that got beaten up over the last week or so.”

U.S. Markets

  • Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA)- 16,801.05 (-0.02%)
  • S&P 500- 1,946.17 (0.00%)
  • NASDAQ- 4,430.20 (+0.18%)
  • Russell 2000- 1,096.32 (+1.01%)

European Markets

  • EURO STOXX 50 Price EUR- 3,106.42 (-2.77%)
  • FTSE 100 Index- 6,446.39 (-1.69%)
  • Deutsche Borse AG German Stock Index DAX- 9,195.68 (-1.99%)

Asia-Pacific Markets

  • Nikkei 225- 15,661.99 (-2.61%)
  • Hong Kong Hang Seng Index- 22,932.98 (-1.28%)
  • Shanghai Shenzhen CSI 300 Index- 2,450.99 (+0.13%)

Stocks in Focus

The stock price of GoPro Inc (NASDAQ:GPRO) closed $85.46 per share, down by almost 7% after its founders disclosed that they provided a personal gift of around 5.8 million shares (approximately $500) to establish a new charity—The Jill + Nicholas Woodman Foundation.

The shares of Lithia Motors Inc (NYSE:LAD) climbed 10% to $80.79 per share, among the top gainers in the automotive industry. The company benefited from Warren Buffett’s disclosure that Berkshire Hathaway Inc (NYSE:BRK.A) (NYSE:BRK.A) agreed to acquire the Van Tuyl Group, the fifth largest auto dealer in the United States.

Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR) gained 3.58% to $51.85 per share after Morgan Stanley upgraded its rating for the stock from Neutral to Overweight and raised its price target to $64 from $54.

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