The stock markets in the United States gained today. Investors are getting a breather as equities managed to recover some losses from its worst quarterly decline since 2011.

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Bloomberg noted that investors are buying some of the hardly-hit companies in the third quarter. Today’s leaders in the S&P 500 are the equities in the energy, raw materials and healthcare sectors, which plummeted the most since June.

Lew Piantedosi, vice president of growth equities at Eaton Vance Management said, “We’re getting a snapback in some of the beaten-down names, particularly biotech. I think that’s to be expected after the beating they took. There also could be some end-of-the-quarter window dressing going on today.”

On the other hand, Boris Rjavinski commented that investors should expect around $21 billion to $26 billion in equity buying and some bond selling as pension fund managers rebalance their portfolios by the end of the quarter.

[drizzle]The recent declines in the U.S. stock markets were due to concerns regarding China’s economic slowdown and the confusion among investors regarding the Federal Reserve’s policy on interest rates because of its mixed messages. Some Fed officials are confident that the U.S. economy can withstand a higher interest rate.

Andrew Brenner, head of international fixed income at National Alliance Capital Market believed that the “U.S. economy is on the right track.” He expressed optimism that the “equity markets will turn around and have a strong last quarter” this year.

“I wouldn’t be surprised to see stocks bottom the first full week of October. Then I think we’ll probably do OK between now and the end of the year because I believe the U.S. economy is doing just fine,” said Brenner.

U.S. Markets

  • Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) – 16, 287.11 (+1.48%)
  • S&P 500- 1,919.76 (+1.89%)
  • NASDAQ- 4,619.69 (+2.22%)
  • Russell 2000- 1100.36 (+1.52%)

European Markets

  • EURO STOXX 50 Price EUR- 3,100.67 (+2.34%)
  • FTSE 100 Index- 6,061.61 (+2.58%)
  • Deutsche Borse AG German Stock Index DAX- 9,660.44 (+2.22%)

Asia-Pacific Markets

  • Nikkei 225- 17,388.15 (+2.70%)
  • Hong Kong Hang Seng Index- 20,846.30 (+1.41%)
  • Shanghai Shenzhen CSI 300 Index- 3,202.95 (+0.76%)

Stocks in Focus

Gap declined more than 5% to $28.50 per share. Stefan Larsson, the current global president of the company’s Old Navy brand, will step down from his position on October 2. Larsson will join as CEO of Ralph Lauren.

The stock price of Synaptics surged more than 27% to $82.46 per share. The custom-designed human interface solutions developer was considered by Trade Ideas LLC as a “barbarian at the gate” candidate. TheStreet Quant Ratings recommended a Buy rating on the stock.

Rentrak Corporation gained more than 24% to $54.07 per share. The company signed a stock-for-stock merger agreement with comScore to create a leading cross-platform measurement company. Wunderlich analyst Matthew Harrigan maintained a Buy rating for Rentrak shares with a $72 price target.

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