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Midday Market Update

Stocks Mixed; Earnings, Data Eyed

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U.S. Market    
Stocks were mixed at midday on account of corporate earnings reports and economic data. The story could be the same for much of the week as earnings releases will continue to flow and government entities will release backlogged economic data following the government's reopening last week. 

Existing-home sales dropped to 1.9% for last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.29 million, just less than economists had expected. The August data was also revised downward. The weaker numbers were the result of rising interest rates during the summer months which discouraged home-buying activity as mortgages became higher-cost. 

The Dow was down by 0.1% at midday, while the Nasdaq was up by 0.2%. The S&P 500 was flat. 

Stocks on the Move
During the weekend,  J.P. Morgan Chase (JPM) reportedly reached a tentative settlement, valued at $13 billion, with the U.S. Justice Department stemming from investigations of the bank's mortgage-backed securities operations. J.P. Morgan is seeking to resolve its issues with federal regulars relating to this, its London Whale ordeal, and other grievances against the company. Shares were 0.3% lower at midday. 

 McDonald's (MCD) posted a 4.6% year-over-year gain in third-quarter profit to $1.52 billion along with a 2.4% increase in revenue. Each reading was slightly ahead of Wall Street expectations. Although same-store sales fell in the firm's Asia/Pacific, Middle East, and Africa operations, such sales improved in the United States. Shares, however, were down by 0.6% at midday. 

 Halliburton (HAL) reported a 17% gain in third-quarter earnings and a 5.1% increase in revenue. However, a relatively larger exposure than peers to the pressure-pumping market meant that the recent Colorado floods hurt the company's North American results.  Internationally, Halliburton delivered much better numbers, with 13% year-over-year revenue growth to $3.6 billion and margins of 16%, a 230-basis-point sequential improvement. Shares were 1.8% lower at midday. 

Foreign Markets
Stocks in Asia were higher Monday. The Shanghai Composite rose by 1.6%. The Nikkei 225 was 0.9% higher, and the Hang Seng was up by 0.4%. 

In Europe, the FTSE 100 gained 0.5%, the DAX was flat, and the Paris CAC fell by 0.2%. 

Kevin O'Shaughnessy does not own (actual or beneficial) shares in any of the securities mentioned above. Find out about Morningstar’s editorial policies.