U.S. stocks are moving higher as housing starts fell in October, but building permits rose from September to October. The Federal Reserve minutes will be released today at 2 p.m. Eastern Standard Time and investors will be parsing the language for any signs of an interest rate increase in December.
The S&P 500 increased by 7 points to 2,057, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 61 points to 17,550 and the Nasdaq rose 16 points to 5,002.
Target delivered its third-quarter results with earnings per share of 86 cents, which was inline with the FactSet consensus of 86 cents. Sales came in at $17.6 billion, an increase of 2.1 percent over the same period last year and beating the FactSet consensus of $17.5 billion. Net earnings were $549 million, a 56 percent increase over last year’s $352 million. Target’s sales growth was seen in the categories of Style, Baby, Kids and Wellness. Target modestly raised its full-year guidance for earnings per share from a range of $4.60 to $4.75 to $4.65 to $4.75. The stock is down over 5 percent to $68.95 in early trading and has dropped 3.95 percent year-to-date.
Hudson Bay Company Inc. stock was up over 2 percent to 20.10 Canadian dollars, or $15.07 in today’s currency exchange. The department store chain sold $533 million worth of equity it owned in HBS Global Properties along with Simon Property Group. The investors that acquired the stakes are Ivanhoé Cambridge, Madison International Realty and a large unidentified pension fund. The proceeds will be used to pay down debt.
Sally Beauty Holdings is up over 2 percent to $25.58 after the company said it intends to sell $750 million in senior notes due 2025. The company will use the proceeds to redeem the notes that were due in 2019.
Payments processor upstart Square will be pricing its initial public offering today. The company has been called a “unicorn” for being valued at over $1 billion as a privately held company. It set a price range of between $11 and $13 when it filed to go public, which puts the valuation of the company at $4.2 billion. That sounds impressive, but it is lower than the company’s valuation when it raised capital a year ago. The stock will begin trading on Thursday and is seen as a harbinger of the values of other up-and-coming tech companies.
Dating site Match.com, owner of Tinder, OK Cupid and Plenty Of Fish, is also set the price its shares. The mobile dating site known for its swiping feature is valued at roughly $3.4 billion with shares to be priced between $12 and $14. The parent company, Barry Diller’s IAC/InterActiveCorp, will retain 98.4 percent of the voting power, making this investor match a little unpopular. In addition to that, competing dating site Hinge, which matches people through mutual friends, is becoming very popular.
Asian markets ended the day on a mixed note. China’s Shanghai Composite fell 1 percent as the government expands its investigation into the securities industry.
European markets remain on edge after a French raid on suspected militants resulted in a shootout in a town outside of Paris. The major indices are softer, but still continuing to hold up considering the level of uncertainty the countries are facing these days.