Mid-Morning Look: February 26, 2024

Mid-Morning Look

Monday, February 26, 2024





DJ Industrials




S&P 500








Russell 2000






U.S. stocks up slightly to kick off the week, with the S&P 500 (SPX) flattish, holding below the 5,100 level while the Nasdaq and Dow edge higher and the Russell 2000 Smallcap outperforms after declining again last week. We head into the last meaningful earnings week of the quarter, but the attention all leans toward economic data mid-to-end of week with the Q4 GDP results expected and then the PCE/Core PCE inflation readings late week. Treasury yields popping early as the 10-yr moves back to 4.28% though the dollar index (DXY) edges lower after falling for the first time this year last week. Bitcoin prices turn higher moving back above $52K while semiconductors (SOX) rise another 1% as the momentum related plays continue to hold markets higher. Consumer Discretionary and Energy among early sector leaders while Utilities, Comm, and Materials are down the most. Lone piece of US data today showed weaker New Home Sales for January. Few notable stock movers on M&A headlines and earnings (see below).

Economic Data

  • New Home Sales for January reported at 661K annual rate below est. 684k and December 651K; Jan single-family home sales +1.5% vs Dec +7.2% (prev +8.0%); Jan home sales Northeast +72.0%, Midwest +7.7%, South -15.6%, and West +38.7%; new home supply 8.3 months’ worth at current pace vs Dec 8.3 months; January median sale price $420,700, -2.6% from Jan 2023 ($432,100).






WTI Crude















10-Year Note






  • AGTI +29%; said it had agreed to be taken private by THL Partners for $1.35 billion as a unit of THL will pay $10 in cash for each share of Agiliti, representing a premium of 31% to the stock’s last close. http://tinyurl.com/5y9w2pc2
  • DPZ +6%; Q4 EPS $4.48 vs. est. $4.38; Q4 revs $1.4B vs. est. $1.42B; Q4 U.S. same store sales growth of 2.8% vs est. 2.2%; lifts dividend by 25% to $1.51 and approves additional $1B share repurchase program; said a revamp of its loyalty program and its delivery partnership with Uber Eats boosted sales.
  • FRPT +19%; forecast better-than-expected net sales and adjusted Ebitda for 2024 and as earnings per share beat Wall Street estimates.
  • HCP +11%; upgraded to overweight and raise tgt to $30 at Morgan Stanley saying their latest round of conversations show further improvement in the cloud demand environment which now appears to be benefitting HCP.
  • ITRI +14%; after Q4 sales rise 23% to $577m topping consensus and guided FY EPS well above consensus ($0.80-$0.90 vs. est. $0.57 and revs $575M-$585M vs. est. $542M).
  • LI +14%; reported better-than-expected Q4 profitability and free cash flow though guidance for Q1 revenues fell short of consensus expectations.
  • MIST +34%; after saying plans to resubmit application to U.S. FDA seeking approval for its experimental drug to treat a condition leading to abnormal heart rhythm.
  • RCM +29%; said private-equity firm New Mountain Capital, which owns a more than 32% stake, said it has proposed a buyout price of $13.75 a share in cash, a 24% premium to Friday’s closing price of $11.10. http://tinyurl.com/bd34mvpx
  • TEVA +4%: and partner ALVO said the FDA approved Simlandi injection, a biosimilar of ABBV’s blockbuster rheumatoid arthritis drug Humira; they expect to launch Simlandi in the U.S. soon.



  • AA -3%; made a $2.2B all-stock buyout proposal for its Australian joint venture partner Alumina to give them greater upstream exposure and simplify its operations; under the proposed deal, Alumina shareholders would receive 0.02854 shares of Alcoa stock for each share held, giving them a 31% stake in the combined company.
  • FDP -6%; Q4 EPS loss (-$2.22) or adj EPS loss (-$0.25) missed ests. of $0.31 and revs fell -3% y/y to $1.01B vs. $1.04B last year; raises quarterly dividend to 25c per share; banana sales dropped 6% to $379.6 million.
  • GOOGL -2%; after saying plans to relaunch "in the next couple of weeks" its AI tool that creates images of people which it paused last week following inaccuracies in some historical depictions, Google DeepMind’s CEO.
  • LUNR -20%; the space exploration firm said its Odysseus moon lander had tipped over and was resting on its side.
  • MDGL -2%; shares of NASH stocks fall (AKRO, ETNB) after Zealand Pharma Phase 2 survodutide data in Nash where a significantly greater number of patients treated with survodutide. Goldman noted the secondary endpoint of improvement in fibrosis was also met, which the firm expects will pressure names within the Nash complex.
  • MRNA -3%; downgraded to Hold from Buy at HSBC but lift tgt to $86 from $75 – says two INT Phase 3 data readouts in medium term; HSBC is skeptical, noting RSV vaccine efficacy concerns.
  • NEM -3%; and GOLD both downgraded at Argus saying given global economic uncertainty and geopolitics, gold — which is already trading near the top of its five-year range — is likely to remain in demand. That said, Argus doesn’t look for gold prices to move substantially above recent levels.


Market commentary provided by Hammerstone Markets, Inc, a firm separate from and not affiliated with Regal Securities. Regal Securities has not participated in the creation of the content, and does not explicitly or implicitly endorse the content.