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The Markets Now: Caterpillar Shares Rise on Earnings, Apple Jumps 2.41%

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Economic news today was mixed after the release of a negative home sales report and positive durable goods and Dallas Fed business activity reports

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Stocks initially rose on the heels of a positive earnings report from Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT) but slid later Monday morning.

Economic news was mixed after the release of a negative home sales report and positive durable goods and Dallas Fed business activity reports.

Durable goods orders in December went up 4.6% after an increase of 0.07% in November, driven in part by increased demand for aircraft. The Dallas Fed general business activity index rose to 5.5, beating the consensus of 4.0.

The pending home sales index fell 4.3% last month due to a smaller supply of homes available for sale, which has pushed up prices and discouraged buying.

The Dow (INDEXDJX:.DJI) declined 0.13% to 13877.95; the S&P 500 (INDEXSP:.INX) fell to 1500.41, down 0.17%; and the Nasdaq (INDEXNASDAQ:.IXIC) inched up 0.14% to 3154.04.

Caterpillar earned $8.90 per share, up from $7.40 per share last year, but the construction equipment manufacturer is concerned that China's economy will not grow at the same pace as it did in 2011 and 2010.

Toyota (NYSE:TM) outsold General Motors (NYSE:GM) in 2012, allowing for a 23% increase in global sales. Shares declined, however, to $94.96, down 1.19%.

Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) bounced back to $450.86, up 2.41% after steady declines last week after its earnings report.

Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) announced it will sell a $1 billion stake in the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China. Shares edged up 22% to $144.78.

Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) shares moved up 2.69% to $32.39 after its stock was upgraded to outperform from market perform by Raymond James.

Furiex Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:FURX) ascended to $31.61, up 48.82% after the company announced that Takeda Pharmaceutical (TYO:4502) received Food and Drug Administration approval for some of its treatments.

Keryx Biopharmaceuticals' (NASDAQ:KERX) new drug Zerenex met the end-point in the long-term phase 3 study, causing the stock to rally 43.44% to $4.92.

Sony (NYSE:SNE) rejoiced at the news that the Chinese government is considering lifting the ban on gaming consoles. Shares rose 3.05% to $14.85.

Transocean LTD (NYSE:RIG) shares surged 2.73% to $58.31 after activist investor Carl Icahn bought more stake in the company. He now has a 5.6% stake in the company.

Biogen Idec (NASDAQ:BIIB) ascended 3.22% to $150.90, despite missing expectations in its fourth-quarter earnings of $1.40, $0.06 lower than analyst estimates. The company's tax expense also went up by $12 million after correcting an accounting mistake in its Denmark facility.

Yahoo's (NASDAQ:YHOO) fourth-quarter earnings will be released after the closing bell. Analysts expect earnings of $0.28 per share. Today shares inched up 0.20% to $20.41.

The hard disk drive maker Seagate Technology (NASDAQ:STX) is expected to post an earnings per share of $1.27, down 4% from last year. Shares rose 1.15% to $37.68.

Analysts predict that VMware (NYSE:VMW) will have a positive fourth quarter with earnings of $0.78 per share after customer acquisition sales grew higher than expected. The stock fell 0.15% to $98.83.

In commodity futures, crude oil's last price fell 0.07 to 95.81 and gold's last price went up 0.4 to 1659.2.

No positions in stocks mentioned.
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