Thanks to Cease-Fire Announcement, US Stocks Increase

The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index has seen an increase for the 4th straight day, thereby helping the US stocks as well. The cease-fire announcement between Palestine and Israel has helped this climb a lot. The cease-fire decision was announced by the Foreign Minister of Egypt, Mohamed Amr and US Foreign Secretary Hillary Clinton.

After seeing a down of 12% yesterday, Hewlett-Packard Co. saw an increase on Wednesday of 2.5%. However, the largest agricultural equipment maker, Deere & Co. saw a decline of 3.8% in its share prices. The recently reported earnings of the company were below the initial estimates done by analysts and that may have generated negative sentiment among investors.

The S&P 500 Index saw a rise of 0.2% and is at 1390.97 currently. Incidentally, over the course of last 3 days, the index increased by 2.6% mainly being helped by the better than expected housing data of US and Obama’s announcement of possible budget agreement with the Congress. The Dow Jones Industrial Average, on the other hand, also saw an increase of 55.87 points and is at 12844.38. The US market will not operate on Thursday, it being the Thanksgiving holiday.

According to the Senior Analyst of RidgeWorth Capital Management, Alan Gayle, the cease-fire does not assure investors a fix of this issue. But, at least, for the time being, it’s positive news as the investors will know that the negotiations are still being continued. Incidentally, after a weeklong missile attacks and air strikes, Palestine based militant group Hamas and Israel decided to halt the same.

According to the Chief Investment Strategist of Charles Schwab Corp., Liz Ann Sonders, the US economy has got some elements of further strength and if the upcoming fiscal cliff can be properly handled, the largest economy in the world will only grow in 2013.

The biggest customer-management software maker, Inc. saw a rise of 7.9% in the share prices. The company recently announced that its profits and sales are in line with the projections and that helped the company big time. Marc Benioff, the Chief Executive Officer of the company is going to sign biggest enterprise agreements thereby giving customers broader access to the software of Salesforce. During the Dreamforce conference which concluded in September, this proposal was undertaken. This decision is expected to help Salesforce stave off from its biggest competitors such as Oracle Corp., SAP AG and Microsoft Corp. These companies off late have started to offer business management tools in an attempt to gain foothold in an area where Salesforce initially pioneered.

Vivus Inc., the maker of the Qsymia weight-loss medicine, saw jump of 13% in the share prices. A share of the company is priced at $11.65 now and as Aetna Inc. decided to clear the coverage proposal of the obesity treatment, the company is expected to show further improvements.

Among others, HP rallied 2.5% to get to $12 currently. This is a good comeback by the company after the stocks plunged yesterday. DELL shares plummeted by 3.8% and is at $82.75 currently. The company recently announced that they expect the farm-equipment sales to stay similar to that of 2012 in 2013 for Asia region. However, it may decrease a little in the Europe. DELL intends to expand the share sales by 50% outside US and Canada within 2018 and this report will serve as a blow to this.

Zale Corp. which operates Piercing Pagoda Jewelry and Zales saw its shares tumble by 28% as it reported a huge loss. St. Jude Medical Inc. share prices also went down by 14%. The US Government inspectors recently criticized the company for using faulty methods to test the Durata cables used for defibrillators. Lawrence Biegelsen, an analyst for Wells Fargo & Co. rightfully stated that it will be tough for St. Jude Medical Inc. to regain back both customer and investor confidence. Even if they are able to do so, that will take time.