Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Stocks Do A Turnaround

The Dow worked its way into positive territory, while news reports surfaced that GM will register for its IPO later Wednesday.

Overcoming a lukewarm start, stocks worked their way into positive territory by midday trading on Wednesday.

The Dow Jones industrial average increased 0.6% to 10,462 points, the Nasdaq composite index 0.8% to 2,227 points and the S&P 500 index 0.6% to 1,098 points.

Despite the turnaround energy stocks continued to lag due to the 800,000 barrel drop in petroleum inventories last week. Exxon Mobil ( XOM - news - people ) fell 1%, Chevron ( CVX - news - people ) 0.7% and ConocoPhillips ( COP - news - people ) 0.6%, while the broader sector, as measured by the Energy Select Sector SPDR ( XLE - news - people ) exchange-traded fund, slid 0.7%.

Dell ( DELL - news - people ) founder Michael Dell was re-elected to its board, though with more than 25.1% of the votes withholding support, indicating dissatisfaction with his performance as chief executive. The vote follows Dell's announcement that it was purchasing data storage firm 3Par ( PAR - news - people ), which received a great deal of criticism, namely on account for the high premium. (See "Head In The Clouds: Dell To Buy 3Par For $1.2 billion." and "Dell Buys Money-Losing 3Par To Fluff Cloud Portfoliio.")

Despite the underwhelming support for Dell, the company's shares increased 1.7% Wednesday, while Hewlett-Packard ( HPQ - news - people ) rose 1.6%, Apple ( AAPL - news - people ) 1% and IBM ( IBM - news - people ) 1.3%.

Meanwhile, media reports surfaced that General Motors is expected to formally register for its initial public offering later on Wednesday. (See "As GM Preps For Offering, The IPO Market Is Still Sucking Wind.") Shares of peers Ford Motor ( F - news - people ), Toyota Motor ( TM - news - people ) and Honda Motor ( HMC - news - people ) all enjoyed gains by midday trading.

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