Despite a drop in initial applications for unemployment benefits, the markets closed modestly lower with the Dow slipping 15 points to 11,569 as mortgage rates rose. Nasdaq lost 3 points to 2662.
On the upside
Analysts expect International Coal (NYSE: ICO) to post a profit for the fourth quarter of 8 cents per share compared with a loss of 7 cents per share a year earlier and forecast a 23% surge in the stock.
Shares of Rio Tinto (NYSE: RIO) are expected to soar 37% in 2011.
DARA Biosciences (Nasdaq: DARA) announced an agreement for the sale of convertible preferred stock and warrants to purchase common stock to certain investors.
On the downside
Bloomberg reported that a surge yesterday in put-option volume for Zale (NYSE: ZLC) indicated that investors expect the jewelry retailer's price to drop.
Shares of Suntech Power (NYSE: STP) continued falling over concerns that more solar subsidies will end.
TheStreet.com listed Fortress Investment Group (NYSE: FIG) as a top 10 financial stock pick for 2011 but the stock price fell.
In the broad market, advancing issues edged out decliners by a slim margin on the NYSE while decliners outpaced advancers by more than 10 to 9 on Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks eased a fraction to 789.
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