After Monday's late-day stock market rout, major indices on Tuesday gained and ended at session highs following Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke's first day of Congressional testimony and a slew of upbeat economic data, including housing numbers and consumer confidence. All S&P sectors were higher, with energy and materials leading, and the VIX (VIX) fell near 17 after soaring 34% to near 19 on Monday.
Here is a closing-bell look at the individual stocks we focused on in the premarket on Tuesday.
Bigger is doing better in the home improvement business. Home Depot (HD) posted quarterly earnings Tuesday that cast a shadow on Lowe's (LOW), which reported yesterday. The chain says it earned 68 cents a share, beating estimates by 3 cents. Shares ended the day up 2%.
HD also announced it will raise its dividend by 34% to 50 cents a share. The company also announced a massive new $17 billion share repurchase authorization. The report quickly sent shares soaring more than 5%. Home Depot has been on a steady climb for much of the past year.
Zynga (ZNGA) took a negative turn on Tuesday after rising nearly 4% in premarket trading. Zynga stands to benefit from a new law allowing internet gambling in Nevada, as well as a forthcoming one in New Jersey. Shares gained close to 8% Monday but ended the day on Tuesday down 2%.
Macy's (M) has seen a sales surge thanks to online shoppers. The chain says its online receipts were up an impressive 48% in the last quarter. The country's second-largest department store chain beat estimates when it released its quarterly report ahead of the opening bell. At one point shares were trading 4.6% higher, but they lost some ground and ended the trading day up 2%.
Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia
Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia (MSO) may need to get its house in order. The company says net income fell 74% during the fourth quarter. The Martha Stewart empire is struggling with weak results in both its publishing and broadcasting divisions. Overall the company earned $1.1 million, or 2 cents a share. On Tuesday shares ended down 5%.