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Stocks Lower After Housing Data, M&A News

Jeremy Glaser

U.S. Market
Stocks were lower this morning after disappointing housing data.

Pending home sales fell 1.1% in June from May levels according to the National Association of Realtors. Economists had expected pending sales to rise 0.5% in the month. Sales were down 7.3% year-over-year.

At midday the Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq were down 0.1%, 0.2% and 0.4% respectively.

Stocks on the Move
M&A activity was in the spotlight this morning.

Dollar Tree (DLTR) is purchasing Family Dollar (FDO) at an enterprise value of $9.2 billion. The $74.50 a share offer represents a 23% premium over Family Dollar’s previous close price. Activist investor Carl Icahn had amassed a stake in Family Dollar and had been pushing for a sale of the firm. Dollar Tree shares were up 3.5% while Family Dollar shares climbed 22% on the news.

Zillow (Z) said that it was purchasing real-estate website rival Trulia (TRLA) for $3.5 billion. Management expects the deal to close sometime in 2015. Zillow shares fell 3.5% on the report while Trulia shares soared 12%.

Foreign Markets
European markets were mixed today. In late trading the Paris CAC was up 0.3%, the FTSE 100 was down 0.1% while Germany’s DAX was off 0.5%.

Asian shares were higher. The Nikkei 225, Hang Seng and Shanghai Composite were up 0.5%, 0.9% and 2.4% respectively.