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US Markets Decline on Friday

- By Omar Venerio

U.S. stocks were in negative territory on Friday morning on weak labor market data. The U.S. added 20,000 non-farm payrolls, while the unemployment rate fell to 3.8%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 0.67% to 25,301, the S&P 500 index slid 0.86% to 2,725, while the Nasdaq Composite Index fell 0.80% to 7,361.

Shares of Big Lots Inc. (BIG) jumped nearly 12% on Friday morning after the company announced fourth-quarter results. Revenue declined 2.4% from the prior-year quarter to $1.6 billion, in line with expectations. Earnings were $2.68 per share, beating analysts' estimates by 38 cents.


"After a slow start to the quarter, we experienced meaningful sales acceleration in December and January, driving fourth-quarter sales and earnings above the high end of our guidance," President and CEO Bruce Thorn said .

Comparable store sales rose 3.1%, exceeding the previous guidance of flat to 2% growth.

Further, the company returned $151 million to shareholders via dividends and share repurchases.

Looking ahead to fiscal 2019, Big Lots projects adjusted earnings between $3.55 and $3.75 per diluted share on a non-GAAP basis. It also guided for cash flow in the range of $95 million to $105 million.

Gainers

  • Costco Wholesale Corp. (COST)
  • Seagate Technology PLC (STX)
  • Gilead Sciences Inc. (GILD)
  • Coty Inc. (COTY)
  • Discovery Inc. (DISCA)



Losers

  • Devon Energy Corp. (DVN)
  • EOG Resources Inc. (EOG)
  • Apache Corp. (APA)
  • Marathon Oil Corp. (MRO)
  • ConocoPhillips (COP)



Global markets

The main European stock markets traded lower. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 lost 0.74%, France's CAC 40 declined 0.70%, Germany's Dax fell 0.52% and Spain's IBEX 35 slid 1.30%.


In Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 tumbled 2.01%, India's BSE Sensex declined 0.15%, Hong Kong's Hang Seng retreated 1.91% and China's Shanghai Composite plummeted 4.40%.


Disclosure: The author holds no positions in any stocks mentioned.

This article first appeared on GuruFocus.