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Wall Street Declines on Weak Economic Data

- By Omar Venerio

U.S. market indexes were mostly lower on Thursday as retail sales declined by the largest amount in 10 years. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.11% to 25,516, the S&P 500 index slid 0.03% to 2,752 and the Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 0.26% to 7,439.

Shares of CF Industries Holdings Inc. (CF) gained more than 1% after the company announced fourth-quarter results on Wednesday morning. Revenue grew 2.7% from the prior-year quarter to $1.13 billion, falling $110 million short of analysts' expectations. Earnings of 21 cents per share also fell short of estimates by 23 cents.

"We delivered strong results in 2018, as higher global nitrogen prices and lower natural gas costs drove a 45 percent increase in adjusted EBITDA compared to 2017," President and CEO Tony Will said.

For the full year, net earnings reached $290 million, or $1.24 per diluted share. The company recorded $1.43 billion in earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization and an adjusted EBITDA of $1.4 billion.

Looking ahead, the company expects strong nitrogen fertilizer demand during the first six months of 2019 in the U.S. and international markets such as India and Brazil.

Guru investor Ray Dalio (Trades, Portfolio) opened a new 25,614-share position in the fourth quarter of 2018. Ken Fisher (Trades, Portfolio) and Jim Simons (Trades, Portfolio) also added to their holdings.


  • Marathon Oil Corp. (MRO)
  • Vulcan Materials Co. (VMC)
  • Equinix Inc. (EQIX)
  • Zoetis Inc. (ZTS)
  • DISH Network Corp. (DISH)
  • Electronic Arts Inc. (EA)


  • CenturyLink Inc. (CTL)
  • Coca-Cola Co. (KO)
  • NetApp Inc. (NTAP)
  • Quest Diagnostics Inc. (DGX)
  • General Electric Co. (GE)

Global markets

The main European stock markets traded mostly lower. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 gained 0.09%, France's CAC 40 fell 0.23%, Germany's Dax slid 0.69% and Spain's IBEX 35 dipped 0.33%.

In Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 fell 0.02%, India's BSE Sensex slid 0.44%, Hong Kong's Hang Seng lost 0.23% and China's Shanghai Composite declined 0.05%.

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

This article first appeared on GuruFocus.