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Markets Close Slightly in Green; L Brands (LB) Up 17.7% on Big Earnings

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Market trading activity today was almost a mirror image of Wednesday: starting out in the red on a jump in Initial Jobless Claims and the case-rate of Covid-19 in almost every state in the U.S., but churning higher as the day progressed, with the Down and S&P 500 closing near session highs. The Nasdaq led the way, up 0.87%, while the S&P 500 rose 0.39% and the Dow registering +0.15%. It wasn’t a blockbuster trading day, and the markets are still on target for a down-week. But we’re closer to break-even with one trading day left to go.

Beleaguered retail conglomerate L Brands (LB - Free Report) rose 17.6% on the day following its huge earnings beat before the market opened this morning. Strength in its Bath & Body Works business joined improvements in its Victoria’s Secret line. The Energy sector also performed well, up 1.5% on the day on strength in oil prices, with Halliburton (HAL - Free Report) rising 4%. Information Technology and Consumer Discretionary sectors continue to lead, as they have over the past year.

Enterprise software solutions provider Workday (WDAY - Free Report) is also up 4% in after-hour trading Thursday, with earnings of 86 cents per share well ahead of the 67 cents in the Zacks consensus on $1.11 billion in revenues, which also beat consensus and demonstrated growth of 18% year over year. Momentum in its core Financial Management segment continued; the company now counts over 1000 customers in the space. The company also guided higher on Q4 subscriptions. For more on WDAY’s earnings, click here.

After the market closed Thursday, the U.S. government has decided to cancel any extension of five CARES Act lending programs, including Main Street Lending, Corporate Bond Purchases and Municipal Bond Purchases. These were programs Fed Chair Jay Powell had earlier expressed strong interest in seeing continue; apparently the White House disagrees. Further, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin has requested the Fed return as-yet unused funds allotted by the CARES Act. Main Street Lending particularly assist small- and mid-sized businesses struck hard by coronavirus. These programs now appear to have been expired by the end of 2020.

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Halliburton Company (HAL) - free report >>

Workday, Inc. (WDAY) - free report >>

L Brands, Inc. (LB) - free report >>