Stocks Waver in Early Trade

Stocks Waver in Early Trade

NEW YORK (AP) -- Stocks are mostly unchanged in morning trading Thursday as investors sift through a handful of earnings reports. Several companies including HP and Dollar General fell after their results disappointed investors.

KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones industrial average was flat at 18,480 as of 10:30 a.m. Eastern time. The Standard & Poor's 500 index was nearly unchanged at 2,175. The Nasdaq composite slipped less than one point to 5,217.

PRINTER JAM: Computer and printer maker HP Inc. fell 70 cents, or nearly 5 percent, to $13.70 after it beat expectations for its fiscal third quarter earnings but gave an outlook for the current quarter results that disappointed.

SALES SLUMP: Dollar General dropped $11.42, or 12 percent, to $80.37 after its earnings and revenue fell short of analysts' forecasts. Signet Jewelers dropped $16.75, or nearly 18 percent, to $78.73 after its results also missed estimates.

ADRENALINE BOOST: EpiPen maker Mylan rose $1.63, or 3.8 percent, to $44.79, after two days of steep drops in the face of heated criticism over price hikes for its EpiPen emergency allergy treatment. The company announced Thursday that it is bulking up programs that help patients pay for the drug.

ORDERS INCREASE: Orders to U.S. factories for big-ticket manufactured goods surged in July, lifted in part by the biggest increase in orders in a key investment category since January. The Commerce Department says that orders for durable goods jumped 4.4 percent in July, partly due to increase in demand for commercial aircraft.

OVERSEAS: Germany's DAX dropped 1 percent after a survey showed business confidence fell unexpectedly in August. France's CAC-40 lost 0.7 and Britain's FTSE 100 fell 0.3 percent. Earlier in Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 fell 0.2 percent and Hong Kong's Hang Seng was flat.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude oil rose 19 cents to $46.96 a barrel. Brent crude, which is used to price oil internationally, rose 34 cents to $49.40 a barrel.

BONDS, CURRENCIES: U.S. government bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 1.57 percent from 1.56 percent. The dollar was flat at 100.49 yen, while the euro rose to $1.1292 from $1.1261.

(KA)