Stock Market Today, Dec. 30: In the second-to-last trading day of the year, stocks are fairly flat except for some double-digit movers in the consumer and biotech sectors, like Crocs Inc. (Nasdaq: CROX) stock.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average today clutched a small gain of 25 points while both the Standard & Poor's 500 and Nasdaq Composite Index ended in the red. They fell about 0.02% and 0.06%, respectively.
U.S. stocks are kicking this week off on a sanguine note, even as the National Association of Realtors reports a slight increase in U.S. home sales in November, the first increase in six months. Home sales index of pending home sales increased 0.2% to 101.7 from 101.5 in October, although the index is lower than the 103.3 in November 2012. The NAR also reported that October sales were less than first reported, down 1.2%.
Light, sweet crude oil for February is down about $0.40 at $99.92 per barrel. Heating oil for February delivery is also down a bit at $3.08 per gallon. Metal futures are also down today, with February gold dropping 0.7% to $1,206 an ounce, while March silver slipped 1.7% to $19.71 an ounce.
Consumer Stocks: Crocs (CROX) Stock Zooms on Blackstone Investment
In the consumer sector today, Crocs Inc. (Nasdaq: CROX) is up a solid 21% after it said its board approved several measures, including an increase to its stock buyback program to $350 million. Crocs also approved a pact with private equity firm Blackstone Group LP (NYSE: BX) for the PE company to buy $200 million in convertible preferred stock.
The company reaffirmed its fourth-quarter outlook at the low end of its guidance, saying it expects revenue of about $220 million and a loss of $0.23 per share. And Crocs Chief Executive Officer John McCarvel will retire as president, CEO, and board member in April.
Blackstone shares seemed buoyant on the news as well, at first. Shares rose about 2% before ending the day down 0.16%. They marked a new 52-week high intraday at $31.94.
In other major consumer stocks news today…