Is a Dow Correction Imminent? Merck Says No

Watch stocks you care about

The single, easiest way to keep track of all the stocks that matter...

Your own personalized stock watchlist!

It's a 100% FREE Motley Fool service...

Click Here Now

For once, the stock market wasn't able to recover from its losses, as the Dow Jones Industrials (DJINDICES: ^DJI  ) backed off from their record highs yesterday in giving up 112 points. After a fairly long string of favorable data on the U.S. economy recently, today's news of sluggish growth in the services sector and in the private job market seemed much more consistent with the signs of weakness we've seen internationally. With commodity stocks in particular getting hit hard today, fears that the recovery in the U.S. may be the best the world has to offer in terms of growth could hold back the stock market for a while.

In the meantime, though, some story stocks will still buck the downward bias and head higher. Merck (NYSE: MRK  ) climbed 1% as it released a favorable study of its insomnia drug suvorexant. The study argues that Merck's drug could help patients avoid some side effects of existing insomnia drugs because suvorexant targets a different set of neurotransmitters. If Merck can differentiate suvorexant from existing medications, the company could gain a key competitive advantage if the drug gains FDA approval.

Elsewhere, Zynga (NASDAQ: ZNGA  ) soared 15% as it went forward with its plans to offer online gambling. With the launch of ZyngaPlusCasino and ZyngaPlusPoker in the U.K., Zynga partnered with Party Poker operator The real test for Zynga will come later if online gambling becomes legal in the U.S., but for now, investors seem satisfied that the social gaming giant will be able to monetize at least some of its customer base.

Finally, Latin American telecom NII Holdings (NASDAQOTH: NIHDQ  ) jumped more than 21%. With reports that Chile's Entel wants to buy out NII's Peruvian business for $500 million, investors are excited that NII appears to be following through on its strategy of selling off non-core assets to focus on the stronger Mexican and Brazilian markets. Cash from the sales will go a long way toward capital expenditures designed to boost the company's presence in these key markets, and if these reports prove true, the sale of the Peru business marks an important first step.

Even with suvorexant's successful study, Merck continues to battle patent expirations and pipeline problems. Is Merck still a solid dividend play, or should investors be looking elsewhere? In a new premium research report on Merck, the Fool tackles all of the company's moving parts, its major market opportunities, and reasons to both buy and sell. To find out more, click here to claim your copy today.

Read/Post Comments (0) | Recommend This Article (6)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

Be the first one to comment on this article.

Compare Brokers

Fool Disclosure

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 2345424, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 9/24/2016 8:23:33 PM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...

Today's Market

updated 23 hours ago Sponsored by:
DOW 18,261.45 -131.01 -0.71%
S&P 500 2,164.69 -12.49 -0.57%
NASD 5,305.75 -33.78 -0.63%

Create My Watchlist

Go to My Watchlist

You don't seem to be following any stocks yet!

Better investing starts with a watchlist. Now you can create a personalized watchlist and get immediate access to the personalized information you need to make successful investing decisions.

Data delayed up to 5 minutes

Related Tickers

9/23/2016 4:55 PM
^DJI $18261.45 Down -131.01 -0.71%
MRK $62.96 Down -0.06 -0.10%
Merck and Co. CAPS Rating: ****
NIHDQ $0.00 Down +0.00 +0.00%
NII Holdings, Inc. CAPS Rating: **
ZNGA $2.84 Down +0.00 +0.00%
Zynga CAPS Rating: *