The stock market continued to gain ground on Tuesday, with major benchmarks finishing the day with modest advances. Wall Street got a lift from positive comments from billionaire investor Warren Buffett, who said that as long as interest rates remain at relatively low levels, current valuations across the broader stock market "make sense." In addition, positive news from several companies helped improve the mood among investors. Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL), Manhattan Associates (NASDAQ:MANH), and Diana Shipping (NYSE:DSX) were among the best performers on the day. Below, we'll look more closely at these stocks to tell you why they did so well.
Delta flies higher
Shares of Delta Air Lines gained almost 7% after the airline giant gave its latest performance numbers for September. Delta said that Hurricane Irma led to the cancellation of 2,200 flights across the Southeast, costing the company about $120 million. Yet the airline still believes that operating margin will come in between 15.5% and 16.5% for the September quarter. That's worse than Delta anticipated early last month before Irma hit, but investors were generally pleased with how well Delta managed to weather the storm. Moreover, with prospects for fare increases being able to hold due to industrywide negative impacts from recent hurricanes, Delta is taking the long view that overall profitability should benefit.
Manhattan gets a favorable look
Manhattan Associates stock picked up 9% in the wake of positive comments from a stock analyst company. Analysts at SunTrust Robinson Humphrey upgraded shares of the supply chain management software maker from hold to buy, citing the growth potential from Manhattan's cloud-based platforms. SunTrust also boosted its share price target by $11 to $55 per share. After having seen some sluggish results recently, Manhattan has its shareholders hoping that the company can take advantage of generally improving economic conditions and help more clients modernize their supply chain infrastructure.
Diana lands a big contract
Finally, shares of Diana Shipping rose nearly 11%. The global shipping company said that it had entered into a time charter contract with Glencore Agriculture for an Ice Class Panamax dry bulk vessel for $11,100 per day. That's a big improvement from the current charter for $6,250 per day, and the new agreement will last between 12 and 15 months. Those following the shipping industry have waited for the market to bottom out, and the fact that new charters are coming in at higher prices rather than lower ones is a good sign that the long-anticipated turnaround could finally be here.