Retail Sales Rise But Homebuilder Sentiment Falls, Markets Open Mixed

The markets opened mixed with the Dow gaining 54 points to 12,904 while Nasdaq dropped 25 points to 2985 as a drop in homebuilder sentiment tempered enthusiasm over rising retail sales.

On the upside

Lee Equity Partners will take Edelman Financial Group (Nasdaq: EF) private in deal valued at approximately $258 million.

Merck (NYSE: MRK) and Endocyte (Nasdaq: ECYT) will jointly develop and commercialize Endocyte's late stage cancer drug candidate EC145.

Sequenom (Nasdaq: SQNM) reported that total test volumes exceeded goals and increased its full year volume goal for the MaterniT21 PLUS LDTs.

On the downside

The Food and Drug Administration requested additional information in order to complete its review of Baxter International's (NYSE: BAX) and Halozyme Therapeutics' (Nasdaq: HALO) HyQ Biologics License Application.

Mattel (Nasdaq: MAT) disappointed with sharply lower first quarter earnings that missed analyst estimates as revenue fell.

Shares of Pendrell (Nasdaq: PCO) continued falling after an appeals court overturned a jury award of $603 million.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of 9 to 7 on the NYSE and by more than 5 to 3 on Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks fell 4 points to 791.

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