Trade Deficit Drops, Markets Soar

The markets extended its gains during the midday with the Dow soaring 110 points to 14,811 as the nation's trade deficit dropped 11% in March. Nasdaq surged 36 points to 3335.

On the upside

Renewable Energy Group (Nasdaq: REGI) reported sharply higher first quarter earnings as biodiesel demand increased.

Beazer Homes (NYSE: BZH) narrowed second quarter losses as revenue climbed to surpass expectations.

First quarter earnings slipped for Monster Worldwide (NYSE: MWW) due to a weak job market but the results met analyst expectations and the online recruitment company announced plans to repurchase shares if efforts to find a buyer fail.

On the downside

Brocade Communications Systems (Nasdaq: BRCD) reported preliminary second quarter earnings and revenue that fell below its previous guidance.

Alpha Natural Resources (NYSE: ANR) widened first quarter losses as revenue dropped.

Walter Energy (NYSE: WLT) narrowed first quarter losses but revenue tumbled to fall short of expectations.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 5 to 2 on the NYSE and by nearly 7 to 2 on Nasdaq. The broader S&P 500 index climbed 13 points to 1596.

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