Mid-Day Report

The markets traded mixed during the midday as credit concerns tempered reports of upbeat holiday sales. The Dow rose 23 points to 13,003 while Nasdaq slipped 2 points to 2595.

On the upside

Fuwei Films (Nasdaq: FFHL) elected three new directors to its board.

SkillSoft (Nasdaq: SKIL) reported third quarter earnings that surpassed expectations as revenue rose.

Excel Maritime Carriers' (NYSE: EXM) CEO will join the chief executives of two other drybulk shipping firms to discuss industry trends.

On the downside

In order to protect itself from further mortgage defaults, Franklin Bank (Nasdaq: FBTX) will increase its loan loss reserves by another $20 million.

Friedman Billings Ramsey downgraded First Marblehead (NYSE: FMD) over concerns that The Education Resources Institute's ability to cover student loan losses is limited.

Medivation (Nasdaq: MDVN) reported a loss for the third quarter.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 9 to 7 on the NYSE and by more than 8 to 5 on Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 4 points to 751.

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