US SMALL/MIDCAPS-Midcaps see strong week; Big 5 shares sag

NEW YORK, July 9 (BestGrowthStock) – Midcap stocks were on track
for their best week in nine months on Friday, boosted by
financial and resource shares, while small-cap Big 5 Sporting
Goods slid after it cut its outlook.

Eaton Vance Corp (EV.N: ) helped boost midcap financials
after JPMorgan Securities raised its rating on the company to
“neutral” from “overweight,” sending the asset manager’s shares
up 3.3 percent to $30.29. For details, see [ID:nSGE6680FG]

Resource and industrial companies also led the S&P MidCap
400 index index higher, with Louisiana Pacific Corp (LPX.N: )
climbing 5.2 percent to $7.51 and United Rentals Inc (URI.N: )
rising 4.5 percent to $9.51.

The strength of those economically sensitive sectors could
indicate investors are feeling more optimistic, said
Lawrence Creatura, portfolio manager at Federated Clover
Investment Advisors in Rochester, New York.

“Because there’s more operating leverage in the financials
of smaller companies, if investors are bidding up the stocks,
that may imply the economy is relatively better than it had
been in the prior weeks,” said Creatura, though he said more
than one week would be needed to make a trend.

The S&P MidCap 400 index (.MID: ) rose 0.8 percent and the
S&P SmallCap 600 index (.SML: ) advanced 0.9 percent. In
comparison, the broader S&P 500 (.SPX: ) added 0.6 percent.

For the week, midcaps gained 5 percent, on track for the
best week for the index since October 2009. Small caps rose 4.2
percent, their best week since mid-May.

On the downside, shares Big 5 Sporting Goods Corp (BGFV.O: )
lost nearly 5 percent after the sporting goods retailer cut its
earnings view for the second quarter on weak sales for summer
products. Big 5 was down 4.3 percent at $11.49.

Hair salon operator Regis Corp (RGS.N: ) tumbled after its
quarterly profit missed expectations. The midcap was down 11.1
percent at $13.98. [ID:nSGE6680DX]
(Reporting by Leah Schnurr; Editing by Padraic Cassidy)

US SMALL/MIDCAPS-Midcaps see strong week; Big 5 shares sag