Following the market opening Wednesday, the Dow traded up 0.94 percent to 24,511.54 while the NASDAQ climbed 0.49 percent to 7,598.76. The S&P also rose, gaining 0.72 percent to 2,742.78.

Leading and Lagging Sectors;

Wednesday morning, the energy shares surged 2.01 percent. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included Seadrill Limited SDRL 11.71% up 11 percent, and Ensco plc ESV 9.54% up 10 percent.

In trading on Wednesday, health care shares rose by just 0.2 percent.

Top Headline;

Conagra Brands Inc CAG 6.7% confirmed Wednesday morning it has reached an agreement to acquire Pinnacle Foods Inc PF 3.95% for $8.1 billion, or $10.9 billion including debt.

Conagra, the parent company of multiple food brands including Pam cooking spray and Hebrew National hot dogs, will pay Pinnacle shareholders $43.11 per share in cash plus 0.6494 shares of Conagra common stock for each share of Pinnacle Foods held. The deal implies a value of $68 per Pinnacle Foods share, which is a slight premium to Tuesday’s closing price of $67.86.

Equities Trading UP;

Cara Therapeutics, Inc. CARA 23.48% shares shot up 24 percent to $20.39 after management reported positive top-line data for a drug candidate. A Phase 2/3 trial of intravenous CR845 in abdominal surgery patients achieved primary endpoints for pain relief and secondary endpoints for nausea and vomiting reduction.

Shares of Galectin Therapeutics, Inc. GALT 17.6% got a boost, shooting up 16 percent to $7.24 after the company disclosed that it has received a patent for GR-MD-02 for the method and treatment of pulmonary fibrosis.

Arcadia Biosciences, Inc. RKDA 10.76% shares were also up, gaining 10 percent to $8.62 after the company and Farmer’s Business Network announced partnership for Arcadia’s GoodWheat.

 

Equities Trading DOWN;

Aquinox Pharmaceuticals, Inc. AQXP 84.24% shares dropped 85 percent to $2.37 following news that AQX-1125 trial failed to meet primary endpoint.

Shares of Summit Therapeutics plc SMMT 80% were down 81 percent to $2.45 after the company disclosed that its PhaseOut Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy failed to meet primary endpoint.

Pain Therapeutics, Inc. PTIE 71.16% was down, falling around 71 percent to $2.46 after the company confirmed a 14-3 vote against approval for REMOXY by a FDA panel.

 

Commodities;

In commodity news, oil traded up 1.91 percent to $71.88 while gold traded down 0.35 percent to $1,255.50.

Silver traded down 0.71 percent Wednesday to $16.135, while copper fell 0.02 to $3.015.

Eurozone;

European shares were higher today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 gained 1 percent, the Spanish Ibex Index rose 0.53 percent, while Italy’s FTSE MIB Index climbed 1.16 percent. Meanwhile the German DAX climbed 1.29 percent, and the French CAC 40 surged 1.38 percent while U.K. shares rose 1.23 percent.

Economics;

U.S. durable goods orders dropped 0.6 percent for May.

The trade deficit in goods shrank 3.7 percent to $64.8 billion in May. However, economists were expecting a $69.2 billion deficit..

The pending home sales index fell 0.5 percent to a reading of 105.9 for May.

The Energy Information Administration’s weekly report on petroleum inventories in the U.S. will be released at 10:30 a.m. ET.

Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Randal Quarles is set to speak in Sun Valley, Idaho at 11:00 a.m. ET.

Boston Federal Reserve Bank President Eric Rosengren will speak in Boston at 12:15 p.m. ET.

The Treasury is set to auction 5-year notes at 1:00 p.m. ET.