What Happened in the Stock Market Today

By Demitrios Kalogeropoulos Markets Fool.com

A late-day surge helped stocks close Friday with gains, as both the Dow Jones Industrial Average(DJINDICES: ^DJI) and the S&P 500 (SNPINDEX: ^GSPC) indexes finished higher by more than 0.25%.

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Today's stock market

Index

Percentage Change

Point Change

Dow

0.26%

55.47

S&P 500

0.41%

9.77

Data source: Yahoo! Finance.

Financial stocks saw some of the heaviest trading, and theFinancial Select Sector SPDR ETF (NYSEMKT: XLF) ended with a 0.17% drop. A slight uptick in gold prices, meanwhile, pushed theVanEck Vectors Gold Miners ETF(NYSEMKT: GDX)higher by 2%.

As for individual stocks, Universal Display (NASDAQ: OLED) and Revlon (NYSE: REV) attracted heavy investor interest following their quarterly earnings reports.

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Image source: Getty Images.

Universal Display sees a brighter future

Universal Display shares soared 24% after the company posted surprisingly strong quarterly results and boosted its outlook for the full year. Sales jumped 87% to $56.6 million, blowing past consensus estimates that were targeting revenue of $33.8 million. The display specialist benefited from a near-doubling of material sales, as well as a 32% spike in licensing fees as its customers, including major TV and smartphone manufacturers, ramped up investments in products that will use its technologies. Net income improved to $10.4 million from $1.9 million a year ago.

"It is an exciting time for the OLED industry," CEO Sidney Rosenblatt said in a press release. "We are encouraged by the momentum that we are seeing from our customers as well as from the supply chain that supports the OLED ecosystem," he continued.

That firming ecosystem gave management enough confidence to significantly raise its 2017 sales guidance. Revenue is now expected to be between $260 million and $280 million, which translates into growth of 30% to 40%. Its prior official forecast range was $230 million to $250 million, and so Wall Street scrambled to account for the accelerated growth potential by sending shares sharply higher.

Revlon stumbles in its biggest market

Shares of beauty product specialist Revlon plummeted 23.5% following the company's release of its fiscal first-quarter earnings report. The company revealed sharply lower retailing trends for its products in the core U.S. market, which led to a 5.8% overall sales decline. Revlon generated a net loss of $37.4 million in the period as adjusted gross margin fell to 58% from 60%. Sales in the U.S. dove 19% even as international markets logged 10% gains.

Image source: Getty Images.

Executives blamed weakening demand in core beauty categories across both the mass retail and prestige segments, but were encouraged that their share of the market held steady. "While we are disappointed with our U.S. results," CEO Fabian Garcia said in a press release, "our brands continue to achieve strong international net sales growth across all segments and despite the U.S. retail environment, our iconic beauty brands have demonstrated resilience and have maintained market share in the U.S."

Revlon aims to restore the brand to sales gains in part by investing in the online channel that's grabbing all the growth right now. It also plans to double down on international expansion, especially in attractive markets in Asia and Latin America.

Finally, Revlon expects operating income to improve as its recently acquired Elizabeth Arden segment raises its profitability toward the company average. While each of those initiatives should help, it's clear that the company risks losing plenty of business as beauty shoppers shift their spending away from traditional retail locations in favor of online purchasing.

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Demitrios Kalogeropoulos has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Universal Display. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.