Dow Keeps Streak Alive at Eight Days, Sets New High

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"It was an extremely slow day, with the markets not really reacting to much of anything," said Schaeffer's Senior Equity Analyst Joe Bell on a day that saw the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) finish slightly up on a late rally to push its winning streak to eight days. "After an incredibly strong rally last week, the broad market indices continued their coma-like behavior as we approach mid-week. Consumer staples and health care stocks -- which are both more defensive by nature -- both displayed leadership."

Continue reading for more on today's market, including :

  • Schaeffer's Senior Trading Analyst Bryan Sapp discussing a quiet day in the markets; plus, the chart of the day on Wynn Resorts Limited ( WYNN ).
  • Schaeffer's bi-weekly look at the big moves in short interest, including companies such as US Airways Group ( LCC ), Dr Pepper Snapple Group ( DPS ), and Avon Products ( AVP ).
  • How option traders remained bullish with a new wave of call buying on NIKE, Inc. ( NKE ).
plus...
  • The Dow's win streak stays alive (albeit barely), more help wanted signs are out, and how bullish traders targeted Cisco Systems (CSCO) despite its downturn today.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) finished with a minor rally, enough to keep its eight-day winning streak alive on a day that also saw the index set its sixth straight intraday high at 14,478.80. The Dow gained nearly 3 points, or less than 0.1%, to finish at 14,450.06. The 30-member Dow saw 12 companies advance, led by Merck & Co. (MRK), which climbed 3.2%. The 17 decliners were paced by Caterpillar (CAT), which fell 1.6%. Exxon Mobil (XOM) was unchanged.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX) fell, shedding nearly 4 points, or 0.2%, to close at 1,552.48 despite hitting another multi-year high of 1,556.77 in intraday trading. The Nasdaq Composite (COMP) also lost ground, giving back nearly 11 points, or 0.3%, to finish at 3,242.32.

The CBOE Market Volatility Index (VIX) gained 0.7 point, or 6.3%, to close at 12.27.

A Trader's Take :

"The best thing about today's trading is that it's over," Bell quipped. "Tomorrow (Wednesday) should be a little more eventful, as several companies are set to report retail sales. Despite continued skepticism, the consumer discretionary sector has been incredibly hot this year."

CLOSING SUMMARY - INDICES

CLOSING SUMMARY - NYSE AND NASDAQ

3 Things to Know About Today's Market :

  • American employers sought more workers in January, with openings rising 2.2% during that month, the U.S. Labor Department said today. (CBS News)
  • The battle over the federal budget has begun, with Congressional Republicans unveiling their plan today and the White House saying it would not finish its proposal until early April. (The Washington Post)
  • And quite a few tax filers may not be getting their refunds on time, as a mistake by tax preparer H&R Block (HRB) is going to delay at least 600,000 returns. (MarketWatch)

5 Stocks We Were Watching Today :

  1. Cisco Systems, Inc. (CSCO) dropped on the charts today, but that didn't stop bullish option traders from swarming the IT equipment maker.
  2. Optimistic call traders also targeted Coinstar, Inc. (CSTR) in light of the stock's recent uptick, with one investor pulling off a bull call spread.
  3. With the announcement that a major wireless carrier would sell its new Z10 model phone, Research In Motion Ltd (BBRY) was a big play for both call and put traders.
  4. Bulls and bears also surrounded Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), which is trying to make up a big gap from last year's trading levels.
  5. And finally, Sears Holdings Corporation (SHLD) saw a big surge in call trading for next month, with traders looking for the stock to keep up its current climb.

EARNINGS

For a look at today's options movers and commodities activity, head to page 2.

STOCKS - NOTABLE CALL ACTIVITY

STOCKS - NOTABLE PUT ACTIVITY

Commodities :

An upwardly revised 2014 demand estimate for China pushed oil futures higher on Tuesday, with crude for April delivery rising 48 cents, or 0.5%, to end at $92.54 per barrel.

April-dated gold climbed $13.70, or 0.9%, to finish at $1,591.70 per ounce. It was the highest daily close since Feb. 27.

SCHAEFFER'S MARKET POSTURE

At the end of every market day, the staff at Schaeffer's Investment Research reviews the trading day in detail, covering major events and key market developments. Don't miss this critical, timely and insightful report. If you enjoyed today's edition of Market Recap, sign up here for free daily delivery straight to your inbox.



The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.

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This article appears in: Investing , Options

Referenced Stocks: AVP , DPS , LCC , NKE , WYNN

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