"It looks like the early holiday spending was a little
disappointing, and that gave the bears some momentum," observed
Schaeffer's Senior Technical Strategist Ryan Detrick, CMT. "Still,
if you look a little deeper into the data, online sales were
actually pretty strong." Against this backdrop, the
Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI)
finished the session in negative territory, but managed to stay
atop the 16,000 level.
Continue reading for more on today's market, including
Retail sales for Thanksgiving weekend declined, manufacturing
activity rose in November, and Apple Inc. (
) attracted weekly call buyers.
Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 16,008.77)
spent most of the session in the red, and touched an intraday low
of 15,986.23 shortly before the closing bell. By the time the dust
settled, the blue-chip index was down 77.6 points, or 0.5%.
Microsoft Corporation (
) and Visa Inc (
) led the Dow's nine advancers with gains of 0.8% each, while 3M Co
) paced the 20 laggards with an analyst-induced drop of 4.4%.
General Electric Company (GE) remained unchanged.
S&P 500 Index (SPX - 1,800.90)
charted a similar path, and shed 4.9 points, or 0.3%, by the
closing bell -- ending slightly above the 1,800 mark. Meanwhile,
Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 4,045.26)
declined 14.6 points, or 0.4%, on the day.
CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 14.23)
plummeted to an intraday low of 13.78 around midday, but powered
north to finish with a gain of 0.5 point, or 3.9%.
A Trader's Take
"Manufacturing data came out today, and it was the best monthly
reading since April 2011," said Detrick. "The overall economy
continues to steadily improve, but the one area that is lacking is
employment. Speaking of which, monthly jobs data is due for release
3 Things to Know About Today's Market
- The National Retail Federation revealed that the
number of Thanksgiving Day shoppers
rose 27% on a year-over-year basis to around 45 million. However,
retail sales for the full holiday weekend dropped 2.7% to $57.4
billion, with the average shopper spending almost 6% less this
- The Institute for Supply Management's
arrived at 57.3 in November -- up from a reading of 56.4 in the
month prior, and marking the loftiest level since April 2011.
Economists, on average, were expecting a decline in the index
- The Labor Department said
rose by 0.8% in October to a seasonally adjusted yearly rate of
$908.4 billion. This latest figure contrasts the previous month's
drop of 0.3%, and denoted the fastest pace of growth since May
5 Stocks We Were Watching Today
Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN)
received a price-target hike following news that the company is
testing the use of delivery drones.
- Call volume has accelerated on
Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (AMD)
, but some of this activity could be the work of hedging short
Apple Inc. (
saw a surge in bullish betting -- particularly among weekly calls
-- despite a rise in the equity's options prices.
- Another round of positive, drug-related headlines pushed
Biogen Idec Inc (BIIB)
to a new technical milestone.
General Electric Company (GE)
received an upbeat analyst note this morning, which may have
prompted a wave of front-month call buying.
For a look at today's options movers and commodities
activity, head to page 2.
Crude futures climbed higher today, thanks to upbeat
manufacturing data both overseas and here at home. By the close,
the January contract gained $1.10, or 1.2%, to end at $93.82 per
Meanwhile, the same data dragged gold futures lower, with
February-dated gold falling $28.50, or 2.3%, to finish at $1,221.90
per ounce -- marking the lowest settlement price for a most active
contract since early July.
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