"It was a pretty mixed day of price action, as a lot of the
momentum names underperformed, and many of the big-cap stocks
outperformed," observed Schaeffer's Senior Equity Analyst Joe Bell,
CMT. "Most notably, tech and small-cap stocks lagged throughout the
trading session." Meanwhile the
Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI)
rallied to new heights, and the
S&P 500 Index (SPX)
came within striking distance of its own record high.
Continue reading for more on today's market, including
Microsoft Corporation (
) notched a decade-plus high on CEO news, the Conference Board's
index of leading economic indicators rose more than expected in
September, and eBay Inc (
) saw a jump in bullish options activity.
Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 15,746.88)
spent the entire day in positive territory, and touched a record
intraday peak of 15,750.29 just ahead of the closing bell. By the
end of the session, the blue-chip index was up 128.7 points, or
0.8% -- marking an all-time closing high. Microsoft Corporation (
) led the Dow's 27 advancers with a gain of 4.2%, while Nike Inc's
) drop of 0.6% paced the three laggards.
S&P 500 Index (SPX - 1,770.49)
tagged a session high of 1,773.74 early on, and gained 7.5 points,
or 0.4%, by the close -- just a stone's throw away from a record
closing high. Conversely, the
Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 3,931.95)
shed 7.9 points, or 0.2%, on the day.
CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 12.67)
was parked mostly in the red today, finishing 0.6 point, or 4.5%,
A Trader's Take
"Some of the really big names in the Dow showed incredible
performances today," Bell went on. "Microsoft Corporation (
), Cisco Systems, Inc. (
), and Intel Corporation (INTC) all registered nice gains and
helped the Dow outperform all of the other major indices."
3 Things to Know About Today's Market
- Shares of Microsoft hit a
today, after the firm said it's close to appointing a new CEO,
with the shortlist to replace Steve Ballmer including Ford Motor
Company (F) CEO Alan Mulally. Meanwhile, an analyst at Nomura who
works closely with the software giant said a changing of the
guard could result in the sale of MSFT's Bing and Xbox
- Cleveland Fed President Sandra Pianalto is the latest central
to weigh in on the topic of tapering
. During a speech in Columbus, Ohio, the Fed official expressed
caution regarding the continuation of the current bond-buying
program, and noted, "My hope is that the economic recovery will
accelerate so that the Fed gains the reassurance it needs to
begin winding the program."
- The Conference Board said its
Leading Economic Index
climbed 0.7% to 97.1 in September, matching the increase recorded
in the month prior. Economists, on average, were expecting a rise
of just 0.6%.
5 Stocks We Were Watching Today
- A well-received quarterly earnings report for
Ctrip.com International, Ltd. (ADR) (CTRP)
triggered a pair of price-target hikes for the online travel
BlackBerry Ltd (BBRY)
saw a surge of selling activity in its December-dated puts, the
expiration date of which coincides with the firm's next earnings
- Speculators wagered on extended gains for
eBay Inc (
by scooping up the stock's in-the-money, November-dated call
- Opinions toward
Twitter Inc (TWTR)
are varied on Wall Street ahead of the Internet company's
long-waited IPO tomorrow.
Ford Motor Company (F)
put activity spiked despite some upbeat sales news abroad, but
not all of today's volume was of the bearish variety.
For a look at today's options movers and commodities
activity, head to page 2.
Crude futures climbed higher today, thanks to a
smaller-than-anticipated increase in oil supplies last week. By the
closing bell, the December contract gained $1.43, or 1.5%, to end
at $94.80 per barrel -- the largest daily advance for a most active
contract since early October.
Gold futures also gained ground, as a weaker dollar gave the
malleable metal a bit of momentum. December-dated gold added $9.70,
or 0.7%, to finish at $1,317.80 per ounce.
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