"Although it was an extremely slow day for the markets, we still
saw the release of the S&P/Case-Shiller home price index, the
Chicago purchasing managers index (PMI), and the Conference Board's
consumer confidence index," said Schaeffer's Senior Equity Analyst
Joe Bell, CMT. "Overall, the results were mixed, but the data
didn't seem to affect the market too much either way."
Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI)
, S&P 500 Index (SPX), and Nasdaq Composite (COMP) finished
2013 by tagging technical milestones and notching notable 52-week
Continue reading for more on today's market, including
Consumer sentiment was better than expected in December, home
prices saw a notable year-over-year gain, and
Facebook Inc (
was popular with near-term bulls.
Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 16,576.66)
touched an all-time intraday peak of 16,588.25 before ending the
day with a rise of 72.4 points, or 0.4% -- notching another record
closing high. For the year, the blue-chip bellwether advanced
26.5%. The Dow's 23 advancers were led by American Express
) 1.3% gain, while Johnson & Johnson (
) paced the seven laggards with a drop of 0.8%.
S&P 500 Index (SPX - 1,848.36)
tagged its own record intraday peak of 1,849.44, and finished the
session with a climb of 7.3 points, or 0.4% -- denoting an all-time
closing high. Meanwhile, the
Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 4,176.59)
-- which reached a 13-year intraday high of 4,177.73 -- added 22.4
points, or 0.5%, on the day. For 2013, the indexes tacked on 29.6%
and 38.3%, respectively.
CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 13.72)
spent most of the session in the green, and was up 0.2 point, or
1.2%, by the closing bell. However, the "fear barometer" shed 23.9%
on the year.
A Trader's Take
"The market continued its strong upward momentum, and finished
off the year on a positive note," Bell went on. "In the midst of
all the doubt that surrounded this market at the beginning of 2013,
it was quite remarkable to watch the major indexes climb the wall
of worry throughout the year, and post one of the strongest returns
we've seen in years."
5 Items on Our Radar Today
- The Conference Board said its
consumer confidence index
arrived at 78.1 in December, up from the previous month's reading
of 72.0. Economists, on average, were expecting a reading of
(Reuters via CNBC)
- The S&P/Case-Shiller
home price index
spiked by 13.6% in October -- marking the largest year-over-year
gain since February 2006, and besting the consensus view.
Ctrip.com International, Ltd. (ADR) (
attracted a bevy of call players -- including a February spread
strategist -- despite today's drop.
- Bullish speculators zeroed in on
Facebook Inc (
, showing a notable preference for weekly call options.
Alcatel Lucent SA's (ADR) (ALU)
sentiment backdrop reveals mixed attitudes among options players
and covering analysts of late.
For a look at today's options movers and commodities
activity, head to page 2.
Crude futures drifted south today, as the February contract fell
87 cents, or 0.9%, to finish at $98.42 per barrel. However, oil
climbed 7.2% on a year-over-year basis.
Meanwhile, gold futures edged lower again, with February-dated
gold lopping off $1.50, or 0.1%, to close at $1,202.30 an ounce.
For the year, the malleable metal shed 28% -- ending a 12-year
winning streak, and marking its biggest annual loss in almost 30
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