"After this week's sharp sell-off, most sectors were able to
shrug off the downward momentum and rebound slightly today," noted
Schaeffer's Senior Equity Analyst Joe Bell. "The
Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI)
was a notable laggard for the day, however, as International
Business Machines (
) and General Electric (
) dragged it lower after worse-than-expected earnings." The
blue-chip index still managed a small gain of less than 0.1%,
however, thanks to a late-session press higher. Overall, stocks
posted their sharpest weekly loss of 2013.
Continue reading for more on today's market, including
- Market indexes suffer big weekly losses, Dell Inc. (
) has one fewer option, and Caterpillar (CAT) traders are bullish
ahead of earnings.
Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI)
trailed its peers, gaining just 10.4 points, or less than 0.1%, to
settle at 14,547.51, which was near its high point of the day. Two
dozen of the Dow's 30 members ended higher, with Microsoft
Corporation (MSFT) and American Express (AXP) -- the former of
which reported earnings Thursday evening -- each enjoying a 3.4%
gain. On the down side was another earnings name, IBM, which
plunged 8.3% on the day. On a weekly basis, the Dow dropped
S&P 500 Index (SPX)
bounced up 13.6 points, or 0.9%, retaking control of the 1,550
level and its 50-day moving average to close at 1,555.25.
Nasdaq Composite (COMP)
rallied 1.3%, tacking on 39.7 points, to end at 3,206.06. This
week, however, the SPX surrendered 2.1%, while the COMP dropped
CBOE Market Volatility Index (VIX)
gave back some of its recent gains, losing 2.6 points, or 15%, to
land at 14.97. Still, the fear barometer expanded by 24.1% this
A Trader's Take
"After struggling the past several days, homebuilding stocks
finally showed a little strength," Bell observed. "This was a nice
sign for a group that had been performing well the past several
3 Things to Know About Today's Market
- Microsoft Corporation (MSFT) was one of many high-profile
names reporting earnings in the last 24 hours. Its mixed report
was quickly followed by news that company Chief Financial Officer
after 11 years with the software giant.
- Dell Inc. (
no longer being pursued
by The Blackstone Group (BX), which has abandoned its bid for the
company amid concerns over dropping PC sales. This move ups the
likelihood that Michael Dell and his investing partners will take
the company private.
- And while lacking a direct impact on the markets,
events in Boston
captured everyone's focus today. The metropolitan area was on
virtual lockdown as law enforcement officials -- including police
and National Guard -- tracked the surviving suspect in Monday's
Boston Marathon bombings.
5 Stocks We Were Watching Today
- Bearish speculators bet on
in Research In Motion (BBRY) for the next two months.
- Intel Corporation (INTC) optimists foresee
in the semiconductor name.
- Vertex Pharmaceuticals (VRTX) saw a
rush of bullish attention
on Wall Street, after sprinting up the charts on the heels of
strong findings for its cystic fibrosis drug.
- Call buyers
DISH Network (DISH) as the shares notched a new five-year
- Caterpillar Inc. (CAT) speculators
scooped up long calls
ahead of the company's earnings report.
For a look at today's options movers and commodities
activity, head to page 2.
Oil prices were higher today, as investors considered the
likelihood of output cuts by the Organization of the Petroleum
Exporting Countries, or OPEC. The May contract tacked on 28 cents,
or 0.3%, to close at $88.01 per barrel. For the week, however,
crude lost 3.6%, its third consecutive weekly pullback.
Speaking of weekly pullbacks, gold futures were down just over
7% from last Friday's close. Today, June-dated gold managed to gain
$3.10, or 0.2%, to end the week at $1,395.60 per ounce.
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
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