Markets Close Solidly Higher (No Thanks to Small Caps)

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At its session peak, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) was up roughly 100 points, which ultimately helped solidify the index's best daily settlement in two weeks. "It was a nice day on Wall Street and rumored to be the 'Romney Rally,' as stocks liked what the Presidential candidate had to say last night at the debate," remarked Schaeffer's Senior Technical Strategist Ryan Detrick. "I have no clue if that is true or not, but one thing that did stand out to me was that small caps lagged again. We need to see small caps regain leadership if this market is going to break out to new highs once more."

Keep reading to see what else was on our radar today:

And now, a look at the numbers...

CLOSING SUMMARY - INDICES

CLOSING SUMMARY - NYSE AND NASDAQ

Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 13,575.36) AA BAC INTC

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 1,461.40) and Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 3,149.46) both followed the Dow into positive territory today, enjoying the wave of optimism hitting the Street. The SPX tacked on 10.4 points, or 0.7%, to close at its loftiest price since September 14. Meanwhile, the COMP posted a return of 14.2 points, or 0.5%, parking at an eight-day best.

The CBOE Market Volatility Index (VIX - 14.55) dipped back below its 20-day moving average, and slipped through support at the 15 mark. By the close, the VIX lost 0.9 point, or 5.7%.

Today's highlight : "To harp some more on small caps, I was very impressed with their reversal off their lows," said Detrick "Small caps were actually in the red at one point, and as the day wore on, they found some buyers."

"Tomorrow is all about the jobs report," continued Ryan. "Then everyone puts on their economist hat and determines what the number means for the economy. After that, we'll put on our central banker hat to see if we can think like Federal Reserve President Ben Bernanke, attempting to predict what the jobs data means for more quantitative easing (or not). Tune in, it'll be fun."

Turning to today's major market stories...

For today's activity in commodities, options, and more, head to page 2.

After hitting a two-month low on Wednesday, oil futures mustered a sizable rally today amid ongoing supply concerns and continued conflict in Syria. By the close, November-dated crude jumped $3.57, or 4.1%, settling at $91.71 a barrel.

Elsewhere in the commodities space, gold futures notched another day higher, supported by word that the European Central Bank (ECB) will keep borrowing costs low. Against this backdrop, gold for December delivery gained $16.70, or 0.9%, to find a perch at $1,796.50 an ounce.

Levels to watch in trading...

  • Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 13,575.36) - support at 11,500; resistance at 14,000
  • S&P 500 Index (SPX - 1,461.40) - support at 1,100; resistance at 1,500
  • Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 3,149.46) - support at 2,400; resistance at 3,400

OUTPERFORMING AND UNDERPERFORMING SECTORS

STOCKS - MOVERS

STOCKS - EARNINGS

STOCKS - NOTABLE CALL ACTIVITY

STOCKS - NOTABLE PUT ACTIVITY

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: AA , BAC , INTC , MRO , PFE

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