"Comments made by Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart sparked
today's selling," said Schaeffer's Senior Technical Strategist Ryan
Detrick, CMT. "Still, volume was very light, and it seemed like the
bulls used the news as an excuse to sell, versus the bears pushing
things lower. All in all, when volume is light like it has been
recently, intraday volatility is very likely. The bigger-picture
earnings season is winding down, and overall, the economy is on
much better footing than most thought just a month ago." Against
this backdrop, the
Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI)
suffered a near triple-digit loss for the session.
Continue reading for more on today's market, including
A pair of Fed officials trigger even more stimulus worry, the
U.S. trade gap narrowed, and International Business Machines (
) was the recipient of a bearish brokerage note.
Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 15,518.74)
stumbled right out of the gate, and touched an intraday low of
15,473.40 during the morning hours of trading. By the close, the
blue-chip bellwether was down 93.4 points, or 0.6%. Ahead of
tonight's turn in the earnings confessional, Walt Disney (
) led the Dow's six advancers with a gain of 1.5%, while
International Business Machines' (
) 2.3% decline paced the 24 laggards.
S&P 500 Index (SPX - 1,697.37)
breached the 1,700 level early on in the session, and ended 9.8
points, or 0.6%, lower. Meanwhile, the
Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 3,665.77)
snapped its streak of achieving new intraday highs to shed 27.2
points, or 0.7%, by the closing bell.
CBOE Market Volatility Index (VIX - 12.72)
hit an intraday peak of 12.93 this morning, and ended up finishing
0.9 point, or 7.4%, higher. However, the "fear barometer" remained
below its 10-day moving average for a fourth consecutive day.
A Trader's Take
"Once again, buyers stepped up later in the afternoon,"
commented Detrick. "Sure, we were still firmly in the red for the
day, but well off the session lows. This is one constant we've seen
time and time again -- the bulls come in to buy late in the day.
That is exactly what you'd want to see."
3 Things to Know About Today's Market
- Dennis Lockhart and Charles Evans -- presidents of the
Atlanta Fed and Chicago Fed, respectively -- fanned the anxiety
flames after separately suggesting that the central bank could
scale back its current bond-buying program
as soon as next month. These comments came on the heels of those
made by Dallas Fed President Richard Fisher, who made a similar
- The Commerce Department said the
U.S. trade deficit
narrowed by a larger-than-expected 22.4% in June to $34.2
billion, marking its lowest level since the fall of 2009. The
contraction was attributed to a 2.5% drop in imports, and a 2.2%
rise in exports -- the biggest increase for the latter in nine
- Shares of American Eagle Outfitters (
) tumbled today, after the retailer slashed its
. The company is now expecting a per-share profit of 10 cents,
which is considerably lower than the 21 cents per share projected
by analysts. AEO is slated to reveal its full quarterly earnings
results on Aug. 21. Several other apparel retailers lost ground
today in sympathy.
5 Stocks We Were Watching Today
scored a price-target boost at Raymond James ahead of the opening
- Near-term call volume ramped up on
, despite the stock's price drop.
is seeing plenty of skepticism from the Street ahead of
Thursday's quarterly earnings report.
- Analysts at Credit Suisse slapped
International Business Machines (
with a downgrade in pre-market activity.
- One strategist utilized September-dated options to initiate a
bull call spread on
Potash Corp/Saskatchewan (POT)
For a look at today's options movers and commodities
activity, head to page 2.
Crude oil futures closed lower ahead of the regularly scheduled
crude inventories report, as today's overall weak price action
weighed on oil prices. By the time the dust settled,
September-dated crude was down $1.26, or 1.2%, to finish at $105.30
Meanwhile, gold futures breached the $1,300 level following
hawkish comments made by two Fed officials, as well as an upbeat
trade gap report. The December-dated contract lopped off $19.90, or
1.5%, to end at $1,282.50 an ounce.
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