S&P 500 Gains 3% for the Week as Bulls Maintain Control


Shutterstock photo

"Today capped off a great start to the earnings season," noted Schaeffer's Senior Equity Analyst Joe, Bell, CMT. "It was a mixed day of price action, but financials got a nice boost, as Wells Fargo ( WFC ) and JPMorgan Chase ( JPM ) both reported solid earnings this morning." In a lightly traded session, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) traded on both sides of the breakeven mark and got within a chip-shot of the 15,500 level before eventually settling fractionally higher on the day.

Continue reading for more on today's market, including :

    Consumer confidence slips, JPMorgan Chase ( JPM ) profits spike, and Boeing (BA) option pits swell with activity.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 15,464.30) began today's session with gains, spent most of the afternoon in negative territory, and fought back as the close approached to end virtually flat. When the bell sounded, the Dow was up 3.4 points, or 0.02%. This was enough to secure a new closing high for the blue-chip index, which finished the week 2.2% higher. Of the Dow's 30 members, 16 settled higher on the day, led by Bank of America (BAC), which closed with a 2% gain. Alcoa (AA), Wal-Mart (WMT), and Coca-Cola (KO) were unchanged today, and Boeing (BA) brought up the rear, losing 4.7%.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 1,680.19) also logged another new all-time closing high, thanks to a gain of 5.2 points, or 0.3%. The Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 3,600.08) advanced to another 12-year peak and closed at its intraday high, gaining 21.8 points, or 0.6%. This week, the SPX rose nearly 3%, while the COMP tacked on 3.5%.

The CBOE Market Volatility Index (VIX - 13.84) finished south of the 14 mark for the first time since late May, suffering a drop of 0.2 point, or 1.2%. This week, the VIX logged a drop of 7.1%.



A Trader's Take :

"Often, trends last longer and go much further than most would believe," added Bell. "That's exactly what we've been experiencing, with all of the broad-market sectors trading at or near historical (or all-time) highs. Next week should be interesting, as a slew of companies are set to report second-quarter earnings."

3 Things to Know About Today's Market :

  • The Labor Department said its producer price index (PPI) rose by a seasonally adjusted 0.8% in June, fueled by a surge in gasoline prices. Meanwhile, core prices climbed by 0.2%. Economists polled by Reuters had expected increases of 0.5% and 0.1%, respectively. (CNBC)
  • The preliminary July reading of the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan consumer sentiment index arrived at 83.9 -- down from June's final reading of 84.1. Economists, on average, were expecting the index to dip to 83.6. (The Wall Street Journal)
  • Dow component JPMorgan Chase ( JPM ) is in focus today, after revealing a 31% increase in second-quarter earnings ahead of the open. The financial firm reported a profit of $6.50 billion, or $1.60 per share, up from $4.96 billion, or $1.21 per share, in the year-ago period. Meanwhile, revenue rose by 13% to $26 billion. (Bloomberg)

5 Stocks We Were Watching Today :

  1. Option bulls expect continued upside in Zynga (ZNGA) over the next couple of months.
  2. As Boeing (BA) spiraled lower, call sellers rushed its option pits to place short-term bets.
  3. High-flying Netflix (NFLX) earned a price-target boost from Barclays this morning.
  4. Tesla Motors (TSLA) is beginning to see more bullish attention from the options crowd.
  5. Our Option Idea of the Week : How to take advantage of the upward momentum in Guess? (GES) shares.


For a look at today's options movers and commodities activity, head to page 2.



Commodities :

Crude oil futures bounced back into the black today, as commodity investors remained positive about global energy demand. August-dated oil futures were up $1.04, or 1%, to close at $105.95 per barrel. On a weekly basis, black gold added 2.6%.

Gold futures, however, settled for a modest daily loss after Thursday's surge higher, shedding $2.30, or 0.2%, to close at $1,277.60 an ounce. On a weekly basis, however, the yellow metal gained 5.4%. This was the precious metal's largest weekly advance since October 2011, according to FactSet.


The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized reproduction of any SIR publication is strictly prohibited.

This article appears in: Investing Options
Referenced Stocks: C , GS , JPM , T , WFC

More from Schaeffer's Investment Research


Schaeffer's Investment Research

Schaeffer's Investment Research

Find a Credit Card

Select a credit card product by:
Select an offer:
Data Provided by BankRate.com