SPX Reclaims 1,400 as Wall Street Shows Its Mettle

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"Despite being downgraded by Standard & Poor's, Spain (and the rest of Europe) displayed a strong performance. And then U.S. markets followed suit," explained Senior Equity Analyst Joe Bell. "The Street was also greeted with a string of solid earnings reports, which only added momentum to an earnings season that is easily beating expectations." As a result, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) rallied for a fourth straight day.

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

  • Small caps are beginning to show signs of life.
  • Columnist Adam Warner picked apart the NASDAQ OMX Alpha Indexes .
  • Plus, Equities Analyst Bryan Sapp applauded this "Teflon market."
And now, a look at the numbers...

CLOSING SUMMARY - INDICES

CLOSING SUMMARY - NYSE AND NASDAQ

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 13,228.31) notched its fourth consecutive win, adding 23.7 points, or 0.2%. Of the Dow's 30 components 19 ended the session with gains, as Cisco Systems ( CSCO ) paced the outperformers with a 1.9% rise. On the other hand, Procter & Gamble's ( PG ) 3.6% earnings-induced slide led the 11 lagging issues. The blue-chip barometer jumped 1.5% for the week.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 1,403.36) landed atop the 1,400 mark for the first time since April 3, enjoying a 3.4 -point, or 0.2%, uptick. Finally, the Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 3,069.20) turned in the best performance of its peers, increasing 18.6 points, or 0.6%, on the day. The SPX ended the week up 1.8%, while the COMP edged 2.3% higher.

The CBOE Market Volatility Index (VIX - 16.32) inched up roughly 0.5%, closing just under its session peak of 16.47, and marking its third finish below former support at 17. The market's fear gauge dropped by 6.4% on the week.

Newsmakers...

Gross domestic product ( GDP ) rose 2.2% during the first quarter of 2012, said the Commerce Department , marking a slowdown from the 3.0% growth recorded during the fourth quarter of 2011. The report fell short of the consensus estimate, which called for the U.S. economy to expand at a 2.6% pace during the first three months of the year.

The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan consumer sentiment index arrived at 76.4 in late April -- representing an improvement over the mid-month reading of 75.7, and up from 76.2 in March. The rise in sentiment surprised economists, who generally expected the index to remain flat at 75.7.

Today's highlight : "The market withstood several potential roadblocks before the open, yet it still kept chugging along," commented Bell. "We also had another round of good earnings reports that maintained the upbeat momentum, with both Expedia ( EXPE ) and Amazon.com ( AMZN ) leading the way. The S&P 500 had a short battle at the 1,400 level, but the bulls appeared to take firm control heading into the weekend."

Turning to today's major market stories...

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

Oil futures continued their positive momentum, and tallied a fourth consecutive win today. Weaker-than-expected first-quarter GDP data initially dragged on crude, but those early jitters eventually gave way to optimism over the prospect of additional stimulus measures from the Fed. As stocks extended their winning ways, June-dated crude added 38 cents, or 0.4%, to land at $104.93 a barrel -- its best close since April 2. Throughout the week, oil pumped up 1.8%.

A faltering U.S. dollar supported gold futures, as a softer-than-forecast GDP weighed on the greenback. Gold for June delivery increased $4.30, or 0.3%, to close at $1,664.80 an ounce, and finished the week up 1.3%.

Levels to Watch in Trading :

  • Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 13,228.31) - support at 11,500; resistance at 14,000
  • S&P 500 Index (SPX - 1,403.36) - support at 1,100; resistance at 1,500
  • Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 3,069.20) - support at 2,400; resistance at 3,400

OUTPERFORMING AND UNDERPERFORMING SECTORS

STOCKS - MOVERS

STOCKS - EARNINGS

STOCKS - NOTABLE CALL ACTIVITY

STOCKS - NOTABLE PUT ACTIVITY

For today's notable annual highs and lows, click here .

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.

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


This article appears in: Investing , Options

Referenced Stocks: AMZN , CSCO , EXPE , GDP , PG

Schaeffer's Investment Research

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