The Dow closed at a record high on Friday and fellow
benchmarks also ended in positive territory boosted by gains in
momentum stocks. Consumer discretionary and the healthcare stocks
led a late-session rally. However, Friday's gains were not enough
to restrict the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq from finishing in the
red for the week. In fact, the Nasdaq recorded its biggest weekly
fall in a month.
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Ahead of Wall Street
The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) gained 0.2% to close
Friday's trading session at 16,583.34. The Standard & Poor 500
(S&P 500) too rose about 0.2% to finish at 1,878.48. The
tech-laden Nasdaq Composite Index went up 0.5% to 4,071.87. The
fear-gauge CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) dropped 3.8% to settle at
12.92. Total volume for the day was roughly 5.7 billion shares,
lower than this month's average of 6.2 billion. Advancers
outpaced declining stocks on the NYSE. For 54% stocks that
advanced, 42% declined.
Benchmarks closed in the green primarily boosted by gains in
high-growth stocks. Internet stocks from the Technology sector such
as Facebook, Inc. (NASDAQ:
), Google Inc. (NASDAQ:
), Twitter, Inc. (NYSE:
), Groupon, Inc. (NASDAQ:
), Yelp, Inc. (NYSE:
) and LinkedIn Corporation (NYSE:
) increased 0.9%, 1.5%, 0.3%, 6.9%, 1.8% and 2.5%, respectively.
However, unlike Internet names, certain technology bellwethers
ended in the red. Shares of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:
), the largest component of both the Nasdaq and the S&P 500,
dropped 0.4% on news that the company is planning to acquire
Beats Electronics for a staggering $3.2 billion. Analysts believe
the acquisition price seems too high for a company, which was
valued only at $1.0 billion in its latest round of private funding
by the The Carlyle Group LP (NASDAQ:
Shares of online retailer Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:
), online travel company TripAdvisor Inc. (NASDAQ:
) and The Priceline Group Inc. (NASDAQ:
) increased 1.4%, 1.6% and 2.5%, respectively.
Shares of Internet television network provider, Netflix, Inc.
) increased 2.1% after the company raised its Internet video prices
by $1 per month for new customers. Netflix's existing 36 million
U.S. subscribers will continue to pay the old price of $8 per month
until May 2016. Overall the Consumer Discret Select Sector
SPDR (XLY) gained almost 0.6%.
Shares of momentum stocks such as electric car maker Tesla Motors,
) and Internet radio service provider Pandora Media, Inc. (NYSE:
) also advanced, by 2.1% and 1.9%, respectively.
Bio-tech stocks too boosted the broader markets on
Friday. Gilead Sciences Inc. (NASDAQ:
), Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (NASDAQ:
) Amgen Inc. (NASDAQ:
), Biogen Idec Inc. (NASDAQ:
) andCelgene Corporation (NASDAQ:
) increased 1.3%, 1.9%, 0.6%, 1.3% and 1.8%, respectively.
The Health Care Select Sector SPDR (XLV) gained 0.6%. Key
stocks from the sector such as Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:
), AbbVie Inc. (NYSE:
) and Bristol-Myers Squibb Company (NYSE:
) increased 0.4%, 0.2% and 0.9%, respectively. Also, shares of drug
manufacturer Merck & Co. Inc. (NYSE:
) went up 0.7% a day after U.S. health regulator approved the drug,
Coming to economic data, the U.S. Department of Commerce announced
that the US wholesale inventories rose 1.1% in March after it
increased 0.7% in February. This rise in wholesale inventories in
March was more than the consensus estimate of a rise of 0.5%.
Separately, the U.S. Department of Labor reported job openings at
US workplaces decreased to 4.014 million in March from 4.125
million in February. However, analysts expected the number of job
openings to remain unchanged compared with February's figure.
The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq closed in the red for the week.
However, the Dow managed to finish in the green. The S&P
500 and the Nasdaq dropped 0.1% and 1.3%, respectively. The
blue-chip index gained 0.4%. This was Nasdaq's largest weekly fall
in four weeks.
Benchmarks ended a choppy week mostly lower, dragged down by
intense selling pressure in Internet stocks. Also, selloffs in
utilities and energy sectors had a negative impact on the
benchmarks. Moreover, a decline in AIG's quarterly income
adversely affected the benchmarks. Separately, Whole Food's dismal
quarterly result swas a big drag on the Nasdaq.
Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen's indication to keep the
key lending rates low, Russian President Vladimir Putin's
willingness to discuss measures to ease the Ukrainian crisis and
dovish comments from ECB President Mario Draghi were some of the
positives for the week.
Additionally, the week's encouraging services sector
data, increase in ISM Services Index and upbeat initial claims
numbers were welcomed by the investors.
Coming back to Friday, 7 out of 10 sectors of the S&P 500
ended in the green. The SPDR S&P Homebuilders ETF
(XHB) led the advance among the S&P 500 sectors. The sector
rose 0.9%. Key housing stocks such as PulteGroup, Inc. (NYSE:
) and Beazer Homes USA Inc. (NYSE:
) increased 0.9% and 0.1%, respectively.
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