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Markets Close Mixed, But Near Breakeven

By: Schaeffer's Investment Research
Posted: 2/6/2013 4:26:00 PM
Referenced Stocks: AAPL;GRPN;HOV;INTC;MMM

"After a volatile start to February, things are calming down some today as the market is catching its breath," said Schaeffer's Senior Technical Strategist Ryan Detrick, CMT, as the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) was little changed on the day after a strong finish to the month last week. "With both 1,500 on the S&P 500 Index (SPX) and 14,000 on the Dow out there, some type of consolidating near these levels makes sense."

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

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After three straight days with point swings of 90 or more, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) was slightly less volatile today, but still rallied toward the close for the second straight winning day. The Dow finished at 13,986.52, gaining just 7 points, or less than 0.1%. 3M Co ( MMM ) led the 19 advancers, jumping 1.2% to hit a new annual high. The 11 decliners were led by semiconductor concern Intel ( INTC ), which lost 0.9%.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX) also gained slightly, picking up less than 1 point, or 0.1%, to close at 1,512.12. Yet it was the seventh time in nine trading days that the SPX stayed above 1,500. The Nasdaq Composite (COMP) fell 3 points, or 0.1%, to finish at 3,168.48.

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) dropped 2.3% to finish at 13.41.

CLOSING SUMMARY - INDICES

CLOSING SUMMARY - NYSE AND NASDAQ

A Trader's Take :

"The overwhelming consensus is we've gone too far, too fast, and a pullback is due," Detrick said. "Although February is one of the weaker months going back 20 years, it is worth noting that a strong January (like we had) usually leads to a decent February. I'm not sure I'd say a big pullback is due, but potentially some sideways consolidation could be in the cards."

3 Things to Know About Today's Market :

5 Stocks We Were Watching Today :

  1. Electric car manufacturer Tesla Motors Inc (TSLA) drew bullish traders in droves, especially those looking long term.
  2. United Continental Holdings Inc (UAL), parent of United Airlines, received unusual attention from call buyers, perhaps as an offshoot of the ongoing saga involving the 787 Dreamliner from The Boeing Company (BA).
  3. Short-term bulls looked to cash in on the recent price climb in Groupon Inc ( GRPN ).
  4. A new multi-year high by online photo service provider Shutterfly, Inc. (SFLY) drew in not only positive analyst attention, but a new slew of bullish call trades.
  5. Bearish investors looked for Citigroup Inc. (C) to take a step back this week.

EARNINGS

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

STOCKS - NOTABLE CALL ACTIVITY

STOCKS - NOTABLE PUT ACTIVITY

Commodities :

On the heels of news that crude supplies rose by a smaller-than-expected amount last week, March oil futures edged down just 2 cents to close at $96.62 per barrel. Meanwhile, gold futures were higher as investors flocked to the "safe haven" of the yellow metal ahead of this tomorrow's European Central Bank policy meeting. April futures for gold were up $5.30, or 0.3%, at $1,678.80 an ounce.

SCHAEFFER'S MARKET POSTURE

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