Day Traders Diary
Equities began today's abbreviated session with a bullish bias. The sentiment was maintained into the close as the S&P 500 reached its high during the first hour of trade, and hovered near that area until the close. The markets were unfazed by headlines from overseas which indicated the Eurozone Summit has been postponed and will likely take place early next year. Today's volume was well below-average and trade was trapped in a narrow range. As a result, the S&P 500 advanced 1.3%. Technology stocks led the broader market. Shares of Apple (AAPL 571.50, +9.80) added 1.7% as the stock attempts to halt its recent slide. Semiconductor manufacturers outperformed and the PHLX Semiconductor index gained 1.8%. Among individual stocks which comprise the index, Taiwan Semiconductor (TSM 16.84, +0.58) advanced 3.6% after Taiwan's finance minister called on the government to begin purchasing individual equities. Looking at other outperformers within the semiconductor average, Advanced Micro Devices (AMD 1.95, +0.08) and Lam Research (LRCX 35.34, +0.84) saw respective gains of 4.3% and 2.4%. Also of note, OCZ Technology (OCZ 1.16, -0.03) slid 2.5% after the company received a Securities and Exchange Commission inquiry and a subpoena requesting certain company documents. The investigation pertains to financial reporting of customer incentive programs among other matters. Elsewhere, Research in Motion (RIMM 11.66, +1.40) surged 13.7% after National Bank Financial raised its estimates for Blackberry 10 sales. In addition, National Financial Bank raised the price target to $15 from $12. Utility stocks continued their recent slide. The space was the only decliner among S&P sectors as settled lower by 0.3%. The biggest relative weakness was observed among electricity providers as Exelon (EXC 28.57, -0.28), Edison International (EIX 43.49, -0.33), and Southern Company (SO 42.03, -0.25) all lost between 0.6% and 1.0%. The extended weakness in utility stocks comes as investors prepare for the possibility of a dividend tax hike. In addition, electricity providers are expected to face tougher regulation after Superstorm Sandy caused considerable damage to east coast infrastructure. Earlier in the week, the investigative panel appointed by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo named Regina Calcaterra as the director. The newly-established panel will investigate utilities' preparation and response to Superstorm Sandy. The Dow Jones Transportation Average advanced 1.1% and railroad stocks saw relative strength. Kansas City Southern (KSU 77.61, +1.28) gained 1.7% and Union Pacific (UNP 121.98, +1.94) advanced 1.6%. There are no economic data points scheduled for a Monday release. All comments contained herein are for informational purposes only, and should not be considered as a solicitation to buy or sell any security. The firm does not guarantee the accuracy or completeness of the information or make any warranties regarding results from it's usage.