Day Traders Diary


The stock market began the new trading week on an unassuming note with the key indices registering modest gains. The S&P 500 added 0.3% while Russell 2000 (+0.5%) outperformed.

Equity indices began the trading near their flat lines after the overnight session did little to change investor sentiment. China's Shanghai Composite stood out, soaring 2.3%, after it was confirmed that the Shanghai-Hong Kong exchange link will begin operating on November 17.

Domestically, the S&P 500 resisted some mild selling efforts during the opening hour, but was able to advance alongside the biotechnology group. The iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF (IBB 295.20, +5.06) gained 1.7% while the health care sector (+1.0%) settled in the lead despite starting among the laggards. Dow component Merck (MRK 58.81, -0.53) lost 0.9% after reporting disappointing trail data, but that had little impact on the sector.

Like health care, the remaining countercyclical groups started in the red, but ended with gains. The consumer staples sector added 0.4% with Dean Foods (DF 16.40, +1.98) surging 13.7% after beating bottom-line estimates and guiding Q4 earnings above consensus.

Elsewhere, the six cyclical sectors ended mixed with respect to the market. Technology (+0.3%) struggled at the start, but was able to end in-line with the S&P 500 amid strength in chipmaker names. The PHLX Semiconductor Index settled higher by 0.8% with just four names registering losses.

Similarly, industrials (+0.5%) and financials (+0.5%) finished ahead of the market while consumer discretionary (-0.1%) and energy (-0.8%) spent the bulk of the session in the red.

The discretionary sector was sent to lows during morning action after President Obama said the Federal Communications Commission should regulate the internet like a utility. The news pressured internet service providers with Charter Communications (CHTR 146.62, -9.75), Comcast (CMCSA 52.95, -2.20), and Time Warner Cable (TWC 136.50, -7.10) losing between 4.0% and 6.2%.

Meanwhile, homebuilders prevented the sector from registering additional losses. The iShares Dow Jones US Home Construction ETF (ITB 24.79, +0.24) rose 1.0% with Toll Brothers (TOL 32.96, +0.74) jumping 2.3% after issuing strong guidance for the fourth quarter.

For its part, the energy sector started in the lead, but slid to the bottom of the leaderboard with crude oil adding pressure. The energy component fell 1.4% to $77.26/bbl. Greenback strength presented a headwind with the Dollar Index (87.81, +0.16) erasing its overnight loss to end higher by 0.2%.

Treasuries retreated throughout the session, sending the 10-yr yield higher by six basis points to 2.36%.

Participation was in-line with long-term averages as 700 million shares changed hands at the NYSE floor.

Investors did not receive any economic data of note and tomorrow's session will also be quiet on the economic front. Also of note, the bond market will be closed for Veterans Day.

Nasdaq Composite +11.4% YTD
S&P 500 +10.3% YTD
Dow Jones Industrial Average +6.3% YTD
Russell 2000 +1.4% YTD

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