As concerns over the coronavirus (also referred to as COVID-19) continue to dominate news headlines, cause volatility in the marketplace, and test investor confidence in securities markets, one thing remains unchanged - Leigh Baldwin & Co. and its commitment to assist clients through turbulent times. Along with the securities markets, we remain open and available to clients, ready to assist with any needs, questions, or concerns as they arise.
U.S. stocks struggle to rally following a disappointing December jobs report. The Dow Jones Industrial Average inched up 5 points to 11,702. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index opened up a fraction at 1,274. The Nasdaq Composite fell 3 points to 2,706. The economy only added 113,000 new jobs while investors were expected 200,000 to 300,000 new jobs. The unemployment rate did dip. One investment bank not concerned about the weaker jobs number is Goldman Sachs raising their S&P 500 forecast to 1500 for the year. Not bad. The financials are modestly higher although ironically Goldman is lower even though it was upgraded. PNC is lower even though it was upgraded. Bank of America is up a percent. Genworth is up 3% for the second straight day. Sallie Mae is up 3% on an upgrade. In the tech space Google, Apple, and Research in Motion are higher. The rest of the techs are lower. The commodities are mixed. The fertilizers are lower for once. Cliffs Natural Resources is lower. Freeport is up on an upgrade. The oil drillers look great after Goldman upgraded Diamond Offshore and Baker Hughes. Both are up over 5%. Thompson Greek Metals is higher on an upgrade. After the first hour the averages remain in the green, but not by much. Through the morning the averages pushed lower led by the financials after Wells Fargo and US Bancorp lost a mortgage court case in the state of Massachusetts. Wells Fargo is down 4%. During the lunch hour the Dow fell over 50 points. The Nasdaq declined 20 points. Fewer and fewer stocks are left in the green. The oil drillers Diamond Offshore and Baker Hughes still look good. Ford is still positive making a new 52 week high today. In the last hour the averages recovered, but remained in the red. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 22 points to end at 11,674, weighed by its financial sector stocks, such as JP Morgan Chase off 1.9% and Bank of America down 1.3%. The S&P 500 index lost 2 points to end at 1,271. For the week, the Dow gained 0.8% and the S&P 500 rose 1.1%, marking the sixth consecutive week of gains for both benchmarks. The Nasdaq Composite fell 6 points to 2,703 on Friday, for a weekly gain of 1.9%.
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