The Week In Review
3/21-3/25/11March 25, 2011
U.S. stocks on Friday opened higher to extend gains into a fourth straight day after the government said the U.S. economy grew more rapidly than some thought at the end of last year. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 36 points to 12,206. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index added 2 points to 1,311. The Nasdaq Composite Index climbed 8 points to 2,744. On the earnings front we have the haves and the have nots. On the downside we have Research in Motion lower by 10% on disappointing guidance. Darden Restaurant is down 2% following earnings as well. Best Buy continues to make new lows following disappointing earnings yesterday. On the plus side, Accenture is jumping 6% following earnings. Oracle is up 3% after easily beating estimates. The disappointing news for Research in Motion is a plus for Apple which is trading 2%. IBM also looks good in the tech sector thanks to an upgrade. Akamai, Altera, and SAP are higher on upgrades. The financials are quiet for a second straight day. Morgan Stanley is lower by a percent on a downgrade. Goldman Sachs is also lower in sympathy. Aetna is up 2% on an upgrade. The insurance stocks look good. The commodities remain the hot sector. Fertilizers, copper, oils, iron ore, and steel stocks all look good. In the retail space, IMAX is jumping 5% on an upgrade. Priceline, Harley Davidson, Las Vegas Sands are all higher on upgrades. Through the first hour the averages pushed higher with the Dow jumping 70 points. The Nasdaq rose 22 points. The correction seems to be ephemeral. Through the morning the averages remained strong. The financials have rebounded except for Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs. In the afternoon the averages remained strong until the last hour when we saw some profit-taking into the close. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 50 points at 12,220. The S&P 500 Index closed up 4 points at 1,313, with all 10 of its tracked sectors posting gains, led by the energy and technology groups. The Nasdaq Composite rose 6 points to 2,743. For the week, the Dow rose 3.05%. The S&P 500 advanced 2.7%, and the Nasdaq rose 3.8% from Friday of last week.
March 24, 2011
U.S. stocks opened higher Thursday after gains in equities overseas, with Wall Street focused on corporate profit and the U.S. economic recovery. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 40 points to 12,126. Caterpillar is higher by a percent to new highs after reaffirming numbers last night. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index rose 3 points to 1,301. The Nasdaq Composite rose 11 points to 2,710. Better than expected earnings from a number of techs and retailers are lifting the averages. In the tech space chipmaker Micron is up 7% following earnings. Software firm Redhat is up 17% following earnings. Oracle and Research in Motion are higher ahead of earnings tonight. Amazon is up 3% on an upgrade. Apple, Google, and IBM also look good. In the retail space Gamestop is up 3% following in line earnings. Talbots is jumping 23% following so-so earnings. ConAgra is higher following earnings. Arctic Cat is jumping 10% on an upgrade. Best Buy opened higher following earnings, but then sold off following conservative earnings guidance. Through the first hour the averages pulled back from the highs as the financials and commodities pulled back. The financials can't get going. US Bancorp is modestly higher on an upgrade. Bank of America is lower following a downgrade. On the acquisition front, Walgreen is buying out Drugstore.com for $409 million. Drugstore.com is up only 111%. Not bad. Through the morning the averages spiked higher with the Dow jumping 70 points and the Nasdaq rising 27 points. The commodities and financials are getting dragged higher. Resilient market. In the afternoon the averages remained strong, but off the highs until the last hour when they rebounded into the close. U.S. stocks advanced Thursday as investors entered corporate earnings season with high hopes. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 84 points at 12,170 with Hewlett-Packard and Home Depot as the top gainers. The S&P 500 gained 12 points to 1,309. The Nasdaq Composite rose 38 points, or 1.4%, to 2,736.
March 23, 2011
U.S. stocks opened lower Wednesday after Adobe Systems and a couple of other techs projected quarterly profits below expectations as the crisis in Japan dented sales. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 24 points to 11,994. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index declined 4 points to 1,289. The Nasdaq Composite declined 9 points to 2,673. Adobe is down 4.5% dragging the Nasdaq with it. LED maker, Cree is down 9% after lowering earnings guidance. The rest of the big cap techs like Apple, Google, and IBM are lower as well. Texas Instruments and Maxim Integrated are lower even though both were upgraded. Oracle and Research in Motion are modestly lower ahead of earnings tomorrow. Jabil Circuit is one of the few techs bucking the trend, trading up 12% following earnings. The financials are taking a big hit this morning. Bank of America is down 3% after the Fed rejects their offer to boost the dividend to shareholders. That's not a good sign. SunTrust is down a percent on a downgrade. Discover is one of the few financials higher after easily beating estimates. The commodities are all lower except for Freeport McMoran. Investors like the copper play this morning. Through the first hour the averages remained in the red, but not far from the unchanged level. A few more stocks are popping into the green. Through the morning the averages slowly moved back toward the unchanged level led by commodities, although the oil and oil related stocks are lower. In the afternoon the Dow moved into the green led by commodities and industrial plays. A few more techs are in the green, but not the financials. They remain in the doghouse. Heading into the last hour the Dow rose 85 points. The Nasdaq improved by 16 points. In the last hour the averages slipped a little from the highs. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 67 points at 12,086, led by a 3% rise in Alcoa shares. The S&P 500 gained 3 points to 1,297, led by a 1.4% jump in materials stocks. The Nasdaq Composite gained 14 points to 2,698.
March 22, 2011
U.S. stocks opened slightly higher Tuesday, with investors hesitant to extend a winning run into a fourth consecutive session after the biggest three day gain since September. The Dow Jones Industrial Average inched up 4 points to 12,041. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index opened flat at 1,298. The Nasdaq Composite added a point to 2,693. The news is mixed this morning. In the tech space Netflix, VMware, Yahoo, and Akamai are higher on upgrades. Research in Motion is higher after announcing their tablet called the Playbook will be released next month. Apple and IBM are higher, but Google is modestly lower. The commodities for the most part are lower except for the oils. Noble Corp is higher on an upgrade. The rare earth metals are trading sharply higher this morning on positive comments and news out of China that pricing has improved. The financials are quiet this morning except for Goldman Sachs which looks good. Zion Bancorp is higher on an upgrade. The insurance stocks are modestly higher. In the transportation sector the airlines are lower on cautious comments about bad weather and the Japanese earthquake disrupting some flights. Carnival Cruise is modestly lower on in line earnings. Through the morning the averages fell into the red hovering just below the unchanged level. After a big run up the preceding three days, to be flat to slightly lower today is a victory in some regards. Through the afternoon the averages continued to trade just below the unchanged level on light volume which is a good sign. Only a handful of stocks traded to the upside with the rare earth metals as the top gainers. Into the close nothing changed. The Dow Jones finished down 17 points at 12018. The Nasdaq closed down 8 points at 2683 and the S&P 500 finished down 4 points at 1293.
March 21, 2011
U.S. stocks started sharply higher Monday as Wall Street embraced AT&T planned acquisition of T-Mobile USA in a move that would make it the nation's biggest wireless player. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 158 points to 12,016 with telecom giants Verizon Communications and AT&T leading the gains among its 30 components, both up over 2%. The S&P 500 Index added 16 points to 1,295. The Nasdaq Composite rose 36 points to 2,680. The AT&T deal is lifting T-Mobile's parent stock Deutsche Telekom by 12%. Charles Schwab is also making a deal to acquire Option Express for a billion dollars. Option Express is up 15%. On the earnings front, Tiffanys is up 6% after beating estimates. Illinois Tool Works is up 2% after reiterating sales and earnings for the quarter. Bed Bath & Beyond is up 3% on an upgrade. Target is also higher on an upgrade. In the tech space EMC, Oracle, Research in Motion, and Qualcomm are higher on upgrades. Google and Apple are strong this morning. Nokia is up a percent after news they are unaffected by the Japanese earthquake. After the first hour the averages only improved with the Dow jumping 200 points and the Nasdaq rising 51 points. The strength is in the blue chip industrials like Caterpillar, Chevron, Boeing, Exxon Mobil, IBM, 3M, and of course Verizon and AT&T. Through the morning the averages remained strong, but off the highs. Many of the financials fell into the red after a big run up on Friday. The techs and commodities still look good. In the afternoon the averages gave up a little more of their gains led by financials. However in the last hour, into the close, the averages rebounded for a third straight up day. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 178 points, or 1.5%, at 12,036, led by a 3% rise in Boeing shares. The last time Dow closed above 12,000 was March 11, the first U.S. trading session after a 9.0 earthquake hit Japan. The S&P 500 gained 19 points, or 1.5%, to 1,298, with energy shares leading gains. The Nasdaq Composite ended up 48 points, or 1.8%, at 2,692.