The Week In Review


January 20, 2012

U.S. stocks started off on a cautious note Friday, weighed by unease over Greek debt talks and some disappointing earnings, and after three straight days of gains. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 9 points to 12,633. The S&P 500 fell 3 points 1,312. The Nasdaq Composite lost 8 points to 2,780. The earnings keep flooding in. Tech titans Intel, Microsoft, IBM and Google all reported last night. Only Google is lower by 50 points or 8%. Ouch. Juniper, Cisco, Nokia, and Research in Motion all received upgrades, but the stocks are not reacting. The financials are quiet this morning. The credit card companies like Capital One and American Express are getting hit following disappointing earnings. Visa and American Express are lower as well. Fifth Third is also lower following earnings. SunTrust is bucking the trend up 5% on earnings. The energy and commodity spaces are getting hit except for the fertilizer stocks. Agrium and Mosaic are higher on upgrades. Noble Corp is higher on an upgrade and Schlumberger is higher following earnings. Through the morning the broader market gave up more ground. Although the big techs like Intel, IBM, and Microsoft remain strong holding up the Dow. In the afternoon more of the same. The Dow held up thanks to the techs and financials. Intel and Microsoft are making new 52 week highs. Google and now Apple are lower. The rest of the market is unchanged to slightly lower. Intuitive Surgical is lower by 6.5% on disappointing earnings. Rival, MAKO Surgical is lower as well. In the last hour the Dow kept pushing higher led by the techs and financials. A good way to end the week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 96 points at 12,720, led by a 5.7% rally in Microsoft and a 4.4% gain in IBM's shares. The S&P 500 ended up 9 cents at 1,315. The Nasdaq Composite lost a point to 2,786. The major indexes rose 2% to nearly 3% for the week, the third straight week of gains.

January 19, 2012

U.S. stocks started higher Thursday, helped by better-than-expected earnings, a drop in jobless claims, and good demand at European bond auctions. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 17 points 12,596. The Nasdaq Composite gained 12 points to 2,782. The S&P 500 gained 4 points to 1,312. The earnings are piling in. Bank of America and Morgan Stanley are trading up 4% on better than expected earnings. The financials in general continue to perform well. UBS is jumping 6% on an upgrade. Knight Capital is up 9% on strong earnings. Blackrock, BB&T, Webster Financial, and Fulton Financial are lower on earnings. In the tech space, F5 Networks is jumping 12% on earnings. Ebay and Xilinx are higher on earnings. Microsoft, Intel, Google, and IBM all report tonight. In the commodity space, Freeport McMoran is higher thanks to improving copper pricing and solid earnings. Noble Corp is higher on an upgrade. In the transportation space, Union Pacific is higher thanks to strong earnings. Southwest Air is up 2% on earnings. Through the first hour the averages slowly improved. The weakness so far is in defensive stocks and sectors like utilities. A few stocks are in the red following earnings. Johnson Controls is a stand out down 8% following earnings. Through the morning the averages held on to their gains, but off the highs. In the afternoon the averages gave up a little more of their gains as a few more stocks dropped into the red. Most investors remain on the sidelines waiting for more earnings reports. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 45 points at 12,623. The S&P 500 gained 6 points to 1,314 while the Nasdaq Composite added 18 points to 2,788.

January 18, 2012

U.S. stocks began mainly lower on Wednesday as investors digest the flood of earnings coming out for the fourth quarter. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 10 points to 12,471. The S&P 500 declined a point to 1,292. The Nasdaq Composite rose 4 points to 2,733. Quiet trading overseas is not lending any support to the US markets. The financials are mixed this morning on a number of earnings reports. Goldman Sachs is one of the bright spots thanks to better than expected earnings, however Bank of New York Mellon, PNC, and Charles Schwab are lower on earnings. US Bancorp is modestly higher on earnings. Wells Fargo and M&T Bank are not reacting to upgrades. The techs are holding up well this morning. Cree traded lower last night after earnings, but luckily is higher by 2% this morning. Taiwan Semi is higher by 2% following earnings. The real winner is a fiber optic company, Amphenol up 10% thanks to strong earnings. Ebay and F5 Networks report tonight while Intel, Microsoft, Google, and IBM report tomorrow. Google and Microsoft are modestly lower. Yahoo is higher by 2% as their founder Jerry Yang resigned. Now the takeover speculation can begin. Speaking of that, Research in Motion is lower as Samsung indicated they are not interested in the company. In the retail space William Sonoma is higher on an upgrade. Carnival is bouncing back after a sharp sell off yesterday. Polo is modestly higher on an upgrade. In the transportation space, Swift Transports is higher by 2% on an upgrade. All the transports look good. In the consumer staples sector, Kraft is just under its' all time high thanks to an upgrade. Through the first hour the averages improved as a number of financials perked up including Goldman Sachs. The defensive sectors like utilities are succumbing to profit-taking. Through the morning the averages held up actually rallying in the afternoon as the financials pushed higher into the last hour. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 96 points to close at 12,578. The S&P 500 added 14 points, or 1.1%, to end at 1,308, its first close above 1,300 since July 28. The Nasdaq Composite tacked on 41 points, or 1.5%, to close at 2,769.

January 17, 2012

U.S. stocks advanced Tuesday, with equities rising along with the euro after Spain 's borrowing costs declined at an auction, denting worry about the nation's ability to handle its debt. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 109 points to 12,531. The S&P 500 Index climbed 11 points to 1,301. The Nasdaq Composite added 26 points to 2,737. Europe is up therefore the financials are higher, at least to start. Wells Fargo looks good up a percent to new recent highs following better than expected earnings. On the flip side Citigroup, M&T Bank, and TD Ameritrade are lower after earnings. The tech space is witnessing a broad based rally. Microsoft, Apple, and Applied Materials are higher on upgrades. Intel is lower on a downgrade. The Energy and Material space are performing well. Hess and Potash are higher by 2% on upgrades. Cliffs Natural Resources is higher on an upgrade. Copper play, Freeport McMoran is jumping 2.5% in part to encouraging economic data out of China . The retail sector is exhibiting plenty of volatility once again. Research in Motion and Sears are jumping 8% each thanks to speculation of takeover rumors. Hasbro is higher by 2% on positive guidance. Eastman Kodak is jumping 12% only because they didn't file for bankruptcy over the weekend. However, the dog of the day goes to Carnival down 13% as one of their cruise ships ran aground off the coast of Italy . That's not good for business. Rival, Royal Caribbean is also lower by 4%. Through the first hour the averages held on to their gains, but couldn't push higher. Through the morning the averages drifted off the highs as the financials started to break down. Only Wells Fargo and a few other banks remain in the green. In the afternoon the averages drifted lower led by financials. It looked like the averages were going to give up all their gains when the averages stabilized in the last hour. Whew. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished at 12,482 up 60 points. The S&P 500 rose 4 points to 1,293. The Nasdaq Composite climbed 17 points to 2,728.

January 16, 2012

Markets closed in observance of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day