The Week In Review
8/20-8/24/12August 24, 2012
U.S. stocks open mildly lower Friday, with the Dow industrials and the S&P 500 positioned for their first weekly drop in seven, on worry about Europe's handling of its debt crisis. "It's been a bad week for markets. It's a very-little volume reaction to some nice weeks of a rally. Investors are nervous the market isn't as cheap as it was, and that something could go wrong here," said David Kelly, chief market strategist at J.P. Morgan Funds. The Dow industrials declined 15 points to 13,041. The S&P 500 retreated 2 points to 1,399. The Nasdaq Composite shed 10 points to 3,042. More disappointing earnings out of the tech space this morning. Today it's Autodesk down 22% after missing estimates. All the big cap techs are modestly lower this morning. Salesforce.com opened lower on earnings, but then battled back. Aruba Networks is jumping 17% on earnings. Most sectors are trading lower, but the healthcare space is bucking the trend. Eli Lilly is jumping 4% on positive clinical trials for their Alzheimer drug. Bristol Myers and Gilead Science are higher on upgrades. Merck was downgraded, but the stock is higher. Many of the drug stocks are trading just under their 52 week highs. Through the first hour the averages sold off only to rebound. Following the first hour the Nasdaq moved into the green followed by the Dow. The healthcare space is in the lead followed consumer staples, telecom, and consumer discretionary. The techs and financials are trying to battle back. Positive comments from our Fed Chairman and comments out of Europe sent the Euro higher and our averages higher as well. The Dow rallied 90 points while the Nasdaq rose 14 points. Now every sector looks pretty good except for the energy space. A number of material stocks are also under water. Entering the last hour the Dow pushed up triple digits and held on to the gains into the close. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 100 points at 13,157, leaving the blue chips 0.7% lower on the week. The S&P 500 index gained 9 points to 1,411, down 0.5% from the week-ago close. The Nasdaq Composite added 16 points to 3,069, off 0.2% for the week.
August 23, 2012
U.S. stocks started lower Thursday after the government reported the number of those applying for jobless benefits rose more than estimated last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 54 points to 13,118. The S&P 500 index dipped 5 points to 1,407. The Nasdaq Composite declined 13 points to 3,060. Slowing growth and weakness overseas has investors in a selling mood this morning once again extending the losses into a third day. On the earnings front, Hewlett Packard is down 6% on disappointing earnings similar to Dell a few days ago. Dell is down 3% in sympathy. The blue chip techs like Google and Apple are lower as well. Intel is down 2.5% showing some relative weakness maybe in sympathy with HP. In the retail space, Guess is getting hit down 17% on disappointing earnings. Not to be out done, Big Lots is down 20% on disappointing earnings. Hormel Foods is modestly higher on in line earnings. Through the morning the averages accelerated to the downside. Materials and industrials are particularly weak. AK Steel is down 5% on a downgrade. Caterpillar was upgraded, but the stock is lower. Toro is lower on earnings. Even the defensive sectors are under pressure. The healthcare space looks the best of any sector. Bristol Myers is higher by one percent this morning as the stock seems to have bottomed out. Through the morning the Dow fell nearly 100 points before rebounding. The Nasdaq fell 26 points before rebounding. HP still has the techs under pressure. Nothing looks particularly good. During the lunch hour the averages moved back toward the lows. In the tech space, Biadu.com is lower by 6% on a downgrade. Rival, Google is one of the few techs trading higher. HP, Dell, and Intel remain particularly weak. In the last hour, no rebound. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 115 points at 13,057. The S&P 500 index declined 11 points to 1,402. The Nasdaq Composite shed 20 points to 3,053.
August 22, 2012
U.S. stocks began moderately lower Wednesday, extending losses into a second session after a run that had the indexes at multi-year highs. "We're pushing up at levels now where a bit of a pullback is in our near future, the question is how severe," said Andrew Fitzpatrick, director of investments at Hinsdale Associates Inc. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 26 points to 13,177. The S&P 500 index shed 4 points to 1,408. The Nasdaq Composite declined 10 points to 3,056. The earnings keep coming in with mixed results. Dell is down 5% due to lackluster numbers. HP is lower in sympathy ahead of their earnings tonight. Analog Devices and Intuit are lower on earnings. Apple and Google, however, keep pushing higher. Apple was upgraded with a $750 price target. In the retail space, William Sonoma is higher by 8% on earnings. American Eagle is jumping 7% on earnings. Chicos is higher by 6% on earnings. Express is getting hit down 11% on earnings. Best Buy is lower on a downgrade. The material space is looking good this morning following earnings from BHP Billiton overnight. The financials are under pressure even though the housing sector looks good. Toll Brothers is higher by 3% at a new high thanks to better than expected earnings. Toll Brothers' stock has doubled in the last year. Fifth Third is one of the few banks bucking the trend on a share buyback plan and a possible dividend hike. In the first hour and through the morning the averages remained under pressure. Many investors are awaiting the Fed minutes out this afternoon. In the afternoon the Fed gave the markets what they wanted with hints of another rate cut. The Dow pared its' losses while the Nasdaq eventually moved into the green thanks to Google and Apple. The averages kept slowly improving until the last hour when the Dow drifted lower once again. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 30 points at 13,172. The S&P 500 index finished unchanged at 1,413. The Nasdaq Composite rose 6 points to 3,073.
August 21, 2012
U.S. stocks rose Tuesday on optimism that euro-zone leaders would take steps this week to contain the region's debt crisis. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 11 points to 13,283. The S&P 500 index gained 3 points to 1,421. The Nasdaq Composite added 13 points to 3,090. Up, up, and away for the major averages, it doesn't look like we're going to have a down day again. In the tech space, Apple keeps pushing higher make new highs and new historic market cap highs. Cree, Corning, VMware, Salesforce.com are higher on upgrades. Google is higher as well, but the rest of the techs are quiet. The retailers are mixed this morning. DSW is higher by 5% on earnings. Urban Outfitter is jumping 17% on earnings. Gap is modestly higher on an upgrade while Barnes and Noble is getting hit on earnings. Best Buy is lower by 5% on earnings and down 16% in the last week after a takeover offer from the founding CEO was essentially rejected. Through the first hour the averages pushed higher led by the financials. JP Morgan is up 2.5% breaking out of a 2 and half month range. The energy, material, and industrial space also look good while the utilities are lower. It's a risk on day. The S&P 500 and Dow retested their yearly highs this morning before pulling back. Apple led the reversal followed by Google. Heading into the lunch hour the Nasdaq gave up most of its' gains while the Dow has cut its' gains in half. In the afternoon the averages dropped into the red led by techs like Apple and Google. The energy and industrial space reversed course, falling into the red. The financials are one of the few sectors clinging to gains. In the last hour the selling accelerated into the red. We were due for a down day. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 68 points at 13,203. The S&P 500 index lost 4 points to 1,413. The Nasdaq Composite fell 8 points to 3,067.
August 20, 2012
U.S. stocks began in a modest retreat Monday after capping off another winning week that brought the S&P 500 index within reach of a four-year high. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 22 points to 13,252. The S&P 500 declined 2 points to 1,415. The Nasdaq Composite shed 5 points to 3,070. A quiet start once again. So far August is working out perfectly for anyone looking to get away without worrying about the market. The diamond of the day is HMO, Coventry Health up 18% after agreeing to be acquired by Aetna. Aetna is higher by 4% as well. A win-win so far. The rest of the healthcare space is quiet. In the retail space, Lowes is getting hit following disappointing earnings. Lowes struggles while Home Depot continues to shine. Best Buy is lower by 7% after announcing a new CEO. Investors are disappointed with the news anticipating a buyout from the original CEO and founder. Waste Management is lower on cautious comments in Barrons. Gap is lower even though it was upgraded. AnnTaylor is higher by 2% on an upgrade. In the tech space, Apple keeps pushing higher. That's a good sign. Microsoft and Oracle are unchanged on upgrades. Facebook was upgraded, but the stock remains near its' 52 week low. In the financial space JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs, and Hartford are modestly higher, but that's about it. Through the first hour and the rest of the morning, the averages remained in the red, but not by much. A few stocks are performing well. In the tech space, Apple looks great. HP and Dell are higher ahead of earnings this week. In the financial space Hartford, JP Morgan, and Goldman look good. In the energy space Hess is higher by a percent and a half. In the consumer discretionary space, McDonalds is higher, but the rest of the sector is in the red. Quiet morning. In the afternoon more of the same. The financials are perking up. Apple keeps pushing higher, rising 2.6% to a new 52 week high. Apple's market cap surpassed the record market cap of $623 billion set by Microsoft over 12 years ago. In the last hour the averages gravitated back to the unchanged level. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down 3 points to 13,271, with American Express posting the biggest decline in the blue-chip index. The S&P 500 index finished virtually unchanged at 1,418, compared with 1,418. The Nasdaq Composite slipped less than a point to 3,076.