The Week In Review


February 12, 2010
U.S. stocks on Friday opened steeply lower after China unexpectedly hiked bank reserve requirements, adding to worries for investors already concerned about a possible default by Greece. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 131 points to 10,012. The S&P 500 Index shed 13 points to 1,065. The Nasdaq Composite Index declined 23 points to 2,153. Not a lot of stocks trading higher. On the earnings front Cheesecake Factory, McAfee, AllianceBernstein, and Agilent are modestly higher following earnings. Buffalo Wild Wing and Ingersoll Rand are lower by over 8% following earnings. Buffalo Wild Wing is also lower following earnings. Plenty of upgrades this morning, but they are not helping much. In the tech sector Apple, Marvell Tech, Qualcomm, HP, NetAppliance, and Research in Motion were all upgraded. Qualcomm and Research in Motion are the only two modestly higher. Motorola is up 2% on news the company plans to split into two companies next year. Through the first hour the averages pushed to new lows before recovering a little bit. A big reweighting in the S&P 500 will occur today with money managers selling to make room for Berkshire Hathaway to join the index. Berkshire is trading up ahead of this transaction at the close. Through the morning the averages slowly improved. During the lunch hour the Nasdaq briefly moved into the green led by the techs. The chip stocks have had a nice turn around. In the afternoon the averages went up, then down, and then recovered a little into the close. The Dow Jones Industrial Aveage finished down 45 points at 10,099, leaving the blue chip average up 0.9% from the week-ago close. The S&P 500 Index declined 2 points to 1,075, leaving it up 0.9% for the week. The Nasdaq Composite Index added 6 points, or 0.3%, to 2,183, giving it a 2% weekly gain.

February 11, 2010
U.S. stocks tallied modest losses at Thursday's start, with better-than-expected data on the jobs front pushing the dollar higher, with commodities and equities hit as a result. The Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 15 points to 10,022. The S&P 500 Index fell 2 points to 1,065. The Nasdaq Composite shed 4 points to 2,143. A quiet morning for news as many people in the Northeast are still digging out from the snow storm. On the earnings front Allstate and Prudential produced in line earnings. Neither stock is reacting much even though the analysts remain bullish on the stocks. Video game maker, Activision Blizzard is up 8% after beating estimates. A number of companies are trading lower following earnings including AutoNation, SunLife Financial, Marriott International, and Progress Energy. After the first half an hour the Dow dropped 40 points as the Nasdaq declined 10 points. Not many stocks are in the green. In the tech space Palm and Nvidia are higher on upgrades. Redhat and Hewlett Packard were also upgraded, but neither are reacting much. The financials are modestly lower. Credit Suisse made positive comments on Bank of America and Wells Fargo. The commodities have turned around moving into the green. Through the morning and into the afternoon the U.S. dollar sold off sending the averages and commodities higher. The Dow shot up 100 points. The Nasdaq rose 25 points. The techs and commodities are in the lead. The financials are quiet once again. The averages held on to their gains into the close. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 105 points, or 1.1%, at 10,144. The S&P 500 Index added 10 points, or 1%, to 1,078. The Nasdaq Composite Index climbed 29 points, or 1.4%, to 2,177.

February 10, 2010
U.S. stocks managed to open higher as progress is being made in Europe to aid Greece. Investors are also awaiting testimony from Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke later this morning. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 7 points to 10,065. The S&P 500 Index inched up half a point to 1,070. The Nasdaq Composite rose 4 points to 2,155. Plenty of earnings keep coming out. Last night a number of techs and financials reported better than expected earnings. National Financial Partners, Baidu, Netgear, and Stifel Financial are all up 6% or better due to earnings. Computer Science is higher thanks to better than expected earnings this morning. Adobe, Dell, and JP Morgan look good this morning due to upgrades. Unfortunately not everything is higher. A number of stocks are trading lower this morning due to earnings including Disney, Bob Evans, XL Capital, BHP Billiton, NY Times, Dean Foods, Louisiana Pacific, Sprint/Nextel, and Marsh & McLennan. The averages were holding in until 10 o'clock when the Fed's testimony was released and hinted to raising rates at least at the discount window. That sent the averages into the red. The financials which have been weak of late are actually holding in there so far. Through the morning the averages remained in the red with only the financials holding firm. Stifel Financial and National Financial Partners are both up over 8% this morning. Not bad. In the afternoon the averages held near the unchanged level. The financials are leading the charge. In the last hour the averages dipped into the red. Volume trailed off as many traders and workers in the Northeast left early ahead of the big snow storm. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 20 points at 10,038. The S&P 500 Index declined 2 points to 1,068, while the Nasdaq Composite Index lost 3 points to 2,147.

February 9, 2010
U.S. stocks rallied at the start on Tuesday on hopes Greece would get European assistance in combating its deficit. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 123 points to 10,032. The S&P 500 Index climbed 14 points to 1,071. The Nasdaq Composite Index gained 27 points to 2,153. Within the Dow Caterpillar is up 5% on an upgrade. Verizon is higher as well on an upgrade. Coke is up 3% even though they missed estimates by a penny. The commodities are performing well. Agrium is jumping 4% on in line earnings. Potlatch is up 3% after beating estimates. Other companies reporting earnings include Biogen and Coventry Health. Both trading higher. Martin Marietta and Pulte Homes are lower by 4% after both missed earnings estimates. Molson Coors is also lower after missing estimates. After the first hour the averages remained strong, but a few stocks are losing steam. The financials are up, but not by much. Citigroup and Bank of America had their credit outlook downgraded. The regional banks seem to be holding up better than most. Fulton Financial is up 2% on an upgrade. In the insurance space Lincoln Financial is up 5% while Hartford is down Through the morning more and more stocks gave up their gains. In the tech space Research in Motion and Corning well into the red. Bank of America, GE, and Goldman Sachs also gave up their gains. The averages gave up half their gains only to rebound once again when the Euro Zone Governments decided in principle to help out Greece. The Dow rebounded, jumping 140 points as the U.S. dollar sank. Commodities are performing well. During the lunch hour the Dow rose 200 points when Germany indicated that aid to Greece was premature. The averages sold off then rebounded again. Through the afternoon the averages remained strong thanks to a weak dollar. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 150 points, or 1.5%, to 10,058. The S&P 500 Index climbed 13 points, or 1.3%, to 1,070. The Nasdaq Composite Index gained 24 points, or 1.2%, to 2,150.

February 8, 2010
U.S. stocks opened lower on Monday, with industrial shares down the most, with equities continuing a negative correlation to the dollar, which edged higher. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 47 points to 9,964. The S&P 500 Index declined 3 points to 1,062. The Nasdaq Composite shed 5 points to 2,135. The financials and insurance stocks are leading the downward sell off. CNA Financial beat estimates this morning, but the stock is lower. Visa and Mastercard are bucking the trend, trading higher. CIT Group is up 4% after hiring John Thain. Mr. Thain has been in hiding since selling Merrill Lynch. A number of techs are trading higher. Apple, Amazon, Motorola, Google, and Computer Sciences are higher on upgrades. Jaffray made positive comments on Research in Motion, but the stock is modestly lower. Broadcom and Nvidia are lower on upgrades. On the earnings front CVS Caremark and Hasbro are jumping over 5% following earnings. Loews is down a percent after missing estimates. In the retail space Autozone and Home Depot are both up over 2% on upgrades. After the first hour the Nasdaq moved into the green while the Dow recovered. Dow components Disney and Exxon Mobil are higher on upgrades. The commodity stocks are modestly higher this morning. Through the morning the averages vascillated back in forth, but slowly improving. The financials remain one of the weakest sectors. In the afternoon, the averages sold back off led by the financials. In last hour the selling accelerated led by the financials and everything else. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 103 points, or 1%, at 9,908. The S&P 500 lost 9 points to 1,056. The Nasdaq Composite sank 15 points to 2,126.