The Week In Review


May 28, 2010
U.S. stocks opened lower on the final trading day of May, the worst month of May since 1962. Weakness in the euro is causing the U.S. dollar to move higher hurting the major averages and commodities. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 29 points to 10,229. The S&P 500 Index declined 3 points to 1,099. The Nasdaq Composite declined 8 points to 2,269. BP is lower by 4% after surging 6% yesterday. Work continues to plug the oil spill in the Gulf. All the oils and most of the commodities are lower. In the retail space Guess and J. Crew are higher following earnings. Decker Outdoors is jumping 5% after announcing a 3 for 1 stock split. Target received an upgrade and Lowes hiked it's dividend, yet both are lower. The tech are lower except for Apple. The news keeps getting better for Apple as business remains white hot. Bank of America upgraded the stock with a $325 price target. Novellus is modestly lower even though they reported better than expected
earnings. Research in Motion, Nokia, and Redhat received upgrades, yet all three are modestly lower. The financials are quiet this morning. After the first hour the averages remain modestly in the red. Volume may trail off later in the day as investors take off early for the long Memorial Day Weekend. Through the morning the averages moved lower due in part to tensions between North and South Korea. During the lunch hour the Dow fell over 100 points on news Fitch downgraded Spain's debt. The debt downgrade caused the Euro currency to sell off sharply. Here we go again. Through the rest of the morning the averages remained weak. In the last hour the Dow sold off once again, then tried to recover, then sold off into the close. The Dow Jones finished down 122 points at 10136. The S&P 500 closed down 13 points at 1089. The Nasdaq declined 20 points to 2257. The Dow finished down modestly for the week while the Nasdaq and S&P 500 rallied half a percent. For the month it wasn't pretty. The Dow dropped 7.9%. The S&P 500 dropped 8% and the Nasdaq dropped 8.2%.

May 27, 2010
U.S. stocks opened sharply higher on Thursday after China rejected talk that it might sell its holdings in European bonds. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 176 points to 10,150. The S&P 500 Index gained 20 points to 1,088. The Nasdaq Composite added 51 points to 2,247. The broader market looks great today, in particular the oils. BP is jumping 6% on news the spill has been temporarily stopped. Hurray. Brazilian company Petrobras is up 4%. Exxon Mobil is jumping 2%. Plenty of upgrades once again. The list includes BP, Panera Bread, McDonalds, EMC, Starbucks, Fluor, Gamestop, Research in Motion, and Microsoft. All are trading up more than 2%. The financials look good this morning. Citigroup is up 4% on news a hedge fund manager bought a 3% stake in the banking giant. Northern Trust, American Express, Travelers, and Bank of Montreal were all upgraded. All four are up 2% or more. On the earnings front Tiffanys, Heinz, Borders, Big Lots, and Costco all beat estimates. Borders and Big Lots are both down 3%. Tiffanys and Costco are up 6%. After the first hour the averages shot higher with the Dow rising over 200 points. The Nasdaq rose 55 points. It's looking good. The dog of the day goes to Monsanto, down 7%, after lowering earnings guidance. Through the morning the averages remained strong. No pull back yet. In the afternoon the averages remained strong. Only J&J is lower in the Dow. In the last hour the averages shot higher. I wish all days were like this. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 284 points, or 2.8%, at 10,258. The S&P 500 Index climbed 35 points, or 3.2%, to 1,103. The Nasdaq Composite gained 81 points, or 3.7%, to 2,277.

May 26, 2010
U.S. stocks opened higher Wednesday after the prior day's late surge. A healthy durable goods report also inspired buying on Wall Street. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 83 points to 10,127. The S&P 500 Index climbed 11 points to 1,085. The Nasdaq Composite added 28 points to 2,239. Everything looks good today. The analysts are in a good mood upgrading plenty of stocks. The upgrade list includes Zions Bancorp, VMware, Johnson Controls, BP, Autozone, Cisco Systems, US Bancorp, Under Armour, Alcoa, Home Depot, and Lowes. Only Autozone is lower. On the earnings front, Zales and Toll Brothers are higher after reporting quarterly losses. The dog of the day goes to American Eagle down 10% after reporting in line earnings. After the first hour the Dow rose over 100 points. The Nasdaq rose 44 points. So far so good. Through the morning the averages remain in the green, but off the highs. A few stocks are in the red including a couple of financials like Goldman Sachs. In the afternoon the averages gave up their gains heading into the last hour and then bounced. In the last hour the selling accelerated. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 69 points at 9974. The S&P 500 Index declined 6 points to 1,067. The Nasdaq Composite declined 15 points to 2,195.

May 25, 2010
U.S. stocks dropped on the open, taking the Dow Jones Industrial Average below 10,000 for the first time since February. Investors are in a selling mood as worries escalate about Europe's debt trouble and rising tensions in Korea. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 218 points, or 2.1%, to 9,848. All 30 components in the Dow are lower. Traveler's stock looks the best down only half a percent. The S&P 500 Index declined 23 points, or 2.2%, to 1,050. The Nasdaq Composite shed 52 points, or 2.4%, to 2,161. Nothing looks good. I found one stock, Autozone, trading up 2% at new highs following earnings. And that's about it for the good news. Medtronics, Sanderson Farms, Cracker Barrel, J. Crew, Trina Solar, and DSW are all lower following better than expected earnings. AK Steel, PNC Bank, Sandisk, Micron, Cliffs Natural Resources, Nike, and NetApp are all lower on upgrades. Go figure. Within the first 20 minutes of trading the Dow dropped 300 points and then rebounded. Goldman Sachs rallied into the green shortly after the open. At least one bank is higher. Through the morning the averages did not budge much with the Dow remaining down 180 to 200 points. Goldman Sachs remains one of the few stocks trading higher. In the afternoon we had a slow motion rally with a few more stocks popping into the green. The financials are perking up on news out of DC that the financial reform package will not be as severe as feared. In the last hour the rally accelerated led by the financials. The only question is will we make it to positive territory. The Dow industrials finished down 22 points, or 0.2%, at 10,043. The Blue-chip gains were led by shares of Home Depot up 2.3% and Alcoa up 1.9%. In the broad market, the S&P 500 index rose 38 cents to 1,074, led by the materials sector, up 1.6%, and the financials and consumer discretionary sectors, both up 0.8%. The Nasdaq Composite ended down 2 points at 2,210.

May 24, 2010
U.S. stocks opened lower Monday amid fresh concerns over global growth, though selling pressure was less heavy than in Europe where thin holiday volumes made for volatile trading conditions. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 90 points to 10,102. The S&P 500 index dropped 6 points to 1,081, while the Nasdaq Composite dropped 5 points to 2,223. Shortly after the open the averages started to rebound. Google, Dell, and Apple are performing well in the tech sector. Google received two upgrades. Dell and Apple also received upgrades. IBM is modestly lower after agreeing to buy software maker, Sterling Commerce from AT&T for $1.4 billion. Intel and Research in Motion were upgraded, but both are lower. In the financial sector Citigroup and Legg Mason are higher on upgrades. Goldman Sachs is higher as well, but most banks are lower. Wells Fargo is lower on a downgrade. In the commodity space, BP continues to struggle with the oil spill in the Gulf. BP is down 3.4%. All the oil and gas stocks are lower on concerns of future restrictions for drilling in the Gulf. Through the first hour the Dow slowly improved with the Nasdaq moving into the green. Through the morning the Nasdaq remained in the green with the Dow still in the red. The oils remain in the red along with a number of big banks. Dreamworks is the dog of the day down 9% today and down 25% in the last month. Their latest movie, Shrek performed well over the weekend, but not up to the lofty expectations. Entering the lunch hour all three averages briefly entered the green. Unfortunately, the rally did not last. Entering the last hour the Dow was back solidly in the red, but the Nasdaq remained in the green. In the last hour, unlike Friday, the averages sold off aggressively into the close. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 126 points, or 1.2%, at 10,066. The S&P 500 index dropped 14 points, or 1.3%, to 1,073. The Nasdaq Composite fell 15 points, or 0.7%, to 2,213. Here we go again.