The Week In Review
12/6-12/10/10December 10, 2010
U.S. stocks began higher on Friday as economic data illustrated increased demand for American goods overseas. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 7 points to 11,377. United Tech is higher after reaffirming estimates. The S&P 500 Index climbed a point to 1,234 while the Nasdaq Composite rose 2 points to 2,619. Wallstreet seems to be warming up to an improving economy. Last night PIMCO raised US growth forecasts for next year. This morning JP Morgan upped their GDP growth forecasts for 2011 to 3.5%. Not bad. The good news doesn't seem to be translating into gains for the market at least in the short term. On the earnings front, Green Mountain Coffee is down 10% on conservative guidance. National Semi is down 6% even though they beat estimates. Jackson Hewitt is up 17% after beating estimates. A number of stocks are jumping on takeovers or rumors. Tenet Healthcare is jumping 50% after accepting a takeover from Community Health Systems. Community is jumping 7% as well. Rackspace is higher on rumors of a takeover. A couple of companies are raising their dividends. A REIT, Capstead Mortgage significantly raised their dividend. The stock is up 2%. Verisign is higher after announcing a special $3 dividend. Occidental Petroleum also raised their dividend. The financials are mixed following consecutive up days. M&T Bank is higher on an upgrade. JP Morgan, Wells Fargo, and Goldman Sachs look good. In the tech space Netflix and F5 Networks are higher after being added to the S&P 500. Intel and Research in Motion are higher on upgrades. After the first hour the averages remained range bound. The commodities opened lower, but are now battling back. Heading into the lunch hour the averages snuck into the green. GE is up 2% after raising their dividend for the second time in the last six months. In the afternoon the averages slowly improved. Honeywell is higher after hiking their dividend. All of a sudden everyone is hiking their dividends. In the last hour the averages kept improving moved back toward the highs of the year. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 40 points at 11,410, lifted by a 3.4% gain in shares of General Electric. For the week, the Dow rose 0.3%. The broad S&P 500 index gained 7 points to 1,240, a two-year high. It gained 1.3% for the week. The Nasdaq Composite rose 20 points to 2,637, tallying a 1.8% weekly gain.
December 9, 2010
U.S. stocks started mildly up on Thursday after the government offered better-than-expected data on the labor market. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 18 points to 11,390. The S&P 500 added 4 points to 1,232. The Nasdaq Composite climbed 10 points to 2,619. The broad market is performing well this morning, but only a hand full of stocks are trading sharply higher. Retailer, Lululemon Athletica is jumping 16% following better than expected earnings and good guidance. Smithfield Foods is jumping 6% following earnings. Ford is modestly higher on an upgrade from Bank of America. Their price target is $24. Not bad. Home Depot is higher on an upgrade while rival Lowes is lower on a downgrade. The financials are performing well for a second straight day. Bank of America is jumping 3%. Regional bank, Huntington Bancshares is up 3.5%. Legg Mason and Northern Trust are higher on upgrades. State Street is one of the few financials lower after selling $11 billion asset backed securities for a loss. In the tech sector Apple, Corning, Seagate, and Qualcomm are higher on upgrades. Most of the commodities are trading higher this morning. Freeport McMoran is jumping 2% on news the company is splitting their stock 2 for 1 and announced a special $1 dividend for shareholders before the end of the year. A year ago the company provided no dividend, but thanks to a robust turnaround in copper prices the yearly dividend is up to 90 cents and now an added dollar on top of that. Plus the stock is up 25% for the year. Nice turnaround. After the first hour the Dow fell into the red, but the Nasdaq held on to gains. The financials remain one of the lone bright spots. Through the morning the averages drifted lower as the Democrats in Washington have temporarily blocked the tax bill. In the afternoon the averages remained led by the financials. In the last hour the averages fought to get back to the unchanged level thanks in part to the largest US bond fund company, Pimco raising US growth forecasts for 2011. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down just 2 points at 11,370. Bank of America was one of the biggest winners in the Dow for a second straight day. The S&P 500 index rose 4 points to 1,233, led by a 1.3% gain in the financial sector. The Nasdaq Composite rose 7 points to 2,616.
December 8, 2010
U.S. stocks sputtered Wednesday, with Wall Street opening in an indecisive fashion as investors gauged the impact of rising Treasury yields and a strengthening dollar. The Dow Jones Industrial Average declined a quarter of a point to 11358. The S&P 500 Index rose 2 points to 1226. The Nasdaq Composite gained 9 points to 2,608. The US dollar is up and the commodities are struggling. The techs are mixed. Apple, Salesforce.com, and Redhat are higher on upgrades. Research in Motion is lower on a downgrade. The financials are modestly higher which is nice. Mastercard is experiencing trouble due to hackers. GE is modestly higher on an upgrade. The insurance stocks are performing well this morning. H&R Block is down 7% following earnings. In the retail space Home Depot is modestly higher after reaffirming guidance. Fortune Brands is modestly higher on rumors the firm will split into three companies. Costco is modestly lower even though they beat estimates. Callaway and Netflix are lower on downgrades. Mens Warehouse is down 14% following disappointing earnings. The retailers are under pressure and seem to be consolidating recent gains. After the first hour the Dow declined 16 points. The Nasdaq is holding onto modest gains. The financials are trying to hold on to gains. Two Chinese IPOs are performing well this morning. The commodities remain under pressure. In the afternoon the averages slowly improved with the Dow moving into the green thanks to the financials. Goldman Sachs is up 2.5%. Bank of America is up 3.6%. Wells Fargo is up 3% as well. The insurance stocks are also performing well. In the last hour all the major averages moved into the green moving heading into the close. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 13 points to end at 11,372, lifted by shares of Bank of America. The S&P 500 index rose 4 points to 1,228. The Nasdaq Composite gained 10 points to 2,609.
December 7, 2010
U.S. stocks opened higher on Tuesday, with a compromise on extending tax cuts bolstering sentiment and removing the threat of larger tax withholdings heading into January. "Santa has definitely arrived," Marc Pado, U.S. market strategist at Cantor Fitzgerald, wrote in a research note. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 84 points to 11,447. Only 3M is lower within the Dow even though they reaffirmed earnings guidance. The S&P 500 Index added 11 points to 1,234. The Nasdaq Composite climbed 25 points to 2,620. All three major averages are breaking out to new recent highs. Commodities are on a roll. Oil is pushing to $90 a barrel. Gold, Silver, and Copper continue to perform well. Yamana Gold is higher on an upgrade. Freeport McMoran is trading at another new high. Silver Wheaton made a new high on an upgrade. The techs are performing well. Google is jumping 2% thanks in part to an upgrade. Apple made another new high. Jabil Circuit is up 5% on an upgrade. Research in Motion is one of the few techs lower on a downgrade. Even the financials are higher. Citigroup is up 3% on news the government is planning on selling their remaining stake in the banking giant. Bank of Montreal is up 2% after easily beating estimates. In the retail space Autozone made a new high on better than expected earnings. Vail resorts is up 2% even though they missed estimates. Weight Watchers is up 5% on an upgrade and rumors of a takeover. Barnes & Noble is higher on rumors of a takeover bid. NY Times is up 3% on an uptick on ad spending. Talbots is the dog of the day down 20% due to lower fourth quarter guidance. After the first hour the rally started to fizzle. A number of commodities and financials are pulling back along with the high flyers. Autozone is off 4% from its' morning highs. Decker Outdoor is also pulling back after making a new 52 week high. In the afternoon the averages tried to rally once again, but failed. In the last hour the averages pulled back toward the unchanged level. A number of the techs, financials, retailers, and commodities fell into the red. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished at 11,359, down 3 points. The S&P 500 finished fractionally higher at 1,223, while the Nasdaq Composite gained 3 points to 2,598.
December 6, 2010
U.S. stocks open mildly lower as worries about European debt subside and investors focus on Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke's comments regarding the possibility to expand the Fed's bond-buying program. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 26 points to 11,355. The S&P 500 Index dipped 2 points to 1,221. The Nasdaq Composite declined a point to 2,590. Bernanke's comments are certainly helping the commodities. Gold broke out to new all time high. The other commodities are also performing well. Freeport McMoran is trading at a new 52 week high. Arch Coal is higher on an upgrade. The fertilizers are also performing well. A number of techs are performing well. Apple and Google are higher. Cisco Systems is up 2% on an upgrade from Oppenheimer who indicates the stock has bottomed. Cisco is also the featured stock at Leighbaldwin.com. Rambus is up 4% after lifting their forecast. Texas Instruments and Analog Devices were upgraded, however, both are lower. Sandisk is down 2% on a downgrade. Many of the retailers are modestly higher. American Eagle and Abercrombie & Fitch are higher on upgrades. Barnes and Noble is jumping 18% on rumors of a leveraged takeover. Sprint/Nextel is jumping 5% after a hedge fund manager recommended it on CNBC. Six Flags is up a percent after announcing a dividend. Kellogg is unchanged after reaffirming numbers. Autozone is down a percent even though it was upgraded. Dollar General is dropping 7% following earnings and a disappointing outlook. After the first hour the Nasdaq remains down a point and the Dow is down 17 points. Not much going on so far this morning. The financials are quiet even though Goldman Sachs recommended the group as their best sector for 2011 last Friday. Hopefully they're right. Through the morning the averages remain modestly below the unchanged level. A number of financials are perked up. JPMorgan is in the green thanks to positive comments from Deutsche Bank. In the afternoon the averages slowly improved with more and more stocks moving into the green. In the last hour all the major averages moved into the green only to pull back into the close. The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended down 19 points at 11,362. The S&P 500 lost a point to 1,223. The Nasdaq Composite ended up 3 points at 2,594.