Market Recap

Consumer Sentiment at Five-Year Best, but Markets Little Moved

Stocks endure wishy-washy action on the Street, weekly losses swell

by 10/12/2012 4:40:24 PM
Stocks quoted in this article:

After being up roughly 75 points in early action, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) turned south just before midday and stayed near breakeven for the latter half of the day. "The broad market once again tried to form a rally early on, but succumbed to selling pressure in the late afternoon," said Schaeffer's Senior Equities Analyst Joe Bell. "The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan consumer sentiment survey was released this morning, and came in at its best level since September 2007. Despite the positive news, however, most sectors were unable to hold onto gains."

Keep reading to see what else was on our radar today:

And now, a look at the numbers...



The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI 13,328.85) ended its recent four-day pullback, but just barely. The Dow jumped to an intraday high of 13,401.32 in morning trading, but battled to maintain this lead for the rest of the session. The index did eke out a win, however, inching fractionally higher by 2.5 points. Eleven of the 30 components claimed victories, with The Boeing Company's (NYSE:BA) 1.4% rise topping the list. Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) paced the 17 underperformers with a 2.4% decline. Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) and Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) remained unchanged. The blue-chip barometer closed out the week with a loss of 2.1%, marking its worst weekly close since the beginning of September.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX 1,428.59) and Nasdaq Composite (COMP 3,044.11) also burned off early gains, but settled below the breakeven mark by the time the dust settled. The SPX fell 4.3 points, or 0.3%, on the day, and sawed off 2.2% for the week -- its lowest weekly perch since early September. Meanwhile, the COMP notched a 5.3-point, or roughly 0.2%, daily deficit, and an even greater 2.9% weekly defeat -- its lowest weekly reading in two months.

The CBOE Market Volatility Index (VIX 16.14) was up 0.6 point, or 3.5%, today, bringing its weekly return to 12.6%.

Today's highlight: "We got a first round of financial earnings reports, but the reaction wasn't very positive," pointed out Bell. "Financials were the clear laggard today, as JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM) and Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE:WFC) both reported earnings that underwhelmed investors."

Turning to today's major market stories...

For today's activity in commodities, options, and more, head to page 2.

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