Dow Drops, S&P 500 Gains as Investors Weigh Earnings Reports

Crude advances on revised demand outlook, while gold pares recent gains

by 1/21/2014 4:19:28 PM
Stocks quoted in this article:

"Today was all about earnings, and we saw a mixture of reactions," summarized Schaeffer's Senior Equity Analyst Joe Bell, CMT. "There was a ton of intraday volatility, but in the end we didn't see a lot of net movement either way." After being down more than 140 points at its intraday nadir, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) settled with a modest loss, while other major indexes closed slightly higher.

Continue reading for more on today's market, including:

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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 16,414.44) started the day in the black, but its gains quickly unraveled. The blue-chip index bottomed out during the lunch hour, and ultimately closed with a loss of 44.1 points, or 0.3%. The Dow's dozen winners were led by The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE:KO), which added 1.6%, while the 18 losers were paced by Goldman Sachs Group Inc (NYSE:GS), down 1.8% on the day.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 1,843.80) managed to close in positive territory, settling 5.1 points, or 0.3%, higher after coming within two points of another intraday record high. The Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 4,225.76) tagged a new 13-year peak of 4,227.93 shortly out of the gate, and settled with a gain of 28.2 points, or 0.7%.

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 12.87) moved higher as well, adding 0.4 point, or 3.5%. The VIX topped the 13 mark in intraday trading, but was unable to close north of this threshold.

CLOSING SUMMARY – INDICES

CLOSING SUMMARY – NYSE AND NASDAQ

A Trader's Take:

"Although we were relatively flat today," Bell continued, "it's nice to see stock correlations at very low levels and good trading opportunities for stock pickers."

5 Items on Our Radar Today:

  1. Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) reported fourth-quarter earnings and revenue that narrowly topped analysts' expectations. In other news, the telecom name announced plans to acquire the assets of Intel Media -- a cloud television concern -- from Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC). (Forbes)
  2. The Dow Chemical Company (NYSE:DOW) ran to a new multi-year high today after activist investor Daniel Loeb revealed a sizable stake in the chemical manufacturer. The manager of the Third Point hedge fund is also encouraging DOW to spin off its petrochemical division. (Reuters)
  3. BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) surged on a positive fundamental development, spurring call buyers into action.
  4. Days before its fiscal first-quarter earnings release, Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ:SBUX) suffered a downgrade at Goldman Sachs.
  5. Our Tuesday Tumble reveals why Marathon Oil Corporation (NYSE:MRO) could continue to underperform in the weeks ahead.
EARNINGS

For a look at today's options movers and commodities activity, head to page 2.

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