"Today felt almost like a repeat of the past several trading sessions," said Schaeffer's Senior Equity Analyst Joe Bell, CMT. "Small rallies were met with selling, and buyers came in on the dips. With that being said, small-caps and technology continue to lag and look very weak under the surface." During the course of the session, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) partially recovered from an early morning sell-off to finish with a modest loss.
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 16,264.23) spent time on both sides of breakeven, traded within a 109-point range, and ultimately settled on a minor loss of 4.8 points, or just 0.03%. Still, 16 of the Dow's 30 components managed to close in the black, led by Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM), which rose 1.6%. Pacing the declining minority was International Business Machines Corp. (NYSE:IBM), down 1.5% today.
The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 1,849.04) also endured choppy trading on the day, peeking into positive territory this morning before closing down 3.5 points, or 0.2%, and below the 1,850 support level. Tech stocks underperformed again, sending the Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 4,151.23) down 22.4 points, or 0.5%.
The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 14.62) also fell, shedding 0.3 point, or 2.1%, during the session. The "fear barometer" did, however, spend the majority of the session above breakeven.
A Trader's Take:
"We actually received some pretty decent economic news this morning, as the weekly jobless claims report was better than expected, while the fourth-quarter GDP reading came in above the preliminary estimate," Bell continued. "Perhaps some market participants are selling good news in anticipation of higher rates sooner rather than later. Whatever the case may be, we are definitely seeing a pickup in intraday volatility this year, relative to most of 2013."
5 Items on Our Radar Today:
For a look at today's options movers and commodities activity, head to page 2.
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