Dow Jones Industrial Average Adds 305; Crude Hits 2015 High

Crude rallied to its highest settlement price of the year

Feb 3, 2015 at 4:16 PM
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:DJI) scored a second straight triple-digit win today, fueled by gains in the energy sector. Specifically, oil stocks spiked amid crude's ongoing rebound, and futures settled at their highest level of 2015. Elsewhere, St. Louis Fed President James Bullard and Minneapolis Fed President Narayana Kocherlakota offered up divided thoughts on when the central bank should raise interest rates -- with the former calling for an increase sooner rather than later, and the latter cautioning against it. Meanwhile, traders spent much of the day digesting the latest news out of Greece, as well as January auto sales data.

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

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 17,666.40) shot higher out of the gate, and ended 305.4 points, or 1.8%, higher. All 30 of the Dow's components advanced, led by Caterpillar Inc.'s (NYSE:CAT) 3.8% gain.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,050.03) bounced 29.2 points, or 1.4%. Meanwhile, the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 4,727.74) underperformed its peers, but still managed a solid 51.1-point, or 1.1%, pop.

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 17.33) skidded 2.1 points, or 10.8%, but found a foothold atop its 50-day moving average, at 17.09.

CLOSING SUMMARY – INDICES

CLOSING SUMMARY – NYSE AND NASDAQ

5 Items on Our Radar Today:

  1. Helped by lower gas prices, auto sales were surprisingly strong last month -- as predicted by AutoNation, Inc. (NYSE:AN) -- with a number of major manufacturers seeing double-digit year-over-year gains. Specifically, Detroit darlings General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) and Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) saw sales increase 18% and 15%, respectively, while global leader Toyota Motor Corp (ADR) (NYSE:TM) posted 16% growth. (The New York Times)
  2. U.S. factory orders fell a steeper-than-expected 3.4% in December, according to the Commerce Department. This was also the fifth consecutive month that new orders for factory goods declined. (Reuters)
  3. Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) options traders broke with the recent bullish trend today, amid rumors the firm may be eyeing RadioShack Corporation (NYSE:RSH) locations.
  4. This pair of office supply peddlers rallied on reports of a potential merger.
  5. How speculators responded to Canadian Solar Inc.'s (NASDAQ:CSIQ) big acquisition.
EARNINGS

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

STOCKS – NOTABLE CALL ACTIVITY

STOCKS – NOTABLE PUT ACTIVITY

Commodities:

Crude advanced for a third consecutive day -- and settled at its highest mark of 2015 -- with bulls jumping on the beaten down commodity amid declines in drilling activity and a weaker dollar. This, despite warnings from BP plc (ADR) (NYSE:BP) CEO Bob Dudley about the future of oil prices. At the close, March-dated crude was up $3.48, or 7%, at $53.05 per barrel.

Gold dropped today, as Greece's latest round of debt proposals calmed fears of a potential standoff with the European Union. Specifically, the April-dated contract shed $16.60, or 1.3%, to land at $1,260.30.

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