Dow Jones Industrial Average Dives on Greek Credit Concerns

Standard & Poor's reduced Greece's credit rating by one notch

by Alex Eppstein

Published on Feb 6, 2015 at 4:20 PM
Updated on Apr 20, 2015 at 5:32 PM

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:DJI) was up by more than 66 points at its intraday high -- powered by a standout January jobs report -- but reversed lower after Standard & Poor's downgraded Greece's credit rating to "B-" from "B," and warned that the run on Greek banks could accelerate. By the close, the Dow was down more than 60 points -- though it still managed a significant weekly gain and remained in positive year-to-date territory. The broader S&P 500 Index (SPX) charted a similar path, but found a foothold atop its key 2,050 level. Looking ahead, a number of notable names are headed to the earnings confessional next week, including blue chip The Coca-Cola Co (NYSE:KO) and electric automaker Tesla Motors Inc. (NASDAQ:TSLA).

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

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 17,824.29) erased its early gains to end 60.6 points, or 0.3%, lower. On a week-over-week basis, however, the blue-chip index rallied 3.8% -- outdoing its peers. Eleven of the Dow's 30 components finished above breakeven, paced by a 3.1% pop at Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ). Of the 19 losers, Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) fared the worst, giving back 1.9%.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,055.47) slipped 7.1 points, or 0.3%, but managed a 3% week-over-week advance. Similarly, the Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 4,744.40) dropped 20.7 points, or 0.4%, yet finished 2.4% higher on a weekly basis.

After spending the first half of the day in the red, the CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 17.29) added 0.4 point, or 2.6%, but tumbled 17.5% relative to last Friday's close.

CLOSING SUMMARY – INDICES

CLOSING SUMMARY – NYSE AND NASDAQ

5 Items on Our Radar Today:

  1. The Labor Department's nonfarm payrolls report showed several signs of an improving employment market. The U.S. economy added a better-than-expected 257,000 jobs last month, with companies hiring at the fastest rate in more than a decade. Meanwhile, hourly wages popped 0.5% -- the biggest month-over-month increase in six years -- helped by minimum wage boosts in roughly 20 states. (MarketWatch)
  2. Despite the aforementioned news, Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart expressed concern over weak inflation and wage growth -- though he still supports an interest rate hike in 2015. This cautious outlook represents a change of pace for Lockhart, who last month described the economy as "hitting on all cylinders." (Reuters, via CNBC)
  3. A closer look at this $1.5 million bet on Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMD).
  4. eBay Inc's (NASDAQ:EBAY) upwardly revised fourth-quarter profit had option bulls licking their chops.
  5. This tech concern surged on M&A news -- and call buyers see more upside ahead.
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 continued its run higher amid ongoing violence in Libya and a ninth straight weekly decline in U.S. oil rigs -- which hit their lowest level in more than three years. March-dated oil rose $1.21, or 2.4%, to close at $51.69 per barrel. Compared to last Friday, crude was up 7.2%.

April-dated gold was pressured lower by the strong jobs report, dropping $28.10, or 2.2%, to settle at $1,234.60 per ounce. On a week-over-week basis, the malleable metal gave back 3.5%.


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