Dow Jones Industrial Average Can't Be Stopped; COMP Snaps Hot Streak

Crude oil reclaimed the round-number $50 mark, while gold took back $1,200

by Karee Venema

Published on Feb 25, 2015 at 4:20 PM
Updated on Apr 20, 2015 at 5:32 PM

It was another record-setting day on Wall Street, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:DJI) hitting a fresh intraday peak, and settling at its highest perch to date. Elsewhere, the S&P 500 Index (SPX) and Nasdaq Composite (COMP) each tagged notable milestones in intraday action, but were unable to maintain the momentum through the close. In fact, after 10 consecutive days of gains, the COMP closed at a modest loss -- falling just shy of the last streak of its kind. Today's price action came amid a relatively uninspiring performance from Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen in front of the House Financial Services Committee, as well as a slight drop in new home sales last month. Looking ahead, there's plenty of activity to hold traders' attention for the remainder of the week, including the preliminary reading on fourth-quarter gross domestic product (GDP), as well as speeches from a handful of Federal Reserve officials.

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

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 18,224.57) spent time on both sides of breakeven today -- notching a fresh intraday peak of 18,244.38, before closing up 15.4 points, or 0.1%, at its loftiest mark on record. Of the Dow's 30 components, 15 settled lower, led by Intel Corporation's (NASDAQ:INTC) 1.4% drop. McDonald's Corporation (NYSE:MCD) paced the 14 advancers with its 3.9% gain. DuPont (DD) was unchanged.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,113.86) hit 2,119.59 in intraday action -- an all-time best -- before settling down 1.6 points, or 0.1%. The Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 4,967.14), meanwhile, tagged a new 14-year high of 4,984.24, but closed fractionally lower.

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 13.84) added 0.2 point, or 1.1%, but notched its fourth straight close south of its 200-day moving average.

CLOSING SUMMARY – INDICES

CLOSING SUMMARY – NYSE AND NASDAQ

5 Items on Our Radar Today:

  1. In her second day of congressional testimony, Fed Chair Janet Yellen fielded accusations from a Republican-controlled House that the central bank is biased to the Obama administration. Responding to the House Financial Services Committee, Yellen called the allegations a "complete mischaracterization," and said the Fed is "independent." (Bloomberg)
  2. In the wake of a dreary earnings report and outlook, HPQ declined to comment on reports that it is in talks to purchase wireless network infrastructure specialist Aruba Networks, Inc. (NASDAQ:ARUN). This would represent the biggest acquisition for HPQ in a number of years, given ARUN's rougly $2 billion market cap. (Bloomberg)
  3. AAPL retreated from record highs today, after a jury in Texas ruled against the tech titan in a patent-infringement case.
  4. Short-term traders took aim at Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (NYSE:BABA) and Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA).
  5. Schaeffer's contributor Adam Warner offered his two cents on how to find success with buy-write funds.
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 oil snapped its recent losing streak -- and reclaimed the round-number $50 mark -- amid a steeper-than-forecast drop in gasoline inventories and upbeat demand speculation from Saudi Arabia's oil minister. At session's end, crude for April delivery was up $1.71, or 3.5%, at $50.99 per barrel.

Gold also gained ground today -- and retook the highly watched $1,200 level -- amid a cooling dollar. By the close, April-dated gold was up $4.20, or 0.4%, at $1,201.50 per ounce.


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