Dow Jones Industrial Average Jumps 260 Points as Dollar Cools

Crude closed at its lowest level in six weeks on supply concerns Keywords: Dow Jones Industrial Average, DJI, crude, dollar

Mar 12, 2015 at 4:18 PM
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:DJI) not only erased its steep weekly deficit, but also moved back into the black on a year-to-date basis, as the dollar retreated from 12-year highs and uninspiring economic data chilled expectations for a rate hike. Also boosting the blue-chip index was a big rally for Walt Disney Co (NYSE:DIS), as well as strong gains for financial firms following the results from the second round of the Fed's annual stress tests. The burst of buying power was witnessed elsewhere on the Street, with the S&P 500 Index (SPX) also reclaiming a perch north of its 2015 breakeven mark, and the Nasdaq Composite (COMP) popping 0.9%.

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

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 17,895.22) hit the ground running today, eventually closing near its intraday highs -- up 259.8 points, or 1.5%. Of the Dow's 30 components, 26 settled in positive territory, led by a 4.2% pop for DIS. INTC paced the four decliners with its 4.7% drop.

In similar fashion, the S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,065.95) spent the entire session above breakeven, settling up 25.7 points, or 1.3%, while the Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 4,893.29) added 43.4 points, or 0.9%.

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 15.42) surrendered its short-term foothold above 16, shedding 1.5 points, or 8.6%.

CLOSING SUMMARY – INDICES

CLOSING SUMMARY – NYSE AND NASDAQ

5 Items on Our Radar Today:

  1. Severe winter weather caused retail sales to decline for a third straight month in February -- specifically, dropping 0.6% versus an expected 0.4% rise. Elsewhere, weekly jobless claims declined, falling back below the highly watched 300,000 mark; after shrinking for seven straight months, import prices rose in February; business inventories were flat, while the inventory-to-sales ratio jumped to its loftiest perch in five years; and, the budget deficit dropped to $192 billion last month. (USA Today; MarketWatch; Business Insider; Reuters, via CNBC)
  2. Speaking at the company's annual shareholder meeting, DIS CEO Bob Iger said the firm has plans to release a spin-off for the "Star Wars" series, as well as a sequel to the highly successful "Frozen" film. (CNBC)
  3. LL jumped nearly 10.2% today, after the company insisted its products were safe, and offered free indoor quality testing to its customers. Month-to-date, though, the shares have shed 30% amid reports to the contrary.
  4. Micron Technology, Inc. (NASDAQ:MU) managed to rebound from its early INTC-related losses, and options traders responded in kind.
  5. The Wall Street freshman that got crushed in the wake of its inaugural earnings report.
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 took a hit today, after a shipping channel reopened in Houston -- stoking fears of growing inventories. By the close, April-dated crude was off $1.12, or 2.3%, at $47.05 per barrel -- its lowest settlement in six weeks.

Gold bounced back from Wednesday's loss as the dollar retreated from 12-year-high territory. At session's end, gold for April delivery was up $1.30, or 0.1%, at $1,151.90 per ounce.

 

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