Dow Jones Industrial Average Backpedals Ahead of Fed

Minneapolis Fed President Narayana Kocherlakota urged the central bank to delay raising interest rates

Apr 7, 2015 at 4:22 PM
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) nearly made it three straight daily victories -- and came within a chip-shot of the key 18,000 level -- but surrendered a triple-digit lead ahead of tomorrow's highly anticipated Fed meeting minutes and the unofficial start of earnings season. While there was little in the way of economic data today -- notwithstanding a relatively in-line Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) -- a multi-month high in crude and renewed strength in the dollar captured attention. Also noteworthy, Minneapolis Fed President Narayana Kocherlakota broke with many of his peers during an early morning speech, calling on the central bank to wait until the second half of 2016 to begin hiking interest rates.

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

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA - 17,875.42) came within 17 points of 18,000 today, but slid in late-afternoon trading to settle on a loss of 5.4 points, or 0.03%. Fourteen of the Dow's 30 components settled above breakeven, paced by a 1.5% gain at Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX). The remaining 16 blue chips ended lower, led by American Express Company (NYSE:AXP), which lost 1.6%.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,076.33) slipped 4.3 points, or 0.2%, while the Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 4,910.23) suffered a similar fate, giving back 7.1 points, or 0.1%.

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 14.78) rallied late in the day to close with a slim gain of 0.04 point, or 0.3%.



5 Items on Our Radar Today:

  1. The Bureau of Labor Statistics' JOLTS revealed job openings hit a 14-year high in February. Specifically, openings rose slightly to 5.1 million from 5 million in January, edging past economists' consensus estimate. (CNBC)
  2. Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul declared his candidacy for the presidency, joining Texas Sen. Ted Cruz in the race for the 2016 GOP nomination. In his speech, Paul laid out an agenda that includes pushing for term limits, curbing government debt, and protecting civil liberties. (CNN)
  3. Call buyers took aim at Barracuda Networks Inc (NYSE:CUDA), as the stock surged to an annual high.
  4. The Canadian government is throwing in the towel on this U.S. automaker.
  5. Why Clovis Oncology Inc (NASDAQ:CLVS) short sellers may be feeling the heat.

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




Crude oil rallied to its highest point since December, despite a long-term bearish forecast from Goldman Sachs, and ahead of tomorrow's supply report from the Energy Information Administration (EIA). The dovish comments from Kocherlakota also helped buoy liquid gold. At the close, crude for May delivery was up $1.84, or 3.5%, at $53.98 per barrel.

Gold retreated amid a strengthening dollar, giving back some of Monday's data-induced gains. By day's end, June-dated gold was down $8, or 0.7%, to settle at $1,210.60 per ounce.



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