Dow Jones Industrial Average Breaks Out; S&P Makes History

S&P Makes History; Plus, the Big Avon Mystery

by Karee Venema

Published on May 14, 2015 at 4:28 PM
Updated on Jun 24, 2020 at 10:16 AM

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) took off out of the gate and never looked back. At one point, the 30-stock index was within a chip-shot of notching an all-time best, amid well-received data and as the dollar and bond yields cooled. While economic reports drove yesterday's activity, a big rally in tech names helped power today's action. Specifically, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) jumped on legal and dividend news, while Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) extended Wednesday's analyst-induced pop. The positive price action for these two titans also helped lift the Nasdaq Composite (COMP), but it was the S&P 500 Index (SPX) that stole the show with its record-setting performance.

 

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

 

At its intraday peak, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA - 18,252.24) came within 34 points of hitting a new record high, and eventually settled up 191.8 points, or 1.1%. AAPL, MSFT, and UnitedHealth Group Inc. (NYSE:UNH) helped to lead 29 Dow components higher with their 2.3% pops, while Cisco Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CSCO) was the sole decliner -- shedding 1% after receiving a post-earnings downgrade.

 

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,121.10) also came within striking distance of its all-time intraday high, before closing up 22.6 points, or 1.1%, to notch its loftiest settlement to date. The Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 5,050.80), meanwhile, tacked on 69.1 points, or 1.4%.

 

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 12.74) shed 1 point, or 7.4%, to notch its lowest close since May 1.

 

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5 Items on Our Radar Today:

 

  1. Amtrak confirmed today that another passenger has died that was on board the train that derailed Wednesday in Philadelphia -- bringing the death toll up to eight. According to reports, the train was traveling at 106 mph, more than double the recommended 50 mph speed of the sharp curve the train was approaching just before it derailed.  (CNBC)
  2. Weekly jobless claims dropped by 1,000 last week to 264,000 -- and remain near a 15-year low -- the Labor Department reported. Elsewhere on the economic front, the producer price index fell 0.4% in April, after inching up in March. (MarketWatch; CNBC)
  3. Put buyers were quick to bet on additional losses for these 2 oil rigs -- who sold off along with their sector peers.
  4. Shares of Puma Biotechnology Inc (NYSE:PBYI) took a sharp tumble after disappointing drug data.
  5. What's the best way to short options? Schaeffer's contributor Adam Warner takes a closer look.

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Commodities:

 

Crude oil closed lower for a second straight session, as global supply worries continued to weigh on investor sentiment. At session's end, crude for June delivery was down 62 cents, or 1%, at $59.88 per barrel.

 

Gold, meanwhile, got a boost from a cooling dollar, and by the close, June-dated gold was up $7, or 0.6%, at $1,225.20 per ounce -- its highest settlement since Feb. 13.

 


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