Dow Jones Industrial Average Cools Off; Oil, Chatty Fed in Focus

What This Rare VIX Signal Says About Stocks

by Andrea Kramer

Published on Aug 28, 2015 at 4:26 PM

After notching back-to-back triple-digit gains, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) cooled off a bit today -- but maintained a weekly victory -- as traders considered rising oil, economic data, and a very verbal Fed. Among the notables, Fed Vice Chair Stanley Fischer said the case for a September rate hike was "pretty strong" before China devalued the yuan, and -- despite recent comments from New York Fed President William Dudley -- it's too early to tell if the timing is now "less compelling." Next week (when we turn the calendar to September!) should fuel even more Fed speculation, with a handful of highly anticipated Fed speeches and economic reports on tap.   

 

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

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA - 16,643.01) spent most of the session in the red -- and was down triple digits at one point -- before settling 11.8 points, or 0.1%, lower. The Dow 30 finally moved out of unison, with 17 components ending lower, paced by Pfizer Inc.'s (NYSE:PFE) 1.8% dip. Oil issue Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX) once again led the gainers with a 3.6% jump. For the week, the Dow added 1.1%.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 1,988.87) also spent the majority of the day lower, but eked out a win of 1.2 points, or 0.1%, by the close. The Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 4,828.32) hands-down outperformed its peers, gaining 15.6 points, or 0.3%. For the week, the SPX notched a 0.9% gain, while the COMP tacked on 2.6% -- marking its biggest Monday-to-Friday gain on record. 

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 26.05) extended its losing streak to four -- albeit barely -- edging down 0.05 point, or 0.2%. For the week, the "fear gauge" surrendered 7.1%.

 

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5 Items on Our Radar Today:

 

  1. Minneapolis Fed President Narayana Kocherlakota weighed in on this morning's batch of data, saying inflation "remains very low" and that it'll take time to reach the central bank's 2% target. Meanwhile, Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart said recent volatility presents a "new" risk, and lowered the odds of a September hike to 50-50(MarketWatch)
  2. Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) will reportedly unveil its next generation of iPhones at its Sept. 9 event. The smartphones' camera megapixel count will be upgraded for the first time since the iPhone 4S launch four years ago, according to inside sources.  (9to5mac)
  3. Speaking of AAPL, competition concerns might be fueling bearish speculation on Fitbit Inc (NYSE:FIT).
  4. What prompted a rush to Micron Technology, Inc.'s (NASDAQ:MU) options?
  5. This retailer just confessed to its 11th straight quarterly loss.

 

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Commodities:

 

A session after notching its biggest daily gain since 2009, crude continued its upward momentum today, wrapping up its best week in six years. The October contract was up $2.66, or 6.3%, to settle at $45.22 per barrel. For the week, black gold added 11.8%.

 

Gold snapped its four-session losing streak, with December futures advancing $11.40, or 1%, to end at $1,134 an ounce. For the week, though, the yellow metal lost 2.2% -- its biggest weekly decline in over a month.


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