Factory Data Rattles Dow Jones Industrial Average; Crude's Crumble Continues

Why Thursday Could Be Big for These 4 Stocks

by Alex Eppstein

Published on Sep 23, 2015 at 4:29 PM

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) spent time on both sides of breakeven today, ultimately resolving to the downside as traders digested less-than-encouraging manufacturing activity at home and abroad, as well as another slump in energy prices. Meanwhile, Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart spoke for the third straight day, reiterating expectations for a 2015 rate hike and reassuring investors that China's slowdown likely will not spark a global recession -- with Fed Chair Janet Yellen on deck for tomorrow. Overseas, the Volkswagen scandal came to a head, and European Central Bank (ECB) President Mario Draghi expressed concerns over the eurozone's tepid inflation rate.

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


The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA - 16,279.89) ended 50.6 points, or 0.3%, lower -- its fourth loss in the last five sessions. Of the 30 Dow components, 13 gained -- led by Pfizer Inc.'s (NYSE:PFE) 1.1% advance -- while the other 17 dropped -- paced by Caterpillar Inc.'s (NYSE:CAT) 2.1% decline

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 1,938.76) gave back 4 points, or 0.2%, while the Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 4,752.74) slipped 4 points, or 0.1%.

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 22.13) lost 0.3 point, or 1.4%, pressured once more by its descending 10-day trendline.



5 Items on Our Radar Today:

  1. Markit's flash purchasing managers manufacturing index (PMI) was flat month-over-month, as expected, remaining near levels not seen previously since October 2013. Meanwhile, job creation slowed to 51.4, its weakest level in over one year. (Reuters)
  2. Two days after Volkswagen's emission scandal came to light, the automaker's CEO, Martin Winterkorn, stepped down. In a written statement, Winterkorn said he is "shocked by the events" that took place, and denied having any knowledge of the company's deceptive practices. (USA Today)
  3. How Cowen stopped GPRO in its tracks.
  4. Short-term traders blazed a bullish path toward this surging cybersecurity stock.
  5. A closer look at some massive bets on precious metal ETFs.





Crude oil got drilled, as news of a second straight -- and steeper-than-expected -- drop in U.S. stockpiles was overshadowed by reports of a buildup in gasoline inventories. At the close, November-dated crude -- now the front-month contract -- had plunged $1.88, or 4.1%, at $44.48 per barrel.

Gold got a boost from a cooling dollar, as well as weak factory data out of China, which enhanced the metal's safe-haven appeal. By day's end, gold for December delivery was up $6.70, or 0.6%, to settle at $1,131.50 per ounce.

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