General Electric Propels Dow Jones Industrial Average Higher

Finding the 'Sweet Spot' for 2 Volatility Strategies

by Andrea Kramer

Published on Oct 16, 2015 at 4:21 PM

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) spent most of the session cautiously higher, with General Electric Company (NYSE:GE) leading the charge after a well-received earnings showing. However, the scales struggled to tip to the bulls' side, as mixed economic data kept upside momentum in check. Nevertheless, the Dow, S&P 500 Index (SPX),and Nasdaq Composite (COMP) all landed on the north side of breakeven, and extended their weekly winning streaks to three. Looking ahead, it's another busy week in the earnings confessional, with a laundry list of big names stepping up to the plate.

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

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA - 17,215.97) recovered from an afternoon trek into negative territory, adding 74.2 points, or 0.4%, to settle near an intraday high. Twenty-four of the Dow's 30 components ended higher, led by GE's 3.4% gain. Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT) paced the six laggards, dropping 1.6% as industrial stocks tanked. For the week, the Dow added 0.8%.
 
The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,033.11) followed suit, tacking on 9.3 points, or 0.5%, thanks to a late-session surge. The Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 4,886.69) gained 16.6 points, or 0.3%, after spending time south of breakeven. For the week, the SPX and COMP advanced 0.9% and 1.2%, respectively.

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 15.05) succumbed to late-session selling, giving up 1 point, or 6.2%, to end at its lowest close since Aug. 18. For the week, the "fear gauge" dropped 11.9%.


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5 Items on Our Radar Today:

  1. Industrial production fell 0.2% in September, in line with expectations, while job openings fell by more than expected in August. On the other hand, consumer sentiment bounced back in a big way in October.  (Reuters, via CNBC; Business Insider; Reuters)
  2. United Continental Holdings Inc (NYSE:UAL) shares dropped after the company's new CEO suffered a heart attack. Oscar Munoz's family said he was admitted to the hospital, and as a result UAL canceled scheduled talks between Munoz and labor leaders. (MarketWatch)
  3. Elsewhere in the airline sector, Spirit Airlines Incorporated (NASDAQ:SAVE) ran into serious turbulence of its own.
  4. BABA made a big purchase, and this trio of China-based stocks soared.
  5. Why some speculators bet on record lows for PTC Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ:PTCT).

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Commodities:

Crude oil snapped its four-session losing streak, thanks to reports that active U.S. drilling rigs declined for a seventh straight week. By the close, November-dated crude was up 88 cents, or 1.9%, at $47.26 per barrel. For the week, though, black gold fell 4.8%.

On the other hand, gold snapped a five-session winning streak, pressured by strength in the greenback. December-dated gold ended the day at $1,183.10 per ounce -- down $4.40, or 0.4%. For the week, however, the dollar-denominated commodity gained 2.4%.


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