Dow Jones Industrial Average, Nasdaq Take Off On Tech Earnings, PBOC

Apple Options Heat Up Ahead of Big Week

by Andrea Kramer

Published on Oct 23, 2015 at 4:27 PM

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) enjoyed its second straight triple-digit win -- and its fourth consecutive weekly victory -- as global stocks celebrated a rate cut from the People's Bank of China (PBOC). However, the Nasdaq Composite (COMP) was the big winner on the day, thanks to blowout earnings in the tech sector and a solid day for biotechs. Against this backdrop, the tech-rich COMP barreled back above the 5,000 level, while the S&P 500 Index (SPX) muscled its way into positive territory for 2015.

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

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA - 17,646.70) rallied to its best close since July 31, advancing 157.5 points, or 0.9%. Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) blew the other 21 advancers out of the water, skyrocketing 10.4% and touching an all-time high post-earnings. Nike Inc (NYSE:NKE), meanwhile, was the worst of the eight decliners, shedding 1.4%. For the week, the blue-chip index advanced 2.5%, and ended atop both its 10- and 20-week trendlines for just the second time since mid-May.
 
The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,075.15) followed suit, jumping 22.6 points, or 1.1%, to pull 0.8% ahead year-to-date. The Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 5,031.86) fared the best of the three, soaring 111.8 points, or 2.3%, to end atop 5,000 for the first time since Aug. 19. For the week, the SPX gained 2.1%, while the COMP advanced 3%.

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 14.46) traded on both sides of breakeven, but eventually resolved higher, adding 0.01 point, or 0.07%. For the week, the "fear gauge" surrendered 3.9%, bringing its weekly losing streak to four.

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5 Items on Our Radar Today:

  1. Former Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee dropped out of the Democratic race for the presidency. Just three contenders are left in battle for the party's nomination, including frontrunner Hillary Clinton. Earlier this week, Vice President Joe Biden said he won't join the race. (MarketWatch)
  2. Obamacare site Healthcare.gov got a brand-new look in advance of open enrollment, which begins Nov. 1. The website, which was the target of much criticism upon its 2013 launch, goes live on Sunday, and will now allow users to preview the benefits that various plans offer. (U.S. News & World Report)
  3. Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) finally broke past the century mark, sending bulls to the option pits.
  4. Diamond Foods, Inc. (NASDAQ:DMND) rallied on big buyout rumors
  5. This video game guru just unveiled a new e-sports division.

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Commodities:

A stronger greenback weighed on crude, and a barely noticeable drop in active oil rigs didn't help. By the close, oil for December delivery gave up 78 cents, or 1.7%, to end at a one-month low of $44.60 per barrel. For the week, black gold fell 5.6%. Meanwhile, November-dated natural gas dropped 4.2% on the day, ending at a three-year low of $2.286 per million BTUs.

Gold was also hit by a stronger dollar, with the December contract shedding $3.30, or 0.3%, to end at a two-week low of $1,162.80 an ounce. For the week, the malleable metal dropped 1.7%.


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