Dow Jones Industrial Average Falters; Tech Stocks Outperform

3 Top Stocks for February; Plus, the 7-Figure Bet Against GE

by Kirra Fedyszyn

Published on Feb 1, 2016 at 4:26 PM

After kicking off the day with a triple-digit loss, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) spent most of the first session of February in the red. The Dow briefly turned positive in the final hour of trading, following suit with strength in big-name tech stocks as traders shook off worries over slipping crude futures and lackluster economic data, but ultimately failed to claw its way to a positive finish.


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

  • Find out which 3 stocks could smoke the market in February.
  • One trader's $1.6 million bet against General Electric Company (NYSE:GE).
  • The Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) news that sent call players scrambling.
  • Plus ... the WHO declares a global health emergency, what sparked Nokia's big slide, and a three-month high for gold futures.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA - 16,449.18) slipped 17.1 points, or 0.1% to settle in the red in the final minutes of trading. Payment services provider American Express Company (NYSE:AXP) led 13 of the 30 Dow components higher with a 2.2% gain, while oil stock Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM) paced the laggards, falling 2% as crude futures plummeted.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 1,939.38) gave up 0.9 point, or 0.04%, after mounting its own late-day attack on positive ground. The Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 4,620.37) just managed a positive finish, adding 6.4 points, or 0.1%, by the close of trading.

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 19.98) settled 0.2 point, or 1.1%, lower for the day.

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5 Items on Our Radar Today:

  1. The World Health Organization (WHO) has officially called birth defects linked to the Zika virus a global health emergency. At least 25 countries have reported cases of the mosquito-borne virus so far, with most occurring in the Americas. (MarketWatch)

  2. The Institute for Supply Management's (ISM) manufacturing index for January came in just above estimates at 48.2, compared to 48.0 for the previous month -- indicating the manufacturing sector is still in a contraction. Meanwhile, construction spending rose just 0.1% in December, while economists had been expecting a gain of 0.6%. (Reuters via CNBC)

  3. Call volume exploded as Lumber Liquidators Holdings Inc (NYSE:LL) staged a major rally.

  4. Nokia Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:NOK) settled with a major rival, but Wall Street was less than impressed by the terms.

  5. How is sentiment shaping up on Mattel, Inc. (NASDAQ:MAT) ahead of earnings?

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Data courtesy of Trade-Alert

Commodities:

March-dated crude oil snapped its four-session winning streak to plunge $2.00, or 6%, at $31.62 a barrel. Concerns stemmed from weak factory data out of China, along with similarly soft manufacturing trends in the U.S.

Conversely, worries over the global economy sent risk-averse traders back to the safe haven of gold. April-dated gold futures added $11.60, or 1%, to close at $1,128.00 an ounce -- the precious metal's loftiest finish since early November.


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