Dow Jones Industrial Average Trims Triple-Digit Loss

How Traders Are Playing Apple Ahead of Earnings

Jul 26, 2016 at 4:24 PM
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After dropping more than 100 points at its intraday low, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) managed to pare its losses by the close, with a big post-earnings boost from Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT) helping to offset a disappointing report from McDonald's Corporation (NYSE:MCD). Falling oil prices also continued to weigh on stocks, with September crude futures tumbling to a three-month low -- even as the start of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting gave gold futures a lift.

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

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA - 18,473.75) pared its loss to 19.3 points, or 0.1%, by the day's end. MCD led 16 of the 30 Dow components lower, giving up 4.5%, while CAT led the 14 winners with its 5.2% gain.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,169.18) managed to edge back into positive territory just before the close, adding 0.7 point, or 0.03%. The Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 5,110.05) outperformed the other major indexes yet again, climbing 12.4 points, or 0.2%, and retaking the round 5,100 level.

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 13.05) added a mere 0.2 point, or 1.4%. 

Indexes closing summary July 26

NYSE and NASDAQ stats July 26

5 Items on Our Radar Today: 

  1. BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) revealed its second Android-based smartphone, called DTEK50. The phone will come at a much lower price point than BlackBerry's Priv, and will include features focused on security and privacy. (MarketWatch)
  2. A report from the National Traffic Safety Board said the Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) Model S driver killed in a crash was driving nine miles per hour above the speed limit at the time of the accident. The report found that the vehicle's Traffic-Aware Cruise Control and Autosteer features were being employed when the car collided with a semitrailer, but this preliminary report neither proves nor disproves Tesla's responsibility for the fatality. (CNBC)
  3. 2 Dow components prepare to step into the earnings spotlight. 
  4. The diagnostics firm that shot 28% higher -- and lit up the options pits.
  5. Eleventh-hour call buyers pick up pre-earnings bets on Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR).

Quarterly earnings July 26 2016

Unusual options activity July 26

Data courtesy of


Oversupply worries weighed on oil prices yet again today, even with analysts predicting that tomorrow's inventory reports will show weekly declines in crude and gasoline stockpiles. Crude futures for September delivery slid 21 cents, or 0.5%, to $42.92 per barrel.

Gold prices edged slightly higher as the two-day Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting kicked off today, with traders hoping the forthcoming policy statement may give clues as to the timing of the next interest rate hike. For the day, August-dated gold added $1.30, or less than 0.1%, to settle at $1,320.80 an ounce.

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