Dow Jones Industrial Average Touches Record High, Wraps Up Best Month Since February

The Dow ended July with a gain of 2.5%

Andrea Kramer
Jul 31, 2017 at 4:38 PM
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) ended higher for a fifth straight session, and notched an all-time high, thanks to solid performances from Boeing and oil stocks. In fact, crude oil prices topped $50 per barrel, wrapping up their best month of 2017, thanks to a weaker dollar and new sanctions for Venezuela. The Dow lost some steam briefly in afternoon trading, after President Donald Trump announced the dismissal of White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci after just 10 days, but still ended comfortably higher. However, the S&P 500 Index (SPX) and Nasdaq Composite (COMP) ended the day lower, as tech stocks continued to pull back, but like the Dow, both indexes finished their best month since February.

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

  • 3 small-cap stocks with rally potential.
  • Analysts see higher highs for 2 Dow stocks.
  • The options traders who doubled their money on Lockheed Martin.
  • Plus, the Chinese ETF worth watching; FireEye earnings preview; and the drug stock that skyrocketed.  

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA - 21,891.12) ended with a gain of 60.8 points, or 0.3%, after peaking at a record high of 21,929.80 in intraday trading. Twenty of the Dow's 30 stocks ended higher, led by Home Depot's 1% gain. DuPont stock led the laggards, dropping 2.1%. For the month, the Dow rallied 2.5%.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,470.30) ended a wishy-washy session with a loss of 1.8 points, or 0.1%. For the month, though, the SPX gained nearly 2%. The Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 6,348.12) surrendered 26.6 points, or 0.4%, marking its third straight daily loss. For July, though, the COMP rallied 3.4%.

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 10.26) closed down 0.03 point, or 0.3%. For the month, the VIX dropped 8.2%.

Closing Indexes Summary July 31
NYSE and Nasdaq July 31

5 Items on Our Radar Today:

  1. President Trump stated that new White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, "will do a spectacular job." Today was Kelly's first day on the job after being hired following Trump's firing of former Chief of Staff Reince Priebus. (Bloomberg)
  2. Los Angeles reportedly completed an agreement to host the 2028 Summer Olympics, with Paris set to host the 2024 games. This will be the third time LA has hosted the games, the last occurring in 1984. (CNBC)
  3. The ETF worth watching at current levels, according to founder and CEO Bernie Schaeffer. 
  4. A huge swing is expected from FireEye stock after earnings.
  5. The pharma stock that rocketed 72% higher.

Corporate Earnings Chart July 31
Unusual Options Activity Jul 31
Data courtesy of Trade-Alert

Commodities

Ahead of a major producer meeting next week, U.S. crude oil reached above $50 a barrel for the first time in two months, amid reports of U.S. sanctions on Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro after a controversial election. After a settlement delay from CME Group, September-dated oil futures ended up 46 cents, or 0.9%, at $50.17 a barrel. For the month, black gold skyrocketed 8.9% -- its best month of 2017.

Gold futures ended Monday on a negative note, but closed July comfortably higher. August-dated gold futures settled the day down $1.80, or 0.1%, at $1,266.60 per ounce, while the more active December contract shed $1.90, or 0.1%, to finish at $1,273.40 per ounce. For the month, gold advanced 2.5%.


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