Dow Swings to a Win, Despite North Korea Tensions

Gasoline prices hit a two-year high amid Harvey devastation

Aug 29, 2017 at 4:29 PM
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) ended a roller-coaster session in the black today, erasing an intraday loss of more than 130 points to finish with a healthy gain. Stocks seemingly shrugged off resurfaced tensions with North Korea, with President Trump warning that "all options are on the table" after the country's missile test over Japan. Meanwhile, traders kept an eye on Tropical Storm Harvey, which continues to devastate the oil-rich Gulf Coast, while a weaker dollar and demand for safe-haven assets bolstered gold.

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

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA - 21,865.37) traded in a range of nearly 200 points today, but ultimately ended with a gain of 57 points, or 0.3%, while 17 of its 30 stocks managed to end higher. United Tech led the advancers with its 2.9% gain, while Nike paced the 13 losers with a 1.9% loss.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,446.30) closed up 2.1 points, or 0.1%. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite (COMP - 6,301.89) gained 18.9 points, or 0.3%.

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 11.70) ended up 0.4 point, or 3.4%, after peaking north of 14 earlier in the day.

Closing Indexes Summary August 29

 NYSE & Nasdaq August 29

5 Items on Our Radar Today

  1. The panic in Houston continues well after Hurricane Harvey, with reservoirs filling up beyond their capacity, and expected to overflow and flood into various neighborhoods through Thursday. The Addicks Reservoir, at least, has never surpassed its capacity, according to Jeff Linder of the county's flood control district. Residents are under immediate instruction to evacuate to higher ground. (CNBC)
  2. United Airlines may have sparked a price war among airlines, which could be bad for industry earnings, according to analysts. (Bloomberg)
  3. Our founder and CEO Bernie Schaeffer's continuing case for tech over small-caps.
  4. 2 retail stocks to buy puts on right now.
  5. How the FDA sent this drug stock reeling.

Corporate Earnings Chart August 29

Unusual Options Activity August 29
Data courtesy of Trade-Alert


With Harvey still very much a factor in the oil-rich Gulf Coast, keeping refineries shuttered, crude futures ended lower again today. October-dated crude finished down 13 cents, or 0.3%, at $46.44 per barrel -- a more than four-week low. Gasoline, meanwhile, climbed to a two-year peak, with September-dated futures suring 4.2% to $1.783 per gallon.

Gold continued its journey higher today amid a sinking dollar, as well as increasing tension with North Korea. The North Korean missile launch fueled demand for safe-haven metals, sending December-dated gold up $3.60, or 0.3%, to settle at $1,318.90 per ounce -- an 11-month high.

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