Crude, Caterpillar Stock Send Dow Down Triple Digits

Crude futures plunged again as supply and demand concerns resurfaced

Nov 15, 2017 at 4:30 PM
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) was down nearly 167 points at its intraday low, and while the blue-chip index managed to pare these losses, it still closed at its lowest point since Oct. 19. Sparking the risk-off session was another big drop in oil prices, as supply and demand concerns resurfaced, while a sharp decline for Caterpillar (CAT) only exacerbated the Dow's woes.

This negative price action was seen elsewhere on Wall Street, too, with retailers weighing on the S&P 500 Index (SPX), and swooning tech and FAANG stocks putting pressure on the Nasdaq Composite (IXIC). And against this backdrop, the CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) -- or the stock market's "fear gauge" -- settled at its highest close since August.

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

  • It could be time to buy short-term calls on this retailer.
  • Money managers are abandoning stocks at the fastest pace in over a year.
  • The bitcoin buzz that sent Square stock to record highs.
  • Plus, the drug stock that jumped 14%; short sellers are steering clear of these 2 retail stocks; and why ANF could be set for a volatile Friday.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA - 23,271.28) closed down 138.2 points, or 0.6%. Twenty-two of the Dow's 30 components settled in negative territory, paced by CAT's 2.5% drop. General Electric (GE) paced the advancers with its 2% climb.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,564.62) settled with a 14.3-point, or 0.6%, loss. The Nasdaq Composite (IXIC - 6,706.21), meanwhile, gave back 31.7 points, or 0.5%.

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 13.13) tacked on 1.5 points, or 13.3%, for its highest close since Aug. 21.

Closing Indexes Summary Nov 15

NYSE and Nasdaq Nov 15

5 Items on Our Radar Today

  1. Richard Cordray said he will resign as head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) at the end of this month. Cordray was confirmed to the position, after the Democrat was nominated by former President Barack Obama, and speculation is swirling that he will now throw his hat in Ohio's gubernatorial race. (Bloomberg)
  2. The Commerce Department said U.S. retail sales increased 0.2% last month, versus expectations of an unchanged reading from September. The gain came as a result of rising auto sales, and counteracted a drop in demand for building materials. (CNBC)
  3. This drug stock surged more than 14% after the company reported successful gene-editing data.
  4. Short sellers are throwing in towel on these 2 retail stocks ahead of earnings.
  5. Abercrombie & Fitch (ANF) could be in for a volatile day of trading on Friday.

Corporate Earnings Chart Nov 15

Unusual Options Activity Nov 15
Data courtesy of Trade-Alert


Crude oil prices fell for a second straight session, after the Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported an unexpected rise in domestic inventories last week. At the close, December-dated crude futures were down 37 cents, or 0.7%, at $55.33 per barrel.

Gold prices fell for the first time this week, as the U.S. dollar rebounded from its recent weakness after this morning's inflation data strengthened the case for a December rate hike. Gold for December delivery settled the session down $5.20, or 0.4%, at $1,277.70 an ounce.


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