Stocks Slide Ahead of Christmas, But Dow and S&P Get Another Weekly Win

The huge drop in bitcoin may have pressured stocks, too

Josh Selway
Dec 22, 2017 at 4:27 PM
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Stocks faded into the close ahead of the long holiday weekend, but the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) and S&P 500 Index (SPX) both managed a fifth straight weekly win. While trading volume was much lighter than normal, there was plenty to digest on Wall Street today. Most notably, President Trump signed the new tax bill into law, as well as a short-term spending bill to avoid a government shutdown. Traders also considered a round of disappointing economic data, as well as a post-earnings slide from Nike (NKE) stock. Also likely adding to the bearish bias was bitcoin's huge selloff.

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

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA - 24,754.06) finished down 28.3 points, or 0.1%, as 15 Dow components closed in the black, led by Caterpillar's 0.7% rise. Apple stock closed flat, and the biggest loser was Nike, which fell 2.3%. The Dow advanced 0.4% for the week.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,683.34) fell 1.2 points, or 0.05%, and the Nasdaq Composite (IXIC - 6,959.96) dropped 5.4 points, or 0.1%. The SPX and Nasdaq both added 0.3% this week.

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX - 9.90) ticked up 0.3 point, or 2.9%, bringing its weekly gain to 5.1%.

closing indexes summary dec 22

nyse and nasdaq dec 22

5 Items on Our Radar Today

  1. After touching a record high around $19,800 on Sunday, bitcoin collapsed this week, including a roughly 30% drop today alone. Plus, digital marketplace Coinbase shut down trading temporarily. (USA Today)
  2. Apple (AAPL) is being sued after the company admitted to slowing down old iPhones so they operate longer. A class-action lawsuit has been filed by iPhone users in California claiming the company never received consent to slow down the phones. (CNBC)
  3. 2 hot housing stocks defying skeptics.
  4. How Papa John's stock reacted to the departure of its founder.
  5. Analysts weighed in on the WWE stock drama.

corporate earnings chart dec 22

unusual options activity dec 22
Data courtesy of Trade-Alert

Commodities

February-dated crude futures added 11 cents, or 0.2%, to settle at $58.47 per barrel. Volume was light ahead of the long holiday weekend, and vows from Russia and Saudi Arabia to gradually scale back production cuts helped black gold off its session lows. Comparing most-active contracts, oil added roughly 2% on the week.

Gold for February delivery jumped $8.20, or 0.7%, to finish at $1,278.80 an ounce, marking its sixth straight win. Lackluster economic data and a rough day for bitcoin whet the collective appetite for "safe haven" investments. For the week, gold gained 1.7%. Elsewhere, palladium surged to a 17-year high on signs of strong demand from China.


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