Stocks End Higher After Tariff Plan

Trump excluded Mexico and Canada from steel and aluminum tariffs

by Patrick Martin

Published on Mar 8, 2018 at 4:24 PM

It was a wishy-washy session for U.S. stocks, as traders awaited and then reacted to President Trump's highly anticipated tariff plan. The Dow was up triple digits in early trading, but spent the afternoon waffling on both sides of breakeven, before Trump signed steel and aluminum tariffs that exclude fellow NAFTA members Canada and Mexico. By the close, however, the blue-chip index landed firmly in the black, with the S&P 500 also hanging on for a win. Meanwhile, the Nasdaq secured its fifth straight gain, behind a huge effort from tech stocks. Looking ahead, Wall Street tomorrow will digest the closely watched February jobs report.

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

  • This Dow alarm also sounded in 1987 and 2008.
  • Analyst: Sell this tech stock now.
  • How one option bull made a big bet on this Mexico ETF.
  • Plus, the chip stock flashing buy; BlackBerry's surging options volume; and a retail stock reeling after an earnings miss.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 24,895.21) finished up 93.9 points, or 0.4%. Today saw 24 Dow components close in positive territory, led by Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) with a 2.3% gain. IBM stock was the worst decliner, dropping 1.3%.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,738.97) gained 12.2 points, or 0.5%. The Nasdaq Composite (IXIC - 7,427.95) gained 31.3 points, or 0.4%.

The Cboe Volatility Index (VIX - 16.54) finished 1.2 points, or 6.9%, lower for its fifth straight losing session.

closing index summary march 8

nyse and nasdaq stats march 8

5 Items on Our Radar Today

  1. Snapchat parent Snap Inc (NYSE:SNAP) will reportedly lay off over 120 engineers in an effort to restructure its engineering team. The company has been under pressure to cut costs after revenue has fallen short of forecasts. (Reuters)
  2. For the second straight day, bitcoin tanked, this time after Japan's Financial Services Agency suspended two cryptocurrency exchanges, Bit Station and FSHO, for a month. Bitcoin has now shed more than 18% in the past two days, as regulatory agencies continue to apply pressure to the decentralized digital currency. (CNBC)
  3. Buy the dip on this chip stock
  4. Call options ran hot on Blackberry stock after a licensing deal. 
  5. Costco stock swung lower after an earnings miss. 

corporate earnings march 8

 unusual options volume march 8

Data courtesy of Trade-Alert

Dollar Bounce Sinks Oil, Gold

April-dated crude futures slipped $1.03, or 1.7%, to end at $60.12 per barrel, its lowest mark in three weeks, as a rising dollar shoved prices lower.

Gold futures for April delivery fell $5.90, or 0.4%, to close at $1,321.70 an ounce, marking the metal's second straight loss. The surging dollar weighed on the commodity, as did the European Central Bank (ECB) policy statement.


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