Dow Extends Win Streak in Low-Volume Session

Today's Supreme Court decision lifted casino stocks

by Josh Selway

Published on May 14, 2018 at 4:25 PM

Stocks jumped out of the gate this morning, thanks to a diplomatic trade tweet from President Donald Trump, which eased tensions between the U.S. and China and lifted several optical component stocks. The major indexes went on to lose momentum in what turned out to be a low-volume session, with the S&P 500 and Nasdaq both briefly dipping into negative territory -- though the Dow managed to grab an eighth straight win, marking its best streak since September. Oil prices again ticked higher thanks to a strong demand forecast from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), and Wall Street also digested a Supreme Court decision to repeal a nationwide ban on sports betting, news that boosted casino stocks. Looking ahead, traders will be preparing for a wave of quarterly updates from retailers, including an earnings release from Home Depot tomorrow morning.

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

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 24,899.41) added 68.2 points, or 0.3%, but closed well off its session highs. Nineteen of 30 Dow components closed with gains, and UnitedHealth (UNH) stock led the charge with a 1.9% rise. Travelers Companies (TRV) was the biggest loser, shedding 1%.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,730.13) added 2.4 points, or 0.1%, while the Nasdaq Composite (IXIC - 7,411.32) closed up 8.4 points, or 0.1%. 

The Cboe Volatility Index (VIX - 12.93) actually managed a 0.3-point, or 2.2%, win today, snapping a seven-day losing streak.

Closing Indexes Summary May 14

NYSE and Nasdaq May 14

5 Items on Our Radar Today

  1. Today's Supreme Court decision on sports betting could be a huge boon to daily fantasy sites DraftKings and FanDuel. The former company immediately released a statement saying it plans to offer "innovative online sports betting products." DraftKings CEO Jason Robins was also featured on CNBC, saying, "This is going to be a huge industry." (CNBC)
  2. Hackers were reportedly able to steal millions of pesos from Mexican banks. The thieves created phantom orders that funneled money into fake accounts, which were quickly emptied. (Reuters)
  3. Options traders swarmed beleaguered Symantec stock.
  4. J.P. Morgan's huge Amazon Prime call.
  5. An analyst said AMD stock could rally this week.

Unusual Options Activity May 14

Data courtesy of Trade-Alert

OPEC Forecast Sends Oil Higher

Oil prices rose today, after OPEC raised its outlook for global demand. Rising tensions in the Middle East also boosted black gold. June-dated crude futures finished up 26 cents, or 0.4%, at $70.96 per barrel as a result.

Gold prices, on the other hand, fell today, as the dollar rebounded. Gold set for June delivery gave back $2.50, or 0.2%, and closed at $1,318.20 an ounce.

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