Stocks Pivot Lower as Tariff Report Spooks Traders

The Dow was up more than 350 points at its apex today, and narrowly avoided a correction by the close

Managing Editor
Oct 29, 2018 at 4:31 PM
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It was a volatile, ugly session on Wall Street today, with the Dow up more than 352 points at its session highs before pivoting sharply lower late in the day. Driving the sudden U-turn was a Bloomberg report that the U.S. was planning on imposing tariffs on all remaining Chinese imports -- about $257 billion worth of goods -- should upcoming talks between President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping fail to resolve the ongoing U.S.-China trade dispute. By its afternoon lows, the Dow was off just over 566 points, and at risk of closing in official correction territory.

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

  • This Black Monday stock signal is flashing again.
  • One Red Hat options trader banked millions with a pre-buyout trade.
  • This is the best Dow stock to buy in November.
  • Plus, the auto stock that more than doubled today; Goldman upgrades Ford; and pre-earnings options traders target Facebook stock.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 24,442.92) closed down 245.4 points, or 1%. Verizon (VZ) led 15 Dow stocks higher with its 1.7% gain, while Boeing (BA) paced the 15 decliners with its 6.6% fall. Earlier in the session, the Dow traded as low as 24,122.23.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,641.25) fell 17.4 points, or 0.7%, to finish in the red for the eighth time in the last nine days. The Nasdaq Composite (IXIC - 7,050.29) surrendered 116.9 points, or 1.6%, to collect its second consecutive triple-digit drop.

The Cboe Volatility Index (VIX - 24.70) gained 0.5 point, or 2.2%.

closing indexes summary oct 29NYSE and Nasdaq Oct 29

5 Items on our Radar Today

  1. German Chancellor Angela Merkel will not seek re-election as chair of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party, and intends to step down from politics after 2021, when her fourth term ends. The news that her 13-year stretch as chancellor comes after her CDU party suffered setbacks in regional elections over the weekend. (Reuters)
  2. U.S. consumer spending rose in September for the seventh straight month. While disposable income rose as well, it was the smallest gain in 15 months -- implying a spending slowdown could be nearing. (Reuters)
  3. This auto stock more than doubled today.
  4. Ford stock picked up a big upgrade from Goldman Sachs.
  5. Bulls are blasting Facebook stock before earnings.

corporate earnings oct 29

unusual options volume oct 29

Data courtesy of Trade-Alert

Oil, Gold End Lower

Oil prices fell today, keeping pace with steep losses for China's stock market. December-dated crude futures gave back 55 cents, or 0.8%, at $67.04 per barrel. 

Gold fell today thanks to a strengthening dollar and initially strong stock market gains during the first half of the session. The December-dated contract shed $8.20, or 0.7%, to close at $1,227.60 an ounce.


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