Dow Racks Up Biggest Gain Ever in Post-Christmas Comeback

FAANG stock Amazon was a big winner today following upbeat holiday spending data

by Patrick Martin

Published on Dec 26, 2018 at 4:32 PM

Fresh off a historically awful Christmas Eve, stocks bounced back in a big way today. The Dow traded on both sides of breakeven early in the session, only to stabilize around midday and ultimately rally over 1,000 points -- its biggest point gain ever -- to snap a four-day losing streak. Investors were encouraged today after Kevin Hassett, White House economic adviser, said Fed Chair Jerome Powell's job was "100% safe" and that the president was "highly confident" in Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, whose impromptu phone summit with bank CEOs was widely credited for Monday's brutal selling.

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

  • 30 stocks to jump-start your New Year, courtesy of Schaeffer's Senior Quantitative Analyst Rocky White.
  • Beleaguered Roku stock gets a big "Top Pick" nod.
  • Plus, more Tesla Model 3 news; bull notes for two drug stocks; and an auto parts name ripe for a put play.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 22,878.45) closed the day on a gain of 1,086.3 points, or nearly 5%. The rally was its biggest ever in point terms, and its heftiest since March 2009 on a percentage basis. All 30 Dow components finished higher, led by a gain of 7.2% for Nike (NKE). Bringing up the rear was Coca-Cola (KO), with its 2.1% rise.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,467.70) vaulted to a gain of 116.6 points, or about 5%. The Nasdaq Composite (IXIC - 6,554.36) advanced 361.4 points, or 5.8%. Like the Dow, both the SPX and Nasdaq recorded their biggest one-day percentage gains since March 2009. 

The Cboe Volatility Index (VIX - 30.41) ended the day significantly lower, down 5.7 points, or 15.7%. Earlier in the session, VIX had set a new 10-month intraday high of 36.20.

closing indexes summary december 26

nyse and nasdaq stats december 26

5 Items on our Radar Today

  1. Retail sales soared by 5.1% this holiday season to a six-year high of $850 billion, per Mastercard. In addition, e-commerce giant Amazon.com (AMZN) announced a "record breaking" selling season led by strong demand for its devices (Reuters)
  2. The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller home-price index rose 0.4% for October, on a seasonally adjusted basis. However, the year-over-year increase in home prices fell to 5% -- in line with expectations, but marking its lowest point in two years. (MarketWatch)
  3. Model 3 buzz jolted Tesla stock.
  4. 2 drug stocks soared on "buy" ratings.
  5. One auto parts stock primed for put buyers.

There are no earnings to report.

unusual options activity december 26

Data courtesy of Trade-Alert

Oil Futures Notch Biggest Jump Since November 2016

Oil futures mirrored U.S. equities today by erasing their sharp losses from Christmas Eve. February-dated crude futures settled up $4.69, or 8.6%, at $46.22 per barrel -- their biggest daily gain in over two years.

Gold futures edged up to settle at a six-month high, as the precious metal continues to find an underpinning of safe-haven demand amid ongoing market volatility. February-dated gold futures added $1.20, or 0.1%, to settle at $1,273 an ounce.


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