Dow on Pace for Fifth Straight Win, Fed Meeting in Focus

The DJI is trading back above the 26,000 level

Managing Editor
Mar 19, 2019 at 12:09 PM
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Eyeing a fifth straight win, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) is comfortably higher, up 134 points at midday, as investor focus shifts to the two-day Fed meeting, currently underway. Investors don't expect a policy change from the central bank, but will pore over tomorrow's statement for shifts in economic and rate forecasts. The S&P 500 Index (SPX) and Nasdaq Composite (IXIC) are higher as well, helped by strength in semiconductor stocks.

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

Midday Market Stats March 19

Shoe retailer DSW Inc. (NYSE:DSW) is down 14.4% at $21.75, at last check, and is sporting unusual options volume this afternoon. The security is short-sale restricted today, after the company reported a surprise fourth-quarter loss. So far, about 7,300 calls and 3,300 puts have crossed the tape -- 39 times its average intraday pace. Most active by a long shot is the April 22.50 call, where over 4,400 contacts have exchanged hands. Today's bear gap has set the retailer back 12% year-to-date, and DSW is pacing toward its first close below $23 since last May.

The shares of Warren Buffett-backed financial technology solutions provider StoneCo Ltd (NASDAQ:STNE) are near the top of the Nasdaq today, up 22.4% at $42.36, and earlier hit an all-time high of $43.90, after the company reported solid earnings and said its active client base more than doubled. Year-to-date the stock is up 129%, and it sits 76% higher than its October initial public offering (IPO) price of $24.

Daily STNE since October IPO

One of the top stocks on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) is PermRock Royalty Trust (NYSE:PRT), last seen up 7% at $8.56, though the catalyst is unclear. The oil name is up 44% in 2019, but is running into familiar resistance at its 80-day moving average.

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