Stocks Swing Lower As Rate Cut Optimism Dampens

Both Powell and Bullard want to be patient with rate-cut decisions

by Patrick Martin

Published on Jun 25, 2019 at 4:32 PM

The Dow suffered a triple-digit loss today, as hopes for an interest rate cut next month took a hit in the wake of Fed Chair Jerome Powell's speech this afternoon. Powell described the Fed's approach as "patient," and said it's "important not to overreact in the short term." Fanning the flames of uncertainty were additional comments from St. Louis Fed President James Bullard, who does not think the Fed needs to cut interest rates by a half-percentage point in July. All of this followed a round of lackluster economic data, and the S&P 500 and Nasdaq both closed lower, as well, marking their third straight loss. 

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

  • This cloud stock bull signal has never been wrong.
  • Jefferies bashed Microsoft stock again.
  • Allergan options volume peaked amid AbbVie buyout buzz.
  • Plus, Lennar's bad day; an insurance stock to dump; and big options volume on MCD and SBUX. 

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 26,548.22) fell 179.3 points, or 0.7%, in today's trading. Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) led the six blue-chip winners with a 1.9% gain, while Microsoft (MSFT) paced the 23 losers with a 3.2% drop. Pfizer (PFE) closed flat.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,917.38) lost 27.9 points, or 1%, while the Nasdaq Composite (IXIC - 7,884.72) shed 102.9 points, or 1.5%.

The Cboe Volatility Index (VIX - 16.28) gained 1 point, or 6.7%.

Closing Indexes June 25

NYSE and Nasdaq June 25

5 Items on our Radar Today

  1. The White House has a new press secretary. Stephanie Grisham, the communications director for First Lady Melania Trump, will replace Sarah Sanders, who resigned earlier this month. Grisham has already been added to the White House team going to Osaka, Japan, later this week for the G-20 summit. (Reuters
  2. Illinois has become the 11th state to legalize recreational marijuana. Democratic Governor J.B. Pritzker made good on his campaign promise earlier today, legalizing small amounts of marijuana for purchase and possession. This also potentially paves the way for the criminal records of nearly 800,000 low-level pot offenders to be expunged. (MarketWatch)
  3. Dismal earnings sent Lennar stock lower today.
  4. Analyst says to dump this insurance stock.
  5. Microsoft and Starbucks stocks saw short-term call trading.

Corporate Earnings June 25Unusual Options activity June 25

Data courtesy of Trade-Alert

Oil Takes Breather, Gold Pares Big Gains

Oil finished lower today, snapping a three-day win streak that was sparked by U.S tensions with both China and Iran. By the close, August-dated crude shed 7 cents, or 0.1%, to end at $57.83 per barrel.

Gold stayed hot in overnight trading, trading as high as $1,442.90, but gave back most of its gains at the end of the day in the wake of Powell's comments. August-delivered gold added 50 cents to settle at $1,418.70 an ounce.

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