Dow Dives 100 Points as Tech Cools Off

The S&P and Nasdaq also suffered modest losses

by Lillian Currens

Published on May 21, 2020 at 4:30 PM

After spending most of the day waffling below breakeven, the Dow settled roughly 100 points lower, as Wall Street weighed mixed economic data that included another spike in weekly jobless claims. A new wave of U.S.-China tensions is also spooking traders, alongside a new bill that could delist Chinese companies on U.S. exchanges.

The resurgent tech sector took a breather today, too. Amazon (AMZN) hit another record high only to promptly pivot into the red, while fellow FAANG names Netflix (NFLX) and Apple (AAPL) also cooled off. In response, the Nasdaq and S&P 500 took modest losses. 

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

  • The 25 worst stocks to own next week. 
  • L Brands stock surged today even after a dismal quarterly report. 
  • Plus, Mastercard extends remote work for employees; EXPE sinks on Q1 miss; and unpacking Medtronic's turn in the earnings confessional. 

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 24,474.12) lost 101.8 points, or 0.4% today. Six members of the index finished higher, with Boeing (BA) in the lead with a 4.3% pop, while IBM (IBM) fell to the bottom with a 1.9% drop. 

The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 2,948.51) ended 23.1 points, or 0.9% lower, while the Nasdaq Composite (IXIC - 9,284.88) ended 90.9 points, or 1%, lower.

The Cboe Volatility Index (VIX - 29.53) tacked on 1.5 points, or 5.5%.

Closing Summary May 21

nyse nasdaq may 21

5 Items on Our Radar Today

  1. In an email from Tesla's (TSLA) human resources manager, Valerie Workman, the company said it will return to "normal operations" with its regular attendance policy this week. The email also stated that it would give employees the option to take unpaid leave until May 31 -- with approval -- if they were concerned about exposing a family member to COVID-19. (CNBC)
  2. Wild animal consumption as been banned in the Chinese city of Wuhan, a few weeks after Dr. Anthony Fauci called for a halt in wet markets in the region trading exotic meat. The new policy will bar lion, tiger, peacock and pangolin, among other animals, and will be effective for the next five years. (Reuters)
  3. Mastercard extends remote work until further notice. 
  4. Analysts chime in after Expedia's first-quarter report.  
  5. Options bulls bombarded Medtronic stock despite an earnings miss. 

Earnings May 21

Unusual Options May 21

Data courtesy of Trade-Alert

Oil Keeps Climbing, While Gold Takes a Break

Oil futures continue to climb on Thursday, hitting a two-and-a-half-month high amid optimism over a rise in demand and a rise in crude production. July-dated crude added 43 cents, or 1.3%, to settle at $34.66 a barrel. 

Gold snapped its three-day win streak today, as Wall Street kept an eye on the latest economic data confirming that the worst for the spring sell-off is over. This gave gold futures another boost, with gold for June delivery settling down $30.20, or 1.7% to $1,721.90 an ounce.


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