Trump Tweets Spark Volatile Daily Swings for Stocks

FB had its best day in two years earlier this week

Karee Venema
Apr 13, 2018 at 1:53 PM
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It was another week of volatile daily swings, as Wall Street kept a close eye on President Donald Trump's Twitter feed. While easing tensions surrounding a potential U.S.-China trade war fueled big intraday upside moves on Monday and Tuesday, Trump's taunts toward Russia of a possible Syrian missile strike sparked a sharp sell-off on Wednesday -- while boosting gold futures, oil prices, and energy stocks. The president sought to soothe nerves with a more ambiguous tweet on Thursday, sending markets higher. And while last week's intraday swings resulted in little net movement for the broader stock market, all three major indexes are headed toward tonight's close boasting substantial week-to-date gains.

FAANG Stock News This Week

FAANG stocks continued to be in focus, too, with Facebook (FB) shares logging their best day in years -- and lifting rival Snap (SNAP) stock along the way -- as the social media giant's CEO Mark Zuckerberg testified in front of Congress following the recent data harvesting scandal. Netflix (NFLX) also rallied, with the streaming name receiving bull note upon bull note ahead of next week's earnings report -- and Deutsche Bank screaming "buy" the high-flying stock on Friday.

Meanwhile, Trump issued an executive order requesting a review of the United States Postal Service (USPS), after the president accused Amazon (AMZN) of losing USPS money, and Barron's called Google parent Alphabet (GOOGL) a "bargain in big tech." Rounding things out, Apple (AAPL) was ordered to pay VirnetX (VHC) a massive patent infringement settlement -- putting the latter stock on track for its best week since late February.

Morgan Stanley Pegs Buying Opportunity in Chip Sector

Elsewhere in the tech sector, Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) stock brushed off a bearish brokerage note early on to head toward its strongest weekly return since the start of the year, while sector peer Nvidia (NVDA) jumped after Morgan Stanley called the security's recent pullback a buying opportunity. Seagate Technology (STX) and Twilio (TWLO) also jumped on positive analyst attention, while this screen specialist may have formed a tradable bottom. Plus, Tesla (TSLA) stock rallied into key technical resistance on Friday, following an overnight tweet from the firm's CEO Elon Musk.

Keytruda Data Fuels Big Upside Move for Merck Stock

Drug data also helped fuel big moves for pharma stocks, with Merck (MRK) shares pacing for their best week since November 2016 on positive results for the company's Keytruda cancer treatment. CymaBay Therapeutics (CYBA) stock had its best session since last summer after the biotech's impressive liver disease drug data. Menlo Therapeutics (MNLO), on the other hand, plummeted to a new record low after the biotech's cough drug failed to meet its mid-stage study goals.

Stocks Flashing "Buy"

While this rare options signal not seen since the 2016 U.S. presidential election has historically been bullish for the S&P in the short term, an unusual drop in this sentiment survey has not. Despite the opposing indicators, Schaeffer's Senior Quantitative Analyst Rocky White found these to be the hottest buy signals over the past year -- potentially putting Dow stock Caterpillar (CAT) and this pair of biotechs on bulls' radar. For options traders, these two retail stocks may be worth a second look.

Bank Earnings Roll In, Blue Chips on Tap

This week marked the start of earnings season, with Delta Air Lines (DAL) stock snapping its lengthy losing streak after the airline reported first-quarter profit and revenue beats. The financial sector was in the limelight, as well, as big bank earnings started rolling in. Ahead of results from BlackRock (BLK), JPMorgan (JPM), and Citigroup (C), though, Deutsche Bank (DB) wowed Wall Street by announcing it has replaced embattled CEO John Cryan.

Financial firms will continue to unveil quarterly results next week, with Bank of America (BAC) set to kick things off bright and early on Monday. Several Dow components are also on tap to report, as is aluminum giant Alcoa (AA) -- whose shares got a lift earlier this week after the Trump administration imposed new sanctions on Russia.


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