S&P, DJIA Off for 5th Consecutive Day as Good News Brings Taper Anxiety

Michael Teague  |

Stocks ended lower across the board on Thursday, with the Standard & Poor’s 500 index and the Dow Jones Industrial Average down for the fifth consecutive day as yet more upbeat economic data heightened investor anxiety over reductions in the Fed’s fiscal stimulus program.

The S&P 500 was 0.43 percent lower at 1,785.03 points, while the Dow Industrials were off by the same to 15,821.51 points, and the NASDAQ lost 0.12 percent to 4,033.17.

The morning saw the release of the Department of Labor’s weekly jobless claims report, showing filings for first-time benefits dropped, the 7th decline in 8 weeks, by some 23,000, contradicting expectations for an increase of about the same amount. Continuing claims were also significantly lower.

Meanwhile, the Bureau of Economic Analysis released its GDP report that showing the US economy growing 3.6 percent during the recently-ended period, far outpacing the expected 2.8 percent expansion. The combination of the day’s data with data released earlier in the week and ahead of tomorrow’s Employment Situation report gave investors the jitters about the possibility of earlier date for the tapering of fiscal stimulus.

On the S&P 500, J.C. Penney (JCP) continued its slide, down 8.5 percent by the bell and leading services and consumer goods stocks lower in the face of expectations for an underwhelming holiday shopping season. Safeway (SWY) , The Kroger Co. (KR) , and Best Buy (BBY) were among the benchmark’s biggest losers on the day.

The Dow’s only real bright spot on the day was semiconductor giant Intel (INTC) with shares adding over 2 percent on news that the market for tablets is becoming saturated, while the PC/laptop market may finally be either near or at its bottom. Microsoft (MSFT) lead the Dow’s losers, down some 2.40 percent by the close on news that Ford Motors (F) CEO Alan Mulally would not in fact be accepted a job as the top executive of the former tech giant.

On the NASDAQ, Apple Inc. (AAPL) was up about 0.60 percent after news of a deal between the iPhone-maker and China’s biggest mobile network. This was not a rising tide that lifted all boats, however, as tech shares were the worst-performing on the exchange, with heavy declines for Cisco Systems (CSCO) , Blackberry (BBRY) , GT Advanced Technologies (GTAT) , and Micron Technology (MU) .

Electronics retailer Conns Inc. (CONN) was a rare positive story in retail, jumping almost 20 percent and hitting all-time highs after its third quarter earnings report handily beat expectations.

DISCLOSURE: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors, and do not represent the views of equities.com. Readers should not consider statements made by the author as formal recommendations and should consult their financial advisor before making any investment decisions. To read our full disclosure, please go to: http://www.equities.com/disclaimer.

Companies

Symbol Name Price Change % Volume
KR Kroger Company (The) 28.19 -0.25 -0.88 4,642,165 Trade
INTC Intel Corporation 68.47 5.15 8.13 84,711,037 Trade
CSCO Cisco Systems Inc. 48.85 -0.15 -0.31 14,066,913 Trade
CONN Conn's Inc. 9.17 -0.47 -4.83 1,529,632 Trade
BBY Best Buy Co. Inc. 89.44 -0.38 -0.42 1,209,634 Trade
F Ford Motor Company 9.00 -0.14 -1.53 68,100,949 Trade
MU Micron Technology Inc. 57.76 -1.44 -2.43 28,555,345 Trade
BBRY BB BlackBerry Limited n/a n/a n/a n/a
JCP J.C. Penney Company Inc. 0.80 -0.02 -2.13 5,936,465 Trade
MSFT Microsoft Corporation 165.04 -1.68 -1.01 24,918,117 Trade
PRGLY Puregold Price Club Inc Manila ADR 6.80 0.00 0.00 0
AAPL Apple Inc. 318.31 -0.92 -0.29 36,634,380 Trade

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AAPL

     
AMZN

     
HD

     
JPM

     
IBM

     
BA

     
WMT

     
DIS

     
GOOG

     
XOM

     
BRK.A

     
FB

     
JNJ

     
WFC

     
T

     
NFLX

     
TSLA

     
V

     
UNH

     
PG

     

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