Wall Street Snubs Government Shutdown as Stocks Soar

Michael Teague |

Stocks held the line on Tuesday as investors showed resilience in the face of the federal government shutdown that had officially begun at midnight.

The S&P 500 Index rallied 0.80 percent to finish the day at a clean 1,695 points, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.41 percent, ending with at a total of 15,191.70 points, and the NASDAQ added1.23 percent to 3,817.98 points.

The shutdown resulting from Congress’s inability to pass a resolution that would continue to fund the government pertains mainly to “non-essential” government employees, and its effects can already be seen in the Department of Commerce’s decision to delay the release of construction-spending data that had been scheduled for the morning.

The “business as usual” reaction of markets to the current scenario could be interpreted as a snub to the intransigence and brinkmanship of elected officials, particularly those in the House of Representatives. While the shutdown will certainly not be without onerous consequences, investors seem to have indicated that they do not believe that it can last long enough to significantly dampen the bullish environment for equities that has been the dominant theme of 2013.

On the S&P 500, the main beneficiaries of the day’s trading activity were streaming content provider Netflix (NFLX) , and Walgreen Co. (WAG) , the latter getting a bump from an impressive fiscal fourth-quarter earnings report. Both stocks were up over 4 percent by the closing bell.

The Dow was led up by healthcare companies, with Merck & Co. (MRK) and Unitedhealth Group Inc. (UNH) making the biggest gains on the day.

On the NASDAQ, services and tech shares were the stories of the day, with Apple Inc. (AAPL) up some 2 percent, followed by Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO) , Groupon (GRPN) , and semiconductor manufacturer Himax Technologies (HIMX) all making gains on heavy trading. LED producer Cree Inc. (CREE) jumped over 15 percent by the closing bell.

Meanwhile, the services sector was held up mainly by shipping stocks, including big gains for NewLead Holdings Ltd. ($NEWL), DryShips Inc. (DRYS) , and FreeSeas Inc. (FREE) .

[Image Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons]

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


Symbol Name Price Change % Volume
UNH UnitedHealth Group Incorporated (DE) 227.86 -1.62 -0.71 5,690,267 Trade
FREE FreeSeas Inc n/a n/a n/a n/a
DRYS DryShips Inc. 4.18 0.15 3.72 1,373,729 Trade
AAPL Apple Inc. 178.02 -0.63 -0.35 39,404,688 Trade
NFLX Netflix Inc. 318.45 -2.64 -0.82 7,333,734 Trade
YHOO Yahoo! Inc. n/a n/a n/a 0 Trade
MRK Merck & Company Inc. (new) 55.67 0.42 0.76 21,002,481 Trade
GRPN Groupon Inc. 4.60 0.05 1.10 10,436,553 Trade
SASOF Sasol Ltd Ord 33.35 0.00 0.00 0


Emerging Growth

Radient Technologies Inc.

Radient Technologies Inc is engaged in research, development and commercialization of environmentally responsible technology for the extraction, isolation and purification of soluble products from a wide range of materials using…

Private Markets

The Green Organic Dutchman

The Green Organic Dutchman Ltd. ("TGOD") produces farm grown, organic cannabis for medical use. The company grows its high quality organic cannabis in small batches using craft growing, all natural…


Voleo is a free download that allows you to form investment clubs with your friends, family, colleagues, classmates, teammates…basically anyone you know and trust. Invest and manage a stock portfolio…