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The Dow Jones today slipped, falling 3 points despite news the U.S. economy grew at a faster pace than previously reported. This was the day after the Dow hit its 29th record close of the year. The S&P 500 reported 73 new 52-week stock highs and no new lows on the day as the market rally continues. The S&P 500 Volatility Index (VIX), the market's fear gauge, slipped 1.7% on the day.
Dow: 17,814.94, -2.96, -0.02%
S&P 500: 2,067.03, -2.38, -0.12%
Nasdaq: 4,758.25, +3.36, +0.07%
What Moved the Markets Today: The U.S. economy grew at a pace of 3.9% in the third quarter, a figure that was stronger than previously reported by the U.S. Department of Commerce. The first revision to the report was a solid increase from the original estimate of 3.5%. The new figure outpaced the expected consensus downward revision of 3.3%. This is good news for the U.S. economy, which continues to break out of its long-term slump, and could serve as a catalyst for the U.S. Federal Reserve to begin plotting its action on interest rates. The Dow's continued surge prompted FOX Business' Stuart Varney to ask our Shah Gilani when the Index will hit 18,000. To hear his answer, watch his interview right here.
Now check out the day's most important market notes:
- The Rich Get Richer: Shares of Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) hit an intraday high of $119.75, temporarily pushing the tech icon's market cap above $700 billion. The company has indicated stronger-than-expected iPhone and tablet demand ahead of the holiday season. Shares retreated in the afternoon, but the company remains the largest on the U.S. markets, significantly beating the No. 2 firm by size, Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM), which has a market cap of just above $400 billion.
- OPEC on Tap: Energy shares held the Dow Jones back as oil prices slumped roughly 2% on the day on news that Russia's largest energy producer would not slash output, even if crude slipped to $60 per barrel. West Texas Intermediate crude prices slipped nearly 2.5%, falling below $74 per barrel. Meanwhile, Brent crude, the global benchmark, slipped more than 1.8% to fall near $78 per barrel. The downturn dragged down shares of multinationals Exxon Mobil and Chevron Corp. (NYSE: CVX). The news comes ahead of a Nov. 27 meeting by members of global oil cartel OPEC, which is considering its first energy quotas since the onset of the global financial crisis.
- Bad Beat: Shares of Hormel Foods Corp. (NYSE: HRL) dropped by more than 4% this afternoon on news the company missed earnings expectations. The food production giant reported per-share earnings of $0.63, down from consensus expectations of $0.64. Despite the miss, the firm did say that its sales and earnings were much stronger than in 2013. The firm also announced a 25% increase in its dividend to an annual rate of $1 per share next year. The company is just one of several great income stocks that have raised their dividends. Here's Money Morning's list of 25 notable stocks that just raised their dividends last week.
- Earnings Reports: Shares of Tiffany & Co. (NYSE: TIF) jumped more than 2.3% on news the company's same-store sales beat analyst expectations. The company did report per-share earnings just a penny below estimates and offered a lowered sales forecast; however, investors remained confident on news that same-store sales increased by 4% over the same period last year.
Now our experts share some of the most important investment moves to make based on today's market trading – for Money Morning Members only:
- This Play Could Double Again – But There's Much More to It: Money Morning Chief Investment Strategist Keith Fitz-Gerald's recent small-cap stock pick has already doubled. And this human augmentation company is still a great buy – especially if you understand how to use Keith's favorite trading tactic. Here's how to put the power of the "free trade" to work for you to collect even bigger
- How We'll Play the 2014 Year-End Rally: Stocks are headed higher through year end for many reasons, but one in particular is telling. It's really simple, yet too many people have overlooked it. Indeed, most wouldn't even give it enough thought. And that would be a big mistake… As Money Morning's Shah Gilani explains, if you understand that one compelling reason, you can pick some winners – and pocket big profits – yourself.
- How Google Will Dominate the Future: Today tech Specialist Michael A. Robinson reveals why Google is such an intriguing tech investment with enormous upside. This industry leader has somehow combined Warren Buffett's business genius with the futurist brain of Ray Kurzweil, Google's director of engineering. And there's nothing but profit ahead for investors…