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Dow: 17,749.31, -145.91, -0.82%
S&P 500: 2,053.40, -12.55, -0.61%
Nasdaq: 4,871.76, -21.53%, -0.44%
The S&P 500 Volatility Index (VIX), the market's fear gauge, jumped 3.76% on the day.
What Moved the DJIA Index Today: Crumbling oil prices weighed heavily on the markets. The S&P energy index dipped 1.4% intraday after the International Energy Agency said the glut in U.S. production is weighing on the global markets. Shares of Chevron Corp. (NYSE: CVX) dipped 0.78%, while Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM) dipped 0.42%. This was the 12th consecutive decline for the Exxon Mobil stock price.
Investors are increasingly nervous about the Federal Reserve's pending meeting on monetary policy. On February 24, Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen said the Fed will not raise interest rates for several more committee meetings. However, during her testimony before the Senate, Yellen said the Federal Open Market Committee will consider future rate hikes "on a meeting by meeting basis." Tuesday's event could provide insight on when the decisive meeting could be later this year.
Now, check out the other top market stories – plus get our new profit tip for investors:
- Oil Prices Today: Oil prices collapsed again Friday as supply concerns continue to rattle the domestic market. The United States is running out of places to put all the oil extracted during the shale boom. Right now, approximately 60% of our storage systems are full, up from 48% in 2014. In addition, U.S. rig counts fell by another 56 this week, as plunging oil prices fail to justify production costs. April 2015 futures for U.S. crude, priced at the NYMEX in New York City, slipped 4.7% to fall below $45 per barrel. Brent crude, priced in London, dipped 4.2% to hit $54.67. If you're looking to profit in this seesawing energy world, Money Morning Global Energy Strategist Dr. Kent Moors just released a report on three investment opportunities that could produce a huge windfall.
- Activist Woes: Shares of Herbalife Ltd.(NYSE: HLF) soared more than 8% on news the FBI and federal prosecutors are investigating activist investor Bill Ackman and a number of his associates over possible manipulation of the company's stock. For several years, Ackman has charged Herbalife of operating a Pyramid Scheme and has called the firm a "criminal organization." Now, investigators are tapping into his associates at Ackman's hedge fund Pershing Square Capital Management. At issue is whether Ackman intentionally made false statements to affect HLF shares. In addition, Ackman has very publicly shorted the company's stock. During an interview with CNBC Wednesday, Ackman said he hasn't discussed the case with any public agency.
- Bouncing Back: Shares of FXCM Inc. (NYSE: FXCM) gained 20% this afternoon after the currency broker announced better than expected fourth quarter earnings. This was the first earnings report since the company nearly went bankrupt after the Swiss National Bank's sudden decision to remove its cap against the euro. The company's shares fell more than 90% and it was forced to accept an emergency loan to stay afloat.
- Cutting Back: Shares of Harley Davidson (NYSE: HOG) fell more than 3% this afternoon on news that the company is downsizing. The motorcycle giant announced plans to slash 169 employees at its Kansas City plant. Although investors typically like production costs to fall, this could be a warning sign about the state of the industry. This afternoon, Wells Fargo & Co. (NYSE: WFC), which rates the company a "Buy," raised concerns that global motorcycle demand could be waning.
- Back to Work: Shares of Tesoro Corp. (NYSE: TSO) jumped 2.33% on news that the company has reached a deal to resolve a major workplace stoppage arranged by the United Steelworkers union at its Martinez, Calif., refinery. The refinery strike was the largest of its kind in 35 years and added pressure on gasoline prices around the nation. The new four-year deal will cover the salaries and benefits of 35,000 employees. Combined with news of plunging oil prices in the United States, Americans can expect gasoline prices to fall in the near future.
- An Apple a Day: Shares of Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) continued to decline for the third consecutive week. Apple stock fell 0.69% today in pattern with the broader daily decline. However, investors seemed uncertain about the profit potential of the Apple Watch, which the firm unveiled during a company event on Monday. This is the first time the company's stock has fallen for three straight weeks since September 2014.
Money Morning Tip of the Day: European Central Bank monetary policy and a falling euro are flashing a strong "Buy" signal for these investments.
The European Central Bank's QE program began Monday, March 9. It will flood the Eurozone economy with 60 billion euros ($66.1 billion) a month in government debt and asset purchases.
These policies will keep downward pressure on the euro. The Eurozone kicked the Greek debt crisis issue four months down the road when it extended its current bailout program. This looming threat of a Greek exit from the euro will smother the currency even more.
But it's also providing strong "Buy" signals for three investments in particular:
- ProShares UltraShort Euro ETF (NYSE Arca: EUO): This exchange-traded fund aims to generate twice the inverse daily returns of the dollar price of the euro. The euro hit a fresh 12-year low against the U.S. dollar early Thursday morning, slumping below $1.05. But it has further to fall. Money Morning Chief Investment Strategist Keith Fitz-Gerald believes the euro could fall to $0.90 by early 2016 due to the scope of Eurozone QE.
- Dice Holdings Inc. (NYSE: DHX): Eurozone QE will boost certain sectors, like healthcare, tech, energy, and defense. But there's currently a shortage of highly trained, highly skilled people needed to staff the very jobs in these industries that are going to pull the Eurozone out of its economic struggles. That's where Dice Holdings comes in. It helps connect highly skilled workers in North America and Europe with employers in these sectors. And the smart money is betting on it – institutional investors own 80% of DHX stock.
To get the third investment to profit from the European Central Bank's money printing, check out 3 Ways to Play the European Central Bank Easy Money Madness…
About the Author
Garrett Baldwin is a globally recognized research economist, financial writer, and consultant with degrees from Northwestern, Johns Hopkins, Purdue, and Indiana University. He is a seasoned financial and political risk analyst, with a focus on stocks, hedge funds, private equity, blockchain, and housing policy. He has conducted risk assessment projects for clients in 27 countries, and consulted on policy and financial operations for some of the nation's largest financial institutions, including a $1.5 trillion credit fund, a $43 billion credit and auto loan giant, as well as two of the largest Wall Street banks by assets under management.
Garrett joined Money Map Press as an economist and researcher in 2011, specializing in alternative strategies with an emphasis on fundamental and technical analysis.