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For April 22, 2015, here's how the stock market did today, earnings reports, the top stock market news, and stocks to watch based on today's market moves…
How Did the Stock Market Do Today?
Dow: 18,038.07, +88.48, +0.49%
S&P 500: 2,107.96, +10.67, +0.51%
Nasdaq: 5,035.17, +21.07, +0.42%
The DJIA Index gained 88 points Wednesday after investors weighed earnings reports from a number of prominent companies.
Currency swings are heightening pressures on many multinational companies. But strong housing numbers and a change in China's financial policy that will allow U.S. credit card processors to operate in the massive market gave the markets a boost today.
The S&P 500 Volatility Index (VIX), the market's fear gauge, dipped 4.6% on the day.
Top Stock Market News Today
- Home Sales Surge:S. existing home sales roared back to surge 6.1% in March, according to the National Association of Realtors, shattering economist expectations. This was a surprising figure given concerns about domestic supply and suggests the U.S. housing market is finally on solid ground after a near-decade boom-and-bust cycle. In addition, mortgage applications rose more than 2.3% last week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.
- Oil Prices Today: The Energy Information Administration reported weekly inventory levels, and it was a big number. Today, U.S. oil inventories hit an 85-year high, as the nation added another 5.3 million barrels to its supply chain. The United States now has 489 million barrels in inventory. WTI crude, priced in New York City, slipped 0.8% on to hit $56.16 per barrel. Brent Crude, priced in London, rose 1% today over ongoing geopolitical tension in the Middle East.
- Flash Crash: Navinder Singh Sarao, suspected of crimes connected to the May 2010 "flash crash," is out on bail and fighting extradition to the United States. Yesterday the high-frequency trader (HFT) based in London was arrested and charged with wire fraud, commodities fraud, and manipulation. This case has the potential to change the future of HFT forever.
- After the Bell: A number of key companies report quarterly results after close today. That roster includes AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T), Facebook Inc. (Nasdaq: FB), and eBay (Nasdaq: EBAY).
Stocks to Watch: MCD, V, MA, KO, YUM
- Stocks to Watch No. 1, MCD: Shares of McDonald's Corp. (NYSE: MCD) surged 3.1% on news that the company is preparing a turnaround strategy. The fast-food giant released meager first-quarter earnings, announcing that revenue fell by 11% from the same period last year. The company is under pressure from its franchisees to alter the company's strategy moving forward in the face of falling same-store sales and declining customer traffic. The company said it will announce its turnaround plan on May 4.
- Stocks to Watch No. 2, V: Shares of Visa Inc. (NYSE: V) jumped as much as 7.1% intraday, hitting a new record high. Meanwhile, rival MasterCard Inc. (NYSE: MA) saw shares jump nearly 4%. Why the big gain for credit processors? Today, the Chinese government announced that it will open up its market to foreign companies for clearing domestic bank card transactions.
- Stocks to Watch No. 3, KO: Shares of the Coca-Cola Co. (NYSE: KO) jumped 1.3% this afternoon on news that the company beat Wall Street earnings estimates. The firm reported an adjusted per-share profit of $0.48, which beat estimates by $0.06. The company cited stronger than expected profits in the European market as a primary driver of its strong quarter.
- Stocks to Watch No. 4, YUM: Shares of Yum Brands Inc. (NYSE: YUM) were up nearly 4% today after the company reported that it is recovering from a meat scare that rattled customers in China. The company maintained its 2015 guidance levels and said it expects a strong year-end finish.