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How Did the Stock Market Do Today?
Dow: 18,312.39, +13.51, +0.07%
S&P 500: 2,127.83, -1.37, -0.06%
Nasdaq: 5,070.03, -8.40, -0.17%
The Dow Jones Industrial Average today eked out a 13-point gain to hit another record closing high. The S&P 500 remained in the red, however, as energy stocks slid and retailers reported weak earnings for the March-ending quarter.
Top Stock Market News Today
- Housing Surge: This morning, U.S. housing starts jumped to their highest levels in roughly seven and a half years, while new permits rose. Groundbreaking surged more than 20% in April to hit an annual rate of 1.14 million, a sign the housing sector is rebounding from a difficult winter.
- Energy Decline: WTI crude slipped below $60 per barrel this afternoon, while the S&P 500 energy index (SPNY) fell more than 1.2%. Oil prices fell despite geopolitical concerns and wars affecting regions in Iraq, Syria, and Yemen. Shares of Chevron Corp. (NYSE: CVX) and Royal Dutch Shell Plc. (NYSE: A) both fell roughly 1.5% on the day.
- Fed Hacking: Central bank supporters are on edge after the St. Louis Federal Reserve admitted that hackers took over parts of its website last month. The hackers redirected traffic to fake web pages of economic data and might have subjected users to malware and phishing attacks. The attack transpired on April 24. Anyone who used the site to obtain statistics are advised to change their password and other credentials.
- On Tap Wednesday: On Wednesday, investors will digest notes from the April Fed Open Market Committee meeting, seeking any change in sentiment from members of the central bank. The markets do not anticipate an increase in interest rates in June, but it looks like patience is running out. Companies reporting earnings include American Eagle Outfitters (NYSE: AEO), Hormel Foods Corp. (NYSE: HRL), Lowes Companies Inc. (NYSE: LOW), Sears Holdings Corp. (Nasdaq: SHLD), Staples Inc. (Nasdaq: SPLS), Target Corp. (NYSE: TGT), and Williams-Sonoma Inc. (NYSE: WSM).
Stocks to Watch: WMT, HD, TTWO, URBN, ETSY
- Stocks to Watch No. 1, AAPL: Shares of Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) slipped marginally today. The decline came despite activist investor Carl Icahn doubling down on his statement from Monday that Apple stock is worth $240 per share. On Tuesday, Icahn said he expects the company to release a car and television in the near future and again stated his frustration with the company's current buyback program. To find out what Money Morning Tech Specialist Michael A. Robinson thinks about Icahn's lofty claims, watch the interview here...
- Stocks to Watch No. 2, WMT: Shares of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE: WMT) slipped 4.37% on news that the company reported weaker than expected U.S. same-store sales growth in the first quarter. The company said its customers were saving their tax returns and gasoline savings to pay off debt rather than boost discretionary spending. The company also said higher wages and a stronger dollar affected profits.
- Stocks to Watch No. 3, HD: Shares of Home Depot Inc. (NYSE: HD) slipped 1.74% despite news that the home improvement retailer beat Wall Street quarterly earnings estimates. The firm reported adjusted quarterly profits of $1.16 per share, besting analyst estimates by a penny. The firm increased its 2015 full-year earnings and sales outlooks and said its same-store sales are on the rise. The company's rival The Lowes Companies Inc. (NYSE: LOW) will report earnings on Wednesday.
- Stocks to Watch No. 4, TTWO: Shares of Take-Two Interactive Software Inc. (Nasdaq: TTWO) surged more than 18% after the gaming company reported stronger than expected earnings after the bell on Monday. In addition, the company received an upgrade from "Neutral" to "Buy" from investment firm Sterne Agee. The firm reported very strong digital sales of its "Grand Theft Auto V" and "NBA 2K15" titles.
- Stocks to Watch No. 5, URBN: Today's worst performer was retailer Urban Outfitters Inc. (Nasdaq: URBN), which saw shares slide 15% on a terrible earnings and sales miss in the first quarter. The company stumbled in a weak March-ending quarter for retailers. Urban was hit by both bad weather and supply chain problems after a massive strike slowed West Coast ports to a crawl.
- Stocks to Watch No. 6, ETSY: After the bell, online craft network Etsy Inc. (Nasdaq: ETSY) released earnings for the first time since its IPO earlier this year. The company reported a loss of $0.84 per share on revenue of $59 million in the first quarter. ETSY shares are down 14% in after-hours trading.
What Investors Must Know This Week
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.