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What Did the Stock Market Do Today?
S&P 500: 2,077.57; -5.99; -0.29%
Nasdaq: 5,043.54; -12.90; -0.26%
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 46 points today after the July jobs report indicated the "official unemployment rate" sits at 5.3%, a seven-year low. Investors were cautious and believe the seven-year low could provide justification for the U.S. Federal Reserve to raise interest rates in September. The Fed Open Market Committee will meet again to discuss monetary policy on Sept. 15.
However, the report wasn't all good news. A record 93,770,000 Americans are not in the labor force, which means they have effectively given up their job search. The workforce participation rate is at a 38-year low of 62.6%, and a record 56,209,000 women are out of work.
The S&P 500 Volatility Index (VIX), the market's fear gauge, lost 2.5% on the day.
Top Stock Market News Today
- Stock Market News: Today, the Dow Jones Industrial Average faced its worst losing streak since the 2011 Congressional debt-ceiling crisis. Nine of the 10 major S&P sectors declined on the day, with the worst performance coming from the energy sector. The Energy Index fell 1.9% as oil prices slumped to their sixth-straight weekly decline. Shares of Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM) fell more than 1.6%, while Chevron Corp. (NYSE: CVX) cratered another 1.7% on the day. Today's largest losers were Cloud Peak Energy Inc. (NYSE: CLD) and W&T Offshore Inc. (NYSE: WTI), both declining more than 10.8%.
- Oil Slumps: Crude oil prices slipped again today to their lowest levels since March on concerns about oversupply and high inventory levels. WTI crude futures for September slipped 1.9% to hit $43.80 per barrel. Meanwhile, Brent oil prices dipped almost 2% to $48.55 per barrel.
- On Tap Next Week: On Monday, investors will be keeping an eye on the Labor Market Conditions Index and a speech by Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank President Dennis Lockhart. Companies reporting earnings include Rackspace Hosting Inc. (NYSE: RAX), Procter & Gamble Co. (NYSE: PG), Informatica Corp. (Nasdaq: INFA), Sysco Corp. (NYSE: SYY), Take-Two Interactive Software Inc. (Nasdaq: TTWO), and Dean Foods Company (NYSE: DF).
Stocks to Watch: LNG, NVDA, GRPN, AAPL, AXP
- Stocks to Watch No. 1, LNG: Shares of Cheniere Energy Inc. (NYSEMKT: LNG) jumped more than 5% on news activist investor Carl Icahn led a team that has taken an 8.2% stake in the company. Icahn built the position, valued at more than $1 billion, after saying he believed the stock to be cheap. Icahn plans to speak to the company's board about efforts to slash company expenses and boost shareholder value. For insight from Money Morning Global Energy Strategist Dr. Kent Moors on why Icahn's deal is so important both for Icahn's hedge fund and for the future of domestic natural gas exports, visit here.
- Stocks to Watch No. 2, NVDA: Shares of Nvidia Corp. (Nasdaq: NVDA) surged more than 12% this afternoon after the company reported stronger than expected quarterly earnings. The firm reported per-share earnings of $0.05, down from $0.22 cents last year. The chip maker earned an adjusted per-share earnings figure of $0.34, beating Wall Street estimates by $0.11.
- Stocks to Watch No. 3, GRPN: Shares of Groupon Inc. (Nasdaq: GRPN) plunged more than 5.3% after the company reported second-quarter earnings and slashed its third-quarter revenue outlook. Groupon reported its quarterly revenue increased to $738.4 million, up from $716.2 million in the same period last year. However, this fell short of analyst expectations of $740.25 million. The company's CEO Eric Lefkofsky said all of its businesses in North America and abroad are growing.
- Stocks to Watch No. 4, AAPL: Shares of Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) were flat this afternoon; however, Apple stock has fallen by $12 since July 21, the day before the firm reported its quarterly results. Apple stock has been weakened by irrational expectations on Wall Street. But we're sticking to a $200 price target for the company. Here's a breakdown on how you can make 74% on Apple stock.
- Stocks to Watch No. 5, AXP: Shares of credit-card giant American Express Co. (NYSE: AXP) surged 6.3% on news activist hedge fund ValueAct Capital Management announced it has taken a $1 billion stake in the company. The 5% stake in the company will allow it to focus on boosting shareholder value and helping the company rebound from a difficult year that saw purchases with its credit cards decline.
What Investors Must Know This Week
- Why We're Still Bullish on Apple Stock (Nasdaq: AAPL)
- The Best Way to Add Gold to Your Portfolio Today
- The 4 Real Reasons Oil Prices Are Slipping – and How to Profit
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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.