How Did the Stock Market Do Today?
S&P 500: 1,920.02; +35.93; +1.91%
Nasdaq: 4,620.17; +102.84; +2.28%
The Dow Jones Industrial Average today (Wednesday) ended the worst quarter for international markets in four years on a high note. The Dow added 235 points to close out a quarter in which major equity indexes around the globe slipped more than 10%. Concerns about declining growth in China, falling oil prices, the U.S. Federal Reserve's confusing interest rate rhetoric, and economic slumps in major export markets fueled the quarterly downturn. All three major U.S. indices finished their worst quarter since 2011. The Dow was the worst performing, declining roughly 7.5%.
Thursday's gains were fueled on the back of a strong employment report issued by Automated Data Processing (ADP). The firm said the private sector added 200,000 jobs in September.
Top Stock Market News Today
- Stock Market News: All 10 S&P 500 sectors gained more than 1% today as investors were optimistic about the U.S. economy after the release of private sector job growth. The markets are rebounding ahead of the September jobs report, which the U.S. Commerce Department will release on Friday. Investors also shrugged off statements by IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde, who said global growth would be weaker as the international economy continues to face headwinds from China's lackluster growth rate and a pending hike to U.S. interest rates.
- U.S. Oil Prices Slip: Oil prices were largely flat after a very volatile trading session. WTI prices fell 0.3% to hit $45.09, while Brent oil prices added 0.3% to hit $48.37. Today, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) announced U.S. crude inventories surged by 4 million barrels last week, when many analysts projected a drawdown of more than 1 million barrels. Prices were supported by news that a hurricane is currently threatening energy infrastructure on the east coast of the United States. Oil prices declined by 24% over the third quarter.
- On Tap Thursday: Tomorrow, a busy economic calendar features updates on the health of manufacturing sectors around the world, weekly jobless claims, and a speech by San Francisco Federal Reserve President John Williams. Companies reporting earnings include Micron Technology Inc. (Nasdaq: MU), McCormick & Co. Inc. (NYSE: MKC), Progress Software Corp. (Nasdaq: PRGS), and CalAmp Corp. (Nasdaq: CAMP).
Stocks to Watch: AAPL, CBSH, TWTR, KMI, RMP, NAP, TSLA
- Stocks to Watch No. 1, AAPL: Shares of Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) gained 0.8% today. According to a report by Reuters, the company's average Apple Watch price hit $529.
- Stocks to Watch No. 2, CBSH: Shares of Commerce Bancshares Inc. (Nasdaq: CBSH) added more than 1.2% as part of a broader rise in community bank stocks today. Community bank stocks rose after Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen suggested U.S. regulators should tailor rules specifically for these financial companies and said a "one size fits all" approach to the financial sector can overburden smaller firms trying to compete in the sector.
- Stocks to Watch No. 3, TWTR: Shares of Twitter Inc. (NYSE: TWTR) surged more than 5% today on news the company's board of directors is close to announcing Jack Dorsey as the new permanent CEO. Shareholders have been pushing for Dorsey, who is a co-founder of the company, after he assumed the temporary role earlier this year. The company also announced it was expanding the buy button on its platform in order to boost its ecommerce potential.
- Stocks to Watch No. 4, KMI: Shares of Kinder Morgan Inc. (NYSE: KMI) gained more than 5.8% alongside most companies in the midstream energy sector. Energy transport companies like Rice Midstream Partners LP (NYSE: RMP) and Navios Maritime Midstream Partners LP (NYSE: NAP) both gained more than 13% on the day.
- Stocks to Watch No. 5, TSLA: Shares of Tesla Motors Inc. (Nasdaq: TSLA) were up 0.7% today after the company hosted its highly anticipated Model X event last night at its factory in Fremont, Calif. Here's a recap of the event and the stock's performance during the day.
What Investors Must Know This Week
- The One Stock to Profit from China's Trillion-Dollar Megaproject
- CHARTS: Gold Price Forecast Sees Rise Before 2016
- How to Protect Against the Biggest Threat to Your Money Today
Follow us on Twitter: @moneymorning.