Dow Jones Industrial Average

Dow Jones Industrial Average Today Climbs Near 20,000 as Crude Prices Rise

Dow Jones Industrial AverageThe Dow Jones Industrial Average today was pushing higher as investors continued to pile into equities.

In what will likely be a light day of trading, investors will be keeping an eye on the U.S. housing market with the release of the Pending Home Sales Index at 10 a.m.

On Tuesday, the Nasdaq closed at an all-time record thanks to a nice boost from the technology sector.

Meanwhile, nine of 11 S&P sectors were on the rise. Shares of Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) added more than 0.6%, while shares of NVIDIA Corp. (Nasdaq: NVDA) rallied another 6.8%. Nvidia stock is the top performer on the S&P 500 in 2016, adding more than 255% since Jan. 1.

Let's look at the numbers from Tuesday for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:

Dow Jones: 19,945.04; +11.23; +0.06%

S&P 500: 2,268.88; +5.09; +0.22%

Nasdaq: 5,487.44; +24.75; +0.45%

Here's a look at today's most important market events and stocks, plus a look at Wednesday's economic calendar.

What's Ahead for the Dow Jones Industrial Average Today

The Dow Jones Industrial Average projected a 32-point gain thanks to a strong uptick in crude oil prices and increasing expectations for the latest round of economic data.

On Tuesday, the S&P Case-Shiller index showed that home prices increased by 0.6% in October. Over the previous 12 months, U.S. home prices added more than 5.1%. In other positive news, U.S. consumer confidence in December hit its highest level since 2001.

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However, investors have to keep an eye on the European markets. In bad news for the continent's massive financial sector, Europe's most dangerous bank will require a larger bailout than investors had anticipated. Monte dei Paschi, the oldest operating bank in the world, needs at least $9.2 billion to shore up its balance sheet. That figure is twice what Italian citizens and banking investors had anticipated.

Crude oil prices were rising for the fourth consecutive trading session as traders anticipate OPEC and non-OPEC nations to honor their agreement to cut excessive production. This deal will kick off on Jan. 1, and it is expected to reduce global output by roughly 1.8 million barrels per day. Earlier this week, Venezuela said it will cut 95,000 barrels each day starting on Sunday.

The WTI crude oil price today added 0.3%. Meanwhile, Brent crude gained more than 0.4%.

Money Morning Global Energy Strategist Dr. Kent Moors has spent the last two weeks of 2016 putting together his 2017 oil price forecast for our readers. Last year, he set predictions for December 2016 for both WTI crude and Brent crude. Sure enough, both types of oil are trading in the range he projected. Now, he's setting his price targets in his 2017 oil forecast.

The price of silver today is sliding due to a strengthening U.S. dollar and the rally in the equities markets. Here's the latest outlook on silver prices from Money Morning Resource Specialist Peter Krauth.

In other news, Japanese electronics giant Panasonic Corp. (ADR) (OTC: PCRFY) and Tesla Motors Inc. (Nasdaq: TSLA) announced on Dec. 27 they will start production of solar cells in a new factory in New York. The new plant is part of a much larger revitalization of the Buffalo community.

But the big news today is President-elect Donald Trump's goal to bring jobs back to the United States. A number of companies have already announced large investments and plans to create new jobs in the nation at the onset of his inauguration.

Stocks to Watch Today, Dec. 28, 2016

  • Shares of Fitbit Inc. (NYSE: FIT) climbed more than 7% on Tuesday thanks to increased optimism for sales during the holiday season. Shares bounced from a near 52-week low and continued to climb in premarket hours.
  • Oil-field giant Halliburton Co. (NYSE: HAL) announced it is awaiting regulatory approval from the Russian government to purchase drilling-equipment company Novomet Oil Services Holding Ltd. Then the firm announced it has settled a lawsuit dating back to 1998 when former U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney was the firm's CEO. The firm will pay plaintiffs roughly $100 million to settle charges that the oilfield company misled investors about construction costs and asbestos claims tied to an acquisition during the Cheney era.
  • Shares of Amazon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN) pushed higher after the ecommerce giant announced that it had a successful holiday shopping season in 2016. The company said that it shipped at least 1 billion items around the globe.
  • In deal news, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission formally approved the $25 billion purchase of medical device giant St. Jude Medical Inc. (NYSE: STJ) by healthcare firm Abbott Laboratories (NYSE: ABT). Both firms agreed to make concessions to the FTC. The deal had received formal approval from the European Commission in November 2016.
  • No major U.S. companies report earnings Wednesday.

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Today's U.S. Economic Calendar (all times EST)

  • Redbook at 8:55 a.m.
  • Pending Home Sales Index at 10 a.m.
  • Two-Year FRN Note Auction at 11:30 a.m.
  • Five-Year Note Auction at 1 p.m.

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