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The Dow Jones Industrial Average today was rising on the first day of President-elect Donald Trump's term in office.
The swearing-in ceremony for the Trump inauguration will take place at 11:30 a.m., and Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr., will administer the oath of office around noon. Here's more on today's festivities and the one sector you need to follow under Trump.
On Thursday, the Dow slipped 72 points after another busy day of earnings reports, economic data, and speculation on Capitol Hill over the incoming Trump administration's cabinet picks. It was the fifth consecutive losing day on Wall Street. Meanwhile, the markets barely flinched after European Central Bank President Mario Draghi announced that his central bank would leave interest rates unchanged. Draghi said that the European bloc has still failed to see much inflation despite years of loose monetary policy.
Let's look at the numbers from Thursday for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:
Dow Jones: 19,732.40; -72.32; -0.37%%
S&P 500: 2,263.69; -8.20.; -0.36%
Nasdaq: 5,540.08; -15.57; -0.28%
Here's a look at today's most important market events and stocks, plus a look at Friday's economic calendar.
What's Ahead for the Dow Jones Industrial Average Today
The Dow Jones Industrial Average projected a nine-point gain today as the 45th president in U.S. history takes office. After two terms of President Barrack Obama, the nation will turn to President-elect Donald Trump. Global markets were mixed overnight.
Crude oil prices were pushing higher for the second straight day as investors await an upcoming compliance meeting among OPEC producers. The meeting will update us on the status of their planned cuts to cap excessive production. Optimism over the OPEC deal offset the impact of a surprise uptick in U.S. crude inventories. On Friday, traders will be looking at the weekly production rig count released by Baker Hughes Inc. (NYSE: BHI). Last week, Baker Hughes reported that the number of production rigs in operation in the United States fell for the first time in nearly three months.
The WTI crude oil price today added 1.2%. Brent crude gained 1.4%.
But the big story is happening in Washington, D.C.
In addition to Trump's inauguration Friday, expect a lot of chatter about the president-elect's cabinet picks and the confirmation hearings taking place on Capitol Hill. Yesterday, Trump's pick for Treasury secretary, Steve Mnuchin, faced intense grilling from Senate Democrats, but there is little reason to believe that he won't be confirmed.
Mnuchin addressed questions about his former company's deals in faulty mortgage loans, the strength of the U.S. dollar, and questions about embattled housing agencies Federal National Mortgage Association (OTCMKTS: FNMA) and Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp. (OTCMKTS: FMCC).
Meanwhile, Trump's pick to run the Department of Energy is former Texas Gov. Rick Perry, who also faced intense questions about climate change, domestic oil policy, and his 2011 calls to shut down the agency.
Despite all the political theater happening this week, it appears that only Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) will face serious scrutiny.
Stocks to Watch Today, Jan. 20, 2017
- Facebook Inc. (Nasdaq: FB) CEO Mark Zuckerberg is generating headlines on news that he is heading to court in Hawaii. In 2014, the billionaire purchased 700 acres of beachfront property for roughly $100 million. Now, he is suing hundreds of locals in the area who still have legal ownership claims to parts of his estate through their ancestors. Here's how Zuckerberg became a "Hawaiian Land Tyrant."
- In earnings news, General Electric Co. (NYSE: GE) is the headliner this morning. As one of the most widely held stocks in the United States, the General Electric Co. (NYSE: GE) earnings report is always one of the most anticipated reports. The stock fell 1.4% after the company matched earnings expectations but fell just short of Wall Street revenue forecasts.
- Meanwhile, Proctor & Gamble Co. (NYSE: PG) added 2.3% after the company easily beat Wall Street top- and bottom-line expectations for its quarterly report. Wall Street was bullish Friday after the company also hiked its full-year outlook for organic sales growth.
- On Thursday afternoon, International Business Machines Corp. (NYSE: IBM) announced it topped Wall Street profit expectations. However, the company also announced its year-over-year revenue decreased for the 19th consecutive quarter. The company reported Q4 earnings per share of $5.01 on top of $21.77 billion in revenue. Wall Street expected $4.88 per share on $21.64 billion in revenue. The company reported a 33% jump in its cloud-computing business, which did please investors. Even though the stock briefly surged 3% in post-market hours, it is now trading down 1.5% this morning.
- Keep an eye out for additional earnings reports from Schlumberger Ltd. (NYSE: SLB), SunTrust Banks Inc. (NYSE: STI), Kansas City Southern (NYSE: KSU), Rockwell Collins Inc. (NYSE: COL), and Synchrony Financial (NYSE: SYF).
Today's U.S. Economic Calendar (all times EST)
- Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank President Patrick Harker speaks at 9 a.m.
- Baker Hughes Inc. (NYSE: BHI) Rig Count at 1 p.m.
- San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank President John C. Williams speaks at 1 p.m.
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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.