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In Dow Jones news today, the Dow added 74 points despite news that Democrats in the U.S. House Financial Services Committee are seeking internal reviews of President Trump's accounts from Deutsche Bank.
Here are the numbers from Wednesday for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:
|Index||Closing||Point Change||Percentage Change|
Now here's a closer look at today's most important market events and stocks, plus Thursday's economic calendar.
The Five Top Stock Market Stories for Wednesday
- The U.S. Federal Reserve generated headlines today with the release of the minutes from its most recent monetary policy meeting. The Fed set a schedule in the months ahead to begin winding down its $4.5 trillion balance sheet. The central bank also said that it will tie future rate hikes to the nation's economic rebound in the months ahead. That puts a lot of focus on Friday's latest update on Q1 GDP. With the job market improving and inflation moving toward the Fed's 2% target, it's very likely that interest rates are going up in June 2017. Yesterday, we broke down the impact of a June 2017 interest rate hike. Read this important insight, right here.
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- Crude oil prices are above $50 per barrel on growing optimism that OPEC members and non-members will vote to extend a deal to cap excessive crude production by another 12 months. The WTI crude oil price today fell 0.2%, and Brent crude dipped 0.3%.
- In economic news, the sale of pre-existing homes fell from a 10-year high in April. Economists blamed a shortage of supply in the market, which has pushed prices higher. The uptick in prices has sidelined many buyers in the hot market, even though rising wages and improving labor markets are creating a larger pool of buyers. Despite the news, homebuilding stocks ticked higher, a sign that investors are hoping for more supply in the future. Shares of Toll Brothers Inc. (NYSE: TOL) added 0.4%, while CalAtlantic Group Inc. (NYSE: CAA) gained 0.9%.
- Markets are still paying attention to Greece's debt problems. The European Union has struggled to reach an agreement on a deal, while the IMF has said that the current Greek debt payment schedule is not sustainable. Many are now speculating Greece may be forced to leave the European Union should it default on its debt. Money Morning has identified an outstanding opportunity for investors as uncertainty grows in the European Union. Read about it, right here.
- But today's big news is happening out of China. Moody's Investors Service has downgraded the credit rates of China for the first time in almost three decades. The credit agency argues that China's economic strength will erode due to slowing growth and rising debt.
Three Stocks to Watch Wednesday: LOW, TIF, F
- In earnings news, shares of Lowe's Cos. Inc. (NYSE: LOW) fell more than 3% after the home-improvement retailer fell short of Wall Street quarter expectations. The rival of Home Depot Inc. (NYSE: HD) reported earnings per share (EPS) of $1.03 on top of $16.8 billion in revenue. Those figures were well below analyst expectations of $1.07 on $17.0 billion in revenue.
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- Meanwhile, shares of Tiffany & Co. (NYSE: TIF) stock fell 8.7% after the firm reported a surprise decline in comparable store sales. The jewelry company also fell short of revenue expectations. The firm reported EPS of $0.74 on top of $889.6 million in revenue. Wall Street expected $0.70 on top of $915.89 billion in revenue.
- Shares of Ford Motor Co. (NYSE: F) are looking more and more attractive. Money Morning Executive Editor Bill Patalon thinks there is great value in Ford stock at these lower prices and remains bullish on it as a long-term play. Right now, F stock trades just above $11 per share. Here's where this stock is heading next.
- Look for earnings reports from HP Inc. (NYSE: HPQ), Williams-Sonoma Inc.(NYSE: WSM), NetApp Inc. (Nasdaq: NTAP) and Guess? Inc. (NYSE: GES).
Thursday's U.S. Economic Calendar (all times EDT)
- International Trade in Goods at 8:30 a.m.
- Jobless Claims at 8:30 a.m.
- Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index at 9:45 a.m.
- Fed Governor Lael Brainard speaks at 10 a.m.
- EIA Natural Gas Report at 10:30 a.m.
- Kansas City Fed Manufacturing Index at 11 a.m.
- Four-Week Bill Announcement at 11 a.m.
- Three-Month Bill Announcement at 11 a.m.
- Six-Month Bill Announcement at 11 a.m.
- Seven-Year Note Auction at 1 p.m.
- Fed Balance Sheet at 4:30 p.m.
- Money Supply at 4:30 p.m.
- Dallas Federal Reserve Bank President Robert Kaplan speaks at 6 p.m.
- Louis Fed Bank President James Bullard speaks at 10 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.