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The Dow Jones just closed at its all-time high yesterday, and it's on the verge of shattering the elusive 25,000 level on the last trading day of 2017…
Dow futures are already up 77 points this morning ahead of the bell, but it will need a major boost to add another 125 points to reach 25,000. With stocks soaring, investors are eyeing new profits in 2018. And with New Year's Eve coming up this weekend, we've got the one resolution every investor needs for 2018, and it could set you up for lifetime wealth…
Here are the numbers from Thursday for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:
|Index||Previous Close||Point Change||Percentage Change|
Now here's a closer look at today's most important market events and stocks, plus Friday's economic calendar.
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The Top Stock Market Stories for Friday
- The National Employment Law Project reports that 18 states and 20 cities and counties will introduce wage hikes starting in 2018. In several cases, wage hikes will shift workers closer to $15 per hour, a level some unions and workers' rights advocates call a "living wage." The uptick in pay will complement tax cuts that will give 91% of American workers more take-home pay in 2018.
- Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) has issued an apology for slowing down its software in older versions of its iPhone, an action designed to reduce battery draining. However, the company failed to inform owners, prompting a wave of class-action lawsuits across the country. Apple says that its actions were not intended to shorten the lives of the devices or to negatively impact the user experience. In an effort to alleviate concerns, the firm announced it would slash the cost of replacing out-of-warranty batteries from $79 to $29.
- Crude oil prices hit levels not witnessed since mid-2015. The WTI crude oil price today topped $60.00 per barrel after a surprise decline in U.S. production. According to the Energy Information Administration, American output dipped to 9.754 million barrels per day. The downturn complements rising Chinese demand and support among OPEC members to cap excessive production. Brent crude topped $63.00 per barrel.
- The price of gold is now looking to have its best year since 2010. A sliding U.S. dollar has pushed gold prices in recent weeks from roughly $1,250 per ounce to $1,300. Spot gold has risen more than 12% on the year thanks to a weaker dollar, rising geopolitical tensions around the world, and diminished concerns about further rate hikes by the Fed.
Stocks to Watch Today: GS, BA, GE, SFTBF
- Shares of Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (NYSE: GS) were up slightly despite news that the bank has issued a warning about current quarter profits. The firm said in a regulatory filing that quarterly earnings will be reduced by roughly $5 billion. The firm said that the company's efforts to bring home cash through a repatriation tax will be partly responsible.
- At the beginning of the year, Money Morning Executive Editor Bill Patalon told investors that they should put their money in a beat up industrial giant and said that their best years were ahead of them. As it turns out, his long-loved stock Boeing Co. (NYSE: BA) was the best-performing stock on the Dow Jones Industrial Average in 2017. The stock jumped roughly 90% over the year.
- Finally, Japanese technology firm SoftBank Corp. (OTCMKTS: SFTBF) announced it has purchased a 15% stake in ride-sharing giant Uber. The deal, which is worth more than $7 billion, comes as existing Uber investors are selling off shares. Concerns about the company's valuation and ongoing scandals has raised concerns about the world's most valuable "unicorn." SoftBank will likely ignite a series of reforms and structural changes at the organization and press for the company to go public through an IPO in the years ahead.
Friday's U.S. Economic Calendar (all times EST)
- Chicago PMI at 9:45 a.m.
- Baker Hughes Rig Count at 1 p.m.
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