Dow Jones Today Locks in 669-Point Gain as Trade War Fears Fade

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The Dow Jones today traded over 100 points higher in pre-market trading after recording its third-highest nominal gain ever on Monday. Monday's 669-point rise came after The Wall Street Journal reported that the United States and China had quietly entered negotiations to give American companies greater access to Chinese markets, further easing market concerns of an escalating trade war.

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Here are the numbers from Monday for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:

Index Previous Close Point Change Percentage Change
Dow Jones 2,4202.60 669.40 2.84%
Nasdaq 7,220.54 227.88 3.26%
S&P 500 2,658.55 70.29 2.72%

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

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 The Top Stock Market Stories for Tuesday

  • The Dow surged more than 650 points Monday, as fears of a trade war between the United States and China faded. According to reports, China and the United States began negotiations over the weekend to reduce growing tensions and to improve the trade relationship between the two nations. Reuters reported Monday night that the United States is seeking a deal that would reduce tariffs on U.S. auto exports, increase the capacity for majority ownership of financial institutions in the country, and increase the amount of U.S. semiconductor chips purchased by Chinese companies. China has repeated pledges in recent weeks to improve the access of U.S. companies to the foreign market.

Dow Jones news today

  • The Federal Trade Commission announced Monday that it is investigating Facebook Inc. (Nasdaq: FB) over the social media giant's recent data breach. Shares fell as much as 5% in response - the company has struggled to get in front of the breach, and many critics are calling on FB CEO Mark Zuckerberg to testify before Congress.
  • Gold prices ticked higher this morning thanks to a falling dollar and rising tensions between the United States and Russia. A day after fears eroded about a trade war between the United States and China, analysts are increasingly concerned about a diplomatic battle between Russia and the West. On Monday, gold prices hit a five-week high after the United States expelled 60 Russians as part of a coordinated trans-Atlantic retaliation against the Kremlin for attempting to assassinate a Russian spy in England with a nerve agent. Gold traded at $1,343.50 before the bell Monday.
  • Crude oil prices ticked slightly higher as growing geopolitical concerns offset any fears about rising U.S. production. Brent crude pressed passed $70.00 per barrel for the second time since 2014 today, as markets eyed tensions between Saudi Arabia and Iran. In addition, traders are weighing the possibility that the United States will withdraw from the Obama-era nuclear deal with Iran and potentially impose new sanctions on Iran that would hinder its oil export program. The WTI crude oil price today added 0.3%. Brent crude gained 0.4%.

 Three Stocks to Watch Today: LUL, GE, RHT

  • Shares of General Electric Co. (NYSE: GE) are sitting at their lowest level since July 2009, and there could be more pain on the way. The U.S. conglomerate was among the Dow's worst performers in 2017, and shares continue to decline due to ongoing financial risks within GE Capital's portfolio that the firm has been unable to divest. WSJ reports that the company could still be liable for several of the assets that it sold in the wake of the financial crisis.
  • Shares of Red Hat Inc. (NYSE: RHT) added about 5% in pre-market hours after the company reported earnings for the fourth quarter after the bell Monday. The firm topped Wall Street earnings and revenue expectations thanks to a 23% jump in sales year over year.
  • Shares of Lululemon Athletica Inc. (Nasdaq: LULU) are in focus as the yoga apparel giant prepares to report earnings after the bell Tuesday. Wall Street analysts project that the company will report earnings per share of $1.27 in top of $900.15 million in revenue.
  • Look for additional earnings reports from Sonic Corp. (Nasdaq: SONC), Restoration Hardware Holdings Inc. (NYSE: RH), McCormick & Co. (NYSE: MRK), FactSet Research Systems Inc. (NYSE: FDS), Shoe Carnival Inc. (Nasdaq: SCVL), and IHS Markit Ltd. (Nasdaq: INFO).

 Tuesday's U.S. Economic Calendar (all times EDT)

  • Redbook at 8:55 a.m.
  • S&P Corelogic Case-Shiller HPI at 9 a.m.
  • Consumer Confidence at 10 a.m.
  • Richmond Fed Manufacturing Index at 10 a.m.
  • Atlanta Fed Bank President Raphael Bostic Speaks at 11 a.m.
  • 4-Week Bill Auction at 11:30 a.m.
  • 52-Week Bill Auction at 11:30 a.m.
  • Five-Year Note Auction at 1 p.m.

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About the Author

Garrett Baldwin is a globally recognized research economist, financial writer, consultant, and political risk analyst with decades of trading experience and degrees in economics, cybersecurity, and business from Johns Hopkins, Purdue, Indiana University, and Northwestern.

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