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The Dow Jones Industrial Average will keep flat today on trade tensions with China. U.S. President Donald Trump appears committed to slapping new tariffs, despite China's demands. But that's not the only thing feeding the fire... I've got more on this below.
December has been the best month for the S&P 500 since 1950. The month has an average return of 1.6%, according to the Stock Trader's Almanac. And we have some stocks to watch this Cyber Monday.
Before we get into that, here are the numbers from Friday for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:
|Index||Previous Close||Point Change||Percentage Change|
Now, here's a closer look at today's Money Morning insight, the most important market events, and stocks to watch.
The Top Stock Market Stories for Monday
- First up, U.S. investors are paying close attention to trade developments between the United States and China. Over the weekend, China again demanded that the U.S. cut tariffs ahead of any trade agreement. However, President Trump has held back and remained committed to slapping new tariffs on China come Dec. 15. Tensions remain high over a recent congressional bill that offered support to Hong Kong protesters. China responded to the bill (signed by Trump) by barring the U.S. Navy from making any port calls in Hong Kong.
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- Next, retail stocks will generate buzz this morning as investors dissect the results of Black Friday shopping. Initial data suggests that consumers spent a record $7.4 billion on the second largest day ever for online sales. Reports, however, show that brick-and-mortar retail saw lackluster traffic during the annual shopping holiday event. Today, of course, is Cyber Monday.
- Finally, pay close attention to manufacturing data this morning. The Institute for Supply Management will release its November reading. Investors are hoping that the U.S. manufacturing sector bounced back last month. Previous data showed a contraction in the sector in October for the third consecutive month.
Stocks to Watch Today: DIS, AMZN
- Shares of Walt Disney Co. (NYSE: DIS) were on the move after the company set a Thanksgiving weekend record at the box office. Its film, "Frozen 2," clocked in $123.7 million in ticket sales in North America alone. That figure shattered the previous record from "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire" in 2013.
- Shares of Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) will generate the most buzz of any company on Monday. Today is Cyber Monday, and Amazon is the largest e-commerce company in the United States. New data from the National Retail Federation suggests that online spending could top $9.4 billion today. That figure would be a 19% increase from last year.
- Look for additional earnings reports from Coupa Software Inc. (NASDAQ: COUP) and Diana Shipping Inc. (NYSE: DSX).
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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.