Day Traders Diary


The major averages rebounded into the close wrapping up a banner year that saw equities surge to record highs, overcoming concerns about the economy and a trade fight with China. The S&P 500 climbed 0.3% to 3,230. The Nasdaq Composite also advanced 0.3% and ended the day at 8,972. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 76 points or 0.3% at 28,538. Materials and energy were the best-performing sectors rising around 0.7% each for the day. IBM, Cisco Systems and Apple led the Dow higher.

Tuesday's performance capped off a strong year for stocks. The S&P 500 closed up 28% for 2019, its biggest one-year gain since 2013, when it rallied 29.6%. The Nasdaq also had its best one-year performance in six years after rallying 35.2% in 2019. The Dow rose 22.3% in 2019, its best annual performance since 2017.

Stocks surged in 2019 despite the ongoing U.S.-China trade war as the Federal Reserve cut rates three times while consumer sentiment remained high. Trade tensions also declined in the fourth quarter after China and the U.S. agreed to sign a so-called phase one trade deal with a signing at the White House on Jan. 15. President Trump will later travel to Beijing for Phase Two talks.

Corporate news was relatively light, but it's worth noting that Apple extended its yearly gain to an impressive 86.2%. NVIDIA rose a percent on an upgrade with a price target of $275.

U.S. Treasuries finished the thinly-traded session on a lower note. The 2-yr yield increased one basis point to 1.57% (-93 bps for 2019), and the 10-yr yield increased two basis points to 1.92% (-77 bps for 2019). The U.S. Dollar Index declined 0.3% to 96.50. WTI crude declined 0.3%, or $0.16, to $61.48/bbl (+35.4% for 2019).

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