The Week In Review


March 27, 2009
U.S. stocks on Friday opened sharply lower, scaling back the week's large advance, after the government reported personal spending rose last month but personal income declined. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 100 points to 7,824. The S&P 500 Index shed 11 points to 820 while the Nasdaq Composite declined 24 points to 1,562. Most stocks and sectors are trading lower. Financials are witnessing more profit-taking even as Goldman and Morgan Stanley receive upgrades. President Obama is expected to meet with the top bank CEOs some time today. KB Homes is trading down 5% on earnings. The company had sobering news for the housing market including no up tick in business before the end of the year. The retailers are lower following a good run up. Christopher & Bank is down 25% following a big quarterly loss. Best Buy was removed from Goldman's buy list after a 30% surge in the last week. JC Penney is bucking the trend following an upgrade. Finish Line is up 10% after beating estimates. After one day in the green for the year, the tech-laden Nasdaq is back in the red. Google is lower after laying off 200 employees. IBM is down 4% following lay offs earlier in the week. Amazon is down 3% after shutting down three distribution centers. Intel is down 3% even though it was upgraded. After the first hour, the Dow fell 150 points. The Nasdaq declined 32 points. Even the commodities are lower. Agrium is sweetening its deal to buy CF Industries. Through the morning the averages remained weak. A few financials have rebounded including names like Bank of America, GE, and Barclays. KB Homes has had a nice rebound rallying 9% off it's lows. In the afternoon, the selling reaccelerated. Wether he wanted to or not, JP Morgan CEO indicated that March was tougher than January and February causing the financials to tick lower. Thanks. Even with the sell off, U.S. stocks, as measured by the broad Standard & Poor's 500 index, were on track for their best monthly gain since 1987. The S&P 500 remained up 11.2% month to date, giving it the best monthly gain so far since a 13.2% gain in January of 1987. As of Thursday's close, the S&P was on track for its best monthly gain since 1974 and also its best 13-day run since July 1938, with a 23% gain. Wow. In the last hour, more selling. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 148 points, or 1.9%, at 7,776, leaving it 6.8% higher for the week. The S&P 500 Index fell 16 points, or 2%, to 815, for a weekly gain of 6.2%. The Nasdaq Composite shed 41 points, or 2.6%, to close at 1,545. The technology-laden index jumped 6% on the week.

March 26, 2009
U.S. stocks started higher on Thursday, furthering the prior session's gains, after retailer Best Buy reported better than expected profits. The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 71 points to 7,821. The S&P 500 Index added 8 points to 822, while the technology-laden Nasdaq Composite rose 21 points to 1,550. A good day for the retailers. Best Buy is jumping 13% after raising guidance. Citi Trends is jumping 26% on earnings. Gamestop and ConAgra are up 3% on earnings. Dr. Pepper/Snapple is up 6% even though the company lost $621 million in the quarter. Marvel Entertainment and Dreamworks are higher on positive analyst comments. The big cap techs are acting well. Google is up 3% following two upgrades. Symantec is up 2% on an upgrade and Redhat is up 14% after beating estimates. The financials opened higher, but then sold off. Blackrock is down 2% thanks to a downgrade. Paychex is up 3% on in line earnings. The commodities are performing well. Oil keeps pushing higher. Valero is up 4% on a positive piece from Barrons Online. Gold and Goldcorp are higher. After the first hour, the rally started to fizzle. The financials moved into the red. Through the morning a few buyers stepped in to keep the averages in the green, not far from where they started. In the afternoon, the averages push to new highs thanks to a Treasury auction that went better than yesterday. The Dow jumped nearly 200 points before pulling back. The Nasdaq rose 50 points, moving into positive territory for the year. Wow. Entering the last hour, the averages started to pull back, but then rallied into the close for a second straight day. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 174 points, or 2.3%, at 7,924. The S&P 500 Index gained 18 points, or 2.3%, closing at 832, while the Nasdaq Composite climbed 58 points, or 3.8%, to stand at 1,587, putting it in positive territory for the year.

March 25, 2009
U.S. stocks opened higher on Wednesday in the wake of positive economic data showing an unexpected rise in big-ticket durable goods in February. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 87 points to 7,747. The S&P 500 Index added 8 points to 814 while the Nasdaq Composite rose 16 points to 1,533. The financials are performing well this morning, a very good sign.
Bank of America is up 6% on comments in the LA Times that they want to start repaying their TARP money as soon as next month. We'll see. Blackstone and American Express were downgraded, however, both stocks are higher. President Obama is expected to meet with the top bank CEOs on Friday. The tech stocks are performing well. Jabil Circuit is up 36% on better than expected earnings. Nvidia, Corning, and Sony are higher thanks to upgrades. IBM is within inches of $100 a share, first time since October. Research in Motion is one of the few big cap techs trading lower on a downgrade. The retail sector is mixed. Urban Outfitters is down 5% due to a downgrade. DSW is down 6% after missing earnings estimates. The restaurant stocks are performing well thanks to an upgrade. After the first half an hour, the averages pushed higher thanks to better than expected housing data. The 30 year fixed mortgage rate broke through 5% today, another good sign. Through the morning the averages pushed higher. The Dow rose as much as 200 points before pulling back. The Nasdaq rose 27 points. Everything looks pretty good. In the afternoon, the rally fizzled. The commodities sold off. The major averages moved into the red. Even the financials are moving into the red. The culprit seems to be a Treasury auction which didn't go off as well as expected. The Dow dropped over 100 points before rebounding into the last hour. In the last hour, the averages surprisingly moving back into the green. Go figure. The White House helped things by supporting the dollar. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 89 points, or 1.2%, at 7,749. The S&P 500 Index added 7 points, or 1%, to finish at 813, while the Nasdaq Composite advanced 12 points, or 0.8%, to close at 1,528.

March 24, 2009
Profit-taking to start the day with bank shares retreating following Wall Street's largest rally in five months. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 74 points, or 1%, to 7,701. Disney is down 2% on a downgrade. The S&P 500 Index shed 9 points to 813. The Nasdaq Composite fell 19 points, or 1.3%, to 1,536. Virtually all the financials are lower. Bank of America is down 6% as more executives are leaving following the Merrill merger. Credit Suisse is down 6% even though they implied the company is off to a strong start in 2009. Duetsche Bank is down 3% even though the firm says they don't need more capital. Rumors are circling that JP Morgan and Goldman Sachs want to give back their TARP money. The tech stocks are acting much better. The Nasdaq is only down 1% for the year. Sycamore Networks, Texas Instruments, Dell, and Nvidia were all upgraded. Only Dell is modestly higher. The retail sector continues to perform well. Willam Sonoma is up 7% after beating estimates by 15 cents. Carnival is up 6% after beating estimates by 14 cents. International Paper is up 2% on an upgrade. Under Armour is down 7% following a second downgrade in as many days. After the first hour, the averages remained weak, but off the lows. Through the morning the averages slowly improved. Many of the financials are improving with GE, Goldman Sachs, and Morgan Stanley in the green. In the afternoon, the averages slowly moved back to the unchanged, momentarily sneaking into the green, before pulling back again. The techs and a number of financials are in the green, but not by much. Entering the last hour, the averages were back toward the lows and unfortunately pushed lower. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 115 points, or 1.5%, at 7,660. The S&P 500 Index shed 16 points, or 2%, to stand at 806, while the Nasdaq Composite dropped 37 points, or 2.4%, closing at 1,518.

March 23, 2009
Up, up, and away is the theme of the day. U.S. stocks shot higher to start the week thanks to the release of the Treasury Department's plan to rid banks of a $1 trillion in bad assets. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 160 points to 7,439. The S&P 500 rose 18 points to 786 and the Nasdaq Composite climbed 28 points to 1,485. It's no surprise the financials are leading the rally. Citigroup is rallying 20% while Bank of America is up 16%. At 10 o'clock, better than expected existing home sales added fuel to the fire. The Dow jumped over 200 points while the Nasdaq advanced by 42. Everything is working today. Techs are pushing higher. Intel is up 4% on an upgrade. The retailers look great. Tiffanys is up over 15% even though earnings declined dramatically year over year.
As the morning progressed, the averages kept pushing higher. No slowing down this market. The Dow surged up more than 300 points to 7,579. The Nasdaq Composite added 52 points to 1,509. The homebuilders are surging. The U.S. Home Construction Index is up over 6%. The sector's biggest percentage gainers included Beazer Homes and Hovnanian Enterprises, both up more than 20%. Unfortinately, the commodities are surging as well. Petro-Canada is up 18% to $28.26 thanks to a all stock buyout offer from Suncor. In the afternoon, more of the same. The averages kept shooting higher. The financials look better and better. In the last hour, no pull back. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 497 points, or 6.8%, to finish 7,775, its biggest point jump since Nov. 13, 2008. The S&P 500 Index added 54 points, or 7.1%, to stand at 822. The Nasdaq Composite surged 98 points, or 6.8%, to close at 1,555.