The Week In Review


May 22, 2009
It should be a quiet day as investors gear up for the holiday weekend.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 20 points to 8311. The S&P 500 inched up 2 points to 889 while the Nasdaq Composite Index rose 6 points to 1,698. Plenty of earnings from the retail sector last night. Sears, Red Robin Gourmet Burger, Aeropostale, Gap, and Foot Locker all beat estimates last night. Sears looks great, up 18%. Red Robin is lower by 17% following a bleak outlook. Aeropostale, Polo, and Gap all received upgrades and yet all three are lower. In the tech sector, Autodesk is jumping 10% on earnings. Juniper and Research in Motion were upgraded, however, both are lower. The financials are modestly lower this morning. HSBC is modestly lower on cautious comments on the next year. After the first half an hour the averages gravitated back to the unchanged level. It could be a boring day. Through the morning the averages drifted higher. The Dow rose 60 points. The Nasdaq rose 11 points. The retailers turned around and look good. The financials are quiet even though Morgan Stanley raised their price targets on a majority of the financial titans. In the afternoon the averages remained in the green until the last hour when the averages succombed to selling pressure. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 14 points at 8,277. For the week, the Dow held onto a 0.5% gain. The S&P 500 index fell a point to end at 896. It still ended the week up 0.5%. The Nasdaq Composite dropped 3 points to 1,69, but it rose 0.7% over the past week.

May 21, 2009
U.S. stocks on Thursday opened steeply lower, extending losses into a third consecutive session, after the government reported ongoing claims for unemployment benefits hit a record high last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average shed 124 points to 8,297. The S&P 500 declined 13 points to 890. The Nasdaq Composite fell 21 points to 1,706. The financials are mixed this morning. The big cap banks are holding up well as Goldman Sachs upgraded the large banks to neutral. The smaller regionals are succumbing to profit-taking. Regional Financial, Fifth Third, and Huntington Bancshares are all down over 9% due to the fact all three are trying to raise massive amounts of capital. Bank of America doesn't know which way to go. On the one hand, the bank wants to pay back the TARP money by year end. Then on the other hand, rumors persist that the government wants to get rid of the CEO Ken Lewis. The retail sector is mixed this morning. Barnes & Noble, Hormel, Gymboree, BonTon, and Childrens Place are higher following earnings. Target is higher on an upgrade. Hot Topic and GameStop are lower by over 13% following earnings. The tech sector is mixed as well. CSC, Intuit, and Brocade are higher following earnings. Google is higher on an upgrade. Nvidia and Marvell are lower even though they were upgraded. After the first hour the Dow was down 140 points. The Nasdaq declined 26 points. Through the morning and into the afternoon the averages remained weak not far from the lows. Pimco's Bill Gross made cautious comments regarding the United States debt rating sending the averages to new lows. In the last hour the averages bounced off the lows. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 129 points at 8292. The S&P 500 sank 15 points to 888 while the Nasdaq Composite lost 32 points to 1,695.

May 20, 2009
U.S. stocks open modestly higher on Wednesday as investors were cheered by Bank of America ability to raise funds. "The market is rewarding the financial sector again today for raising various capital," said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at Jefferies & Co. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 50 points to 8,525. The S&P 500 Index climbed 9 points to 917, while the Nasdaq Composite added 13 points to 1,747. Bank of America is up 8% after completing their stock offering. A majority of the financials are trading higher. The retailers are performing well. Target is up 4% after easily beat earnings estimates. Deere and Ann Taylor are also higher thanks to earnings. McDonalds, Home Depot, and Costco are higher thanks to upgrades. Hewlett Packard is lower by 3% due to a cautious outlook following earnings last night. Dell and IBM are down in sympathy, but the rest of the techs look good. Analog Devices is up 14% after easily beating estimates. Amazon and Nokia are higher thanks to upgrades. Google looks good this morning. After the first hour, the Dow rose 100 points. The Nasdaq rose 25 points. Only Hewlett Packard among the big caps is performing poorly this morning. Through the morning and into the lunch hour, the rally fizzled, then rebounded. As the afternoon progressed, the averages drifted lower accelerating the losses in the last hour. The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended at 8,422, down 52 points. The S&P 500 Index shed 4 points to 903, while the Nasdaq Composite declined 6 points to 1,727.

May 19, 2009
A quiet start to the open following data showing new housing starts and permits falling to record lows in April, neutralizing thoughts of economic stability. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 20 points to 8,483. The S&P 500 declined 2 points to 907 while the Nasdaq Composite shed 11 points to 1,721. The disappointing housing news doesn't seem to be bothering the financials this morning. Citigroup and Bank of America are performing well. M&T Bank is jumping 4% on a upgrade. Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, JP Morgan, and American Express are all getting in line to pay back their government TARP money. JP Morgan has their annual meeting today. More earnings in the retail sector. Home Depot had good numbers, but after a big run up yesterday, the stock is lower this morning. Lowes is lower as well on an upgrade. Dicks is also lower after beating earnings estimates. TJX is higher following earnings. Sherwin Williams is higher on an upgrade. Saks is jumping 20% even though they reported a quarterly loss. The techs are modestly lower. AMD is jumping 5% on encouraging comments the company could be profitable by the end of the year. After the first half an hour, the averages remained quiet near the unchanged level. Bank of America and Citigroup are both up over jumping 3%. Through the morning the averages moved into the green, but not by much. The commodities are performing well. In the afternoon, the averages gravitated back to the unchanged level. The rally in the financials fizzled. The techs have improved. Entering the last hour, the averages remained in the green. The commodities and techs look good. The Dow sold off into the close. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 29 points at 8,474. The S&P 500 index lost a point to 908, while the Nasdaq Composite ended in the green, up 2 points at 1,734.

May 18, 2009
U.S. stocks shot higher at Monday's start, thanks to a plethora of upgrades and better than expected earnings from Lowes, our featured stock of the week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 105 points, or 1.3%, to 8,374. The S&P 500 rose 10 points to 893. The Nasdaq Composite advanced 17 points to 1,697. The research analysts are in a good mood this morning upgrading a number of industries and companies. Lowes is lifting the retail sector, jumping 7% on earnings. Home Depot is up 5% ahead of their earnings tomorrow. Dillards is up 19% after reporting last Friday night. The analysts in the retail sector upgraded Aeropostale, Macys, and J. Crew. All three are higher. The financials are performing well this morning. Bank of Amercia is up 8% thanks to a big upgrade from Goldman Sachs. Plenty of upgrades and positive comments from the analyst community regarding the financials. Stifel is making positive comments on Wells Fargo, USB, and Bank of America regarding a recovery. All three are higher. We learned over the weekend that Warren Buffett increased his stack in Wells in the first quarter. JMP Securities upgraded Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs. Both are higher. American Express is up 2% on an upgrade. The tech sector looks good this morning. Broadcom, Micron, Marvell, and McAfee are all higher on upgrades. Only Google among the big techs is lower. After the first hour the Dow was up 100 points. The Nasdaq rose 13 points. Through the morning the averages slowly improved. In the lunch hour, the Dow rose 150 points. The Nasdaq rose 28 points. Even Google turned around. Entering the last hour, the Dow was at the highs of the day, up 200 points. The Nasdaq rose 43 points. No pull back today. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 235 points, or 2.9%, at 8,504. The S&P 500 Index rose 26 points, or 3%, to 909. The Nasdaq Composite advanced 52 points, or 3.1%, to 1,732.