Daily Market Recap

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The stock market finished essentially unchanged today. There were several headlines that dragged the market down prior to buyers coming in on weakness. Some pointed to profit taking in the financial space as a reason for market weakness mid-day. That profit taking was small in light of the continued advance higher in the space.

Fed member Bullard made dovish comments on the continued pace of QE. He feels that QE should be reduced in response to improving economic data.

Washington, after an extended absence, decided to influence the market today. Boehner said that it was “hard to imagine” striking a budget arrangement with Democrats. The action from the market today is another clear example of the fact that the market is not as sensitive to headline noise as it was in recent months.

Steel, banks and homebuilders underperformed and media, airlines and managed care outperformed. Steel stocks sold off as investors took profits after the latest round of earnings announcements in the industry.  There were no major developments for the Credit Suisse financial services conference. The lack of a catalyst in the space led to some profit taking in the sector. Home builders eased off today after they had a sharp spike higher yesterday.

The media group was led by Comcast. Comcast rose by 3% after they announced and increased dividends and the purchase of the remaining 49% of NBC Universal it did not own. GE, the seller of the stake in NBC, rose by better than 3%. Managed care stocks were higher after the group received an analyst upgrade.

Commodities were mostly lower with precious metals, copper and crude lower. Gold and silver traded lower on the day.

General Electric put in a quiet day in the industrial space. The stock was up over 3% after they announced the sale of their remaining stake in NBC Universal. Investors took it as a positive that they were going to focus more of their efforts on their core industrial businesses. Machinery stocks traded lower after Deere sold off in response to earnings.

Airlines and rails moved higher in the transport space. Short rails were the stand out in the group today. Continued strong pricing due to high volumes caused analyst upgrades in the area.

The energy sector traded roughly in line with the tape today. Crude was flat after the Department of Energy weekly storage numbers were released and natural gas closed up by 2%. Continued strength in crack spreads helped refiners. Gas exploration and production names traded ahead of the tape and the sector.

Source: PFS Group

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