The S&P 500 declined by 0.20% and the Dow was off 0.06%. There was more rotation in the market on a day of low volatility and below average volume.
Financials saw increased interest today. Large cap banks were strong with Bank of America, +1.9%, and Citigroup, +0.80%, leading the way. Retailers also traded ahead of the tape today. Health care was another sector that outperformed. Weakness was seen in consumer staples, industrials, and technology.
Large cap banks and brokers stood out in the financial sector. US Bank, JP Morgan, and Goldman Sachs were all strong. Bulls in the area point to stabilizing mortgage demand, increasing profit margins, and an end to legal headwinds.
Retail was mixed. High flyer Best Buy was lower by 11.0%. Best Buy beat earnings by a wide margin but guidance disappointed and profit taking took place. TJX and Home Depot each gained roughly 1% on stronger than expected earnings and positive forward guidance.
Biotech and medtech were leaders in the healthcare sector. Drug stores and life sciences were areas of weakness. Health care titan Johnson & Johnson moved to another cycle high. The attractive dividend and improved growth prospects have led to continued buying in the stock. Hospitals continue to perform poorly on disappointing Affordable Heath Act enrollment.
Energy was under pressure from profit taking after last week’s surge higher and weak commodity prices. Crude fell below $94 a barrel and natural gas was off 2%. Coals were weak after a nice run higher over the past few weeks.
Transports were off after the rails and parcel delivery names saw profit taking today. These groups had been sharply higher over the past few weeks and had little news flow associated with the names today.
Industrial names have provided leadership for weeks now. There was profit taking in the group as there was virtually no news to impact the sector today. Multi-line industrials, most with huge gains year to date, lagged the tape.
Source: PFS Group