Thursday, August 14, 2008

A Weird Day In The Market

On Wednesday, the market had a weird day with the Dow dropping more than 100 points, but the NASDAQ and S&P 500 finished down only single digits. The Russell 2000 (an index that measures small cap stocks) finished higher.

The market was fighting all of the problems that had pressured it in recent weeks all day. It started with weak economic data, oil data that showed a surprising drop in the supply, and the all too familiar credit crisis. The day began with a retail sales report that was disappointing, then a jump in oil prices when the supply data came in down more than expected, and finally, the financials succumbed to pressure after the write-down of assets by JP Morgan Chase (JPM). The tidbit missed by everyone it seems is that JP Morgan Chase wrote-down the assets because Merill Lynch (ML) sold them for 22 cents on the dollar. Since that is the current "value", that is what JPM wrote them down too. Once again, a write down but not a write off.

On the bright side, the tech heavy NASDAQ finished essentially flat for the day with Apple (AAPL) leading the way. Apple announced that it would expand sales of its new 3G iPhone in an deal with Best Buy (BBY). Apple shares shot up 1.5% to $179.30 on the news.

Thursday's market action will be guided by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) report. The CPI is a guage of inflation that many in the market point to on how it affects the consumer.

Sources: Yahoo, Reuters

No comments: