Sunday, February 18, 2018

Dow Hangs Onto Friday Gains Amid Late-Session Selloff

It was options expiration Friday and the volatility showed up late in the day, as the Dow shed more than 200 points off a morning rally, closing marginally ahead. The S&P gained a point and change, but the NASDAQ slipped into the red for the day.

The entire trading day came to matter little in the larger scheme, especially for the NASDAQ, which led all indices with a gain of more than five percent for the week.

With markets closed for President's Day on Monday, February 19, investors will take the time off to evaluate foreign markets and prepare for the seven remaining trading days of the month.

Stocks have clawed back more than half of the losses incurred earlier in the month, setting up for a continuation of the short-term rally well in advance of expected rate hikes at the next FOMC meeting on March 20-21.

This leaves stock indices with strong support at their respective 200-day moving averages, bottoms which look less likely to be revisited any time soon.

After some tumult earlier in February, it appears that nothing of import has changed - besides the value of the dollar and rates on treasury bonds - supportive of the proposition that central banks are still in charge and complete control.

Should investors be worried?

Always. But, presently, they are not.

Dow Jones Industrial Average February Scorecard:

Date Close Gain/Loss Cum. G/L
2/1/18 26,186.71 +37.32 +37.32
2/2/18 25,520.96 -665.75 -628.43
2/5/18 24,345.75 -1,175.21 -1,803.64
2/6/18 24,912.77 +567.02 -1,236.62
2/7/18 24,893.35 -19.42 -1,256.04
2/8/18 23,860.46 -1,032.89 -2288.93
2/9/18 24,190.90 +330.44 -1958.49
2/12/18 24,601.27 +410.37 -1548.12
2/13/18 24,640.45 +39.18 -1508.94
2/14/18 24,893.49 +253.04 -1255.90
2/15/18 25,200.37 +306.88 -949.02
2/16/18 25,219.38 +19.01 -930.01

At the Close, Friday, February 16, 2018:
Dow Jones Industrial Average: 25,219.38, +19.01 (+0.08%)
NASDAQ: 7,239.47, -16.96 (-0.23%)
S&P 500: 2,732.22, +1.02 (+0.04%)
NYSE Composite: 12,874.36, +17.49 (+0.14%)

For the Week:
Dow Jones Industrial Average: +1028.48 (+4.25%)
NASDAQ: +364.97 (+5.31%)
S&P 500: +112.67 (+4.30%)
NYSE Composite: +468.54 (+3.78%)
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