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posted on 26 May 2017

Investing.com Weekly Wrap-Up 26 May 2017

Written by , Investing.com

U.S. stocks mixed at close of trade; Dow Jones Industrial Average down 0.01%

U.S. stocks were mixed after the close on Friday, as gains in the Consumer Services, Consumer Goods and Basic Materials sectors led shares higher while losses in the Financials, Healthcare and Telecoms sectors led shares lower.

At the close in NYSE, the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.01%, while the S&P 500 index gained 0.03%, and the NASDAQ Composite index climbed 0.08%.


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The best performers of the session on the Dow Jones Industrial Average were Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS), which rose 1.06% or 1.14 points to trade at 108.41 at the close. Meanwhile, Caterpillar Inc (NYSE:CAT) added 0.61% or 0.64 points to end at 105.66 and E I du Pont de Nemours & Co (NYSE:DD) was up 0.59% or 0.46 points to 77.85 in late trade.

The worst performers of the session were Home Depot Inc (NYSE:HD), which fell 1.00% or 1.56 points to trade at 154.90 at the close. Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) declined 0.48% or 0.61 points to end at 126.92 and International Business Machines (NYSE:IBM) was down 0.46% or 0.71 points to 152.49.

The top performers on the S&P 500 were Mallinckrodt (NYSE:MNK) which rose 5.56% to 43.28, Ulta Beauty Inc (NASDAQ:ULTA) which was up 3.19% to settle at 302.40 and Kansas City Southern (NYSE:KSU) which gained 3.09% to close at 95.95.

The worst performers were GGP Inc (NYSE:GGP) which was down 4.39% to 22.65 in late trade, Best Buy Co Inc (NYSE:BBY) which lost 3.72% to settle at 58.97 and Incyte Corporation (NASDAQ:INCY) which was down 2.91% to 134.38 at the close.

The top performers on the NASDAQ Composite were NII Holdings Inc (NASDAQ:NIHD) which rose 40.56% to 0.740, LiNiu Technology Group (NASDAQ:LINU) which was up 27.27% to settle at 0.210 and AEterna Zentaris Inc (NASDAQ:AEZS) which gained 22.92% to close at 1.180.

The worst performers were Spi Energy Co Ltd (NASDAQ:SPI) which was down 33.68% to 1.28 in late trade, BioCryst Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:BCRX) which lost 14.26% to settle at 5.770 and Dataram Corp (NASDAQ:DRAM) which was down 13.79% to 3.5000 at the close.

Rising stocks outnumbered declining ones on the New York Stock Exchange by 1675 to 1527 and 48 ended unchanged; on the Nasdaq Stock Exchange, 1318 fell and 1177 advanced, while 139 ended unchanged.

Shares in Ulta Beauty Inc (NASDAQ:ULTA) rose to all time highs; gaining 3.19% or 9.36 to 302.40. Shares in Caterpillar Inc (NYSE:CAT) rose to 52-week highs; gaining 0.61% or 0.64 to 105.66. Shares in Dataram Corp (NASDAQ:DRAM) fell to 52-week lows; losing 13.79% or 0.5600 to 3.5000.

The CBOE Volatility Index, which measures the implied volatility of S&P 500 options, was down 1.90% to 9.80.

Gold Futures for June delivery was up 0.82% or 10.35 to $1266.75 a troy ounce. Elsewhere in commodities trading, Crude oil for delivery in July rose 1.84% or 0.90 to hit $49.80 a barrel, while the July Brent oil contract rose 1.38% or 0.71 to trade at $52.17 a barrel.

EUR/USD was down 0.32% to 1.1174, while USD/JPY fell 0.47% to 111.30.

The US Dollar Index Futures was up 0.23% at 97.36.

See also Top 5 things that moved markets this past week.

Read additional news from Reuters at Investing.com.

Forex

The dollar rose to a four-day high on Friday buoyed by upbeat U.S. economic growth data, which eased concerns of a slowdown in the U.S. economy, fuelling expectations the Federal Reserve would hike its benchmark rate in June.

The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, rose by 0.23% to 97.36 by 13:00 EDT.

The U.S. economy slowed less than initially expected in the first quarter. Gross domestic product increased at a pace of 1.2%, well above the 0.7% rise reported last month.

In a separate report, The Commerce Department said durable goods orders fell 0.7% in April after rising 2.3% in March. Economists had expected a 1.2% drop in durable goods order.

The bullish GDP data quelled fears that slower U.S. economic growth would sway the Federal Reserve away from its commitment of two additional rate increases in 2017.

The minutes to the Federal Reserve May 2-3 meeting revealed that some Fed officials cautioned that longer-term rate increases would be subject to economic data, showing the dip in first quarter economic growth had been “transitory".

The pound fell sharply against the dollar to $1.2797, down 1.12%, with an opinion poll showing a narrowing in the Conservatives’ lead over Labour, raising uncertainty over the appeal of Theresa May’s leadership and the ruling party’s election manifesto.

A YouGov poll put the Conservative lead at five points, which is well below the Conservatives' sizeable 20-point lead held over Labour last month.

EUR/USD fell to $1.1176, down 0.30%, while EUR/GBP added 0.58% to 0.8735.

USD/JPY dipped to 111.35, down 0.43%, while USD/CAD fell by 0.16% to $1.3463, as the oil-linked Canadian dollar, received a boost, after oil prices recovered from a nearly 5% drop in the previous session.

See also Forex - Dollar index hits 1-week highs despite UoM report.

Commitments of Traders

This week speculators were more bullish on the euro gold, and oil.

Note: This data is for the week ending on Tuesday so the last three days (this week two because markets were closed Friday) of trading are not reflected.

cot.2017.may.24

Gold

Gold rose to a nearly one-month high Friday, shrugging off a rise in the dollar to a four-day high, following an upward revision to U.S. economic growth.

Gold futures for June delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange rose $11.07 or 0.88%, to $1,267.49 a troy ounce by 13:36 EDT.

Gold futures remained on track to end the week in positive, despite a rise in investor expectations the Federal Reserve would hike its benchmark rate in June in the wake of an upward revision to U.S. economic growth.

The U.S. economy grew faster than initially reported during the first three months of 2017, easing concerns about a potential slowdown in the U.S. economy.

Gross domestic product grew at an annualized rate of 1.2% in the first three months of 2017, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis’s, well above the previous reading of 0.7%, which was the slowest period of economic growth since 2014.

The dollar leaped to a four-day high, and pressured commodity prices across the broad, as expectations for a June rate hike rose to its highest level this week .

According to investing.com’s Fed rate monitor tool more than 80% of traders expect the Federal Reserve to hike its benchmark rate in June, compared to below 70% of traders in the previous week.

The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, rose by 0.20% to 97.34.

Gold is sensitive to moves higher in both U.S. rates and the dollar - A stronger dollar makes gold more expensive for holders of foreign currency while a rise in U.S. rates, lift the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding assets such as bullion.

Silver futures rose 0.90% to $11.25 a troy ounce while platinum futures gained 0.93% to trade at $961.75.

Copper fell 1.14% to $2.568, while natural gas rose by 0.76% to $3.30.

Oil

Crude futures settled higher on Friday, after sinking nearly 5% in the previous session, following investor disappointment that the OPEC-led deal extension failed to include deeper cuts to rein in the glut in supply.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange crude futures for July delivery gained 1.8% to settle at $49.80 a barrel, while on London's Intercontinental Exchange, Brent added 1.2% to trade at $52.09 a barrel.

The rebound in crude futures comes a day after oil prices suffered a nearly 5% tumble, as investors questioned whether the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies’ decision to extend production cuts nine more months would effectively rein in supply.

OPEC and non-OPEC members agreed to extend production cuts for a period of nine months until March on Thursday, but stuck to the output cut targets agreed in November last year, against expectations that the oil cartel would take a more aggressive approach with deeper cuts.

Investors feared that the lack of both deeper cuts and inclusion of new non-OPEC members in the supply-cut pact would encourage non-OPEC members such as the U.S. to ramp up output, limiting OPEC’s efforts to curb global output.

Saudi Arabia’s energy minister Khalid Al-Falih, said he expected a “healthy return" for U.S. shale but remained confident that a boom in U.S. shale won’t derail OPEC’s effort to tackle the demand and supply imbalance.

Oilfield services firm Baker Hughes reported its weekly U.S. rig count rose by 2 to 722. It was the nineteenth straight increase in the number of active U.S. drilling rigs.

Natural Gas (Thursday Report)

U.S. natural gas futures fell to session lows on Thursday, following data showing that natural gas supplies in storage in the U.S. rose more than expected last week.

U.S. natural gas for June delivery was down around 0.026 cents or 0.76% to $3.275 per million British thermal units by 10:35 ET (14:35 GMT).

Futures were at around $3.303 prior to the release of the supply data after rising to a session high of $3.351 earlier.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration said in its weekly report that natural gas storage in the U.S. rose by 75 billion cubic feet in the week ended May 19, above forecasts for a build of 71 billion.

That compared with a gain of 68 billion cubic feet in the preceding week.

Total natural gas in storage currently stands at 2.444 trillion cubic feet, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Stocks were 371 billion cubic feet less than last year at this time and 241 billion cubic feet above the five-year average of 2,203 billion cubic feet.

Natural gas prices have closely tracked weather forecasts in recent weeks, as traders try to gauge the impact of shifting outlooks on spring heating demand.

Gas use typically hits a seasonal low with spring's mild temperatures, before warmer weather increases demand for gas-fired electricity generation to power air conditioning.

Nearly 50% of all U.S. households use gas for heating.

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