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posted on 25 August 2017

Investing.com Weekly Wrap-Up 25 August 2017

Written by , Investing.com

U.S. stocks mixed at close of trade; Dow Jones Industrial Average up 0.14%

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

At the close in NYSE, the Dow Jones Industrial Average added 0.14%, while the S&P 500 index climbed 0.17%, and the NASDAQ Composite index declined 0.09%.


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The best performers of the session on the Dow Jones Industrial Average were Home DepotInc (NYSE:HD), which rose 0.94% or 1.40 points to trade at 149.65 at the close. Meanwhile, Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS) added 0.88% or 0.89 points to end at 102.41 and General Electric Company (NYSE:GE) was up 0.78% or 0.19 points to 24.49 in late trade.

The worst performers of the session were Boeing Co (NYSE:BA), which fell 1.19% or 2.85 points to trade at 235.89 at the close. Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) declined 0.28% or 0.37 points to end at 131.68 and Goldman Sachs Group Inc (NYSE:GS) was down 0.23% or 0.52 points to 222.47.

The top performers on the S&P 500 were Urban Outfitters Inc (NASDAQ:URBN) which rose 8.10% to 21.62, American Airlines Group (NASDAQ:AAL) which was up 5.43% to settle at 45.25 and Autodesk Inc (NASDAQ:ADSK) which gained 3.94% to close at 114.97.

The worst performers were Ulta Beauty Inc (NASDAQ:ULTA) which was down 9.14% to 212.36 in late trade, Broadcom Ltd (NASDAQ:AVGO) which lost 3.73% to settle at 245.54 and TripAdvisor Inc (NASDAQ:TRIP) which was down 3.69% to 41.72 at the close.

The top performers on the NASDAQ Composite were Dimension Therapeutics Inc(NASDAQ:DMTX) which rose 162.50% to 3.15, Monster Digital Inc (NASDAQ:MSDI) which was up 56.33% to settle at 0.99 and Adamas Pharma (NASDAQ:ADMS) which gained 40.06% to close at 19.93.

The worst performers were Aceto Corporation (NASDAQ:ACET) which was down 29.36% to 11.33 in late trade, Jaguar Health Inc (NASDAQ:JAGX) which lost 19.57% to settle at 0.400 and Diana Containerships Inc (NASDAQ:DCIX) which was down 17.39% to 0.9500 at the close.

Rising stocks outnumbered declining ones on the New York Stock Exchange by 2027 to 1032 and 165 ended unchanged; on the Nasdaq Stock Exchange, 1438 rose and 1008 declined, while 180 ended unchanged.

Shares in Ulta Beauty Inc (NASDAQ:ULTA) fell to 52-week lows; falling 9.14% or 21.35 to 212.36. Shares in Aceto Corporation (NASDAQ:ACET) fell to 3-years lows; losing 29.36% or 4.71 to 11.33. Shares in Adamas Pharma (NASDAQ:ADMS) rose to 52-week highs; up 40.06% or 5.70 to 19.93. Shares in Diana Containerships Inc (NASDAQ:DCIX) fell to all time lows; down 17.39% or 0.2000 to 0.9500.

The CBOE Volatility Index, which measures the implied volatility of S&P 500 options, was down 7.85% to 11.27.

Gold Futures for December delivery was up 0.33% or 4.28 to $1296.28 a troy ounce. Elsewhere in commodities trading, Crude oil for delivery in October rose 0.78% or 0.37 to hit $47.80 a barrel, while the October Brent oil contract rose 0.63% or 0.33 to trade at $52.37 a barrel.

EUR/USD was up 1.04% to 1.1923, while USD/JPY fell 0.21% to 109.33.

The US Dollar Index Futures was down 0.82% at 92.47.

See also:

Read more news from Reuters at Investing.com: Wall Street rises modestly following Yellen speech.

Forex

The dollar slumped against a basket of global currencies on Friday amid a drop in investor expectations of a third rate hike later this year, after Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen avoided talking about monetary policy in a speech at Jackson Hole.

The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, fell by 0.63% to 92.64.

Fed chair Janet Yellen offered no insight into the central bank’s thinking on future monetary policy or the timing of its balance sheet unwinding, sparking uncertainty as to whether the central bank will raise rates for a third time later this year.

Yellen’s speech came a few hours after data showed durable goods orders in July undershot economists’ expectations.

Overall orders for durable goods, items ranging from toasters to aircraft meant to last three years or more, fell 6.8% in July, the Commerce Department said on Friday, missing expectations of just a 6% decline.

The decline in the greenback fueled sharp moves higher in both sterling and the euro.

EUR/USD rose 0.68% to $1.1880 while EUR/GBP rose 0.05% to 0.9223, ahead of speech by European Central Bank president Mario Draghi at Jackson Hall at 3pm EDT.

Draghi is expected to remain tightlipped on future monetary policy amid concerns from the European Central bank about the sharp rise in the euro in recent months.

GBP/USD recouped some of its recent losses, rising 0.66% to $1.2885.

USD/JPY fell 0.34% Y109.20 while USD/CAD dipped by 0.38% to C$1.2474.

Commitments of Traders

S&P 500 net longs are at a 5-month high; Gold net longs are at a 2-month high.

Note: This data is for the week ending on Tuesday 15 August so the last three days of trading is not reflected.

cot.2017.aug.15

Gold

Gold prices edged towards $1,300 buoyed by falling expectations of U.S. monetary policy tightening later this year, after Janet Yellen failed to offer any details on monetary policy or balance sheet normalization in a speech at Jackson Hole on Friday.

Gold futures for December delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange rose $5.39, or 0.42%, to $1,297.41 a troy ounce.

Gold prices hit a session high of $1,299.40 before tailing off slightly, amid falling investor expectations of a third rate hike later this year, after Yellen sidestepped monetary policy in a speech.

Yellen’s speech comes ahead of a speech by her European counterpart Mario Draghi, who is expected to offer little in the way of updates concerning future monetary policy to avert an upward reaction in the euro.

The ECB’s July policy meeting minutes revealed officials warned that the recent surge in the euro could hamper the central bank’s efforts to get inflation closer to its target of below, but close to, 2%.

According to investing.com’s fed rate monitor just over 30% of traders expect the fed to hike rates in December, compared to nearly 50% in the prior week.

Gold is sensitive to moves higher in U.S. rates, which lift the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding assets such as bullion.

Gold has traded in a narrow range so far this week, but remained on track to post a weekly gain, as investor doubts grew over the possibility of tax-reform amid rising turmoil in Washington.

Gary Cohen, however, eased doubts over tax-reform on Friday, reassuring market participants that the president will make a major push on tax reform in a series of speeches over the coming weeks, the first one of which gets underway in Missouri on Wednesday.

In other precious metal trade, silver futures rose 0.56% to $17.05 an ounce while platinum futures lost 0.28% to $979.785 an ounce.

Copper traded at $3.03, down 0.07% while natural gas futures fell by 1.97% to $2.81.

Oil

Crude futures settled higher on Friday, despite fears that Hurricane Harvey could disrupt refinery activity, reducing demand for crude oil.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange crude futures for October delivery rose 44 cents to settle at $47.87 a barrel, while on London's Intercontinental Exchange, Brent added 37 cents to trade at $52.41 a barrel.

Government weather agencies said Harvey became a Category 2 storm as it crossed the Gulf of Mexico with winds of 110 mph (175 kph), 145 miles (235 km) off Port O'Connor, Texas.

Analysts expect the main hit to the industry would probably be caused by flooding and power cuts, leading to disruption at refineries, reducing demand for crude, the primary input at refineries.

“Demand numbers might suffer, and some [crude-oil] inventories might increase while refinery production also dips." said Richard Hastings, macro strategist at Seaport Global Securities.

Two refineries in Corpus Christi, Texas - Flint Hills Resources' 296,470 barrels per day plant and Citgo Petroleum's 157,000 bpd plant - were shutting down operations in preparation of the storm.

More than 45% of the nation’s petroleum refining capacity is located along the Gulf Coast, as well as 51% of U.S. natural-gas, processing plant capacity, according to the EIA.

The rise in oil prices on Friday failed to offset losses sustained over the past few days, as crude futures slipped to their fourth-straight weekly loss.

Falling crude prices have weighed on U.S. drilling activity over recent weeks, as data showed the number of U.S. oil rigs continued to drop.

Oilfield services firm Baker Hughes said its weekly count of oil rigs operating in the United States fell by four to a total of 759 this week.

The weekly rig count is an important barometer for the drilling industry and serves as a proxy for oil production and oil services demand.

Natural Gas (Thursday Report)

U.S. natural gas futures initially extended gains in North American trade on Thursday, immediately after data showed that natural gas supplies in storage in the U.S. rose less than expected last week, but quickly returned to levels seen prior to the release of the data.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration said in its weekly report that natural gas storage in the U.S. rose by 43 billion cubic feet in the week ended August 18, while analysts had forecast a decrease of just 45 billion.

Natural gas for delivery in August on the New York Mercantile Exchange gained 4.6 cents, or 1.54%, to trade at $2.972 per million British thermal units by 10:33AM ET (14:33GMT).

Futures initially popped to hit an intraday high of $2.982, but quickly pared those gains and were last up around 1.46% at around $2.971 prior to the release of the supply data.

That compared with a build of 53 billion cubic feet (bcf) in the preceding week and represented a decline of 223 billion from a year earlier but was 45 bcf above the five-year average.

Total U.S. natural gas storage stood at 3.125trillion cubic feet, 6.7% lower than levels at this time a year ago and 1.5% above the five-year average for this time of year.

A weather system with showers and cooling will sweep across the central and east-central U.S. through the end of the week, dropping demand to much lighter levels due to highs only reaching the 70s to lower 80s Fahrenheit.

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

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

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