The Companies Pushing the Dow Higher Right Now

Mr. Market decided to start this week off right: After a brief foray into negative territory, it rebounded sharply and is trading up for the morning.

Index

Gain/Loss

Ending Value

Gain/Loss %

Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEX: ^DJI  ) +19.22 12,379.14 0.16%
S&P (INDEX: ^GSPC  ) +0.79 1,278.79 0.08%
Nasdaq (INDEX: ^INIX  ) +2.96 2,677.42 0.11%

The big stuff
The news continues to swirl about the European debt crisis. Germany and France both threatened that Greece will not get any more bailout funds until a bond swap agreement can be made. Chancellor Angela Merkel and President Nicolas Sarkozy are both urging a swift solution to avoid potential default of the euro.

The individuals
In early-morning trading, Alcoa (NYSE: AA  ) is trading up over 3%, and Bank of America (NYSE: BAC  ) isn't far behind, with a 2.8% gain for the morning.

Alcoa has announced trimming operations at three European aluminum smelters. This is just one aspect of a broader global plan to reduce smelting by 12%. High costs have wounded the company's profits lately. Watch it after the bell today, as it releases results after the markets close.

Bank of America continues to whipsaw as rumors swirl about a potential mortgage refinancing. It remains one of the most sensitive financial institutions right now, so look for its shares to continue exaggerated swings up or down. For investors who like roller coasters, this could be a fun ride. For those who would like the dust to settle with regard to the mortgage mess, it's time to hurry up and wait.

The better approach
Watching the broad market each day is exciting, gut wrenching, and stressful. If you're in the mood to pick up a great company to buy for the long term, The Motley Fool has created a brand-new free report: "The Motley Fool's Top Stock for 2012." It features a company hand-selected by the Fool's chief investment officer that has a strong future ahead of it. I invite you to take a copy, free for a limited time. Get access to the report and find out the name of this legendary company. The report is free, but won't be forever, so check it out today.

Austin Smith owns no shares of the companies mentioned here. The Motley Fool owns shares of Bank of America. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.


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