3 Dow Stocks That Soared With the Market

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The bull market for stocks continued, as the S&P 500 (INDEX: ^GSPC  ) rose above 1,400 for the first time since before the market meltdown in 2008. Positive economic news is supporting U.S. large-cap stocks, but today, small-caps and international stocks came along for the ride as well. The Dow Jones Industrials (INDEX: ^DJI  ) rose for the seventh day in a row, finishing up 59 points at 13,253.

Some of the Dow's components did even better than the overall average. Let's turn to three of them.

Bank of America (NYSE: BAC  ) , up 4.5%
Financial stocks continued their advance today, and B of A is consistently the best performer among the Dow's financials. In the short run, the bank's passing the Fed's latest round of stress tests was a vote of confidence that its capital-raising efforts have achieved their goal.

Longer-term, many expect foreclosure activity to increase as the settlement between big mortgage banks and federal and state governments clears up concerns about the so-called robosigning scandal. Getting foreclosures through the system would help B of A put its toxic-asset troubles behind it, clearing the way to a true recovery for the stock.

DuPont (NYSE: DD  ) , up 1.7%
Chemical-maker DuPont posted a nice jump today, adding to substantial gains from last October's lows. Part of the reason for that is the low price of natural gas, which is pushing its way down toward another low for the decade.

Chemical processes need feedstock, and natural gas in particular provides essential ingredients for many important products that DuPont makes. If DuPont can lock in low natural gas prices through derivatives and other means, then it could assure itself of relatively high margins for the foreseeable future.

General Electric (NYSE: GE  ) , up 1.9%
GE may almost have collapsed due to its finance unit three years ago, but now it's riding high. A Bloomberg report noted that credit-default swaps on GE Capital have narrowed further than those of big banks as CEO Jeff Immelt has shrunk GE Capital's balance sheet in favor of the industrial side of GE's business.

The decline in swap costs should translate to lower interest rates on GE's debt. As its debt matures, new financing should cut GE's interest costs, adding to its bottom line. That's good news for both GE and its shareholders.

What will tomorrow bring?
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Fool contributor Dan Caplinger doesn't own shares of the companies mentioned. You can follow him on Twitter 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 Fool has a disclosure policy.

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  • Report this Comment On March 16, 2012, at 7:28 AM, funfundvierzig wrote:

    Some, if not much of the cost savings from cheaper energy inputs may be lost to the staggering costs of DuPont's "new product innovoation" last year. DuPont Imprelis, now banned by the U. S. EPA, was marketed falsely as an environmentally friendly turf weed-killer, but in actuality is a ferocious and efficient toxic killer of mature landscape trees. DuPont and its insurers are facing losses from hundreds of thousands of dead trees nationwide which may climb to $1 billion or more!

    DuPont Management and their PR professionals have been largely successful in downplaying, spinning and covering up the magnitude of this growing DuPont Imprelis consumer product scandal. Litigation has proliferated with scores of lawsuits in federal and state courts.

    Merely the viewpoint of one individual retail investor with small long and short positions in DD...funfun..

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S&P 500 2,141.34 -2.95 -0.14%
NASD 5,241.83 -4.58 -0.09%

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Related Tickers

10/20/2016 4:35 PM
^DJI $18162.35 Down -40.27 -0.22%
^GSPC $2141.34 Down -2.95 -0.14%
S&P 500 INDEX CAPS Rating: No stars
BAC $16.56 Up +0.09 +0.55%
Bank of America CAPS Rating: ****
DD $69.46 Down -0.07 -0.10%
DuPont CAPS Rating: ****
GE $29.07 Up +0.01 +0.03%
General Electric CAPS Rating: ****