While the Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEX: ^DJI ) ended the day lower, investors have something to cheer, given the way today’s trading played out. Markets started the day lower, and continued to show weakness following disappointing readings on the labor markets and manufacturing, as well as the Supreme Court’s ruling to uphold the Obama administration’s health care law. After falling as much as 177 points for the day, with only 30 minutes prior to the market close, news surfaced that German Chancellor Angela Merkel was canceling a press conference scheduled for this evening. The news sparked hopes that meaningful progress is being made by leaders at the EU Summit, and sent stocks skyrocketing into the close. By the end of the day, the blue chip index had only declined by 24 points.
While investors will need to wait and see if the late day rally was indeed merited, let’s go through three of the Dow’s individual winners to see what was behind their moves.
Though it’s been the worst performing sector of the S&P 500 over the past year, energy stocks have resurfaced over the past few trading sessions. Chevron (NYSE: CVX ) is no exception, up 0.9% on the day, and leading all Dow components with a 3.4% gain over the past week.
Shares of Kraft Foods (Nasdaq: KFT ) rose 0.8%, as investors await the planned split of the company into two separate publicly- traded companies. The first will house its North American grocery brands and retain the Kraft name and ticker symbol. The second will hold its larger snack foods business and operate under the name Mondelez International, trading under the ticker MDLZ. The Mondelez unit will have a more robust growth profile than the legacy business, with over 80% of sales coming from faster growing international markets.
Coming in third for the Dow, was telecom juggernaut AT&T (NYSE: T ) , up 0.6% in today’s trading. AT&T is considered a relatively defensive opportunity for investors. The company sports a healthy dividend yield of 5.0%, and continues to grow its wireless business and wire line data business, despite some headwinds in its more legacy offerings. While overall revenue continues to grow at a sluggish pace, the company enjoys a very attractive competitive position, with only one true competitor in Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ ) .
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