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The stock market had a largely down day, but a late-day turnaround helped minimize losses. After the Federal Reserve released the minutes from its latest Federal Open Market Committee policy meeting, stocks turned around as it appeared that the Fed would have to take additional steps to stimulate the economy and bolster growth. Yet although the Nasdaq and S&P 500 both managed to break back into positive territory, the Dow Jones Industrials (INDEX: ^DJI ) weren't as lucky, finishing down 31 points.
But not all Dow stocks fell. DuPont (NYSE: DD ) rose about 0.8%, topping Dow gainers. As Fool Blog Network member David Gould observed yesterday, chemical stocks have been pretty volatile lately, but DuPont in particular has good growth prospects and a reasonable valuation. Moreover, as long as titanium dioxide prices stay high, DuPont should get a lot of support from that market.
Alcoa (NYSE: AA ) also posted gains of slightly more than half a percent. Rival China Zhongwang said that carmakers are replacing steel with more aluminum, which should help bolster long-run demand. The big question, though, is whether regulation will give initiatives toward higher fuel economy greater weight than safety, as the lighter metal unquestionably is more fuel-efficient.
Finally, United Technologies (NYSE: UTX ) also picked up about half a percent. The company got good news from rating agency Moody's, which affirmed the company's A2 bond rating. Given that United Tech just completed its acquisition of Goodrich, the affirmation was good news for the company, as it should help it control its interest costs well into the future.
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