In the first full day of trading after Sandy ravaged the Atlantic, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEX: ^DJI ) fell 10 points, or about 0.1%, to settle at 13,096. It wasn't a great month for the blue chip index; the Dow fell 2.5% in October.
Impact from Sandy
An economist who was consulted in a Bloomberg report earlier today said that GDP could be hit by as much as $25 billion due to rebuilding efforts, disruptions, and loss of productivity as a result of the massive storm. Overall, though, the same report also cited a survey of economists predicting that Sandy's impact would only knock 0.15% off fourth-quarter growth.
Home Depot (NYSE: HD ) was the biggest gainer in the Dow today, up more than 2.5%, as investors bid up the stock in anticipation of greater sales from repairs necessitated by weather damage. Bank of America (NYSE: BAC ) was the only other Dow stock gaining more than 2% on the day. The Charlotte, NC-headquartered bank may not feel the effects of the Hurricane as severely as some of its New York-centered counterparts. Bank of America did, however, announce yesterday that it would donate $1 million to hurricane relief efforts.
The biggest loser in the Dow today was Disney (NYSE: DIS ) , which shook things up yesterday when it announced an agreement to purchase George Lucas' Lucasfilms for $4.05 billion, in a stock and cash deal. Lucasfilms, of course, owns the rights to the Star Wars franchise. Disney announced that it has plans to release a new trilogy, with the first film scheduled for 2015. Lucas himself will receive 40 million shares of Disney stock.
Outside of the Dow, one of the biggest stories of the day was the news that activist investor Carl Icahn has purchased a nearly 10% ownership stake in video streaming company Netflix (Nasdaq: NFLX ) . The stock closed more than 13% higher for the day on the news.
The precipitous drop in Netflix shares since the summer of 2011 -- although they've been ticking back up in recent months -- has caused many shareholders to lose hope. Can Netflix fend off burgeoning competition, and will its international growth aspirations really pay off? These are must-know issues for investors, which is why we've released a brand-new premium report on Netflix. Inside, you'll learn about the key opportunities and risks facing the company, as well as reasons to buy or sell the stock. We're also offering a full year of updates as key news hits, so make sure to click here and claim a copy today.