With Some Help, Dow Finishes the Week on a High Note

Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over daily movements, we do like to keep an eye on market changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

The major indexes all managed to close a down week higher today, with the help of a few big winners, and despite a poor housing report. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI  ) closed the day higher by 46 points, or 0.31%, and now sits at 15,010. The S&P 500 rose 0.39%, and the Nasdaq increased by 0.52%.

The drag on stocks today was the report that July housing sales came in at 394,000, after economists were expecting 485,000 and June's initial reading hit 497,000. While the July figure looks terrible in comparison, it helped a little bit that June's number was revised lower to 455,000. But it was still a major disappointment to investors.

The good news was that a few of the Dow's components made some substantial moves higher today. First up, shares of Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT  ) went crazy today, rising 7.29% after news broke that CEO Steve Ballmer plans to retire within the next 12 months. Despite being with the company for nearly 30 years and holding the top spot since the turn of the century, today's move clearly indicates that investors are ready to see Ballmer go. Microsoft was at the top of its game when he took over, and the stock's performance since he took over has been anything but stellar. For current investors, the change at the top could be a great thing, if the company brings in the right person with the right vision. Just because Ballmer may be heading out the door, Microsoft is in no way out of the woods.

Both of the Dow's telecommunications companies also performed really well today. Shares of AT&T (NYSE: T  ) rose 1.39%, while Verizon (NYSE: VZ  ) moved 1.25% higher.

AT&T shareholders cheered after MacRumors said the wireless service provider will offer refurbished iPhone 3GS devices for its prepaid GoPhone plans. This move could help the company grow its GoPhone customer base by offering a good product at a very reasonable price. The telecommunications providers are battling for market share, and any advantage one company can get over the rest will make a big impact. 

As for Verizon, Moody's Investors Service said today it would cost the company $3 billion to move into the Canadian market and therefore it wouldn't be able to push down prices for consumers in the country. For a company with a market capitalization of $136 billion, a $3 billion investment should be a no-brainer. While Canadian consumers may disagree, it should actually be good news for Verizon investors that if the company did move into Canada, prices wouldn't fall. The last thing Verizon wants to do is spend money to enter a market and then get into pricing wars with the locals.  

More Foolish insight
The world can't get enough of superheroes. Super-powered movies have been some of the highest-grossing films of all time, and as these franchises continue to grow, the numbers are only going to get more impressive. The Motley Fool's new free report "Your Ticket to Cash In on the Superhero Battle of the Century" details what you need to know to profit from your favorite superheroes. Click here to read the full report!


Read/Post Comments (0) | Recommend This Article (4)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

Be the first one to comment on this article.

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 2608449, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 10/24/2014 9:29:13 PM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...


Advertisement