Today's 3 Best Stocks on the S&P 500

The S&P 500 (SNPINDEX: ^GSPC  ) jumped behind Wall Street's confidence that Washington will come to a consensus on reopening the government, and raising the debt ceiling soon. The index climbed 0.6% today, helping negate this month's earlier losses, and bringing the S&P's year-to-date gains to around 15.7%. The index climbed back above the 1,700 mark, to boot, a mark it hadn't surpassed at closing since mid-September.

Even as the S&P moved higher, however, a few of the stocks in the index made waves today. Earnings helped the financial sector jump, but one retailer's plans for the future lit up the market. Let's catch up on the S&P 500's three best stocks.

Tesoro's oil leak relief
Refiner Tesoro (NYSE: TSO  ) picked up more than 3.8% today. The company has been dealing with a pipeline leak in North Dakota that happened in October. The oil leak was first discovered in late September, but the company has managed to stop the leak of oil. While this could have been devastating to investors -- a reported 20,600 barrels of oil ultimately leaked out of the pipeline, possibly due to age -related corrosion, according to regulators -- North Dakota officials said that no groundwater or surface water was affected by the oil leak.

That's a big sigh of relief that helped this stock track higher today. While Tesoro estimates that the clean-up, which is underway, will cost around $4 million in total, environmental damages could have been much greater if the leak had contaminated water sources. Still, Tesoro's stock has fallen more than 18.4% over the past three months, so investors hardly are happy with the shares' progress, even with today's gains.

Indian IT company Cognizant Technology Solutions (NASDAQ: CTSH  ) jumped by 4.6% today, although it wasn't due to the company's own moves. Fellow IT and business solutions outsourcing firm Infosys (NYSE: INFY  ) beat analyst projections on revenue today, and boosted its full-year projections due to growth in the U.S. Cognizant has recently surpassed rival Infosys in the Indian tech outsourcing market, but the latter's beat and optimistic outlook has pushed investors to renew their confidence in Cognizant. We'll get a better picture of whether that confidence is warranted when Cognizant releases its own earnings on Nov. 5, but the stock's done very well over the past three months, as shares have picked up 18.5%.

Still, neither Tesoro nor Cognizant could match Safeway's (NYSE: SWY  ) gains today. The grocery retailer picked up 6.9% on the day of its earnings release, even though Safeway impressed no one on Wall Street. The company's net income plunged 58%, and revenue rose just 1%, although the latter mark did surpass analyst projections.

However, investors were able to overlook Safeway's poor earnings as the company announced moves to help it key in on its core grocery business. The firm said it will leave the competitive Chicago market next year, as Safeway's Dominick line of stores, a segment it acquired in 1998 that operates in the area, has weighed on the company's results.

Don't get too cheery about this move, however, as Safeway is still battling against nationwide competition from regional rivals, high-end grocers appealing to niche tastes, and superstores such as Wal-Mart that are encroaching on the ground of traditional grocery retailers like Safeway. This stock has soared in 2013, but Safeway's earnings prove this company isn't so safe just yet.

Spice your portfolio up with the market's best retailers
The retail space is in the midst of the biggest paradigm shift since mail order took off at the turn of last century. Only those most forward-looking and capable companies will survive, and they'll handsomely reward those investors who understand the landscape. You can read about the 3 Companies Ready to Rule Retail in The Motley Fool's special report. Uncovering these top picks is free today; just click here to read more.


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

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: 2679579, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 11/26/2014 12:39:23 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...

Today's Market

updated Moments ago Sponsored by:
DOW 17,810.17 -4.77 -0.03%
S&P 500 2,069.51 2.48 0.12%
NASD 4,774.43 16.17 0.34%

Create My Watchlist

Go to My Watchlist

You don't seem to be following any stocks yet!

Better investing starts with a watchlist. Now you can create a personalized watchlist and get immediate access to the personalized information you need to make successful investing decisions.

Data delayed up to 5 minutes

Related Tickers

11/26/2014 12:29 PM
^GSPC $2069.51 Up +2.48 +0.12%
S&P 500 INDEX CAPS Rating: No stars
CTSH $53.22 Down -0.08 -0.15%
Cognizant Technolo… CAPS Rating: *****
INFY $69.54 Up +0.69 +0.99%
Infosys Technologi… CAPS Rating: ****
SWY $34.83 Down +0.00 +0.00%
Safeway, Inc. CAPS Rating: **
TSO $78.37 Down -0.18 -0.23%
Tesoro Corp CAPS Rating: ****

Advertisement