Markets Move Higher With Fed Support

Johnson & Johnson moves higher with the sale of a unit, while Coke declines on a falling beverage volume report.

Mar 31, 2014 at 9:00PM
Longview Fool Image

The major indexes came on strong today as the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES:^DJI) rose 134 points, or 0.82%, while the S&P 500 jumped 0.79% and the Nasdaq increased by 1.04%. The rally was spurred by Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen's comments that the economy still needs extraordinary support and will need it for some time. That gave investors confidence that the Fed wouldn't stop stimulating the economy before it was strong enough to support itself.

Within the Dow, shares of Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) rose 0.81% after the announcement was made that the company had accepted a $4 billion offer from The Carlyle Group, a Washington, D.C., private equity firm, for Johnson & Johnson's Ortho-Clinical business. The unit works with hospitals, blood banks, and labs supplying equipment and chemicals used to test blood for different diseases. J&J's CEO said the unit was sold because it didn't fit within the company's long-term strategy, which is to focus on businesses that are first or second in their respected markets.

 The Dow's biggest loser today was Coca-Cola (NYSE:KO), which lost 0.74%. The decline came after a report from Beverage Digest indicated that soda volumes fell 3% in 2013. The 8.9 billion cases sold was the lowest amount since 1995 and marks the ninth straight yearly decline. In 2012, volumes fell only 1.2% after dropping 1% in 2011, so the move away from sodas seems to be picking up steam as more consumers look for healthier options. Coke has a diverse product range, with things like bottled water, sports drinks, and fruit drinks, so I don't think investors need to flee just now. But in the long term, I would like to see the company continue to lessen its reliance on sodas and other unhealthy beverages.  

Outside the Dow, shares of BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY) slid 3.92% after more analysts jumped on the downgrade bandwagon today. This morning it was Evercore and Credit Suisse that lowered BlackBerry's rating, dropping to "underweight" and "underperform," over concerns that the smartphone maker may not be able to continue creating meaningful business or slowing the contraction of its subscriber base. BlackBerry investors need to consider whether the risks of owning the stock outweigh the rewards. Can the company can turn things around? I'm not so sure.  

The greatest thing Warren Buffett ever said
Warren Buffett has made billions through his investing and he wants you to be able to invest like him. Through the years, Buffett has offered up investing tips to shareholders of Berkshire Hathaway. Now you can tap into the best of Warren Buffett's wisdom in a new special report from The Motley Fool. Click here now for a free copy of this invaluable report.

Matt Thalman owns shares of Coca-Cola and Johnson & Johnson. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Coca-Cola and Johnson & Johnson and has options on Coca-Cola. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Money to your ears - A great FREE investing resource for you

The best way to get your regular dose of market and money insights is our suite of free podcasts ... what we like to think of as “binge-worthy finance.”

Feb 1, 2016 at 5:03PM

Whether we're in the midst of earnings season or riding out the market's lulls, you want to know the best strategies for your money.

And you'll want to go beyond the hype of screaming TV personalities, fear-mongering ads, and "analysis" from people who might have your email address ... but no track record of success.

In short, you want a voice of reason you can count on.

A 2015 Business Insider article titled, "11 websites to bookmark if you want to get rich," rated The Motley Fool as the #1 place online to get smarter about investing.

And one of the easiest, most enjoyable, most valuable ways to get your regular dose of market and money insights is our suite of free podcasts ... what we like to think of as "binge-worthy finance."

Whether you make it part of your daily commute or you save up and listen to a handful of episodes for your 50-mile bike rides or long soaks in a bubble bath (or both!), the podcasts make sense of your money.

And unlike so many who want to make the subjects of personal finance and investing complicated and scary, our podcasts are clear, insightful, and (yes, it's true) fun.

Our free suite of podcasts

Motley Fool Money features a team of our analysts discussing the week's top business and investing stories, interviews, and an inside look at the stocks on our radar. The show is also heard weekly on dozens of radio stations across the country.

The hosts of Motley Fool Answers challenge the conventional wisdom on life's biggest financial issues to reveal what you really need to know to make smart money moves.

David Gardner, co-founder of The Motley Fool, is among the most respected and trusted sources on investing. And he's the host of Rule Breaker Investing, in which he shares his insights into today's most innovative and disruptive companies ... and how to profit from them.

Market Foolery is our daily look at stocks in the news, as well as the top business and investing stories.

And Industry Focus offers a deeper dive into a specific industry and the stories making headlines. Healthcare, technology, energy, consumer goods, and other industries take turns in the spotlight.

They're all informative, entertaining, and eminently listenable. Rule Breaker Investing and Answers are timeless, so it's worth going back to and listening from the very start; the other three are focused more on today's events, so listen to the most recent first.

All are available for free at

If you're looking for a friendly voice ... with great advice on how to make the most of your money ... from a business with a lengthy track record of success ... in clear, compelling language ... I encourage you to give a listen to our free podcasts.

Head to, give them a spin, and you can subscribe there (at iTunes, Stitcher, or our other partners) if you want to receive them regularly.

It's money to your ears.


Compare Brokers