The Motley Fool Previous Page


3 Stocks Leading the Dow Higher

http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2013/04/29/3-stocks-leading-the-dow-higher.aspx

Dan Dzombak
April 29, 2013

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEX: ^DJI) is up following some better-than-expected U.S. economic releases. As of 1:25 p.m. EDT the Dow is up 101 points, or 0.69%, to 14,814. The S&P 500 (INDEX: ^GSPC) is up 0.74% to 1,594.

There were three U.S. economic releases today.

Report

Period

Actual

Previous

Personal income

March

0.2%

1.1%

Consumer spending

March

0.2%

0.7%

Pending home sale

March

1.5%

(1%)

The two to take note of are consumer spending and pending home sales. The National Association of Realtors' pending-home-sales index was up 1.5% in March to 105.7 after dropping 1% in February.

US Pending Home Sales Index Chart

US Pending Home Sales Index data by YCharts.

A sale is listed as pending when the contract has been signed but the transaction has not yet closed. Thus pending home sales are an indicator of future sales, so a rise bodes well for the housing market. The index is currently 7% above the year-ago level.

Meanwhile, although growth in consumer spending slowed in March, a slowing U.S. economy was largely expected as consumers cope with higher payroll taxes and gasoline prices than they did last year. As such, many investors feared the worst in the consumer-spending report, especially after last week's disappointing GDP report. The market is up because March's small gain is double analyst expectations of a 0.1% gain. Consumer spending in the U.S. is important, as it makes up nearly 70% of the U.S. economy.

Today's Dow leaders
Today'