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Why the Dow Is Losing Yesterday's Hard-Fought Gains

Jessica Alling
June 14, 2013

After closing yesterday with gains for the first time this week, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI) is having a hard time holding on to the positive momentum. Just before 11:30 a.m. EDT, the index is down 57 points, over a third of yesterday's gains lost. With only two days of trading left before the next Federal Open Markets Committee meeting, investors need something to boost their confidence instead of the disappointing economic news they received this morning. Bank investors are also reeling as news of another scandal hit the Street.

All for naught
The sharp 1% rally yesterday has all but faded as investors prepare to enter the weekend. Though producer price data showed a 0.5% rise last month, beating estimates of a 0.1% increase, other economic data released this morning tamped out the positive news. Industrial output was flat in May, which missed estimates of a 0.2% rise. More troubling perhaps is the drop in consumer sentiment for June, which dropped from May's reading -- the highest point in the past six years.

All of this information continues a trend of conflicting signals, giving no real sense of how the economic recovery is progressing for investors. With the FOMC meeting on Tuesday a pivotal moment for the markets, any indication of how the Fed will approach changes to the current rate of stimulus would be welcomed on the Street. But for long-term investors, the recent frenzy over tapering down stimulus shouldn't be getting you riled up. Though the transition period will be a volatile one, the end result will be better market opportunities.

Banks in trouble again
Bank of America (NYSE: BAC) and JPMorgan (NYSE: JPM) are