In a holiday-shortened week, it's important not to put too much weight on the movements in the stock market. On extremely light volume, though, stocks managed to put together a healthy rally today, with the Dow Jones Industrials
Positive economic news on factory orders helped push pure industrial stocks higher. Caterpillar
Meanwhile, as the Dow component with the smallest market cap, Alcoa has been bouncing along the bottom for months. As useful as more orders would be for the company, the biggest piece of news will come when Alcoa announces its earnings next Monday afternoon. Year-over-year earnings will fall substantially, but if the aluminum maker can beat analyst consensus estimates, it could go a long way toward proving that the stock may have hit bottom.
Among other winners, Wal-Mart
Don't stop believin'
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Fool contributor Dan Caplinger doesn't own shares of the companies mentioned. You can follow him on Twitter, @DanCaplinger. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended creating a diagonal call position in Wal-Mart. 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 Fool has a disclosure policy.