The markets had only a small employment report from the Conference Board to consider on Monday, as well as a surprising government budget surplus, to drive stocks today. Unfortunately, Goldman Sachs had issued a report showing that equities were becoming fully valued. That put the fix in on stocks to the downside.
Several DJIA stocks led the charge lower on Monday, and we have compared 52-week ranges and consensus analyst price targets in case this is the start of what we consider a much needed market correction. While all but one of the thirty DJIA stocks was up on the day, Merck & Co. (NYSE: MRK) kept the DJIA drop from being even worse.
The unofficial closing bell prices will change slightly, but the DJIA was down by -177 at 16,259.16 and the S&P 500 Index was down by 23.32 at 1,1819.05.
Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ: MSFT) was the DJIA’s biggest loser in percentage terms on Monday. Rumors of yet another version of Windows coming to market sooner than expected are not going to get a great reception. Then there is the ongoing CEO vacuum. Microsoft shares were down by 3% at $34.97 in the final minutes of trading. The good news is that Microsoft shares are now down a tad over 10% from the 52-week high of $38.98 and are now down just over 5% from the consensus analyst price target of $36.94.
Nike Inc. (NYSE: NKE) was selected as a top pick for its sector by Sterne Agee, but that did not matter. The footwear and apparel maker saw its stock slide down to where shares were down 2.4% at $75.10 in the final minutes of the day. With a 52-week range of $52.81 to $80.26, its stock is now down 6.5% from its highs and is now almost 10% shy of the expected analyst price targets.
The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS) was also lower on the day as one of the worst DJIA stocks. Shares were down $2.24, or almost 3% lower, at $73.13 right before the closing bell. Disney’s 52-week range is $50.18 to $76.84 and the consensus price target is closer to $77.50.
Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM) was the last one down over 2% in the final minutes of trading on Monday. Big oil’s stock was down $2.02, or 2.03%, at $98.50 right before the closing bell on Monday. With stocks down 1% or so in general, the $1 drop in the price of oil did not help here. Sadly, Exxon is still about $0.25 higher than the consensus price target even if it is now $3.00 off of its 52-week high.
Merck & Co. Inc. (NYSE: MRK) was the only real standout stock in the DJIA on Monday. Its gain was big because the company’s anti-clotting drug Vorapaxar is getting an expedited FDA review. The company also gave an update on its accelerated strategic actions for growth at the Annual J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference. The DJIA would have been far worse without Merck on Monday. Merck’s stock was up about 6.5% at $53.13 in he final minutes, and the stock hit a new 52-week high of $53.44. Analysts are either going to have raise their price targets or the stock is reaching a downgraded risk because the consensus price target is currently just above $52.