Caterpillar, Boeing Weigh on DJIA Thursday

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February 2, 2017: Markets opened lower Thursday and after bobbing above and below the break-even line, appear to have settled in the red as the session reaches its close. Among the S&P’s 11 sectors, telecom was the big loser while real estate and consumer staples posted the biggest gains. Traders are patiently expecting Friday’s employment situation report. WTI crude oil for March delivery settled at $53.54 a barrel, down about 0.6% on the day. April gold added 0.9% on the day to settle at $1,219.40. Equities were headed for a mixed close close shortly before the bell as the DJIA traded down 0.02% for the day, the S&P 500 traded up 0.06%, and the Nasdaq Composite traded down 0.14%.

Stocks traded very near the break even line just minutes before the closing bell. The closing tally could differ from these results.

The DJIA stock posting the largest daily percentage loss ahead of the close Thursday was Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE: CAT) which traded down 1.48% at $93.70. The stock’s 52-week range is $60.51 to $99.46. Volume was about 40% below the daily average of around 4.9 million shares. The company had no specific news Thursday.

UnitedHealth Group Inc. (NYSE: UNH) traded down 1.21% at $160.74. The stock’s 52-week range is $108.83 to $164.00. Volume was about 10% below the daily average of around 4 million shares. The company had no specific news.

The Boeing Co. (NYSE: BA) traded down 1.04% at $162.27. The stock’s 52-week range is $102.10 to $170.00. Volume was about 10% below the daily average of around 3.4 million shares. The company had no specific news Wednesday, but another competitor for the Air Force training jet contract dropped out Wednesday.

Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT) traded down 0.55% at $63.23. The stock’s 52-week range is $48.04 to $65.91. Volume was about 30% above the daily average of around 26 million shares. The company had no specific news Thursday.

Of the Dow 30 stocks, 12 are on track to close higher Thursday and 18 are set to close lower.