February 15, 2017: Markets opened higher Wednesday after a record setting day again Tuesday. President Trump met with some of the country’s top retailers this morning and continued expressions of support for more business-friendly policies and big tax cuts fueled investors risk appetite. The healthcare and financial sectors posted the biggest gains, while utilities and energy stocks acted as the anchors. WTI crude oil for March delivery settled at $53.11 a barrel, down about 0.2% on the day following another big addition to the nation’s crude oil stockpiles. April gold added 0.6% on the day to settle at $1,233.10. Equities were headed for a higher close close shortly before the bell as the DJIA traded up 0.52% for the day, the S&P 500 traded up 0.50%, and the Nasdaq Composite traded up 0.61%.
The DJIA stock posting the largest daily percentage gain ahead of the close Wednesday was The Procter & Gamble Co. (NYSE: PG) which traded up 3.62% at $91.04. The stock’s 52-week range is $79.10 to $91.12, a new 52-week high set this afternoon. Volume was about double the daily average of around 9 million shares. Private equity firm Trian Management took a $3.5 billion stake in the company.
Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE) traded up 2.24% at $33.49. The stock’s 52-week range is $28.74 to $37.39. Volume was about a third higher than the daily average of around 24.8 million shares. The drug maker had no specific news.
Cisco Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: CSCO) traded up 1.41% at $32.76. The stock’s 52-week range is $25.65 to $32.84, and the high was posted this afternoon. Volume was nearly a third above the daily average of around 22 million shares. The company reports quarterly results after markets close Wednesday. Here’s our preview.
JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) traded up 1.24% at $90.67. The stock’s 52-week range is $54.33 to $90.87, a new 52-week high set this afternoon. Volume was about 10% below the daily average of around 16.4 million shares. The company had no specific news.
Of the Dow 30 stocks, 26 are on track to close higher Wednesday and 4 are set to close lower.