DuPont, Nike Lead Dow Higher Wednesday

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February 22, 2017: Markets opened lower Wednesday after a solid report on existing home sales in January. Only the materials and utilities sectors traded solidly in positive territory today, but the blue chips managed to hang on to a small gain. WTI crude oil for April delivery settled at $53.59 a barrel, down 1.4% on the day. April gold dropped 0.5% on the day to settle at $1,233.30 before rising to $1,239.3 after the FOMC minutes were released. Equities were headed for a mixed close shortly before the bell as the DJIA traded up 0.15% for the day, the S&P 500 traded down 0.8%, and the Nasdaq Composite traded down 0.8%.

The DJIA stock posting the largest daily percentage gain ahead of the close Wednesday was E.I. du Pont de Nemours Inc. (NYSE: DD) which traded up 3.39% at $79.80. The stock’s 52-week range is $57.76 to $80.66, and the high was posted this afternoon. Volume was more than 3 times the daily average of around 2.6 million shares. The company had no specific news, but reports indicate that the European Union is about to approve DuPont’s merger with Dow Chemical.

Nike Inc. (NYSE: NKE) traded up 1.66% at $58.31. The stock’s 52-week range is $49.01 to $65.44. Volume was roughly equal to the daily average of around 9.2 million shares. The company had no specific news Wednesday.

3M Company (NYSE: MMM) traded up 1.41% at $185.96. The stock’s 52-week range is $153.64 to $186.07, and the high was posted this afternoon. Volume was about 20% above the daily average of around 1.9 million shares. The company had no specific news.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE: WMT) traded up 0.55% at $71.85. The stock’s 52-week range is $62.72 to $75.19. Volume was about 50% above the daily average of around 8.7 million shares. The company reported solid profits Tuesday morning

Of the Dow 30 stocks, 14 are on track to close higher Wednesday and 16 are set to close lower.