March 26, 2014: Markets opened higher on Tuesday but equity prices trailed downward all morning, finally going into the red in the early afternoon. If there was any momentum in today’s market it couldn’t overcome a weak IPO from Candy Crush Saga game maker King Digital Entertainment PLC (NYSE: KING) and another day in the doldrums for biotech stocks. In the final minutes of trading the DJIA was down 0.46%, the S&P 500 was down 0.56%, and the Nasdaq Composite was down 1.22%.
Again today the big market mover among the DJIA stocks was International Business Machines Corp. (NYSE: IBM) which lost 0.95% to give back about half the gains it made yesterday. The shares traded at $193.12 in a 52-week range of $172.19 to $214.89 just ahead of the closing bell. Volume was on track to be more than 10% higher than the daily average of around 5 million shares traded. No news today, so maybe some profit-taking, as the stock put up a year-to-date high yesterday.
Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT) bounced lower today, down 0.97% to close at $39.95 in a 52-week range of $28.08 to $40.99. Share volume was about 10% below the daily average of around 37 million shares traded. The Redmond giant posted its 52-week high yesterday and, as with IBM, now looks like a good for some investors to harvest some profit.
Big bank JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) also posted a new 52-week high yesterday and the shares traded down down 1.67% today at $59.91. The 52-week range for the stock is $46.05 to $61.48. In addition to the new high, the bank lost a potential replacement for Jamie Dimon yesterday when Mike Cavanaugh left the bank to sign on with private equity firm The Carlyle Group (NASDAQ: CG). Trading volume for JPMorgan’s shares was about 5% below the daily average of around 19 million shares traded.
And the Nasdaq’s fall into negative territory could be put down partly to Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ: FB).The company paid $2 billion in cash and stock last night for virtual reality firm Oculus Rift, and investors haven’t figured out yet how Facebook makes money on the deal. The stock traded down 6.36% today at $60.74 in a 52-week range of $22.67 to $72.59. Trading volume was nearly 50% above the daily average of around 58 million shares traded.
And King Digital’s IPO was crushed, down 15.51% to close near $19.00 after going out at $22.50. Volume was nearly 38 million shares traded.
Of the Dow 30 stocks 25 are set to close lower today and just 5 are on their way to a higher close.