January 28, 2015: Markets opened higher on Wednesday primarily on the strength of better-than-expected quarterly reports from Apple and Boeing. Equities got another brief boost when the FOMC announced that it would remain patient on policy a rate hike. The three major indexes traded near their flat lines until the last half-hour or so of Wednesday’s session. Shortly before the closing bell the DJIA traded down 1.03% for the day, the S&P 500 traded down 1.26%, and the Nasdaq Composite traded down 0.85%.
The DJIA stock posting the largest daily percentage loss ahead of the close Tuesday was Chevron Corp. (NYSE: CVX) which traded down 4.39% at $103.51. The stock’s 52-week range is $100.15 to $135.10. Trading volume was about 10% below the daily average of around 8.8 million shares. The company posts earnings on Friday and investors may be anticipating more bad news due to low crude oil prices.
Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM) traded down 3.42% at $87.84. The stock’s 52-week range is $86.19 to $104.76. Trading volume is about 40% higher than the daily average of around 30 million shares. The company reports earnings next Tuesday, and like Chevron, investors are not expecting good news as crude oil prices keep falling.
Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT) traded down 3.26% at $41.27. The stock’s 52-week range is $35.69 to $50.05. Trading volume was more than double the daily average of around 31 million shares. Microsoft reported earnings on Monday that failed to meet expectations and the stock is still paying the price.
General Electric Co. (NYSE: GE) traded lower by 2.28% at $23.83. The stock’s 52-week range is $23.41 to $27.53. Trading volume was about 10% above the daily average of around 36 million shares. The conglomerate had no specific news today.
Of the Dow 30 stocks 26 are set to close lower today and just 4 are on track to close higher.