May 23, 2016: Markets opened essentially flat Monday following some weakness overseas on economic data from Japan and the eurozone. Bayer’s $62 billion offer for Monsanto boosted U.S. equities a bit out of the gate Monday morning, but gains or losses were relatively small in all sectors except basic materials (up about 1.5%) and utilities and telecoms (down about 0.7% and 0.6%, respectively). WTI crude oil for July delivery settled at $48.08 a barrel, down 0.7% for the day. June gold dropped 0.1% on the day to settle at $1,251.50. Equities were headed for a mixed close shortly before the closing bell as the DJIA traded up 0.01% for the day, the S&P 500 traded down 0.13%, and the Nasdaq Composite traded up 0.01%. All three indexes trade very near their flat lines as the end of the trading session nears, so there could be some differences in final numbers.
The DJIA stock posting the largest daily percentage gain ahead of the close Monday was E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Co. (NYSE: DD) which traded up 1.47% at $66.71. The stock’s 52-week range is $47.11 to $75.72. Volume was equal to the daily average of around 3.36 million shares. The big chemical company had no news Monday.
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) traded up 1.41% at $96.56. The stock’s 52-week range is $89.47 to $132.97. Trading volume was about 15% below the daily average of around 39 million. The tech company had no specific news.
Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE: CAT) traded up 0.89% at $70.50. The stock’s 52-week range is $56.36 to $89.50. Trading volume was about half the daily average of around 6 million shares. The heavy equipment maker had no specific news today either.
3M Company (NYSE: MMM) traded up 0.75% at $166.24. The stock’s 52-week range is $134.00 to $171.27. Volume was about 40% below the daily average of around 2 million shares. The industrial conglomerate had no specific news Monday.
Of the Dow 30 stocks 14 are set to close higher Monday and 16 are on track to close lower.