October 7, 2016: Markets opened slightly higher Friday following a better-than-expected report on non-farm payrolls. Some investors see the report as more ammunition for the Fed to raise interest rates one more time this year. Oil lost some of its luster today after closing above $50 a barrel on Thursday. The basic materials and industrials sectors posted the biggest dips today, while utilities had the most positive result for the day. WTI crude oil for November delivery settled at $49.81 a barrel, down 1.3% for the day, but up about 3.3% for the week. December gold closed down 0.1% on the day to settle at $1,251.90 to close the week down 5%. Equities were headed for a lower close shortly before the bell as the DJIA traded down by 0.08% for the day, the S&P 500 traded down 0.27%, and the Nasdaq Composite traded down 0.27%. The DJIA traded very close to the break-even line shortly before the bell, so the final tally may be different from the results we note here.
The DJIA stock posting the largest daily percentage down ahead of the close Friday was The Home Depot Inc. (NYSE: HD) which traded down 1.32% at $128.47. The stock’s 52-week range is $109.62 to $139.00. Trading volume was slightly above the daily average of around 4.4 million. The home improvement retailer had now specific news Friday.
United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX) traded down 1.31% at $100.74. The stock’s 52-week range is $83.39 to $109.83. Volume was less than 10% below the daily average of around 3.1 million shares. The industrial giant had no specific news, but was caught in the wake of Honeywell’s warning on its aerospace business.
E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Co. (NYSE: DD) traded down 0.91% at $68.43. The stock’s 52-week range is $50.71 to $75.72. Volume was about 25% below the daily average of around 2.6 million shares. The company had no specific news Friday.
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE: WMT) traded down 0.89% at $68.75. The stock’s 52-week range is $56.30 to $75.19. Volume was about 25% above the daily average of around 8.2 million shares. The retailer’s stock took some more hits after dropping more than 3% on Thursday.
Of the 30 Dow index stocks 12 are on track to close higher Friday and 18 are set to close lower.