August 16, 2017: Markets opened higher again Wednesday even after a poor report on U.S. housing starts. Minutes from last month’s FOMC meeting revealed a Fed split on when to begin reducing its debt and to raise rates again. The energy sector dragged on markets following negative reaction the report on last week’s inventories. WTI crude oil for September delivery settled at $46.78 a barrel, down 1.6% for the day. December gold added 0.3% on the day to settle at $1,282.90. Equities were headed for a narrowly higher close shortly before the bell as the DJIA traded up 0.11%for the day, the S&P 500 traded up 0.11%, and the Nasdaq Composite traded up 0.15%.
The DJIA stock posting the largest daily percentage gain ahead of the close Wednesday was United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX) which traded up 2.27% at $117.88. The stock’s 52-week range is $115.81 to $124.79. Volume was about equal to the daily average of around 3.3 million shares. The company had no specific news.
Home Depot Inc. (NYSE: HD) traded up 1.47% at $152.88. The stock’s 52-week range is $119.20 to $160.86. Volume was about about equal to the daily average of around 4.9 million shares. The company got an Outperform rating from Raymond James this morning and price target of $165 per share.
Visa Inc. (NYSE: V) traded up 1.16% at $103.65. The stock’s 52-week range is $75.17 to $103.93, and the high was posted this afternoon. Volume was about 25% below the daily average of around 7.9 million shares. The financial services firm had no specific news.
McDonald’s Corp. (NYSE: MCD) traded up 0.89% at $159.02. The stock’s 52-week range is $110.33 to $159.38, also a new 52-week high set this afternoon. Volume was about 30% below the daily average of around 3.4 million. The fast-food giant had no specific news.
Of the Dow stocks, 19 are on track to close higher Wednesday and 11 are set to close lower.