August 18, 2017: Markets opened lower again Friday and all but the blue-chip DJIA eventually broke through to trade higher. But the gains were small as the only economic data out today was the consumer sentiment index from the University of Michigan and the few earnings reports out this morning were mixed. The Fed may also begin winding down its balance sheet next month, another negative for equities. The energy and utilities sectors traded higher today, but were offset by downdrafts in real estate and consumer goods. WTI crude oil for September delivery settled at $48.51 a barrel, up 3% for the day but down 0.6% for the week. December gold dropped 0.2% on the day to settle at $1,290.40. Equities were headed for a mixed close shortly before the bell as the DJIA traded down 0.15%for the day, the S&P 500 traded up 0.05%, and the Nasdaq Composite traded up 0.17%.
The DJIA stock posting the largest daily percentage loss ahead of the close Friday was Nike Inc. (NYSE: NKE) traded down 4.03% at $55.13. The stock’s 52-week range is $49.01 to $60.53. Volume was about double the daily average of around 9.7 million. The athletic gear maker had no specific news, but the poor report from Foot Locker has weighed heavily on Nike today.
Cisco Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: CSCO) which traded down 1.90% at $30.45. The stock’s 52-week range is $29.12 to $34.60. Volume was about one third higher than the daily average of around 21.8 million shares. The company posted weak results Wednesday night and investors haven’t gotten over it yet.
The Home Depot Inc. (NYSE: HD) traded down 1.46% at $147.49. The stock’s 52-week range is $119.20 to $160.86. Volume was about 20% above the daily average of around 4.8 million shares. The company had no specific news.
Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE) traded down 0.74% at $32.71. The stock’s 52-week range is $29.83 to $35.38. Volume was about about 40% below the daily average of around 18.8 million shares. The company received FDA approval for a new cancer drug to treat a rare form of leukemia.
Of the Dow stocks, 12 are on track to close higher Friday and 18 are set to close lower.