April 18, 2018: The S&P 500 closed relatively flat at 2,708.62. The DJIA closed down 0.2% at 24,748.14. Separately, the Nasdaq was up 0.2% at 7,295.24.
Wednesday was a mixed day for the broad U.S. markets. It’s possible that all three major indices would have notched a gain on the day if only IBM were thrown out. Big Blue posted its worst day in years and was a huge detriment to the Dow and the tech sector in general. Although the averages were somewhat muted, crude oil posted an incredible gain, leaving just about a dollar between it and the coveted $70 price level. The S&P 500 sectors were split down the middle. The most positive sectors were energy and industrials up 1.6% and 1.1%, respectively. The worst performing sectors were financials and consumer staples which were down 0.5% and 0.8%, respectively.
Crude oil was up 3.4% at $68.75.
Gold was also relatively flat at $1,351.20.
The S&P 500 stock posting the largest daily percentage loss ahead of the close Wednesday was International Business Machines Corp. (NYSE: IBM) which traded down about 7% at $148.83. The stock’s 52-week range is $139.13 to $171.13. Volume was nearly 20 million compared to the daily average volume of 5.3 million.
The stock posting the largest daily percentage gain in the S&P 500 ahead of the close Wednesday was Intuitive Surgical, Inc. (NASDAQ: ISRG) which rose about 8% to $469.73. The stock’s 52-week range is $263.66 to $473.79. Volume was 3.2 million compared to the daily average volume of less than 1 million.