Intel, DowDuPont Buoy the Dow Friday

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June 1, 2018: Markets opened higher Friday following a strong report on U.S. jobs. The U.S. unemployment rate dropped to 3.8%, its lowest level in 18 years. Italy appears to have avoided another election, ending fears that the country would vote to leave the eurozone. Only the utilities sector traded lower Friday, while the tech and basic materials sectors were the biggest gainers.

WTI crude oil for July delivery closed at $65.81 a barrel, down about 1.8% for the day and down 3.1% for the week following the rig count report and a report of increased Russian production. August gold dropped about 0.4% on the day to settle at $1,299.30 and down 0.7% for the week. Equities were headed for a higher close about 10 minutes before the bell as the Dow traded up 0.79% for the day, the S&P 500 traded up 0.97%, and the Nasdaq Composite traded up 1.38%.

Bitcoin futures (XBTM8) for June delivery traded at $7,445, down about 1.5% on the CBOE after opening at $7,555 this morning. The trading range today was $7,350 to $7,620.

The Dow stock posting the largest daily percentage gain ahead of the close Friday was Intel Corp. (NASDAQ: INTC) which traded up 3.08% at $56.90 in a 52-week range of $33.23 to $57.10, a new 52-week high posted today. Volume was about 10% below the daily average of around 29 million shares. The company had no specific news.

DowDuPont Inc. (NYSE: DWDP) traded up 2.98% at $66.02. The stock’s 52-week range is $61.27 to $77.08. Volume was about 25% below the daily average of around 8.9 million. Company CEO Ed Breen said yesterday that the company will end most of its ambitious R&D projects to help boost profits.

Cisco Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: CSCO) traded up 2.10% at $43.61. The stock’s 52-week range is $30.36 to $46.37. Volume was about 40% below the daily average of around 25 million. The company had no specific news Friday.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) traded up 1.67% at $190.00. The stock’s 52-week range is $142.20 to$190.37. Volume was about 40% below the daily average of around 31 million shares. The company’s annual developer conference begins Monday.

Of the Dow stocks, 25 are on track to close higher Friday and 5 are set to close lower.