Markets

Stock Market Today: Stocks End Wobbly Week With a Mixed Finish

Tech stocks lagged on Friday, but cyclicals helped buoy the Dow Jones Industrial Average after a better-than-expected CPI reading.

Friday perfectly reflected the past week-plus of trading, with a roller-coaster session that ended up with mixed results for the broader indices and disappointing finishes for several large tech stocks.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average, which gained 0.5% to 27,665, saw relative outperformance from cyclical plays such as Nike (NKE, +2.8%), Dow (DOW, +2.4%) and Caterpillar (CAT, +2.7%), but weakness in Apple (AAPL, -1.3%), Microsoft (MSFT, -0.7%) and Salesforce.com (CRM, -1.9%).

The decent performance for the Dow came after a better-than-expected August print of the consumer price index, which rose 0.4% month-over-month.

"The continued firming of prices in the August report, similarly to last month, was partly driven by components impacted by Covid unwinding some of their previous large declines and bouncing back from depressed levels." says Rick Rieder, BlackRock's chief investment officer of global fixed income. "Overall, we think 2020’s broadly deflationary influences may well lead to somewhat higher rates of inflation by mid-2021, yet, importantly, we do not expect this to reach excessive levels."

Other action in the stock market today:

  • The S&P 500 closed with a marginal gain to 3,340.
  • The Nasdaq Composite finished 0.6% lower to 10,853.
  • The small-cap Russell 2000 declined 0.7% to 1,497.

Up next week is a light earnings calendar, but one with a few important economic bellwethers including FedEx (FDX) and homebuilder Lennar (LEN).

How the "Younger Crowd" Invests

In addition to our own analysis of stocks, ETFs and mutual funds, we often highlight the comings and goings of other noteworthy investors.

Researching the recent purchases of billionaires and other institutional investors, as well as their sells, can be educational, given the research resources available to these high rollers. The same goes for the Berkshire Hathaway equity portfolio, which gives us insights not just into one of Wall Street's most legendary investors (Warren Buffett, of course), but also the lieutenants who are being groomed to likely replace him.

Another group of investors worth watching, too: Millennials.

While older generations have much more invested, this generation is already helping to shape Wall Street in several ways, such as the growth of environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) investing.

The growing importance of ESG standards is coming through loud and clear from corporate communications. FactSet's John Butters notes that in a search for the term "ESG" in conference call transcripts from S&P 500 companies between June 15 through Sept. 5 showed 60 citing the term.

"Although this number is only 12% of the companies in the index," Butters writes, "it reflects a 100% increase compared to the number of companies citing “ESG” in the previous quarter (30) and is the second highest overall number of companies going back at least four years."

Custodian Apex Clearing recently reviewed more than a million Millennial accounts to determine the most popular stocks among this generation's investors. We've looked not just at some of the very top holdings, but also some of the biggest changes made to their portfolios over the wild past few months.

Most Popular

Are You Still Chasing the Almighty Dollar, Even Though You Have Plenty to Retire?
retirement

Are You Still Chasing the Almighty Dollar, Even Though You Have Plenty to Retire?

In our experience, many have saved enough money to retire comfortably. Yet too many worry about their money running out and want more. Maybe it’s tim…
May 6, 2021
Child Tax Credit 2021: Who Gets $3,600? Will I Get Monthly Payments? And Other FAQs
Coronavirus and Your Money

Child Tax Credit 2021: Who Gets $3,600? Will I Get Monthly Payments? And Other FAQs

People have lots of questions about the new $3,000 or $3,600 child tax credit and the advance payments that the IRS will send to most families in 2021…
May 4, 2021
20 Dividend Stocks to Fund 20 Years of Retirement
dividend stocks

20 Dividend Stocks to Fund 20 Years of Retirement

Each of these high-quality dividend stocks yields roughly 4%, and you can expect them to grow their payouts even more. That's a powerful 1-2 combo for…
May 7, 2021

Recommended

Stock Market Today 5/7/21: Stocks Rise as Jarring Jobs Miss Cools Taper Talk
Stock Market Today

Stock Market Today 5/7/21: Stocks Rise as Jarring Jobs Miss Cools Taper Talk

The Dow and S&P 500 ended the week at new highs after a big nonfarm payrolls miss eased anxiety the Fed will tighten the purse strings.
May 7, 2021
Kiplinger's Weekly Earnings Calendar
stocks

Kiplinger's Weekly Earnings Calendar

Check out our earnings calendar for the upcoming week, as well as our previews of the more noteworthy reports.
May 7, 2021
Stock Market Today 5/6/21: Dow Hits Record, Nasdaq Snaps Skid After Late Push
Stock Market Today

Stock Market Today 5/6/21: Dow Hits Record, Nasdaq Snaps Skid After Late Push

A sharp drop in unemployment claims had the Dow poised for another record, but an afternoon push got the Nasdaq into the black, too.
May 6, 2021
Stock Market Today 5/5/21: Dow Ekes Out Record, Nasdaq Retreats Again
Stock Market Today

Stock Market Today 5/5/21: Dow Ekes Out Record, Nasdaq Retreats Again

Energy and materials stocks led the way Wednesday as good (albeit not great) economic data was enough to push the Dow to new highs.
May 5, 2021