Stock Market Today

Stock Market Today: Dow Hits 35K as Rally Spurs Fresh Index Records

Twitter and Snap had strong showings in the earnings confessional.

In a mirror image to last week, the major market indexes continued to rebound from Monday's sharp selloff to close Friday at new record highs across the board.

Today's gains came on the back of mixed economic data. On the plus side, IHS Markit's flash purchasing managers index (PMI) hit a record high of 63.1 in July, with growth supported by an uptick in new orders across the manufacturing sector.

On the negative side, the flash services PMI edged down to 59.8 from its June reading of 64.6, indicating the rate of expansion in the services industry (which includes restaurants and hotels) slowed amid "hikes in supplier prices and a greater need to hire additional workers."

Corporate earnings were also in focus, with stronger-than-expected results from social media names Twitter (TWTR, +3.1%) and Snap (SNAP, +23.8%) lifting the collective mood on Wall Street.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended up 0.7% at 35,061 – its first-ever close above the 35K mark. "Although there is nothing necessarily special about milestone numbers, 35,000 is yet another reminder of how far we've come," says Ryan Detrick, chief market strategist for LPL Financial. "This bull market is alive and well thanks to a very strong economy and record earnings, justifying current levels and likely higher prices in the future."

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The S&P 500 Index and Nasdaq Composite settled at new record highs, too, gaining 1.0% to 4,411 and 1.0% to 14,836, respectively.

Other action in the stock market today:

  • The small-cap Russell 2000 rose 0.2% to 2,209.
  • Intel (INTC) was the worst Dow stock today, shedding 5.3%. While the chipmaker reported higher-than-anticipated adjusted earnings and revenues for its second quarter, INTC issued a cautious guidance for the current quarter amid continued supply constraints.
  • Boston Beer (SAM) was another earnings loser today, slumping 26.0% in the wake of its results. In the second quarter, the maker of Sam Adams beer fell short on both the top and bottom line and lowered its full-year forecast. "The hard seltzer category and overall beer industry were softer than we had anticipated," noted Jim Koch, founder and chairman of SAM.
  • U.S. crude oil futures edged up 0.2% to $72.07 per barrel.
  • Gold futures slipped 0.2% to settle at $1,801.80 an ounce.
  • The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) fell 2.8% to 17.20.
  • Bitcoin eased back 0.3% to $32,304.53. (Bitcoin trades 24 hours a day; prices reported here are as of 4 p.m. each trading day.)
stock price chart 072321

YCharts

Time to Work On That Core

This week was discombobulating for investors, to say the least, as Monday's deep selloff on COVID concerns was quickly shrugged off over the ensuing days.

"Monday's tempest passed quickly, but the key point is that the market focus has shifted from an inflation scare to a (brief) growth scare," says Douglas Porter, chief economist for BMO Capital Markets. "At least some concern on the growth front is certainly warranted by the unnerving jump in virus cases in many regions, even if the market has apparently brushed off such concerns."

In other words: New record highs, while appreciated, don't necessarily dash the potential for additional summer volatility. With so many aspects of the recovery remaining uncertain, investors might consider tending to their portfolio core.

These low-cost Vanguard exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and mutual funds, and our Kiplinger ETF 20, can be of help. All of these funds are among the cheapest in their class and offer a variety of strategies across a number of market areas.

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