Dow Jones Leads Market, But India Protectionism Hurts

Blue chips in the Dow Jones Industrial Average led the pack late Friday morning after trailing the day before. Exxon Mobil (XOM) and Chevron (CVX), the two oil stocks in the Dow, lifted the index with substantial gains after topping views.




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The Dow popped 0.6%, while the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq tacked on 0.1% and 0.2% respectively. The Dow Jones utility average was down as much as 1.1% before shaving some of that loss. It led the market with a 2.1% advance Thursday.

While bulls appreciated the Nasdaq’s 1.4% gain Thursday, the outperformance of utilities and the divergence in the key averages were odd developments. In “How to Make Money in Stocks,” William J. O’Neil noted that divergences can be a way to identify key market turning points. But Thursday’s divergence could be a positive turning point since the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 are more broadly based than the Dow.

Bullish Breakouts

Breakouts too are adding to the market’s bullish tilt.

Stocks breaking out Friday morning included footwear marketer Deckers Outdoor (DECK), up 12%; investment banker LPL Financial (LPLA), up 8%; medical equipment maker PerkinElmer (PKI), up 3.5%; Procter & Gamble (PG), up 0.3%; outsourcing medical firm Medpace (MEDP), up 3.5%; and Honeywell spin-off and connected vehicle technology provider Garrett Motion (GTX), up 2.5%.

All were moving on earnings results.

Exxon and Chevron also moved on earnings beats, surging 4% and 3% respectively. The two blue chips, though, are about 12% and 9% off their recent highs, respectively. Light sweet crude oil rose 0.9% to $54.28.

Amazon.com (AMZN) and Walmart (WMT) ran into trouble Friday morning. The stocks fell 3.5% and 2.5% respectively in heavy volume. The catalyst was a New York Times report that new protectionist regulations in India are forcing the companies to pull items from their online sites.

Economic Data

The nonfarm payroll report soared to 304,000 new jobs — 92% greater than expected.

The University of Michigan’s consumer sentiment gauge came in at 91.2, just below the consensus estimate for 91.4. The reading was the weakest since President Donald Trump became president. Analysts said the government shutdown has hurt consumer confidence.

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