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SP500 Daily Chart.
07/09/09 16:30 ET Dow +4.76 at 8183.17, Nasdaq +5.38 at 1752.55, S&P +3.12 at 882.68:
[BRIEFING.COM] Stocks made modest gains amid choppy trading that followed Alcoa's latest earnings announcement, disappointing retail sales data, and a mixed weekly jobless claims report.
Dow component Alcoa (AA 9.23, -0.23) kicked off earnings season last night with its second quarter earnings announcement. The company posted an adjusted loss of $0.26 per share, but that wasn't as bad as what had been expected. Alcoa showed strength in the early going and provided a boost to the materials sector, but the aluminum giant's shares inevitably faltered. Still, the broader materials sector was able to log a 1.0% gain as commodities prices rebounded amid a weaker U.S. dollar.
Crude oil futures prices rebounded from six straight losses to finish pit trading near $60.30 per barrel, up 0.2%. Though oil's advance was modest, energy stocks were able to log a 1.1% gain.
By climbing 1.4%, financial stocks saw the strongest gains of any major sector. However, the financial sector's strength failed to inspire a concerted buying effort in the broader market.
Semiconductor stocks also showed strength and helped the Semiconductor Index climb 2.8%. Strength among semiconductors did little to support the headline indices, though.
Retailers spent the entire session trading in-line with the broader market. Though their 0.4% gain appears modest, the upturn came amid a barrage of disappointing June same-store sales reports that were highlighted by negative results.
The broader market was restrained a bit by news that continuing jobless claims marched to another new record high by coming in at 6.88 million. That feat overshadowed news that the latest initial jobless claims fell more than expected to 565,000. Though that marked the first time since January that initial claims came in below 600,000, participants recognized that the lower claims number came during a holiday week and that the number will likely be offset in coming weeks.
Nasdaq +5.38 at 1752.55... S&P Midcap 400 +0.3... NYSE Adv/Dec 1812/1178... Nasdaq Adv/Dec 1304/1301.
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