Fri10312014

Business & Real Estate

Brace for quarterly earnings surprises

Starting this week, we are headed into the earnings season, which could bring some healthy – and unhealthy – surprises. The market remains bullish, and it would need to suffer a significant correction over the next three to 10 weeks to become bearish.

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Dow Jones average exceeds 17,000

July is a cool time to own stocks. If you’re thinking of going on vacation to a sandy beach, you better keep in touch. The Dow Jones industrial average topped 17,000 for the first time Thursday on a bullish June jobs report.

With the market closed Friday for Fourth of July, Thursday the Dow was up 92.02 points at a record-high 17,068.26. The S&P 500 closed at 1,985.44, just short of a new 52-week high.

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Market looks for new milestones

With the first half of the year gone, Wall Street analysts are looking for a big rebound in the second half. Earnings reports start arriving this month, and investors expect second-quarter profits to rise 5.4 percent over a year ago.

The Dow Jones industrial average reached nearly 17,000 last quarter, and the S&P 500 is only 40 points from 2,000, up 5 percent for the year. Even with daily market ups and downs, the next two quarters look favorable.

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Market still follows Fed Reserve moves

After Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen last week said the economic outlook appeared positive and hinted that interest rates would remain low through 2016, the market continued toward more new highs.

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Checking stocks in down market

We’ve all had that gut-clenching feeling when we check our stocks and the market is down more than 100 points. Scanning the headlines for more information is a common practice if we’re concerned and thinking of making a move.

However, the most common complaint about the stock market in recent days has been dullness. Even after the Dow Jones industrial average fell more than 100 points on two days last week, we expected to see some life sooner or later.

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Record highs keep on coming

Last week resulted in another good run for the market. Thursday ended with record highs, with the Dow Jones industrial average up nearly 0.60 percent, the Nasdaq up 1.05 percent and the S&P 500 index up 0.65 percent. By noon Friday, more records shattered as the Dow edged up another 0.40 percent.

With the indexes reaching all-time highs, the majority money opinion is positive, but investors’ enthusiasm may be exhausted and a correction could be coming.

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S&P 500 sets another closing record

The S&P 500 index scored its third record-high closing in four market days Thursday, reaching 1,920.03. The Dow Jones industrial average closed at 16,698.68. Sell in May and go away? Not this year.

As the market advances, investors’ money is not in doubt. The question is whether investors’ enthusiasm has declined amid the up-and-down market volatility. New claims for unemployment benefits fell more than expected and provided another incentive to purchase U.S. stocks.

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