U.S. equities were in for a roller coaster ride today, as mixed earnings data and poor economic reports led major indexes to slide sideways for the majority of the trading day. Today’s biggest headliner was Apple, whose quarterly earnings missed the mark: this is only the second time in 39 quarters that the behemoth company missed analysts’ expectations. Blue chips, however, managed to pull their weight as Boeing along with other large industrial companies reported strong earnings. With today’s mixed data, only one major index was able to snap their three-day streak of triple-digit declines: the Dow Jones Industrial average rose 0.5%, while the S&P 500 slipped less than 1 point and the tech-heavy Nasdaq fell 0.3% [see also Seven Simple & Cheap ETF Model Portfolio].
Markets were disappointed with today’s U.S. housing data, which came in significantly lower than expected. New home sales in June were reported at 350,000, well below the forecasted 372,000. Across the Atlantic, UK GDP also came in worse than expected, showing a decline of 0.7% versus the predicted 0.2% decline. Australia’s consumer price index showed a slight slowdown in inflation from last year’s 1.6% reading [see ETF Technical Trading FAQ].
The Van Eck Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF (GDX) was one of the strongest performers, gaining 3.05% on the day. This ETF was bolstered by a rally in gold spot prices coupled with a rise in commodities across the board. GDX gapped at the open, only to push higher throughout the day and end on a relatively strong note [see also Why Jim Rogers Thinks Gold Will Drop 20%].
The United States Natural Gas Fund (UNG) was one of the weakest performers, shedding 3.15% on the day. After a wildly successful few days of trading, this ETF cooled off its winning streak ahead of tomorrow’s inventory reports as profit taking pressures prompted investors to lock in gains. UNG gapped slightly lower at the open, only to tumble lower during mid-morning trading hours [see also Commodity Stock Plays in the 2012 Dividend Achievers].
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Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.