After Market: Volatility Rules Wall Street as Indexes Drop Again


Stocks bounced in and out of the plus column Monday, as the heavy selling from last week subsided. Wall Street didn't see the big, momentum-selling of previous sessions, but trading remained volatile, and investors are wary of another big downturn. No one's sure whether the wave of selling is over, or just taking a break.

The VIX, which measure volatility, rose to its highest level in more than three months.

The Dow Jones industrial average (^DJI) gave up its modest gains in the final few minutes, losing another 41 points, and extending its losing streak to five days, and more than 600 points. The Standard & Poor's 500 index (^GPSC) fell 8, and the Nasdaq composite (^IXIC) lost 44 points.

Among the blue chips, Caterpillar (CAT) rose 6 percent after posting better than expected results and forecasting that sales this year will stabilize after declining in 2013. It also revealed plans to buy back up to $10 billion of company stock.

Merck (MRK) gained 1 percent, moving to a 52-week high. JPMorgan raised its rating by two notches.

United Technologies (UTX) gained 2 percent. A defense industry newsletter said the company is considering the sale or spinoff its Sikorsky helicopter unit.

But some financials remain weak. Visa (V) and Goldman Sachs (GS) both lost 2 percent.

Some of the big name Nasdaq stocks fell. Cisco (CSCO) lost 1 percent on a JPMorgan downgrade. The analyst there says the company has a big emerging markets exposure. Microsoft (MSFT), Google (GOOG) and Facebook (FB) all down about 2 percent. But Apple (AAPL) gained nearly 1 percent ahead of its earnings report.

Homebuilders were weak following a Barclay's downgrade. KBHome (KBH) lost 3 percent.

Elsewhere, Charter Communications (CHTR) jumped 4 percent on word that Comcast (CMCSA) is unlikely to make a solo bid for Time Warner Cable (TWC). That reduces the chances that Charter will need to fight a bidding war in its own quest to acquire its larger rival. Comcast gained nearly 1 percent, Time Warner was little changed, and Cablevision gained 4 percent.

Xerox (XRX) lost 5.5 percent on a pair of brokerage downgrades.

And the biotech firm Geron (GERN) slid 15 percent as 20 patients withdrew from a key clinical drug study.

What to Watch Tuesday:
  • The Commerce Department releases durable goods for December at 8:30 a.m. Eastern time.
  • Standard & Poor's releases the S&P/Case-Shiller index of home prices for November at 9 a.m.
  • The Conference Board releases the Consumer Confidence Index for January at 10 a.m.
  • Federal Reserve policymakers begin a two-day meeting to set interest rates.
These major companies are due to report quarterly financial results:
  • American Airlines Group (AAL)
  • Amgen (AMGN)
  • AT&T (T)
  • Comcast (CMCSA)
  • D.R. Horton (DHI)
  • DuPont (DD)
  • Ford Motor (F)
  • Pfizer (PFE)
  • T. Rowe Price (TROW)
  • Yahoo (YHOO)
-Produced by Drew Trachtenberg.

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What is Scorch dude on break again?

January 28 2014 at 4:34 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Back in the early 1950's many of us did not have to worry about the cost of things because riding in a Nash and feeding the ducks at the park was how we passed the time. :)

And for some of you worried about the freezing temperatures take a breather your probably going to a place much warmer where money can't go!

January 28 2014 at 4:27 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

The freeze and thaw will also create demand for materials and services needed for water main breaks and other related damages. Hopefully while your sewer is out of service you can get some relief at the mall for free!

Unfortunately taxes may rise because money wasn't in the budgets for this unexpected freeze and thaw damage. The good thing is the 1% would make a good source of revenue!

January 28 2014 at 4:17 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Yes I think the Waltons will clean up with their tire centers that is just due to their coverage in the particular sector. It's too late for Strauss since their gone.

Cooper tire should clean up. Schumacher will clean up. Power Converter makers will also cleanup because when added to the jump starters they provide emergency power to some devices in the home during short term power failures for those with out power generators.

January 28 2014 at 4:04 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

Damages from the continued freeze and thaw has only just begun and total costs for repairs is not known. Damaged vehicle tires from pot holes and collapsed roads will benefit tire sales. Tire manufacturers will see an increase in demand as a reduction in inventory at warehouses drop and tire shops request more tires. Consumers will need DC powered jump starters, new vehicle batteries, and DC powered tire inflaters. I see a rebound for the auto parts shops who deal in the above mentioned items.

January 28 2014 at 3:50 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

During the 1970's recession malls tried to recoop funds for water use, toilet paper, paper towels, hot hair dryer use, and increased maintanance by installing coin operated rest room stalls. The consumers retaliated by tearing the stalls apart.

January 28 2014 at 3:29 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

I just happen to know what I said below is true in the other posts is fact. I wish you better luck next time.

January 28 2014 at 3:22 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Consumers can save on some energy costs and consumables by going to the mall:
Toilet paper and water savings.
Hanging out and staying warm while your thermostat is turned down at home.

January 28 2014 at 3:13 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Unexpected energy bills for this prolonged cold weather means previous calculations for demand and current correction in the stock market have changed for the worse.

You don't need a economics degree to figure out the ramifications of uncalculated drops in sales and more job seekers than customers. If the unemployment doesn't rise you know the data is being manipulated by those who think they are fooling somebody.

Here in NJ you can see the manipulation already as explanations of missing people in the labor force fools nobody!

January 28 2014 at 2:58 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Once this freeze starts to thaw the lost of money will become apparent as traffic at the stores and other purchases drop significantly. The uncalculated drop in sales will come on top of the correction in the stock market further driving share prices down forcing a selloff deeper than had been predicted!

As the thaw in the weather begins later the job seekers will be returning to the job market driving up unemployment rates along with the workers being laid off to cover the drop in sales as demand drops.

January 28 2014 at 2:43 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply