Chalk up another new closing high for the S&P on Thursday, but the big news this session was the tech rally that lifted the NASDAQ by more than 1% despite continued low trading activity. Meanwhile, the major indices are heading into Friday with solid gains for the week.
The tech-heavy index jumped 1.03% (or about 140 points) today to 13,829.31, which ends two straight days of slight losses. It also puts the NASDAQ within 2% of its all-time closing high just under 14,100 from almost two months ago.
The S&P’s trek through record territory toward 4100 continued on Thursday, as it rose 0.42% to 4097.17. That marks two consecutive days of record highs, as well as four in the first five sessions of April 2021. Meanwhile, the Dow advanced 0.17% (or about 57 points) to 33,503.57.
The market stayed positive despite a disappointing jobless claims number, which soared to 744,000 last week. The print was expected to stay below 700K. The number was also more than the previous week’s upwardly revised mark of 728K.
It’s hard to get too disheartened by this news, though, in the wake of last Friday’s Government Employment Situation report. Not only did the result soar past expectations by more than 200K, but many investors expect this to be the beginning of a labor rebound as the vaccine rollout continues and the economy reopens.
For right now though, the major indices go into Friday’s session with solid gains for the week. The NASDAQ is up more than 2.5% through the first four days, while the S&P is knocking on the door of 2%. The Dow goes into the final session higher by about 1%.
And then once this week is over… it’s all about earnings season!
Today’s Portfolio Highlights:
Blockchain Innovators: As subscribers of this portfolio know, Dave isn’t afraid to take a chance and add a riskier name that’s promoting blockchain technology. But today’s addition of The Hackett Group (HCKT) isn’t like that. This Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) advisory firm is very established with a track record on Wall Street and a steady business outside of blockchain exposure. The company provides all kinds of advice on things like shared services, offshoring and outsourcing… but it also offers businesses with suggestions on how to integrate blockchain technologies. The editor appreciates that EPS growth for the current year is expected at more than 50% for HCKT, while next year is in the double-digits as well. Read the full write-up for more on this new addition. In other news, this portfolio had three of the top five winners among all ZU names on Thursday, including the only double-digit return. Those strong performances came from Rekor Systems (REKR, +10.4%), Danaos (DAC, +5.7%) and Exp World Holdings (EXPI, +4.9%).
TAZR Trader: After a nice consolidation above $1150, Kevin thinks that Shopify (SHOP) is poised to challenge bigger resistance in the $1250 to $1300 zone. And it could happen in just a matter of days! Therefore, the editor added to this cloud-based, multi-channel commerce platform on Thursday. SHOP was originally picked up in early March and is currently up more than 8% in the portfolio. Read the full write-up for more.
Commodity Innovators: The portfolio had a busy session on Thursday with two sells (both for double-digit returns) and three buys. First of all, Jeremy sold Steel Dynamics (STLD) and Sunoco (SUN) for profits of 35% and 13.2%, respectively. Both names recently hit their targets after being in the portfolio for a few months. The new buys include Nutrien (NTR) and Devon Energy (DVN), which are both Zacks Rank #1s (Strong Buy). NTR is a fertilizer name that gives the service some agriculture exposure, while DVN is an energy company that’s holding its 50-day MA very nicely. The editor also got back into Energy Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLE) since its dividend yield is well over 4% again. DVN is a long term holding, while the other two are mid-terms. Read the full write-up for a lot more on all of today’s action.
Surprise Trader: One of the first companies to report every earnings season is good old Alcoa (AA), the global leader in bauxite, alumina and aluminum products. It reports after the bell next Thursday, April 15, when it will be going for a fifth straight beat. A positive Earnings ESP of 8.9% suggests that AA is poised to keep the streak alive next week. Last quarter’s surprise was 73%. Furthermore, the company is a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) and part of a space (Metal Products – Distribution) that’s in the top 32% of the Zacks Industry Rank. Dave added AA on Thursday with a 12.5% allocation, while selling the rest of Primoris (PRIM) for a 4.6% return. See the complete commentary for more on today’s moves.
Have a Good Evening,
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