Stocks traded in mixed fashion today with the Dow down 12 at 21,397 while the NASDAQ gained for the second day in a row. Trading volume was lower across the board.
As the Paris airshow winds down Airbus has taken orders for 346 jets while Boeing has gotten orders for a whopping 572 airplanes worth about a gazillion dollars. The boys in Wichita, Renton and Everett will be working overtime to keep up with this year’s haul!
Bank stress tests are due out later today as 34 big banks will reveal how they stood up under a scenario in which unemployment is at 10%, home prices drop 25% and commercial real-estate prices decline 35%. If the banks pass the test then they will be allowed to increase dividends and do share buybacks. It is estimated that if all the banks pass the test then they could return upwards of $150 billion in capital to shareholders.
Oil prices stabilized somewhat today as WTI crude gain 0.6% to $42.68 a barrel.
Healthcare stocks have done well the past couple of days being led higher by the health insurance segment. The gurus are attributing the rise of this sector to the release of the Senate healthcare bill which aims to eliminate Obamacare but continue subsidies to insurance companies for 2 years while phasing out taxes and Medicaid’s expansion program. We will see how is all shakes out but some market watchers have noted that with or without reform, they feel certain parts of healthcare, like the biotech’s, are trading at the lowest valuation levels in decades.