Markets closed flat on Monday as investors remained cautious ahead of the Federal Reserve’s monetary statement.
On a day of listless trading, benchmarks remained unaffected by news that Greece had concluded its debt deal with private creditors.
Nonetheless, the Dow registered its fourth straight day of gains and was up all through the trading session unlike its fellow benchmarks.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average (:DJI) rose 0.3% and closed the day at 12,959.71.
The Standard & Poor 500 (S&P 500) edged up 0.02% to finish yesterday’s trading session largely unchanged at 1,371.09.
The Nasdaq Composite Index dropped a mere 0.2% and settled at 2,983.66.
The fear gauge CBOE Volatility Index (:VIX) slumped 8.6% to settle at 15.64, the lowest level since May 2011.
Decliners beat advancing stocks on the NYSE, as for 44% of stocks that gained, 52% of the stocks traded lower.
While both hovered in the red for most of the morning session, the S&P 500 managed to crawl up during the afternoon and ended negligibly higher.
The Nasdaq vacillated between negligible gains and losses, finally closing in the red zone.
However, it was the blue chip index that remained in the green seat through the trading session and subsequently recorded its fourth consecutive finish in the positive zone.
Among the 30 Dow components, 21 finished in the green while The Travelers Companies, Inc.
(NYSE:TRV) closed unchanged and the remaining 8 stocks closed in the red.
(NYSE:AA), The Boeing Company (NYSE:BA), General Electric Company (NYSE:GE), The Home Depot, Inc.
(NYSE:MRK), The Procter & Gamble Company (NYSE:PG) and Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM) jumped 0.6%, 0.4%, 0.5%, 1.0%, 0.9%, 1.3%, 1.2% and 1.5%, respectively.
Apprehensions surrounding the Federal Reserve’s monetary statement, which is due on Tuesday, kept the investors on their toes.
Investors will be keen to find out the central bank’s stance on monetary easing policy.
The Bank of England is the central bank of the United Kingdom and the model on which most modern central banks have been based.
Even during his last congressional testimony, Fed chairman Ben Bernanke provided little hope of a third round of bond buying.
The central bank will also expectedly leave the interest rate unaltered at historically low levels.
Established in 1694, it is the second oldest central bank in the world (the oldest being the Sveriges Riksbank , established in 1668).
Additionally, the Fed will be disclosing the results of the bank stress test.
This is a crucial indicator of the stability of large banks during economic turmoil.
The stress result will also decide if the banks can opt for dividend payouts and buyback of shares.
These concerns kept the financial sector hovering in the negative zone with the Financial SPDR Select Sector Fund (:XLF) losing 0.3% and the KBW Bank Index (:BKX) settling 0.7% lower.
Bellwethers like Bank of America Corporation (NYSE:BAC), The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc.
(NYSE:JPM), Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) and Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE:WFC), which are a part of this test, lost 0.8%, 0.3%, 1.2%, 0.9% and 0.5%, respectively.
Markets largely focused on domestic news yesterday and overlooked foreign developments.
Private investors have agreed to shoulder a substantial amount of the country’s debt load, easing the way for Greece to receive the next tranche of its bailout package.
Victor Arrington is a business journalist based in Orange, California. Victor has a passion for financial markets and breaking news stories and loves writing about business news, stock market, and economic opinions that matters most to its audience. Victor spends a lot of time discovering and researching latest financial markets and industry news stories in order to make sure the latest and greatest stories are brought to you first on BigBoardNews.com.