Bullish Week for U.S. Markets

The market started off with a slump on Monday as the Dow fell from its closing price of 17898.70 on Friday to an opening price of 17711.86 with the S&P 500 and the NASDAQ in a similar situation. However, all three indices rose throughout the week. The Dow closed at 18,014.28, up about 200 points from Monday. The NASDAQ shot up to 5,117.00, up about 100 points from its opening price. The S&P 500 also performed very well, closing at 2109.75, up about 100 points from Monday. The biggest gainer of this week is Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia (MSO), a media and merchandising company, with a whopping 35.55% increase over the course of the week.
The biggest loser is Goodrich Petroleum, with a 32.92% decline, after crude oil prices fell. Volatility took a nose dive as it fell from 15.48% to 13.19%.

Fitbit (FIT) jumps ahead by 52%

Perhaps the biggest event of the week is Fitbit's (FIT) IPO. The company rallied over 50% as the shares opened at $30.40, up from its IPO of $20.00. The company's success can be attributed to it's showing the investor that it can grow and make a profit. To say Fitbit has grown quite a bit is an understatement. Revenues grew almost ten times in the past two years while the number of users went from 0.6 to 6.7 million. But Fitbit is not without its competitors such as Apple (AAPL) and Microsoft (MSFT). The Apple Watch and Microsoft band both contain many similar features to Fitbit and are both poised to be formidable rivals. Thus, the wearable technology market appears to be unsaturated and allows Fitbit to thrive, at least for now.

Economy adds 280,000 new jobs

Investors were more confident this week after Federal Reserve Chair Yellen's press conference as bond yields and volatility fell. Chairwoman Yellen stated that she would like to see higher inflation rates and better job growth before proceeding with an interest rate hike. The economy is also improving after a brief decline in December last year. The U.S. Department of Labor reported that the number of jobless claims fell below 300,000 with the economy adding 280,000 jobs. A falling number of jobless claims is usually an indication of an improving economy. However, it doesn't take into consideration of the number of people who have given up looking for jobs, which removes them from the workforce.

Dollar falls against euro

The uncertainty over the Fed's interest rate hike and negotiations between Greece and its creditors have limited the movement of the dollar. The dollar fell against the euro on Friday as investors lowered their expectations for higher U.S. borrowing cost after Chairwoman Yellen casted doubts over interest rate hikes in the near future. This prompted investors to sell the dollar and led the dollar to fall. Earlier this year, economic signs pointed to an interest rate hike in September or even as early as June, but the recent decline in forecasts for growth and interest rate led many to question whether an interest rate will occur at all this year.

Stock pick of the week

Alaska Air Group (ALK) is this week's stock pick. The company's sales and net income have grown in the past year and its revenue outpaced the average competitor in the industry. Its net income increased from 94 million in Q1 Fiscal year 2014 to 149 million in Q1 Fiscal year 2015, slightly below industrial average in terms of percentage.
Published on Jun 19, 2015
By Adam Colgate

Copyrighted 2016. Content published with author's permission.

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