Dow, S&P 500 Surge Late, Score Modest Gains

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The Dow was lower by triple digits at 3:30 p.m.

Stocks kicked off a critical week with a lot of volatility. Wall Street is anxiously awaiting the start of the U.S. Federal Reserve’s two-day policy meeting tomorrow, which could bring a 75-basis-point hike. The Dow and S&P 500 traded on both sides of the aisle but scored a last-minute surge into positive territory, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq finished modestly lower.

This will also be a big week of corporate earnings, with a slew of Big Tech reports set to roll in, in addition to a gross domestic product (GDP) reading that may be indicative of a recession. Elsewhere, the Cboe Volatility Index (VIX) snapped a four-day losing streak today, but remains below the psychologically significant 25 level.

Continue reading for more on today’s market, including:

  • Microsoft stock picks up pre-earnings bear note.
  • Analyst dubs Chinese stock a catalyst driven idea.”
  • Plus, UAL downgraded; why Squarespace stock took a hit; and can this alternative energy name beat expectations?

The Dow Jones Average (DJI – 31,990.04) gained 90.8 points, or 0.3% for the day. Chevron (CVX) led the gainers, adding 3%. Salesforce (CRM) paced the laggards, falling 2.8%.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX – 3,966.84) added 5.2 points, or 0.1% for the day. Meanwhile, the Nasdaq Composite (IXIC -11,782.67) shed 51.5 points, or 0.4% for the session.

Lastly, the Cboe Market Volatility Index (VIX – 23.36) added 0.3 point, or 1.4% for the day. 

5 Things to Know Today

  1. The National Football League (NFL) launched a new streaming service called NFL+,  which includes all out-of-market pre-season games for $4.99 per month. (CNBC)
  2. These stocks could benefit from a heat wave that has led to multiple advisories, with temperatures hitting records in both Boston and Providence. (MarketWatch)
  3. United Airlines stock moved lower on a downgrade to “neutral.”
  4. A disappointing revenue outlook weighed on Squarespace stock.
  5. Checking in with this alternative energy stock before earnings.

Gold Prices Cool Ahead of Fed Decision

Oil prices finished higher on Monday, but are expected to be volatile this week ahead of the central bank’s decision and the U.S. jobs report. September-dated crude rose $1.83, or 1.0%, to settle at $96.53 per barrel. 

Gold prices, meanwhile, finished lower, as traders eye the outcome of the Fed’s two-day meeting, and what impact it may have on the U.S. dollar. August-dated gold fell $8.30, or 0.5%, to close at $1,719.10 an ounce.