01 October, 2007

Markets start October with a Bang as Dow hits All Time High

The rally continues in the wake of the Fed Rate Cut last month and stocks extended gains as the calendar changed from September to October. The Dow hit an all time intra-day high of 14,115 points as the index gained over 190 points. The Nasdaq followed suit with an almost 40 point gain and the S&P held up a 20 point gain. Canadian markets ended with about half the gains of its US counterparts as investors bought stocks across the board bidding the TSX up 100 points. The advance was broad and spanned every sector. Volume was also much heavier than the week prior as investors on the sidelines during the end of the quarter jumped back into the markets to fuel the rally.

Citigroup (C) drifted off its highs late but was up over 3% in the afternoon as it provided an optimistic outlook for the remainder of the year. The financial heavyweight announced that profit fell 60% due to loses in credit and mortgage securities totalled almost $6Billion. Guess the big bank guys weren't as smart of those Goldman Sachs (GS) traders who shorted such monstrous amounts of mortgage investments to cover up and make up hefty losses. Nonetheless investors were pleased as Citigroup told the markets they expect a calendar 4th quarter that would return things to the norm. Goldman gained another 3% to close at $223.

Nokia (NOK) also made headlines, and started the day well down, as it announced the purchase of Navteq (NVT), the navigation software company, for over $8Billion. Nokia shook off the early heavy drop before the market opened and managed to close the day in the green and even hit a 52-week high above $38/share. Nokia hopes to leverage Navteq's expertise in maps and navigation into its future lineup of mobile phones. The loser here apparently was Garmin (GRMN) as its shares fell 10% on investor speculation that it lost the bid for Navteq's service and now faces stiffer competition from Nokia.

New highs were aplenty in Tech stocks as Ebay (EBAY), Apple (AAPL), IBM (IBM), Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) and Google (GOOG) all hit new marks, while Research In Motion (RIMM) and Amazon (AMZN) came oh so close. Google continued its sharp rise adding $15 and crossing the $580/share price mark for the first time in its young public history. As major techs get set to report earnings in the coming weeks it'll be increasing difficult to judge which of those companies are too inflated for their own growth prospects. But now, while the rally is in full swing, investors are coming back into play and buying Technology ahead of earnings and the seasonally strong holiday quarter.

Disclosure: Author is long AAPL, GOOG, GS, C

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