The Dow Jones Industrial Average briefly rallied more than 150 points Thursday amid stimulus hopes and rising jobless claims. The price of Bitcoin surged above $23,000, while Roku stock jumped 6% on a streaming deal with HBO Max. Shopify added to Wednesday’s breakout move.
Dow Jones Today: Rising Jobless Claims
On Thursday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average moved up 0.3%, while the S&P 500 rose 0.4%. The tech-heavy Nasdaq composite gained 0.5% in midday trade.
The Labor Department reported another increase in jobless claims Thursday at 885,000 in the week ended Dec. 12. That figure was higher than economist projections for a decrease to 806,000.
U.S. Stock Market Today Overview
Last Update: 10:30 AM ET 12/17/2020
Amid the coronavirus stock market rally, the tech-heavy Nasdaq is up 41.1% for the year through Wednesday’s close. The S&P 500 is up 14.6%, while the DJIA is up 5.7% year to date, through the Dec. 16 close.
Lawmakers are getting close to reaching a $900 billion stimulus package that they would attach to a must-pass government funding bill with a deadline at midnight Friday.
The $900 billion stimulus deal would reportedly include direct checks to Americans, extra jobless benefits, more money for small business loans and airline aid.
According to the Worldometer data tracker, the cumulative number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. topped 17.4 million on Thursday. Total virus-related deaths rose past 314,000.
The cumulative total of worldwide Covid-19 cases confirmed since the start of the outbreak topped 74.6 million Thursday, with more than 1.65 million virus-related deaths.
Coronavirus Stock Market Rally
November was a key month for the stock market, after IBD’s The Big Picture flagged a new uptrend following the market’s bullish follow-through day on Nov. 4. Meanwhile, December sees the stock market near record highs, with the Nasdaq already setting more all-time highs.
Wednesday’s Big Picture commented, “The Nasdaq hit a record high Wednesday, extending a win streak to three sessions and erasing last week’s modest loss. The Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 indexes are just shy of all-time highs.”
Investors should continue to use the stock market’s strength to buy breakouts. Be patient and wait for powerful breakouts instead of chasing extended stocks. If the new breakouts work, then add more exposure. But if breakouts start to fail, then you can back away.
In particular, focus on stocks with strong relative strength. Find them by using the relative strength line. The RS line measures a stock’s price performance vs. the S&P 500. If the stock is outperforming the broader market, then the RS line angles upward. If a stock is performing worse than the broad market, then the line will point lower.
Stocks To Watch: IBD Long-Term Leaders
Nice is finding support around it 10-week moving average line and is just above a 238.45 buy point in a flat base. Meanwhile, shares are breaking out past a new flat base’s 255.58 buy point. Intuit is in the 5% buy zone above a 354.08 buy point in a cup with handle.
Bitcoin Tops $23,000
Bitcoin surged 12% to trade above $23,000, just one day after topping 20,000 for the first time ever, according to Coindesk. The price of Bitcoin was about $23,140 in morning trade after topping out at $23,770.85.
The Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) advanced 18% to hit another new 52-week high.
Dow Jones Stocks To Watch: Apple
Apple broke out above another aggressive entry at 125.49 amid Tuesday’s 5% surge. Shares rose 0.9% early Thursday — still below the conventional buy point, which is at 138.08, according to MarketSmith chart analysis.
Apple was Monday’s IBD Stock Of The Day.
The blue chip giant is the No. 1-performing Dow Jones stock for 2020, with a 74.1% advance through Wednesday.
Stocks In Or Near Buy Zones: Chipotle, DraftKings, Shopify
IBD Leaderboard stock Chipotle Mexican Grill broke out above a 1,366.76 buy point in a double bottom with a 4.1% advance in big volume. Volume rose nearly 100% above average. Shares ended the session in the 5% buy zone, which goes up to 1,435.10. Chipotle stock moved down 0.7% early Thursday.
According to IBD Stock Checkup, CMG stock shows an 85 out of a perfect 99 IBD Composite Rating. The Composite Rating — an easy way to identify top growth stocks — is a blend of key fundamental and technical metrics to help investors gauge a stock’s strengths.
DraftKings broke out above a 53.82 entry in a cup with handle, advancing more than 6.5% Wednesday. Shares closed just below the buy point. The stock lost 0.7% early Thursday.
Shopify broke out past a cup-with-handle’s 1,112.51 buy point amid a nearly 8% surge Wednesday. SHOP stock rallied another 0.9% Thursday morning and is at the top of the 5% buy zone that goes up to 1,168.14.
IBD Leaderboard stock Tesla moved up 2.5% early Thursday, attempting to recover from Wednesday’s 1.7% fall. The stock continues to trade about 5% off its recent record highs. The company will be added to the S&P 500 index on Dec. 21.
On Nov. 18, shares broke out above a 466 buy point in a cup with handle and are about 30% from the buy point. Last week, shares of the electric-auto giant hit an all-time high at 654.32.
Roku Stock Jumps On Streaming Deal
Late Wednesday, Roku announced a long-awaited deal with AT&T unit WarnerMedia to carry its HBO Max subscription video-on-demand service. HBO Max will debut Thursday on the Roku platform. That’s just a week before the highly anticipated superhero movie “Wonder Woman 1984” opens simultaneously in theaters and on HBO Max on Dec. 25.
Roku stock jumped 6% to hit a new high Thursday morning.
Dow Jones Leaders: Microsoft
Among the top Dow Jones stocks, software giant Microsoft moved down 0.2% Thursday, as shares looked to move further above their key 50-day line.
Year to date, Microsoft is one of the top Dow Jones stocks, advancing 39.1% through the Dec. 16 close.
Be sure to follow Scott Lehtonen on Twitter at @IBD_SLehtonen for more on growth stocks and the Dow Jones Industrial Average.
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