Equity markets turned south on Wednesday as lackluster earnings on the home front paved the way for profit taking pressures. With no economic data release to overshadow earnings, major indexes oscillated in red territory throughout most of the trading session, broadly finishing the day lower. On Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was the worst performer, shedding 0.63% on the day, while the Nasdaq proved most resilient, losing 0.37% as the closing bell rang.
Corporate earnings results took center stage today and unfortunately market participants were not impressed to say the least. Stocks tumbled lower across the board as investors fretted over quarterly performance data from tech giants IBM (NYSE:IBM) and Intel (NASDAQ:INTC), both of which posted uninspiring results. In international news, the latest U.K. jobless claims data came in better-than-expected - 3.6K people filed for unemployment benefits versus the previous reading of 4.5K.
The iShares S&P California Muni Bond (NYSEARCA:CMF) was one of the best performers, gaining an impressive 4.38% on the day. This ETF was drifting sideways for most of the day, until the final stretch. CMF surged all the way to $118 a share, popping over 4%, bolstered by above average trading volumes in the final minutes of trading. With no relevant fundamental news taking place, it’s difficult to pinpoint a reason for why this ETF posted such an impressive performance during an otherwise lackluster day.
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Click to enlargeThe State Street SPDR Homebuilders ETF (XHB) was one of the worst performers, shedding 1.38% on the day. With no housing market data releases today, it’s reasonable to assume that XHB sank lower ahead of tomorrow's existing home sales report. Profit taking pressures may have developed prior to this release given the worse-than-expected housing starts and homebuilders index data earlier in the week.
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