Futures Fall Ahead Fed Minutes


Dow Jones futures traded quietly lower Wednesday morning ahead of the highly-anticipated release of the minutes from last month’s Fed meeting.


Tesla (TSLA) traded down around 1% early Wednesday. Elsewhere, Dow Jones tech leaders Apple (AAPL) and Microsoft (MSFT) both lost a fraction ahead of today’s stock market open.

In a volatile stock market environment, Dow Jones leaders Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), Merck (MRK) and UnitedHealth (UNH), as well as AutoZone (AZO), BYD (BYDDF), Eli Lilly (LLY) and Quanta Services (PWR), are among the stocks to watch. Keep in mind that ongoing stock market unpredictability is a reason to stay defensive.

UnitedHealth is an IBD Leaderboard stock. BYD featured in this week’s Stocks Near A Buy Zone column.

Dow Jones Today: Treasury Yields, Oil Prices, Fed Minutes

Before Wednesday’s open, Dow Jones futures lost 0.3% vs. fair value, and S&P 500 futures dropped 0.35%. Nasdaq 100 futures were off 0.4%. Remember that overnight action in Dow futures and elsewhere doesn’t necessarily translate into actual trading in the next regular stock market session.

Among exchange-traded funds, the Nasdaq 100 tracker Invesco QQQ Trust (QQQ) moved down 0.4%. The SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY) lost 0.35% in early trade.

The 10-year Treasury yield flattened on Wednesday following Tuesday’s slide to 2.8%. In mid-June, it hit its highest level since April 2011, at 3.48%. Meanwhile, U.S. oil prices looked to regain a portion of Tuesday’s plunge, with West Texas Intermediate edging back above $100 a barrel. In early March, WTI briefly topped out above $130.

Minutes from the Federal Reserve’s most recent meeting are due out at 2 p.m. ET. At the June policy meeting, the Federal Reserve announced a 75-basis-point rate hike for the first time since 1994. The minutes should provide more details on Fed’s decision.

Stock Market Volatility

On Tuesday, the tech-heavy Nasdaq composite reversed higher to close up 1.7%. The composite made an impressive 3.8% swing from low to high. And the Dow Jones Industrial Average also closed well off the day’s lows, down 0.4%.

Tuesday’s The Big Picture column commented, “Investors by now should realize that it’s impossible to discern market direction from one or two days of action. So while the last two sessions offer reason for stock market optimism, uncertainly over interest rates, inflation, geopolitics and other factors should keep traders on the defensive.”

If you’re new to IBD, consider taking a look at its stock trading system and CAN SLIM basics. Recognizing chart patterns is one key to the investment guidelines. IBD offers a broad range of growth stock lists, such as Leaderboard and SwingTrader.

Investors also can create watchlists, find companies nearing a buy point, or develop custom screens at IBD MarketSmith.

Four Dow Jones Stocks To Watch Now

Dow Jones Stocks To Watch: Johnson & Johnson, Merck, UnitedHealth

Dow Jones leader Johnson & Johnson is about 2% below a double-bottom base’s 181.84 buy point following Tuesday’s 0.8% slide, according to IBD MarketSmith chart analysis. JNJ shares were unchanged Wednesday morning.

Drug giant Merck rose a fraction Tuesday, and is about 3% below its flat base’s 95.02 buy point. Early Wednesday, the stock was up 0.5%.

Health care giant and IBD Leaderboard stock UnitedHealth gave up its 507.36 buy point in a double-bottom base during Tuesday’s 4.4% decline. UNH stock shows a 95 out of a perfect 99 IBD Composite Rating, per the IBD Stock Checkup. Investors can use the IBD Composite Rating to easily gauge the quality of a stock’s fundamental and technical metrics. Shares were flat Wednesday morning.

4 Top Growth Stocks To Watch In The Current Stock Market Rally

Top Stocks To Watch: AutoZone, BYD, Eli Lilly, Quanta

AutoZone shares are still holding just above their cup-with-handle’s 2,130.60 buy point Tuesday amid a 0.9% slip. Shares were flat Wednesday.

Chinese electric-vehicle giant BYD, which is backed by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway (BRKA), ended Tuesday slightly above a cup with handle’s 39.81 buy point. Shares were unchanged Wednesday morning.

Eli Lilly rose 0.8% Tuesday, extending a win streak to four sessions. Shares are at the top of the 5% buy area that goes up to 329.81. Eli Lilly stock was unchanged early Wednesday.

Quanta Services is tracing a messy cup with handle that has a 138.56 buy point, according to IBD MarketSmith chart analysis. Last week, shares found strong support around their 50-day line, which is a key level to watch. Quanta stock was flat Wednesday morning.

Join IBD experts as they analyze leading stocks in the current stock market rally on IBD Live

Tesla Stock

Tesla stock rallied 2.55% on Tuesday, adding to Friday’s 1.2% rise. Shares threatened to give up a part of those gains Wednesday morning, moving down around 1%. Early Wednesday, the China Passenger Car Association said Tesla sold 78,000 China-made cars last month, up from 32,165 in May.

The stock is sharply below its 50- and 200-day moving averages. Tesla stock traded as high as 1,243.49 on Nov. 4. Shares are about 44% off that record high.

Dow Jones Leaders: Apple, Microsoft

Among Dow Jones stocks, Apple shares rallied 1.9% Tuesday, but are still far below their long-term 200-day line. The stock is about 24% off its 52-week high. Apple shares moved down 0.4% Wednesday morning.

Software leader Microsoft climbed 1.3% Tuesday, as it looks to rebound after finding stout resistance around its key 50-day line last week. The stock closed about 25% off its 52-week high. Microsoft shares edged 0.4% lower early Wednesday.

Be sure to follow Scott Lehtonen on Twitter at @IBD_SLehtonen for more on growth stocks and the Dow Jones Industrial Average.


Top Growth Stocks To Buy And Watch

Learn How To Time The Market With IBD’s ETF Market Strategy

Find The Best Long-Term Investments With IBD Long-Term Leaders

MarketSmith: Research, Charts, Data And Coaching All In One Place

How To Research Growth Stocks: Why This IBD Tool Simplifies The Search For Top Stocks


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