) -- The markets remained in the red Wednesday in a trading session that was straining for direction.


Dow Jones Industrial Average

dropped 29.93, or 0.32%, to 9280.67, and the

S&P 500

fell 3.29, or 0.33%, to 994.75. The


slipped 1.82, or 0.09%, to 1967.07.

As it did with Tuesday's favorable manufacturing report from the Institute for Supply Management, the market's reaction was muted to the Fed's Open Market Committee's comments indicating an economy on the mend.

Joe Terranova said on


's "Fast Money" TV show that there were a lot of trading opportunities in the market today, especially on the resource side where several stocks had intra-day reversals . For example, he noted




Freeport McMoRan

(FCX) - Get Report


For a breakout of some stocks from a recent "Fast Money" TV show,check out Dan Fitzpatrick's "3 Stocks I Saw on TV."

3 Stocks I Saw onTV

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Guy Adami said there was nothing in today's "benign" tape that would change his opinion that the market will continue to head down.

Adami said that although he thinks highly of

Goldman Sachs

(GS) - Get Report

, it, too, wouldn't be spared if the market sinks.

Melissa Lee, the moderator of the show, shifted the discussion to gold, which broke out today and is only $20 below the $1,000 level. "Everybody but myself has been bullish on it. Do I look as stupid as Paris Hilton taking the SATs? Sorry Paris if you're watching," said Adami.

Adami said he was concerned with gold's "exaggerated move" today and advised investors to "remember the market we're in."

Terranova was bullish on gold, saying it will move to "fresh highs" that "you have not seen before." He said there is demand for bullion and investors seem to have forgotten it as an investment vehicle.

Pete Najarian added investors are buying puts on gold mining stocks like



to protect their positions.

Najarian also noted heavy options activity in the Sept. 24-25 calls for

Intrepid Potash

(IPI) - Get Report


Oil closed, unchanged for the day. Terranova said oil futures fought a lot of negativity this morning. He also said he saw a little contango come out of the market. Najarian added


(BP) - Get Report

looks "awfully cheap." He was impressed the company's dividend, P/E for 2010, solid balance sheet and big oil discovery.

Health insurer shares rallied today on rumors that Obama's health reform overhaul is faltering. Karen Finerman said



(UNH) - Get Report

P/E multiple looks cheap. She said the trade is there for investors if they believe the prospects for Obama's health plan are receding.

Lee noted that M&A activity is heating up. Terranova said he doesn't think it's going to happen in the financials, although he acknowledged there may be some candidates among asset managers and brokerage names. Najarian said the more likely prospects are in tech, energy and pharmaceuticals where the balance sheets are "incredible."

Shifting back to the discussion on gold, Dennis Gartman said it looks like gold is going higher. He said he is buying gold in terms of other currencies like the sterling and euro. He said gold should occupy about 2% to 3% of an investor's portfolio.

Lee invited John Hyland, the chief investment officer for United Commodity Funds, to comment on the impact of possible new regulations from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission that would impose position limits on futures-based commodity ETFs.

Hyland said the regulations would drive up expenses for investors seeking to gain exposure to the commodity.

Instead of one ETF and two or three small ones, there will be three to four small- to medium-sized ones, he said. Hyland added ETNs will have to shut down and return three months later with a higher expense load.

Has the shoe dropped on commercial real estate? Finerman thinks it already has. She said the short-commercial-real-estate trade is over. She said publicly traded REITs have come down far and quickly and have been have been able to raise capital. She said the financing markets are also open to them.

Lee shifted the discussion to the fall retail outlook. Kimberly Greenberger, a Citigroup specialty retail analyst, said back-to-school sales are a "good barometer for holiday sales." She said the situation will become clearer once same-store sales results are available for August and September.

Her best bets? She likes


( JCG) and

Urban Outfitters

(URBN) - Get Report

, saying they have outexecuted their competitors. She stuck to her recommendation of J.Crew despite concerns from Adami and Finerman that the stock is way overvalued.

Ivan Menezes, president of North America operations for


(DEO) - Get Report

, which owns brands such as Guiness, Smirnoff and Captain Morgan, appeared on the show.

Lee asked him whether his company has been affected by trade-down to less expensive brands. He said the beverage-alcohol industry remains very resilient. He said his company has noticed more people staying home.

In developed markets, consumer confidence and unemployment remain concerns for the industry, while the key factor in emerging markets is GDP growth, he said.

In the final trades, Terranova said he liked


(TIF) - Get Report

. Adami said he liked

Gilead Sciences

(GILD) - Get Report

. Finerman said she liked

American Axle

(AXL) - Get Report

though she admitted it was risky. And Najarian said he liked


( OXPS) .

-- Written by David Tong in San Francisco

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