Here Are 3 Hot Things to Know About Stocks Right Now

  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished lower Friday as Boeing (BA - Get Report) and Johnson & Johnson (JNJ - Get Report) pulled shares down, while China posted its weakest quarterly economic growth rate in nearly three decades, returning investors' attention to the trade talks between Washington and Beijing.
  • Coca-Cola (KO - Get Report) advanced after the soft drink giant beat Wall Street's third-quarter revenue forecast. Coca-Cola is Real Money's Stock of the Day.
  • Boeing (BA - Get Report) was the Dow's biggest losers following reports the Federal Aviation Administration demanded the aerospace giant turn over internal communications that questioned the safety the MCAS anti-stall system linked to the grounded 737 MAX jet.

Wall Street Overview

Stocks were lower Friday as Boeing and Johnson & Johnson pulled shares down, while China posted its weakest quarterly economic growth rate in nearly three decades, returning investors' attention to the trade talks between Washington and Beijing.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 255 points, or 0.95%, to 26,770, the S&P 500 slipped 0.39%, and the Nasdaq dropped 0.83%.

Boeing ( BA - Get Report) was the Dow's biggest loser, falling 6.7% to $344.21, following reports the Federal Aviation Administration demanded the aerospace giant turn over previously undisclosed internal communications that questioned the safety the MCAS anti-stall system linked to the grounded 737 MAX jet. The MCAS system has been tied to two fatal 737 Max crashes in five months that killed 346 people. Johnson & Johnson ( JNJ - Get Report) and American Express ( AXP - Get Report)  also weighed on the Dow.

American Express (AXP - Get Report) fell nearly 2% to $116.74 even as record-setting card fees helped the credit card giant beat Wall Street's third-quarter earnings expectations. Chris Kuiper, senior analyst with CFRA Research, said that while American Express overall had a decent quarter, "we have concerns about the consumer finance/credit card industry in general, especially in regards to slowing consumer spending (translating to lower growth for credit card companies) given our research shows the consumer is more leveraged than what many believe and what the aggregate statistics show."

For the week the Dow closed down 0.2%, while the S&P 500 rose 0.5% and the Nasdaq gained 0.4%.

With slumping exports, halted manufacturing and eroding domestic demand, China faces significant headwinds in the coming months, regardless of the outcome of trade negotiations with the U.S.

China, the world's second-largest economy, may look to add further monetary and financial stimulus to shore up growth and avoid deterioration in the country's labor market.

China has said that the U.S. must remove tariffs in order for the two countries to reach a final trade agreement.

President Donald Trump said China agreed to a "very substantial phase one deal," adding that the agreement would address intellectual property and financial services concerns, as well as Chinese purchases of about $40 billion to $50 billion of U.S. agricultural products.

In economic news, Richard Clarida, vice chairman of the Federal Reserve, said during an address in Boston on Friday that "monetary policy is not on a preset course."
 
He added that Fed "will proceed on a meeting-by-meeting basis to assess the economic outlook as well as the risks to the outlook, and it will act as appropriate to sustain growth, a strong labor market, and a return of inflation to our symmetric 2% objective."
 
The Fed has cut interest rates twice this year and is scheduled to meet on October 29-30.
 
Coca-Cola ( KO - Get Report) , the Dow's biggest gainer, advanced 1.8% to $54.78 after the soft drink giant beat Wall Street's third-quarter revenue forecast, thanks to growth of its trademark soft drink, as well as zero-sugar and healthier options. Coca-Cola is Real Money's Stock of the Day.

Schlumberger (SLB - Get Report) climbed nearly 1.4% to $32.33 after the oil industry equipment maker beat Wall Street's third-quarter analysts' estimates as international growth offset weakness in North America.

Caterpillar (CAT - Get Report)   dipped slightly to $130.73 after Morgan Stanley cut its rating on the heavy equipment manufacturer to equal weight from overweight.

E-Trade (ETFC - Get Report) shares rose 4.6% to $40.85 after the company's CEO told analysts that the New York-based online brokerage would be open to a combination.


Caterpillar, Johnson & Johnson, and Schlumberger are holdings in Jim Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS member club . Want to be alerted before Jim Cramer buys or sells these stocks? Learn more now.