Here Are 3 Hot Things to Know About Stocks Right Now

  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended higher Monday in cautious trading as global growth concerns continued to weigh on Wall Street.
  • Shares of Biogen (BIIB) - Get Report  rose 1.6% after its board approved a $5 billion share repurchase program.
  • Viacom Inc. (VIAB) - Get Report surged 3.9% after reaching a deal to renew its distribution contract with DirecTV parent AT&T (T) - Get Report .

Wall Street Overview

Stocks ended up mixed Monday as investors contended with troubling economic data.

U.S. Treasury bond yields continued to suggest difficult economic times. Three-month Treasury bill yields of 2.453% were trading roughly around the same level as 10-year Treasury notes, following Friday's move that saw the latter dip below 2.45%, creating an inverted yield curve. Federal Reserve studies have shown an inverted yield curve to be a signal for nearly every U.S. recession for the past 60 years.

"I think the talk of an inverted yield curve is adding to the negative sentiment," said David Madden, a market analyst at CMC Markets UK, "and the increased chatter about a recession could cause consumers, banks and companies to tighten their belts, which might in fact bring on slower economic growth. The U.S. economy is in solid shape, but investors are fixated on bond yields and they might be talked in believing the economy is going to get weaker."

Stocks appeared indifferent to U.S. Attorney General William Barr's announcement that there was no proof that President Donald Trump or his campaign conspired with Russian forces to swing the election.  

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 15 points, or 0.06%, to 25,517, the S&P 500 fell 0.08% and the Nasdaq dropped 0.07%. The Dow and S&P 500 traded in and out of positive territory throughout the session.

Shares of Biogen (BIIB) - Get Report  climbed 1.6% to $220.26 after its board approved a $5 billion share repurchase program days after the company said it had ended its trial for what had appeared to be a promising potential Alzheimer's treatment.

Viacom Inc. (VIAB) - Get Report surged 3.9% to $26.32 after the media group said it reached a deal to renew its distribution contract with DirecTV parent A&T T.

Apple (AAPL) - Get Reportannounced its first new services offerings,  a news subscription platform called Apple News Plus that will cost $9.99 a month. The platform will also now host 300 magazine publishers, including political, sports, and lifestyle content magazines such as National Geographic, Sports Illustrated, Fortune and the New Yorker, as well as newspapers such as the L.A. Times and the Wall Street Journal. Shares slipped 1.2% to $188.74.

Nike (NKE) - Get Report  rose slightly to $82.33 after the U.S. Justice Department said it would charge controversial attorney Michael Avenatti with extortion. Avenatti, best known for representing adult film actress Stormy Daniels in her lawsuit against U.S. President Donald Trump, vowed to reveal "a major high school/college basketball scandal" that involved Nike executives and "involves some of the biggest names in college basketball."

Boeing Inc. (BA) - Get Report shares rose 2.3% to $370.46 as the company seeks to convince the aviation industry that software changes in the flight system of its 737 MAX series would address safety concerns following two fatal accidents over six months. American Airlines Group (AAL) - Get Report , the second-largest MAX 8 customer, said it would cancel around 90 flights per day and extend its truncated schedule until at least April 24. 

Tesla Inc. (TSLA) - Get Report slipped after analysts at RBC Capital Markets trimmed their target for the stock and founder and CEO Elon Musk noted that prices for the group's clean energy cars would increase in the coming months. Shares were off 1.6% to $260.42.

Viacom and Apple are holdings in Jim Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS member club. Want to be alerted before Jim Cramer buys or sells VIAB or AAPL? Learn more now.


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