NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- The Dow's winning streak ended at eight Friday. Quadruple witching brought some volume back to the market, but volatility was absent as a stronger dollar crushed commodity prices and related equities.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 37 points, or 0.4%, to 10,742 but finished the week ahead, by 1.1%. The S&P 500 shed 6 points, or 0.5%, to 1160 and gained 0.9% on the week while the Nasdaq fell by 17 points, or 0.7%, to 2374 but added 0.3% on the week.

Volume firmed up after a week of sluggish trading, as four different futures and options contracts expire in an occurrence known as "quadruple witching." The Dow had volume of 434.1 million, compared with an average of 200.4 million.

Stephen Wood, chief market strategist for Russell Investments, believes investors are going to have to adjust to a lower-return environment.

"Markets probably recovered higher and quicker than anyone would have thought, but the environment of this recovery will be far slower than recoveries of the past. I always tell my clients: Markets are very efficient, but they aren't always accurate. A lot of this year-round rally has been a correction from the false perception of the 'it's the end of the world' environment.

"Volatility may be absent in the market because the panic is starting to come off," Wood said. "There's stability there. In a low interest-rate, low-return environment, investors will have to look at what asset class mix they'll need in a slow-growth environment," he said.

Wood expects investors to start favoring companies with strong balance sheets that have the ability to take market share.

"2009 was clearly an earnings game, and 2010 is going to be all about revenues -- identifying which companies can now execute and grow after cutting costs," he said.

Overseas, Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 0.2% and Japan's Nikkei rose 0.8%. The FTSE in London added 0.1% and the DAX in Frankfurt lost 0.5%.

Jump to:

The Economy

Shares across the financial sector weakened after Goldman Sachs cut first-quarter estimates on major banks and brokerages, citing weak capital markets revenue in February.

Managed care stocks, meanwhile, strengthened as the House of Representatives plans to vote this weekend on the $940 billion health care reform bill , according to The Associated Press. Shares of Cigna ( CI), WellPoint ( WLP) and UnitedHealth Group ( UNH) gained 3.5%, 2% and 2.4%, respectively.

The sector was also helped by Aetna ( AET), which reaffirmed its 2010 profit estimate and forecast better-than-expected first-quarter earnings. The stock jumped 3.7% to $34.46.

In the only economic release of the day, the Economic Cycle Research Institute's weekly leading index rose 13.1% in the week ended March 12, after previous growth of 12.8%.

Jump to:

Company News

Commodity-related stocks were the session's worst performers as a stronger U.S. dollar weighed on prices of hard assets. The Dow's biggest laggards, however, were 3M ( MMM), Pfizer ( PFE) and American Express ( AXP).

Peabody Energy ( BTU) wants to partner with Coal India to boost international coal assets. Its stock declined 2.3%, to $47.

Sunpower ( SPWRA) shares fell 14%, to $18.96 after it gave weak 2010 guidance and reported gross margin deterioration.

Coca-Cola ( KO), United Technologies ( UTX) and AT&T ( T) were the Dow's best performers.

Boeing ( BA) said it will accelerate planned production increases for both the 777 and 747-800s planes as global airlines participate in the economic recovery. The shares finished 0.2% lower.

Palm ( PALM) shares were seeing heavy trading on the Nasdaq after the company disappointed the market with its fourth-quarter sales guidance. The stock shed 29.2%, or $1.65, to $4.

Citigroup ( C), Ford ( F) and Bank of America ( BAC) were the most heavily traded on the New York Stock Exchange, which had a listed volume of 5.2 billion.

Shares of Best Buy ( BBY) gained 54 cents, or 1.3%, to $40.99 on an upgrade to buy from neutral at Goldman Sachs.

London-based financial services company Lloyds Banking Group ( LYG) saw shares spike 9.1% to $3.72 after it said it expects to be profitable in 2010.

Samsung Electronics , the world's largest manufacturer of flat-screen televisions, is seeking double-digit sales growth in 2010.

Apple ( AAPL) is scrambling to line up media content for the iPad ahead of its April 3 release, according to The Wall Street Journal. Shares lost 1.1%, to $222.30.

Google ( GOOG) may announce whether it will pull out of China on Monday, according to China Business News. The stock slipped 1.1%, to $560.03.

Jump to:

Commodities and the Dollar

The April crude oil contract, which expires Monday, shed $1.52, or 1.9%, to settle at $80.68 a barrel, while the more actively traded May delivery contract lost $1.57, or 1.9%, to settle at $80.97 a barrel.

The April gold contract lost $19.90, or 1.8%, to settle at $1,107.60 an ounce.

The dollar was trading higher against a basket of currencies, with the dollar index up by 0.7%.

Jump to:


The benchmark 10-year Treasury fell 5/32, lifting the yield to 3.695%.

The two-year note weakened 3/32, raising the yield to 0.997%. The 30-year bond strengthened 3/32, dropping the yield to 4.582%.

-- Written by Melinda Peer in New York.

Jump to:

If you liked this article you might like

Two Pair Trades for Absolute Returns

Two Pair Trades for Absolute Returns

5 Verizon iPhone Alternatives

5 Verizon iPhone Alternatives

Droid Pro Underlines Google Android's Power

Droid Pro Underlines Google Android's Power

What's an iOS? Smartphone Users Don't Know

What's an iOS? Smartphone Users Don't Know

Apple's iPhone Is Smartest Smartphone, Poll Says

Apple's iPhone Is Smartest Smartphone, Poll Says