NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- The broader markets opened lower, but were led higher by the Nasdaq, closing near the highs of the day as a deal to end the government shutdown still appears close.
Guy Adami, managing director at stockmonster.com, said the S&P 500 seems likely to trade up to 1,725 on positive D.C. rumors this week. He likes Exxon Mobil (XOM) above $85, where a double-bottom support level was formed.
Karen Finerman, president of Metropolitan Capital Advisors, said she is focusing on earnings now and not the issues in Washington.
Dan Nathan, co-founder and editor of riskreversal.com, said that equities appear to be trading on news and rumors from Washington and the Federal Reserve instead of on fundamentals. He is long Apple (AAPL) and Exxon Mobil via calls.
Andrew Busch, founder of research and consulting firm andrewbusch.com, said that a deal by Oct. 17 is unlikely, but should be completed around Oct. 22. He added that traders should sell if the S&P 500 fails, with 1,711 on the upside.
Finerman said that while Foot Locker (FL) may decline in the short term, it's going to make investors money in the long term because of its strong balance sheet and very low valuation. She concluded the selloff in retail is overdone.
Dan Nathan disagreed, saying consumers appear tapped out when it comes to spending, especially with names like McDonald's (MCD) and Coca-Cola (KO) struggling.
Richard Kovacevich, former chairman and CEO of Wells Fargo (WFC), was a guest on the show and said there will be long- and short-term consequences of the government shutdown. Aside from bond yields shooting higher in the short term, the situation is rattling global and domestic confidence in the U.S. government. He said default would be catastrophic to the economy and both political parties are responsible.
Intuitive Surgical (ISRG) was first up on the show's "Pops & Drops" segment. Adami called the stock nearly impossible to trade but said investors who are interested could start to look at it on the long side.
Activision Blizzard (ATVI) jumped 4%, and Finerman said it looks interesting with management buying up a ton of the stock.
Western Digital (WDC) popped 3%. Nathan said he wouldn't be a buyer as it approaches all-time highs.
Freeport-McMoRan (FCX) moved higher by 1%. Busch said he likes the stock, but not at these levels.
Yahoo! (YHOO) was the featured company on the show's "Street Fight" segment. Adami defended the stock, saying analysts have been and appear to still be too pessimistic. He said the Alibaba initial public offering could shock investors to the upside. He concluded Yahoo! is surpassing Google (GOOG) in unique page views.
Nathan disagreed, arguing that very little of the stock's price action has to do with its core business, which must improve or the stock will go back to $30. He added that the only reason to own the stock is for its Alibaba stake, and it's a buy in the high-$20s.
J.J. Kinahan, chief derivatives strategist at TD Ameritrade, was a guest on the show and said eBay (EBAY) appears to have the most upside based on call option activity, while Intel (INTC) has the most downside potential based on put option activity. He added there is an expected move of over $31 per share for Google when it reports earnings.
Deborah Cunningham, CIO of global money markets at Federated Investors, was a guest on the show and said she is a buyer of short-term Treasuries, including those that expire in October and November. She added that it's unlikely for the U.S. government to completely default, especially since the Treasury Department still has cash on hand for shorter-term obligation.
Busch agreed and added that yields will likely move higher because of quantitative easing, not the debt ceiling debacle. Tapering by the Federal Reserve could also be pushed out a lot further than many had originally thought.
Adami said investors should buy Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) on a selloff if it misses earnings, although he expects the company to beat and for the stock to move higher.
Nathan said Wal-Mart's (WMT) investor day on Tuesday will likely be negative for the stock, but positive news could send it higher since sentiment is so bearish.
For their final trades, Finerman was a buyer of Activision Blizzard and Nathan was a seller of the SPDR Gold Trust ETF (GLD). Busch said to sell Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) and Adami was buying Genuine Parts (GPC).
-- Written by Bret Kenwell in Petoskey, Mich.