A sharp decline in technology stocks pulled both, the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 indices, into the red on Thursday, while the Dow managed to notch a record closing high with a lift from bank and energy shares. Bobbi Rebell reports.
The Dow hitting a new record on gains in bank and energy shares, though the other major indexes took a step backwards. Oil stocks, like Exxon and Chevron, climbed after Wednesday's agreement by major oil producers to cut output. Kevin Mahn, president of Hennion and Walsh: SOUNDBITE: KEVIN MAHN, PRESIDENT AND CHIEF INVESTMENT OFFICER, HENNION AND WALSH ASSET MANAGEMENT, (ENGLISH) SAYING: "We've been caught in a head fake with OPEC before. I don't put too much stock in this particular deal. Will the Saudi's abide by it? How about the non OPEC producers. Will they abide by the deal as well. Will there be any meaningful production cuts. So we are going to pay close attention to the deal." After the closing bell, Starbucks announced Howard Schultz would be stepping down from his position as CEO. Hefty discounts during a robust Black Friday weekend helped boost November U.S. auto sales between four percent and five percent, though some analysts worry incentives are artificially inflating demand. Delta Air Lines pilots getting a big pay hike. Their new contract will give them a 30 percent raise over three years. The aviation business is making higher profits and under pressure to raise pay. Dollar General a big loser on the S&P, falling after the discount retailer reported a surprise drop in quarterly comparable sales and tempered its full-year profit forecast. Bluebird Bio soared after the gene-therapy developer said patients undergoing its multiple myeloma treatment showed strong benefits. In Europe, red arrows for the major country indexes despite strength in the oil sector after the OPEC deal.