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Dow Jones Gains Amid Santa Claus Rally; Cathie Wood Buys This Stock Despite 21% Plunge

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose as the Santa Claus rally gained momentum. Famed investor Cathie Wood snapped up a stock that plunged around 21% from recent highs. Manchester United (MANU) popped amid an ownership deal, while Intel (INTC) jumped after it got an Israeli grant.


Meanwhile, a number of stocks were testing entries. The likes of Weatherford International (WFRD), Okta (OKTA) and ASML (ASML) all cleared buy points amid the positive market action.

Nasdaq Up As Small Caps Excel

We have now entered the Santa Claus rally period. This reflects the time when the stock market tends to go higher for the final five trading days of the year and the first two trading days of the new year, according to the Stock Trader’s Almanac.

It was off to a positive start, with the Nasdaq composite up 0.5% Tuesday afternoon. Charter Communications (CHTR) was among the better performers here as it rose around 2%. It is now trying to reclaim its 200-day moving average, MarketSmith analysis shows.

The benchmark S&P 500 was also solid, rising by a near-identical amount. Energy play APA (APA) was a star in the S&P as it lifted almost 4%.

The S&P 500 sectors were all positive. Energy and utilities, a defensive area, fared best in the stock market today. Energy was gaining amid a nearly 3% gain in the price of U.S. crude. Health care was making the slimmest gain.

Small caps gave the bears a bloody nose, with the Russell 2000 rising more than 1%. Growth stocks also gained, with the Innovator IBD 50 ETF (FFTY) up a more modest 0.3%.

Dow Jones Today: Intel Stock Pops On Israel Grant, AAPL Lags

The Dow Jones average was turning in a gain of nearly 200 points, or 0.5%.

Intel stock was the top performer on the much-watched index today. It popped nearly 5% and was near session highs. The government of Israel announced a $3.2 billion grant for the semiconductor behemoth to build a $25 billion chip plant in the southern part of the country.

Other semiconductor stocks outside the Dow Jones industrials were also having solid sessions. Arm (ARM) was off highs but gained more than 1% while its fellow Leaderboard stock Nvidia (NVDA) rose about 1%.

Other Dow Jones components making solid gains included Caterpillar (CAT) and 3M (MMM). Both were up around 2%, and 3M was moving above a 107.63 handle buy point. But volume was weak.

Salesforce (CRM), Apple (AAPL) and Microsoft (MSFT) were among the worst laggards on the much-watched index. Each was down less than 1% though.

Cathie Wood Snaps Up TTD Stock

Big-name investors often go where the average trader fears to tread. That was certainly the case with Ark Invest CEO Cathie Wood, who snapped up Trade Desk (TTD) stock on Friday.

Ark Invest’s flagship ARK Innovation ETF (ARKK) snapped up more than 261,000 shares. Additionally, the ARK Next Generation Internet ETF (ARKW) bought about 49,000.

Trade Desk provides a self-service platform that helps advertisers find and purchase digital ad inventory across a variety of platforms.

Its recent performance has been far from ideal. It fell about 21% from its July 31 high to its low on Friday, when Ark bought the stock. TTD stock rose fractionally Tuesday.

Overall performance is still good, though, with TTD stock holding an IBD Composite Rating of 87 out of 99. It also holds a perfect EPS Rating.

Bargain hunting can be tempting for investors but IBD recommends buying stocks with strong earnings and price performance rather than laggards. Look for leaders in strong industries that are showing superior earnings growth and sales.

Meanwhile, Wood’s firm also sold some Coinbase Global (COIN) stock. The cryptocurrency play has been on a remarkable run in 2023, rising about 380%. Ark Invest also took some profits in the stock last week.

Manchester United Stock Up On Ownership Move

There are few sports brands as widely known as soccer team Manchester United. But the stock has been a loser in 2023, falling around 10%.

But it was turning in a gain of nearly 3% heading into the close as an overhang over ownership cleared. Billionaire Jim Ratcliffe finally clinched a deal to buy a quarter of the club.

He will pay $33 per share, quite the premium on its price of just over $20 on the stock market. Despite its gain, MANU failed to retake its 200-day moving average.

Ratcliffe is a British billionaire who is the owner, chairman and CEO of the Ineos chemicals group. He has supported the Premier League giant since childhood.

The club has been struggling so far in the 2023-24 season, with its new owner asking fans for “time and patience” in an open letter.

Outside Dow Jones: 3 Stocks Clear Buy Points

With the confirmed market uptrend continuing, it remains important to track breakouts.

Weatherford International sits in a buy zone after clearing a cup base entry of 100.93. A competitor of industry giant Halliburton (HAL), Weatherford provides services for an array of oil field types. Earnings performance is good, with the stock holding an EPS Rating of 83 out of 99.

Security software stock Okta is also in a buy zone after jumping above a double-bottom base entry of 90.73. Overall performance is very strong here, with Okta stock holding an IBD Composite Rating of 96.

ASML cleared a cup-with-handle entry of 760.33 on its weekly chart. This is a first-stage pattern, a bonus. The chip-equipment stock has a perfect Composite Rating and is in the top 17% of stocks in terms of price performance over the past 12 months.

Please follow Michael Larkin on X, formerly known as Twitter, at @IBD_MLarkin for more analysis of growth stocks.


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