Nasdaq Leads Big Week In Stock Market; How Long Can The Bull Run?

DATE POSTED:March 15, 2019

The new bull market remained firmly intact as major stock indexes capped the week with solid gains in stocks today. Thanks to big-cap techs and surging chip stocks, the Nasdaq composite outperformed.


The Nasdaq rallied 0.8%, while the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.5% each. Small caps lagged as the Russell 2000 edged 0.1% higher. Volume swelled on both the NYSE and Nasdaq vs. Thursday, due to options expiration.

For the week, the Nasdaq rallied 4%, the S&P 500 rose 3% and the Dow Jones index added nearly 2%. Big-cap techs led the Dow as Intel (INTC), Microsoft (MSFT) and Apple (AAPL) gained more than 1% apiece.

Intel, up 1.7% Friday, remains in buy range from a 54.20 entry of a cup-with-handle base, but volume has been tepid. Microsoft, up 1.9% to a new high, is still in a potential buy zone from a 113.35 handle buy point. Apple extended a win streak for a sixth straight session with a 1.3% gain but remains far from any correct buy point. It's 19% off an early October peak.

Boeing (BA) lifted 1.5% in four times average volume, also boosting the blue chip index. Shares still finished the week with a 10% drop stemming from a 737 Max 8 jet crash Sunday in Ethiopia. Boeing rose Friday amid hopes for a faster-than-expected software fix for the jet model.

Ulta, Broadcom Fuel Nasdaq Rally

Specialty retailers, chips and other computer-related stocks were among the biggest sector gainers in the stock market today. But automakers and desktop software makers lagged.

In the chip space, Broadcom (AVGO) vaulted 8% to a new high in heavy trade after reporting strong quarterly earnings late Thursday. Revenue missed slightly, but the chipmaker offered a full-year sales outlook just above Street forecasts. Shares remain in the 5% chase zone from a 286.73 handle buy point cleared Friday.

The chip rally boosted semiconductor ETFs: VanEck Vectors Semiconductor (SMH) and iShares Philadelphia Semiconductor (SOXX) each leapt nearly 3%. The funds climbed past respective entry points of 106.37 and 189.33 in a cup with handle but remain in buy range.

Specialty retailer Ulta Beauty (ULTA) led the IBD 50 with an 8% surge to a new high. Shares are well extended from a 318.88 buy point and slightly past a 327.97 alternate entry from the gap-up open price. After the close Thursday, the beauty store operator reported Q4 earnings, revenue and same-store sales that topped views.

More Nasdaq Stocks Among IBD 50 Winners

Also in the IBD 50, China stock Huazhu Group (HTHT) gapped up and soared as much as 16% before paring its gain by half. Turnover ran six times higher than normal. The stock is at a seven-month high and may be starting the right side of a steep base. It's still 22% off a June high. The hotel operator reported Q4 results Thursday.

Chip designer Xilinx (XLNX) advanced 1.4%. Shares have now rallied more than 30% from a buy point cleared in January, so taking some profits here is fair game. IBD 50 and Leaderboard member Xilinx is one of the leading stocks featured in Thursday's 5 Best Tech Stocks To Buy And Watch Now column.

The Innovator IBD 50 ETF (FFTY) climbed 0.3% to extend its win streak for a fifth straight session and bring its weekly gain to more than 3%.


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