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S&P 500 Sets Another Record, Dow Dips Slightly

Dan Berman
Hot Stock Minute

It was a mixed Monday for U.S. stock markets. The S&P 500 moved higher by 0.2%, topping the record-high close it set on Friday. The Dow, however, was unable to set a new record. Instead it closed fractionally lower, pulling further away from its new intraday high above 15,000 set on Friday. Among the key sectors, technology stocks and financials led the gainers. Consumer staples companies fared the worst.

Tyson Foods (TSN) fell over 3% after releasing a disappointing earnings report ahead of the opening bell. The company posted profits of 36-cents a share, a full 20% lower than estimates of 45-cents. It also missed considerably on revenues. Tyson is the country's largest meat processor. It blames the miss on high feed prices resulting from last year's drought. It also warns the current quarter doesn't look encouraging, but predicts an improvement in the second half of the year. Prior to today the stock has been up 25% year to date.

Shares of Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway (BRK-A) (BRK-B) were up more than 1% as the stock resumed trading for the first time since the company reported earnings on Friday afternoon. Berkshire raked in $4.89 billion in profits for the quarter. That's a leap of 51% over the previous year and exceeded expectations. Buffett reiterated at his annual meeting on Saturday that his successor at Berkshire has been selected, though he has yet to reveal who it is.

Apple (AAPL) extended its bounce off the bottom gaining over 2% today. Shares shot up nearly 7% last week and are up nearly 15% over the past two weeks. What's propelling them higher? It could be the company's record-breaking bond issue, designed to return cash to shareholders who've seen the stock tumble from more than $700. Prior to today Apple was still down 20% from a year ago. The company regained the title of "world's largest" by market capitalization last week.

Shares of Facebook (FB) fell nearly 3% in the wake of an article appearing in Barrons. The story says the social network is worth no more than $25 a share, though it had been hovering above $28. Barron's points to the fact that Facebook is trading at 75 times its earnings and that its expenses are up 60%. It also suggests that increasing mobile ad revenue is coming at the expense of desktop dollars.

JPMorgan Chase's (JPM) rose over 1% despite a flurry of headlines about its future. The company's most powerful man, Jamie Dimon, is facing new opposition to his dual role as CEO and Chairman. The advisory firm ISS is backing a proposal to split the jobs. ISS is also calling for shareholders to vote against three current members of the board when ballots are cast later this month. JPMorgan stock is up 14% over the past year.