U.S. stocks were far more “energetic” today, as they fought off morning lows to push higher through the afternoon. However, the rally was not broad based as the Nasdaq was lower, and financials and transports did not rally in tandem with the Dow Jones Industrial Average.
The U.S. Commerce Department reported that retail sales were up 0.9% this month, but that was slightly below the expectations for a 1.1% increase. In somewhat better news, the Producer Price Index (PPI) was up 0.2%, in line with estimates, reversing four consecutive months of declining numbers.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.33% and the S&P 500 gained 0.17%, but the Nasdaq could not keep up, losing 0.22%. Leading the way among Tuesday’s best stocks were Seadrill Ltd (NYSE:SDRL), ArcelorMittal SA (ADR) (NYSE:MT) and JB Hunt Transport Services Inc (NASDAQ:JBHT) would be leading the list of 3 of Today’s Best Stocks.
Seadrill Ltd (SDRL)
Seadrill stock benefited from higher crude oil prices today, pushing higher by more than 7%. The U.S. Energy Information Administration said on Monday that shale production can be expected to fall by 45,000 barrels per day to a total of 4.98 million in the month of May. Ongoing fighting in Syria, Iraq, and Yemen has recently been lifting the price of crude higher, with no signs of a let-up any time soon.
SDRL stock was one of the stronger energy plays on the day, and has bounced back nicely off its mid-March lows.
ArcelorMittal SA (ADR) (MT)
Shares of MT stock were up more than 5% today after ArcelorMittal announced that its 7,000-ton steel beams will be used to construct a landmark retail and leisure complex in the Changi airport in Singapore. Deliveries of the massive steel beams have already begun, and will continue through May. The complex won’t be finished until the end of 2018.
The steel industry, and ArcelorMittal in particular, has had a tough time since early 2014. Steel prices are near six year lows, and MT stock has been cut in half over that time.
Perhaps this announcement will usher in a turning point for the international steel manufacturer.
J B Hunt Transport Services Inc (JBHT)
JBHT stock surged more than 4% after reporting a first-quarter earnings beat. J B Hunt’s Q1 earnings of 78 cents a share on $91.9 million bested the estimates of 72 cents a share, and easily surpassed the 58 cents per share JBHT posted in the year ago quarter.
Revenue was up from $1.41 billion to $1.44 billion year-over-year, but was below Street estimates of $1.54 billion.
JBHT stock is up about 23% since mid-November.
As of this writing, Ethan Roberts did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.