The stock market indices had a fabulous session to start the year, exploding with big breakaway gaps to the upside as a result of the fiscal cliff deal and relief in terms of a major relief rally. The indices exploded with big gaps up and futures were way up early on. They then reached 2740 on the Nasdaq 100 and 1457 S&P 500, before backing off into midday. When two or three times they tested support intraday, they held and started to move up slowly but surely, and then accelerated. In the last 15 minutes the market exploded to the highs and closed at the highs for the day going away.
Net on the day, the Dow was up 308.41 at 13,412.55. The S&P 500 was up 36.23 at 1462.42. The Nasdaq 100 was up 85.54 at 2746.47.
All three indices closed within pennies of their high.
Advance-declines were 10 to 1 positive with 2819 up and 284 down on the New York Stock Exchange, and 7 to 1 positive on Nasdaq with 2203 up and 330. Up/down volume was more than 10 to 1 positive on New York, with total volume of 848 million shares. Nasdaq traded over 2 billion and had a 9 to 1 positive volume ratio.
TheTechTrader.com board was mostly higher. Leading the way was Apple Inc. (AAPL), up 16.86 to 549.03, and traded as high as 555.00. Amazon.com Inc. (AMZN) jumped 6.44 to 257.31, not far off its high. Google Inc. (GOOG) popped 15.87 to 723.25, only 4 points off the high. International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) spiked 4.80 to 196.35. Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (GS) was up 4.10 to 131.66.
Other gainers of note included Pharmacyclics Inc. (PCYC), up 3.66 to 61.44. SolarWinds, Inc. (SWI) was up 2.07 to 54.52, SodaStream International Ltd. (SODA) 1.95 to 46.84, Onyx Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (ONXX) 1.78 to 77.31, and The Home Depot, Inc. (HD), one of our recent swing trades, 1.63 to 63.48.
Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Inc. (GMCR) was up 2.15 to 43.49, Facebook, Inc. (FB) up 1.38 to 28.00, and Affymax, Inc. (AFFY) 1.66 to 20.65,
One of our top picks for the year and a recent swing trade, Aegerion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (AEGR), climbed 1.86 to 27.24.
The Direxion Daily Small Cap Bull 3X Shares (TNA) spiked 5.76 to 69.72, and the Direxion Daily Financial Bull 3X Shares (FAS) popped 9.58 to 129.50.
But that wasn't nearly the story today as many of our low-priced biotech stocks did wonderfully today. Leading the way on the percentage gainers, BioFuel Energy Corp. (BIOF) was up 1.23 to 4.91, or 33%. Stereotaxis Inc. (STXS) gained 72 cents to 3.27, or 28%. Republic Airways Holdings Inc. (RJET) advanced 1.11 to 6.79, or 19%, on over a million shares. Low-priced Synergy Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (SGYP) climbed 95 cents to 6.21, or 18%, on 4.2 million shares. Neutral Tandem, Inc. (IQNT) bounced 44 cents to 3.01, or 17%, on 2 million shares.
Also, Himax Technologies, Inc. (HIMX) climbed 39 cents to 2.79, or 16%, on 2.1 million shares. Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd. (TRQ) leaped 1.12 to 8.73, or 15%, on 4.8 million shares.
In addition, iRobot Corporation (IRBT) was up 2.09 to 20.83, Homeowners Choice, Inc. (HCI) up 2.06 to 22.85, and PolyOne Corporation (POL), one of our Top 20 picks for the year, 1.78 to 22.20. Patrick Industries Inc. (PATK) rose 1.40 to 16.96, Texas Industries Inc. (TXI) 4.18 to 55.19, Vanda Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (VNDA) 1.36 to 19.60, and Riverbed Technology, Inc. (RVBD) 1.44 to 21.16.
Molycorp, Inc. (MCP) was up 95 cents to 10.39, on over 20 million, although it traded to 11.37 earlier in the day.
On the downside, the ProShares Ultra VIX Short-Term Futures ETF (UVXY) got hit pretty hard, down 4.83 to 16.07, and the ProShares UltraShort Silver (ZSL) lost 2.02 to 48.05.
Stepping back and reviewing the hourly chart patterns, the indices had huge opening gaps to start the year. The market then backed off into midday and consolidated, but came on strong at the end of the day and closed at the highs going away.
It was a fabulous start to the year. We'll see how it goes on tomorrow.