Stocks Quiet, But Apple Up Again; These 3 Stock Market Leaders Keep Rising

Key equity indexes made dull moves ahead of a two-day Federal Reserve meeting on interest rates, but the quiet motion in stocks today did not stop new market leaders such as Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG), Acacia Communications (ACIA) and TransDigm (TDG) from scoring strong gains. The Dow Jones Industrial Average, a 1.6% winner last week, edged less than 0.1% lower in afternoon trading.

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Chipotle, Acacia and TransDigm have all advanced significantly since joining IBD Leaderboard in recent months. On a portfolio-weighted basis, stocks on Leaderboard achieved an 11.8% gain in 2018 vs. a 6.2% fall for the S&P 500 excluding dividends.

On Leaderboard, a full position takes one-eighth of a cash-based account focused on growth stocks. A half-size position takes up one-sixteenth. Currently, 14 stocks qualify for a spot on the Leaders Near A Buy Point and Leaders lists.

Meanwhile, the Leaderboard ETF market trading strategy currently notes that index ETF traders should remain fully invested since the Jan. 4 follow-through took root. Innovator IBD 50 (FFTY) traded slightly lower. Yet at 32.97, it’s risen 19.5% since a Day 7 follow-through indicated a key inflection point stocks emerged.

Apple Stock Strategy: No Change For Now

Apple (AAPL), meanwhile, is stretching its nice rebound to a seventh straight session as shares at one point rose more than 1% and reached a session high of 188.39. But the iPhone and digital services innovator still needs to rally at least 2% to retake its 200-day moving average.

The Street sees earnings in the March-ending fiscal second quarter falling 13% to $ 2.37 a share, following a 7% gain in fiscal Q1. In the December-ended first quarter, revenue sank 5% to $ 84.31 billion on limp iPhone unit sales. Read more about the chart action in Apple in this recent Stock Market Today feature.

The intraday range for the Dow Jones was very narrow, less than 0.4% from low to high. Interestingly, the Dow Jones transportation average rallied more than 0.5% despite another tick up in crude oil prices. WTI near-term futures gained as much as 1.2% and notched a session high of $ 59.23 a barrel.

The Nasdaq composite, which soared 3.8% last week, traded near break-even.

The Dow got support from banking shares amid a recent rally in long-dated U.S. Treasuries. Goldman Sachs (GS) rallied more than 2% in active trade. The stock’s 50-day moving average has been rising for at least four weeks, a bullish sign.

Goldman is still working on a new first-stage base.

Leading Stocks Hammering The Dow Jones So Far

Chipotle shares, currently extended past a proper buy point at 501.08 in a good double bottom, have been energized in part by strong execution on the top and bottom lines.

The company, a member of IBD Leaderboard, has grown earnings by 24%, 62% and 28% vs. year-ago quarters. The three-quarter average of 38% more than meets the C in CANSLIM, IBD’s seven-point paradigm for success with growth stocks.

Revenue growth has begun to pick up as well, a good fundamental sign. New CEO Brian Niccol has led a campaign to make it easier to take in digital orders for food. Sales lifted 7% in both the fourth quarter of 2017 and in Q1 2018, then accelerated 8%, 9% and 10% in the past three quarters.

According to IBD Stock Checkup, the Denver-based company gets a healthy B grade for SMR (Sales, Margins, Return on equity) on a scale of A to E.

The Street sees revenue in the first quarter rising 9% to $ 1.26 billion and the bottom line boosting 36% to $ 2.90 a share.

Please follow Chung on Twitter at both @SaitoChung and @IBD_DChung for more on growth stocks, breakouts and financial markets.

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