Early in today’s session, the DOW was ahead by 22 with the health care components taking the lead: JNJ and UNH were at new highs, MRK, PFE were doing nicely upon the release of the new version of the GOP health care bill. The S&P 500 and NASDAQ were also higher in the early going.

However, by the closing bell only the NASDAQ managed a small gain. The DOW lost 12, the S&P 500 slipped a point, and the NASDAQ was higher by 2.  The latter was helped by gains in AAPL, TSLA and ISRG.

The NASDAQ Biotech Index was roaring ahead for the same reasons: IBB closed up 4% today at 320. It is up 9% this week alone. On the other hand, financials were lower on the decline in bond yields and ongoing narrowing of the yield curve.

Energy stocks were trying to stabilize as crude oil was a little higher after the 20% downside correction bear market it has entered into this year. It finished today at $42.80 a barrel. Bond yields were lower with the10-year at 2.14%. The fixed income traders do not seem to believe that the Fed’s outlook for higher inflation is correct.

Donald M. Selkin

These are excerpts from Don Selkin’s Daily Market Notes, abbreviated and updated with permission from the author. Don Selkin is the Chief Market Strategist at Newbridge Securities Corporation, member FINRA/SIPC and provides the Fair Value analysis for CNBC each morning.  The commentary provided in this Market Letter is intended to provide timely market analysis and should not be considered a research report.  This Market Letter may contain, and is limited to: Discussions of broad based indices; Commentaries on economic, political or market conditions; Technical analyses concerning the demand and supply for a sector, index or industry based in trading volume and price; Statistical summaries of multiple companies’ financial data, including listings of current ratings; and, Recommendations regarding increasing or decreasing holdings in particular industries or securities.  This Market Letter does not make a financial or investment recommendation or otherwise promotes a product or service of the firm.  This Market Letter contains only news, facts, and commentary on information previously reported from a news source believed to be accurate and reliable by the author.  These news sources include the following: Bloomberg Financial, Reuters, and the Associated Press.