How the Dow Staged a Big Comeback This Week

It was quite the roller-coaster ride this week for the Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEX: ^DJI) , which wound up finishing positive overall for the week despite falling in four out of the past five days. The blue-chip index posted declines in this week's first four trading days, as the market's anticipation of what Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke would say turned to disappointment when he stopped short of calling for more stimulus. The Fed did signal that it may be prepared to act in its next policy meeting in six weeks, but that wasn't much solace for investors.

Still, after spending four straight days in the red, the Dow rebounded in a big way on Friday, rising more than 200 points and erasing all of the week's losses in one fell swoop. Positive U.S. jobs data was the main catalyst behind the jump, as the report showed that employers added 163,000 jobs versus expectations of 100,000. Despite the better-than-expected jobs number, though, the U.S. unemployment rate rose a tenth of a percentage to 8.3%.

Here's how all three major U.S. indices fared over the past week.



Ending Value

Dow Jones Industrial Average

20.51 [0.16%]



9.81 [0.33%]


S&P 500 (INDEX: ^GSPC)

5.02 [0.36%]


Cisco (NAS: CSCO) was the Dow's biggest gainer on the week, rising 4.2%. Almost all of the tech stock's gains this week were made on Friday, when it rose 3.9%. Still, Cisco is the Dow's third biggest loser in 2012, dropping more than 9% year to date.

Boeing (NYS: BA) was on the opposite end of the spectrum this week, ending as the Dow's biggest loser. The stock dropped 3.6% despite news that the plane maker had reached an agreement to sell 94 of its popular 737s to Singapore Airlines and China Southern Airlines, a big win for the Chicago-based company. Boeing, though, continues to deal with backlash from an incident last weekend in Charleston, S.C., involving its prized 787 Dreamliner. The company is investigating why one of the plane's engines spewed debris during a high-speed taxi test, causing a grass fire along the runway.

Outside the Dow, LinkedIn (NYS: LNKD) had a week much like overall markets, except with much higher volatility. The stock dropped from more than $107 a share on Monday down to below $92 on Thursday before its much-anticipated earnings were released. Profit dropped slightly, but revenue rose 89% versus last year and the company guided full-year revenue above analyst expectations. The impressive earnings report was enough to send LinkedIn shares skyrocketing 16% on Friday, rebounding to end the week up nearly 5%.

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Brendan Byrnes owns no shares of any company mentioned above. The Motley Fool owns shares of LinkedIn and Cisco Systems.Motley Fool newsletter serviceshave recommended buying shares of LinkedIn. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe thatconsidering a diverse range of insightsmakes us better investors. Try any of our Foolish newsletter servicesfree for 30 days. The Motley Fool has adisclosure policy.

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