April's first day of trading got off to a rocky start, as Wall Street showed its lack of enthusiasm for the most recent domestic manufacturing numbers. March's Institute for Supply Management factory index came in below expectations, nearly showing a contraction in U.S. industry. Despite this, the Dow Jones Industrial Average ended only modestly lower, losing five points, or less than 0.1%, to close at 14,572.
While the Dow traded sideways, some components still saw some pretty wide swings. Health-care providers rose across the board today, and UnitedHealth Group was one of them, adding 3.1% in anticipation of Medicare Advantage rate announcements after the bell. Rising as much as another 3% after hours, investors were pleased with the profit potential the new prices imply for health-care providers like UnitedHealth.
One sector that didn't have such a bang-up day was technology, and Hewlett-Packard epitomized that sluggishness, falling 2.2%. One of the chip maker's top executives, Senior Vice President Ajei Gopal, is leaving the company to take a job with Silver Lake Partners, the private equity firm that's taking Dell private. For a company in the middle of a turnaround, losing valuable members of its leadership team isn't exactly what you want to see.
Shrugging off the dismal performance in the rest of tech today, shares of BlackBerry rallied 4.6%. The company, despite losing 3 million subscribers in the last quarter alone, recently came out with new software that's still fresh on the scene in U.S. markets. It also didn't hurt that a Wells Fargo analyst hiked estimates for BlackBerry sales in the current quarter by a cool 1 million phones.
But even BlackBerry's rise was no match for Tesla Motors , which rocketed 15.9% higher today as the company confirmed that it will finally turn a profit in the first quarter on better-than-expected sales of its Model S. Some of the run-up was also due to speculation. Tesla founder Elon Musk tweeted last week that there will be a major company announcement on April 2.
The article Tesla Surges Higher as Dow Sputters Along originally appeared on Fool.com.
Fool contributor John Divine has no position in any stocks mentioned. You can follow him on Twitter @divinebizkid and on Motley Fool CAPS @TMFDivine.The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Tesla Motors and Wells Fargo. It also recommends UnitedHealth Group. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.
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