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One day before Friday’s quad witching, the S&P 500 index futures both made new all-time highs and had the largest loss in nearly three weeks, though the loss was still small.

Overnight, the index futures slowly climbed higher, holding above Tuesday’s close as well as the low from Wednesday’s abbreviated futures session. After peaking at 5588 in the early morning, it was nearly all downhill from there. At 8:30am EDT, several economic data points were released, including housing starts and building permits coming in 4~7% below expectations. The bears took this news and continued their selling until the regular session began.

Right after the bell rang, the bears continued their selloff but the bulls fought back and soon had the index climbing above the opening print. Unfortunately, the bulls were unable to maintain a bid above the open. NVIDIA Corp. (NASDAQ: NVDA) led the index lower, and the bears were soon testing support near the premarket low / all-time closing high in the index futures. Support held at that level for the rest of the morning. It seemed all the buy-the-dippers took off once the lunch hour began, as the bears were able to breach that support level in a big way. The index futures finally bottomed at 5525.50, and the bulls started their comeback.

Buyers were able to take the index right back up from that low, but previous support turned into resistance near the all-time closing high. From there, both the bulls and bears traded blows for the last hour of trading. The session concluded below the day’s midpoint at 5544.50, losing a total of 15.25 handles.

Among the top components of the index, Amazon.com Inc (NASDAQ: AMZN) emerged as the biggest gainer. The issue was able to advance by $3.29 or 1.80% to close at $186.10 for the day.

That performance was over two percent better than the cash index’s decline of 0.27%.

Among the day’s chip-wreck, the biggest loser ended up being Broadcom Inc (NASDAQ: AVGO). For the day, the chip designer declined by $67.96 or 3.77% to close at $1734.56.

 

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