The S&P 500 is on track for its best weekly gain since July, but if history is any indication, those gains may evaporate on Monday.» Read More
The dollar is at a four-week high against the yen, while the Dow attempts to recover from the four-week low it set last week.
Will the recent divergence between the two help the Dow take off?
Year to date, the Dow and USDJPY have moved in tandem and by a similar magnitude, each gaining over 14 percent.
In the past month, however, the two currencies have managed to remain in positive territory, with the Dow losing over 4 percent in the same period.
It's the basic question when investing in a stock: is it on the way up or down?
The Street has developed numerous ways of attempting to predict what will happen, estimating various attributes tied to stock performance in order to determine what the future holds for a company's valuation.
After dissecting the data, analysts following a particular company produce a price target of where they believe the stock is headed.
So far this year, the S&P 500 is up 16.6 percent, with about half (276) of the index components outperforming the overall market. CNBC's Analytics Team dug through the numbers to find the names with average consensus estimates that are farthest above their current stock prices.
All values are as of the market close on August 23, 2013.
So, which stocks are analysts expecting to have the biggest pops?
Posted 23 Aug 2013
Data source: FactSet and Thomson Reuters
Oh, how the mighty have fallen.
ExxonMobil, the world's largest oil and gas concern, has seen its stock close in negative territory in 19 of the past 20 sessions. Since scaling to a five-year high of $95.45 in July, it's been all downhill since then as the stock has tumbled 9 percent.
Exxon's steep slide has cost investors in more ways than one. The oil big was once the world's most valuable company in terms of its market capitalization. Now, at $382 billion, Exxon's market capitalization is well behind technology giant Apple, which enjoys a market cap of about $458 billion.
Over the past 20 sessions, the energy giant has become the worst-performing component of the 30 blue-chip stocks that comprise the Dow Jones industrial average.
As the S&P 500 continues to trade near record highs, short interest appears to be on the rise.
According to data from FactSet, in the first half of July average short interest for S&P 500 stocks increased more than 5 percent, with over 55 percent of those companies seeing a spike in short interest.
Short interest measures the total number of shares of a security that have been sold short, expressed as a percent of total tradable shares.
Investors track short interest levels to gain a sense of where a stock might be headed, along with some insight into whether any positive news might force short traders to cover their positions, pushing stocks higher.
While the S&P 500 hits new highs, the number of companies following suit has been decreasing, suggesting that short-term momentum may have peaked.
The stock market is once again flirting with record-high levels since touching a two-month low in mid-June. Small- and mid-cap stocks have led the gains, up 11 percent and 10 percent, respectively.
Investors often look at waning price momentum along with volume to predict the direction of a security or index.
So far this year, the average number of S&P 500 companies reaching new 52-week highs stands at 62, but it has been trending down in the past three weeks. Could the market be poised for another breather?
While concerns about Egypt are being touted as part of the reason for oil's resilience in the face of dollar strength, there's more going on. If you look back to the Arab Spring and the first uprising in Egypt, that's when Brent exploded and became the global benchmark, with a premium north of $25. But that's not happening this time.
Brent's premium over West Texas Intermediate Nymex crude has dipped below $5 this week, as the prospect for the U.S. economy remains stronger than the global outlook, and some of that Cushing bottleneck has been eased.
The beginning of 2013 brought with it a swelling economy, but also international turmoil, domestic uncertainty over fixed-income securities and a turbulent currency and commodities market. Despite those hurdles, the S&P 500 is still up 13 percent for the year, while the Dow is up nearly 15 percent.
In fact, the S&P is poised for its best first half since 1998 and 1999 for the Dow. As the second quarter and first half of the year came to an end Friday, CNBC examined where the money was made.
Investors betting on health care, financial and consumer discretionary stocks fared the best, as these three sectors recorded more than 18-percent gains. The sectors are also leading in Q2.
Gold futures prices are on track for their largest quarterly loss since at least 1974, down 23 percent in the past three months. Similarly, silver has plunged 34 percent in the same period—its largest loss in at least 50 years.