US stocks trade mixed as Powell says economy is making progress

Jerome Powell
Jerome Powell

  • US stocks closed mixed on Wednesday after Fed Chairman Jerome Powell said the economy is making progress towards it tapering standards.
  • Despite the economic progress, Powell said the Fed is not yet ready to begin tapering its monthly bond purchases.
  • Investors were also digesting earnings results from mega-cap tech companies like Apple, Alphabet, and Microsoft.
  • Sign up here for our daily newsletter, 10 Things Before the Opening Bell.

US stocks were mixed on Wednesday, with the S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 rising following comments from Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell.

Powell said the economy is beginning to make progress towards it standards that would trigger the Fed to begin tapering its monthly bond purchases, but that the economy is not yet fully there. The Fed will continue its monthly bond purchases of $120 billion.

Investors were also digesting strong earnings results from mega-cap tech companies like Apple, Alphabet, and Microsoft.

All three tech giants easily surpassed analyst’s revenue and EPS estimates, helping boost shares of Microsoft and Alphabet in trades on Wednesday. Apple traded slightly lower as investors questioned if Apple’s strong growth rates were sustainable.

Here’s where US indexes stood after the 4:00 p.m. ET close on Wednesday:

The strong moves in US tech companies are in stark comparison to Chinese tech stocks, which continue to sell off as increased regulation from Beijing spreads to various industries. Cathie Wood’s Ark Invest continued to sell off their stakes in Chinese tech companies on Tuesday.

Robinhood’s expected IPO later this week will not be bought by some large asset managers, as they are reportedly going to sit out the offering in fear of retail-driven volatility. The retail brokerage app is now testing a new feature that will let users invest their spare change into select stocks.

Crypto-exchange Binance said it will step up its compliance efforts, including data-sharing with regulators and implementing a tax-tracking tool. The company has come under fire from a number of jurisdictions for its lack of compliance safeguards.

Crypto bull Mike Novogratz criticized Senator Elizabeth Warren’s anti-crypto stance on Tuesday, saying that DeFi is far more transparent than banks. Warren had sent a letter to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen calling for tougher rules on cryptocurrencies.

Oil prices were higher. West Texas Intermediate crude was up as much as 0.66%, to $72.12 per barrel. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, jumped as much as 0.54%, to $74.88 per barrel.

Gold was up 0.34%, to $1,805.90 per ounce.

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US stocks log record highs as investors look to Big Tech to sustain earnings growth

NYSE Traders
  • Dow industrials push further beyond 35,000 in Monday’s record-setting highs for stocks.
  • Tesla and Facebook earnings are among those on deck for this week’s earnings wave.
  • The Federal Reserve will start its two-day meeting on Tuesday.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Stocks finished at record highs Monday as investors set their sights on earnings reports from major technology companies and appeared to set aside concerns about economic recovery in the face of rising coronavirus cases.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average pushed further above 35,000 after crossing that threshold for the first time on Friday. Stocks overcame losses earlier in Monday’s session to build on record highs notched Friday, capping a rebound from a rout last week. Stocks have seen points of weakness in recent sessions on worries about increasing COVID-19 cases around the world as the highly transmissible Delta variant spreads.

Investors will start to plow through this week’s earnings reports, with more than one-third of S&P 500 companies set to release results. Tesla’s report is due after the bell Monday, followed by Alphabet, Apple, Microsoft on Tuesday, and Facebook on Wednesday.

Here’s where US indexes stood at 4:00 p.m. on Monday:

S&P 500 companies are on track for their best earnings growth since 2009, with profit expected to increase 78.1% year-on-year in the second quarter.

“What we’re looking for is what are companies doing with these strong earnings, what are they doing with their cash flow,” Tom Hainlin, national investment strategist at U.S. Bank Wealth Management, told Insider on Monday.

“If they’re optimistic about the future, we’re looking for them to invest that cash flow … new businesses, new initiatives, new factories,” he said. “We’re looking for what are companies doing with these proceeds to give us some insight from the corporate side into where we think the economy is going in the second half and into 2022,” he said.

The Fed’s two-day meeting that begins Tuesday and ends on Wednesday will likely produce commentary about its outlook on domestic and global economic recovery and investors will gauge when the Fed may begin tapering asset purchases or start raising interest rates.

Around the markets, billionaire investor Jeremy Grantham’s firm GMO says stocks are overvalued by every metric.

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway is facing a legal battle with Volkswagen after rejecting a settlement deal with the German auto giant related to its emissions scandal.

Gold fell 1.3%, to $1,798.06 per ounce. Long-dated US Treasury yields slipped, with the 10-year yield at 1.27%.

Oil prices turned slightly higher. West Texas Intermediate crude was fractionally higher at $72.09 per barrel.

Bitcoin jumped 13%, to $38,955.23. The digital currency rose above $38,000 for the first time in about six weeks, partially on a report that Amazon is considering accepting bitcoin payments.

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Dow rises 285 points for 2nd straight daily gain as focus shifts away from growth worries to earnings season

traders
Stocks are on the mend following pullbacks from record highs.

  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 285 points to extend a relief rally on Wednesday.
  • The S&P 500 also rose and the Nasdaq Composite pushed through early weakness.
  • Johnson & Johnson was among the Dow stocks that raised its annual earnings guidance.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

US stocks closed higher Wednesday, led by blue-chips as many corporate behemoths upgraded financial guidance, though questions linger about global economic recovery as COVID-19 infections rise.

The Nasdaq Composite overcame earlier weakness while the Dow Jones Industrial Average soared 285 points to advance for a second straight day of gains. The Dow was helped by shares of Coca-Cola, Johnson & Johnson and Verizon which rose after each company raised their financial guidance and posted quarterly results that beat analyst expectations.

Stocks extended Tuesday’s rebound from a rout in the previous session that was triggered by reports about mounting coronavirus cases worldwide. Retail investors buying the dip in shares on Monday purchased a record $2.2 billion of equities.

Wednesday’s “trade is a natural reaction to such a violent move on Friday and on Monday… but I’d steer clear of drawing any conclusions that say in today’s trading, “All is well,” Keith Buchanan, senior portfolio manager at Globalt Investments, told Insider. “We still have to see a lot more from a data perspective to reassure this market that the reopening and progress towards the new normal of economic conditions and consumer behavior are still on track.”

Here’s where US indexes stood at 4:00 p.m. on Wednesday:

Investors have been skittish about COVID-related developments, including a stall in vaccination rates in the US while the highly transmissible Delta variant of the coronavirus is responsible for an estimated 83% of all new cases, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Also key for the direction of markets is the outlook on inflation given that consumer and wholesales prices have shot up to multi-year highs.

“It’s paramount that investors have a clear understanding of what corporations are dealing with from a supply-shortage standpoint and how that’s developing, what they’re having to pay in order to get their products out to market,” and other cost factors including labor and whether they can pass price increases to their customers, said Buchanan.

Around the markets, Cathie Wood has added to her bitcoin exposure with another purchase of shares in the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust after the cryptocurrency fell below $30,000 on Tuesday. Meanwhile, legendary investor Jeremy Grantham said the stock and cryptocurrency markets are in bubbles worse than in 2000.

Ulta will open mini-shops at 100 Target stores next month, the biggest cosmetics retailer in the US said Wednesday.

JPMorgan Chase handed Jamie Dimon a stock award potentially worth millions if he stays CEO for at least five more years.

Gold slipped by 0.3%, to $1,804.30 per ounce. Long-dated US Treasury yields edged up, with the 10-year yield at 1.28%.

Oil prices jumped, pushing past weekly US data showing an unexpected climb of 2.1 million barrels in crude supplies. West Texas Intermediate crude rose 4.3%, to $70.31 per barrel. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, gained 4.2%, to $72.25 per barrel.

Bitcoin surged 6.6%, to $31,763.61.

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US stocks rise as investors weigh growth concerns against strong corporate earnings

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Traders and investors braced for the jobs data on Friday.

  • Stocks were up Wednesday following a rebound rally in the previous session.
  • Cola-Cola and Verizon aided a rise in the Dow Jones Industrial Average.
  • Bitcoin and oil prices advanced.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

US stocks edged higher Wednesday, with blue-chip stocks advancing on the back of earnings reports that outstripped Wall Street’s targets, while investors confronted questions about global economic recovery as COVID-19 infections rise.

The Nasdaq Composite, home to large-cap tech stocks, slipped while the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained ground. Stocks on Tuesday staged a comeback after a rout in the previous session that was triggered by reports about mounting coronavirus cases worldwide.

Here’s where US indexes stood at 9:30 a.m. on Wednesday:

The Dow on Wednesday found strength from shares of Coca-Cola, Johnson & Johnson and Verizon after each company posted quarterly results that beat analyst expectations and raised guidance.

COVID cases have been increasing on the spread of the Delta strain of the virus and could fuel worries about stagflation, or the combination of slowing economic growth and inflation.

“If the virus begins to spread rapidly again, that would curtail economic growth and prolong the inflationary supply chain disruptions that have affected so many industries including semiconductors and housing,” said Nancy Davis, portfolio manager of the Quadratic Interest Rate Volatility and Inflation Hedge Exchange-Traded Fund, or IVOL, in a note.

“Stagflation is a 60/40 portfolio’s worst nightmare, as stocks and bonds tend to fall together during stagflationary environments. Lower economic growth punishes stocks and inflation robs bond investors of their returns,” she said.

Around the markets, Cathie Wood has added to her bitcoin exposure with another purchase of shares in the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust after the cryptocurrency fell below $30,000 on Tuesday.

Ulta will open mini shops at 100 Target stores next month, the biggest cosmetics retailer in the US said Wednesday.

Gold slipped by 0.5%, to $1,801.17 per ounce. Long-dated US Treasury yields edged up, with the 10-year yield at 1.23%.

Oil prices gained ground, with West Texas Intermediate crude up 1.5% at $68.41 per barrel. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, gained 1.2% to $74.59 per barrel.

Bitcoin jumped 6%, to $31,586.92.

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US stocks gain as jump in retail sales in June points to steady pace of economic recovery

trader, NYSE

US stocks edged higher on Friday amid June retail sales data that showed a surprise increase of 0.6%, besting expectations of a 0.4% decline.

US consumers spent $621 billion at retail stores in June, signaling that the ongoing economic recovery from the pandemic is accelerating as more people get vaccinated from COVID-19.

The move higher in stocks came a day after a market sell-off that was spurred by investor concerns over rising inflation. Fed Chairman Jerome Powell and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen both expressed concerns at the pace of rising inflation and expect the trend to continue over the next few months before cooling down as supply chain disruptions are resolved.

Here’s where US indexes stood shortly after the 9:30 a.m. ET open on Friday:

Moderna jumped as much as 8% on Friday after it was tapped to replace Alexion Therapeutics in the S&P 500 index. The mRNA biotech platform exceeded a $100 billion valuation for the first time on Thursday, and is now worth $112 billion.

Shares of recent IPO Didi continued their decline on Friday, following reports that Chinese officials sent police to its offices as part of a sweeping cybersecurity probe.

Bitcoin declined about 1% on Friday, and is set to see its worst weekly performance in over a month as cryptocurrencies struggle to recover from a deep sell-off that began in May.

PayPal raised its weekly purchase limit of bitcoin to $100,000, and Square’s Jack Dorsey said the company would work to create a DeFi ecosystem centered around bitcoin.

Oil prices were higher. West Texas Intermediate crude was up as much as 0.6%, to $72.12 per barrel. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, jumped 0.5%, to $73.87 per barrel.

Gold fell 0.25%, to $1,824.50 per ounce.

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All major US stock indexes close at record highs ahead of a flood of corporate earnings

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE)
  • Wall Street’s key stock indexes ended at record highs on Monday.
  • Stocks advanced ahead of the second-quarter earnings season which starts on Tuesday.
  • Disney and Goldman Sachs shares were winners on the Dow Jones Industrial Average.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

US stocks finished at record highs on Monday, before the start of a new round of earnings reports that should show profit growth for Corporate America.

All three of Wall Street’s benchmark indexes notched new closing highs, with the Dow industrials and the S&P 500 overcoming losses earlier in the day. Among the Dow’s winners, Disney rose after saying its Disney Plus streaming service pulled in $60 million from this weekend’s release of Marvel Studios’ “Black Widow” movie.

Here’s where US indexes stood at 4:30 p.m. on Monday:

Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan Chase advanced ahead of the release of their financial results early Tuesday in what’s considered the kickoff to the second-quarter earnings season. S&P 500 companies are expected, on average, profit growth of 64%, led by the energy and industrial sectors, according to FactSet.

“With expectations high (again), it won’t be easy for companies to handily clear the bar like they did the past several quarters. We also recognize that stock valuations are elevated, so disappointments will likely be punished. Stocks need strong earnings to come through to justify those valuations, and we think we’ll get them,” said strategists at LPL Financial in a Monday note.

Around the markets, Virgin Galactic shares turned sharply lower after the company said it could sell up to $500 million worth of stock following a successful space test flight with founder Richard Branson on board.

Markets veteran Mohamed El-Erian said stocks are vulnerable to falls despite the recent drop in bond yields and could be rocked when the US Federal Reserve starts to unwind its support.

Gold rose 0.9% to $1,805.68 per ounce. Long-dated US Treasury yields rose, with the 10-year yield at 1.363%.

Oil prices were mixed. West Texas Intermediate crude declined 0.6%, to $74.12. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, picked up 0.1%, to $75.23 per barrel .

Bitcoin dropped 3.9%, to $32,910.95.

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S&P 500 closes at record high as FOMC minutes show little changes to rate outlook

Jerome Powell reads document while speaking in front of the Senate.
  • The S&P 500 closed at a record high on Wednesday as minutes from the last FOMC meeting signaled minimal changes to the central bank’s narrative on inflation, interest rates, and asset purchases.
  • The minutes showed officials are continuing to make progress towards reaching the threshold to scale back asset purchases.
  • The yield on the US 10-year Treasury fell as low as 1.295%, the lowest point since late February.
  • Sign up here for our daily newsletter, 10 Things Before the Opening Bell.

The S&P 500 closed at a record high on Wednesday amid falling Treasury yields as minutes from the Federal Reserve’s June meeting showed policymakers are continuing to make progress towards reaching their threshold to scaling back asset purchases.

The minutes showed that several participants are still uncertain about the outlook for growth and inflation, saying it’s “too early to draw firm conclusions about the paths of the labor market and inflation.” Fed officials also discussed tapering asset purchases but there was no consensus on the timeline.

Here’s where US indexes stood at the 4 p.m. ET close on Wednesday:

Read more: How to earn up to 100% interest on your crypto: A TikTok influencer shares 5 platforms he uses to stake bitcoin and 8 altcoins – and the interest each one offers

“We didn’t expect much from today’s FOMC Minutes, and our expectations were met. The majority of the new information delivered by the Fed was already distributed to the markets via the Summary of Economic Projections and the ‘dots’,” said economists from Jefferies.

Jefferies expects more details on the future of policy to emerge from the Fed’s meeting at Jackson Hole later this summer.

The yield on the US 10-year Treasury fell as low as 1.295%, the lowest point since late February.

The S&P 500 has hit a record closing high in eight of the past nine trading days.

Amid massive US stimulus and record high stocks, BlackRock strategists have switched to a neutral stance on US stocks while upgrading their views on European and Japanese equities, which they see as growing beneficiaries from the further reopenings of economies shut down by the COVID-19 crisis. The BlackRock Investment Institute outlined, among other items, its six to 12-month tactical views on selected assets in a mid-year report released Wednesday.

Bitcoin traded just under $35,000 on Wednesday after briefly overtaking the level.

Oil prices recovered after falling on Tuesday, despite rising sharply earlier in the day after a meeting between the OPEC+ group of oil-producing countries was abruptly called off.

West Texas Intermediate crude fell as much as 3.1%, to $71.07 per barrel. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, dropped 2.6%, to $72.60 per barrel, at intraday lows.

Gold climbed as much as 0.7%, to $1,810 per ounce.

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US stocks close mixed as traders weigh tumbling bond yields and surging oil prices

NYSE Trader
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., March 9, 2020.


US stocks closed mixed on Tuesday, with the S&P 500 ending its seven-day win streak and the Nasdaq 100 closing at record highs.

Crude oil jumped to its highest level since 2015 before paring some of the gains following a breakdown in talks among OPEC+ members. The group was unable to agree upon an oil production increase. OPEC and its allies had been discussing output increases, but the UAE is unhappy with the proposed target that it believes is too low, according to reports.

Meanwhile, the US 10-year Treasury yield fell to 1.34%, helping revitalize the mega-cap tech trade. Shares of Amazon were up nearly 5% on Tuesday to a record high, while Apple jumped about 2%.

Here’s where US indexes stood at the 4:00 p.m. ET close on Tuesday:

All eyes were on shares of Didi, which plunged more than 20% on Tuesday after regulators in China ordered the ride-hailing app to be removed from app stores. The move came just days after Didi completed its IPO.

Robinhood’s upcoming IPO could value the investing app at $30 billion or more, according to analysts from S&P. The firm’s recent S-1 filing revealed it generated about $30 million in revenue in the first quarter from dogecoin trading.

Bitcoin and ether are seeing a resurgence in institutional capital inflows as all digital assets pick up steam, according to a report from CoinShares.

Apple received a price target increase from JPMorgan, with the bank arguing there’s 21% potential upside from current levels on the upcoming iPhone 13 generating better than expected sales.

Oil prices were lower after popping early in the day. West Texas Intermediate crude fell 2%, to $72.72 per barrel. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, dropped about 3%, to $74.87 per barrel.

Gold rose 0.8%, to $1,797.60 per ounce.

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US stocks hover near record highs as oil jumps following breakdown of OPEC talks

NYSE Trader

US stocks were mixed on Tuesday, with the S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 hovering near record highs as the Dow Jones fell slightly.

Oil jumped higher over the weekend following a breakdown in talks among OPEC+ members. The group was unable to agree upon an oil production increase. OPEC and its allies had been discussing output increases, but the UAE is unhappy with the proposed target that it believes is too low, according to reports.

Crude oil surged to its highest level since 2015 before giving up some of those gains.

Here’s where US indexes stood shortly after the 9:30 a.m. ET open on Tuesday:

All eyes were on shares of recent Chinese-IPO Didi, which plunged more than 20% on Tuesday after regulators in China ordered the ride-hailing app to be removed from app stores.

Bitcoin and ether are seeing a resurgence in institutional capital inflows as all digital assets pick up steam, according to a report from CoinShares.

Oil prices were higher. West Texas Intermediate crude was up as much as 2.3%, to $76.92 per barrel. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, jumped 0.8%, to $77.78 per barrel.

Gold rose 1.4%, to $1,809.50 per ounce.

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US stocks extend record highs as investors digest surprisingly strong June jobs report

NYSE traders
  • The S&P 500 on Friday heads toward a new record high after a robust June jobs report.
  • Blue-chip and tech stocks also rose after US data showed the creation of 850,000 jobs last month.
  • Stock trading will be closed Monday for Independence Day.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

US stocks jumped higher Friday, aiming for a seventh straight day of record highs after the June jobs report indicated accelerating growth in the labor market of the world’s largest economy which as it recovers from the coronavirus pandemic.

All three of Wall Street’s main benchmark indexes advanced, with the S&P 500 up after logging its sixth consecutive record-high close on Thursday.

Ahead of the opening bell, the Labor Department reported the addition of 850,000 jobs to nonfarm payrolls last month. Economists had expected growth of 703,000 jobs, according to an Econoday estimate.

Here’s where US indexes stood at 9:30 a.m. on Friday:

The report showed a pickup in hiring in the leisure and hospitality industry, among others. That sector has been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic as bars, restaurants, and air travel were temporarily shut down to curb the spread of the virus. The data arrived before investors take a break on Monday as stock trading will be closed in observance of Independence Day.

“We got some early fireworks in the jobs report as the numbers blew past expectations,” said Chris Zaccarelli, chief investment officer for Independent Advisor Alliance, in a note Friday.

“In the current environment, we remain positive of cyclical sectors such as financials and industrials, but we are complementing that with higher quality, large tech companies which will act defensively in the event that growth slows down in the next couple years after the initial post-pandemic boost.”

Around the markets, Virgin Galactic Holdings shares jumped at least 31% early Friday after founder Richard Branson said he will travel on the spaceflight company’s test flight on July 11, days before Jeff Bezos’ planned trip to space.

Gold rose 0.4% to $1,784.28 per ounce. Long-dated US Treasury yields fell, with the 10-year yield at 1.434%.

Oil prices fell. West Texas Intermediate crude lost 0.6%, to $74.75 per barrel as OPEC and its allies meet for a second day to discuss output levels. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, lost 0.7% to $75.34 per barrel .

Bitcoin fell 1.3%, to $33,008.45.

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