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Wall Street closes lower, pulled down by IT and energy

Stocks fell broadly on Wall Street Thursday, as rising bond yields once again pulled down shares of technology companies and the energy sector sold off on a sharp drop in oil prices.

The S&P 500 index fell 1.5%, on track for its first weekly loss in three weeks. Technology companies accounted for a big swath of the sell-off, which contributed to the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite dropping 3%, its second-worst loss of the year.

Communications stocks and companies that rely on consumer spending also weighed on the market. Energy stocks fell the most as the price of U.S. crude oil skidded for the fifth straight day. Only financial stocks eked out a gain, as investors bet that higher interest rates would translate into healthier profits.

Bond yields ticked higher again, with the 10-year Treasury note rising to 1.72%, near levels not seen since January 2020. Higher yields put downward pressure on stocks generally, in part because they can steer dollars away from the stock market and into bonds instead. That makes investors less willing to pay for higher priced stocks such as Big Tech companies that powered much of the market’s blockbuster turnaround last year. Apple shares fell 3.4%, Microsoft lost 2.7% and Tesla slumped 6.9%.

“Those tech-related stocks that are in the S&P 500 are just coming under so much pressure, and so many of them are in the Nasdaq, that it’s just continuing to bring the market down overall,” said J.J. Kinahan, chief strategist with TD Ameritrade.

The S&P 500 fell 58.66 points to 3,915.46. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 153.07 points, or 0.5%, to 32,862.30, after rising more than 200 points earlier. The Nasdaq slid 409.03 points to 13,116.17.

Smaller company stocks, the market’s standout gainers so far this year, also fell. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies gave up 68.81 points, or 2.9%, to 2,267.59.

Bank stocks were among the best performers as investors bet that higher interest rates would translate into higher profits. Wells Fargo rose 2.4%, Bank of America added 2.6% and JPMorgan Chase gained 1.7%.

The VIX, a measure of fear in the market, climbed about 12%, a sign of rising volatility. One possible factor: Friday is “quadruple witching” day, which happens four times a year and marks the simultaneous expiration of four kinds of options and futures contracts.

“Usually, you have some sort of big move on Thursday as people try to settle up their positions going forward,” Kinahan said.

The market’s pullback undercut some of the gains from a day earlier, when the S&P 500 and Dow hit all-time highs after the Federal Reserve said U.S. economic growth should rebound to 6.5% this year — the strongest since the 1980s — and inflation will climb above 2% for the first time in years.

“Early in a cycle you’re going to see higher inflation and higher interest rates and demand as global activity picks up,” said Scott Wren, senior global market strategist at Wells Fargo Investment Institute.

Investors have worried that if inflation picks up, central banks might respond by raising interest rates, which would cool economic growth. But Fed Chairman Jerome Powell’s comments at a news conference appeared to reassure them. Fed officials have said they would let the U.S. economy “run hot” to make sure a recovery is gaining traction.

ASX 200 to fall

The Australian share market looks set to end the week on a disappointing note. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is expected to open the day 34 points or 0.5% lower this morning. This follows a poor night on Wall Street, which on closing sees the Dow Jones down 0.46%, the S&P 500 down 1.48%, and the Nasdaq sinking 3.02% lower. Rising bond yields have spooked investors again.

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https://apnews.com/article/financia...rus-pandemic-97380f5f24671dacf14fd7544604fc6d

Wall Street closes lower, pulled down by IT and energy

By DAMIAN J. TROISE and ALEX VEIGA

Stocks fell broadly on Wall Street Thursday, as rising bond yields once again pulled down shares of technology companies and the energy sector sold off on a sharp drop in oil prices.

The S&P 500 index fell 1.5%, on track for its first weekly loss in three weeks. Technology companies accounted for a big swath of the sell-off, which contributed to the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite dropping 3%, its second-worst loss of the year.

Communications stocks and companies that rely on consumer spending also weighed on the market. Energy stocks fell the most as the price of U.S. crude oil skidded for the fifth straight day. Only financial stocks eked out a gain, as investors bet that higher interest rates would translate into healthier profits.

Bond yields ticked higher again, with the 10-year Treasury note rising to 1.72%, near levels not seen since January 2020. Higher yields put downward pressure on stocks generally, in part because they can steer dollars away from the stock market and into bonds instead. That makes investors less willing to pay for higher priced stocks such as Big Tech companies that powered much of the market’s blockbuster turnaround last year. Apple shares fell 3.4%, Microsoft lost 2.7% and Tesla slumped 6.9%.

“Those tech-related stocks that are in the S&P 500 are just coming under so much pressure, and so many of them are in the Nasdaq, that it’s just continuing to bring the market down overall,” said J.J. Kinahan, chief strategist with TD Ameritrade.

The S&P 500 fell 58.66 points to 3,915.46. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 153.07 points, or 0.5%, to 32,862.30, after rising more than 200 points earlier. The Nasdaq slid 409.03 points to 13,116.17.

Smaller company stocks, the market’s standout gainers so far this year, also fell. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies gave up 68.81 points, or 2.9%, to 2,267.59.

Bank stocks were among the best performers as investors bet that higher interest rates would translate into higher profits. Wells Fargo rose 2.4%, Bank of America added 2.6% and JPMorgan Chase gained 1.7%.

The VIX, a measure of fear in the market, climbed about 12%, a sign of rising volatility. One possible factor: Friday is “quadruple witching” day, which happens four times a year and marks the simultaneous expiration of four kinds of options and futures contracts.

“Usually, you have some sort of big move on Thursday as people try to settle up their positions going forward,” Kinahan said.

The market’s pullback undercut some of the gains from a day earlier, when the S&P 500 and Dow hit all-time highs after the Federal Reserve said U.S. economic growth should rebound to 6.5% this year — the strongest since the 1980s — and inflation will climb above 2% for the first time in years.

“Early in a cycle you’re going to see higher inflation and higher interest rates and demand as global activity picks up,” said Scott Wren, senior global market strategist at Wells Fargo Investment Institute.

Investors have worried that if inflation picks up, central banks might respond by raising interest rates, which would cool economic growth. But Fed Chairman Jerome Powell’s comments at a news conference appeared to reassure them. Fed officials have said they would let the U.S. economy “run hot” to make sure a recovery is gaining traction.

The U.S. economy still has a lot of recovering to do. The Labor Department said Thursday that the number of Americans who filed for unemployment benefits last week rose to 770,000, remaining well above historic norms for that metric.

Investors are betting the economic malaise will dissipate as spring arrives and more Americans get vaccinated against the coronavirus. The $1,400 stimulus checks the Biden administration began sending to individuals last weekend are helping. Fed policymakers foresee unemployment falling from 6.2% to 4.5% by year’s end and to 3.9% at the end of 2022.

Energy prices fell, with U.S. crude oil losing 7.4% to $59.82 a barrel in New York. That dragged energy companies lower as well. The energy sector of the S&P 500 fell 4.7% Thursday, though it’s still this year’s biggest gainer, up 29.3% since the start of 2021.
 

bigdog

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Wall Street closing lower; bank stocks fall

Wall Street closed out a choppy week of trading Friday with major stock indexes mostly lower and all finishing in the red for the week.

The S&P 500 ended 0.1% lower after reversing a small gain. The benchmark index, which hit an all-time high on Wednesday, posted its first weekly decline in three weeks. Losses by banks, industrial companies and technology stocks weighed on the market. They offset gains in companies that rely on consumer spending, health care and other sectors.

Bond yields were mixed, though the 10-year Treasury yield inched higher. The closely watched yield, which influences interest rates on mortgages and other consumer loans, has hovered this week near the highest level since January.

Higher yields put downward pressure on stocks generally, in part because they can steer dollars away from the stock market and into bonds instead. That makes investors less willing to pay as high prices for stocks.

“Overall, the very near term concerns are going back to some of the bigger picture questions,” said Barry Bannister, chief equity strategist at Stifel. “How high can yields go and what does that mean for stock valuations?”

The S&P 500 lost 2.36 points to 3,913.10. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 234.33 points, or 0.7%, to 32,627.97, pulled lower by financial companies. The technology-heavy Nasdaq Composite rose 99.07 points, or 0.8%, to 13,215.24.

Smaller company stocks also notched gains. That helped the Russell 2000 index of smaller companies claw back some of its losses from a day earlier. It picked up 19.96 points, or 0.9%, to 2,287.55.

A late-burst of selling may have been caused by “quadruple witching,” the simultaneous expiration of four kinds of options and futures contracts. The phenomenon happens four times a year and forces traders to tie up loose ends in contracts they hold.

Bank stocks fell after the Federal Reserve announced it would end some of the emergency measures put in place last year to aid the financial industry deal with the pandemic. The move will restore some of the capital requirements for big banks that were suspended in the early months of the viral outbreak, in order to give banks flexibility. The banking industry had hoped those measures would be extended.

The announcement briefly raised concerns about more bond selling, but those fears have been tempered, Bannister said.

Big bank stocks were particularly hurt, since the Fed’s measures mostly apply to the nation’s largest banks. Citigroup and Bank of America dropped 1.1%, while JPMorgan Chase slid 1.6%.

Several Big Tech companies rose. Netflix gained 1.5% and Amazon.com added 1.6%. Facebook, meanwhile, climbed 4.1%. Even so, the S&P 500′s tech sector fell, weighed down partly by Visa. Shares in the financial services company fell 6.2% for the biggest decline in the S&P 500 following reports that the Justice Department is investigating the company over its debit card practices. Mastercard fell 2.9%.


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https://apnews.com/article/financia...rus-pandemic-2c81b416ae35bac3bf63d047bc4f863a

Wall Street closing lower; bank stocks fall

By DAMIAN J. TROISE and ALEX VEIGA

Wall Street closed out a choppy week of trading Friday with major stock indexes mostly lower and all finishing in the red for the week.

The S&P 500 ended 0.1% lower after reversing a small gain. The benchmark index, which hit an all-time high on Wednesday, posted its first weekly decline in three weeks. Losses by banks, industrial companies and technology stocks weighed on the market. They offset gains in companies that rely on consumer spending, health care and other sectors.

Bond yields were mixed, though the 10-year Treasury yield inched higher. The closely watched yield, which influences interest rates on mortgages and other consumer loans, has hovered this week near the highest level since January.

Higher yields put downward pressure on stocks generally, in part because they can steer dollars away from the stock market and into bonds instead. That makes investors less willing to pay as high prices for stocks.

“Overall, the very near term concerns are going back to some of the bigger picture questions,” said Barry Bannister, chief equity strategist at Stifel. “How high can yields go and what does that mean for stock valuations?”

The S&P 500 lost 2.36 points to 3,913.10. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 234.33 points, or 0.7%, to 32,627.97, pulled lower by financial companies. The technology-heavy Nasdaq Composite rose 99.07 points, or 0.8%, to 13,215.24.

Smaller company stocks also notched gains. That helped the Russell 2000 index of smaller companies claw back some of its losses from a day earlier. It picked up 19.96 points, or 0.9%, to 2,287.55.

A late-burst of selling may have been caused by “quadruple witching,” the simultaneous expiration of four kinds of options and futures contracts. The phenomenon happens four times a year and forces traders to tie up loose ends in contracts they hold.

Bank stocks fell after the Federal Reserve announced it would end some of the emergency measures put in place last year to aid the financial industry deal with the pandemic. The move will restore some of the capital requirements for big banks that were suspended in the early months of the viral outbreak, in order to give banks flexibility. The banking industry had hoped those measures would be extended.

The announcement briefly raised concerns about more bond selling, but those fears have been tempered, Bannister said.

Big bank stocks were particularly hurt, since the Fed’s measures mostly apply to the nation’s largest banks. Citigroup and Bank of America dropped 1.1%, while JPMorgan Chase slid 1.6%.

Several Big Tech companies rose. Netflix gained 1.5% and Amazon.com added 1.6%. Facebook, meanwhile, climbed 4.1%. Even so, the S&P 500′s tech sector fell, weighed down partly by Visa. Shares in the financial services company fell 6.2% for the biggest decline in the S&P 500 following reports that the Justice Department is investigating the company over its debit card practices. Mastercard fell 2.9%.

As interest rates have risen, pricier stocks like technology companies have fallen.

The yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note rose to 1.73% from 1.72% late Thursday. The prospect of higher interest rates as bond yields rise has some investors concerned that economic growth could slow.

There are also concerns that the rise in bond yields could be a harbinger of inflation. Fed officials said earlier this week that they may let the U.S. economy “run hot” for some time in order to not stymie the economic recovery as the pandemic eases.

Shares of transportation company FedEx leaped 6.1% after the company reported earnings well above analysts’ estimates.

Shares of Nike fell by 4% after the athletic apparel company said pandemic-caused congestion at ports caused sales to slow in the last quarter.
 

bigdog

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ASX 200 expected to drop

The Australian share market looks set to drop this morning following another mixed finish to the week on Wall Street. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is expected to open the week 15 points or 0.2% lower today.

On Wall Street on Friday night, the Dow Jones fell 0.7% and the S&P 500 edged slightly lower. A rebound in tech stocks led to the Nasdaq index defying the weakness to record a 0.75% gain.
 

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Technology companies lead stocks higher on Wall Street

Technology companies led stocks higher on Wall Street Monday, reversing some of the market’s losses from last week, as investors welcomed some easing in long-term bond yields.

The S&P 500 index rose 0.7%, as gains in technology, communication and other stocks outweighed a pullback in financial companies. The rally in tech stocks pushed the Nasdaq composite 1.2% higher.

A steady rise in bond yields over the past month has been luring investors away from high-flying tech stocks, but traders have also been quick to snap up tech stocks on days when bond yields decline or only rise slightly.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 1.69% after trading as high as 1.74% last week. Amazon, Apple, and Microsoft all made solid gains.

The prospect of higher interest rates as bond yields rise has some investors concerned that economic growth could slow. There are also concerns that the rise in bond yields could be a harbinger of inflation.

“There will be a pickup in inflation, no doubt about that, as the recovery progresses,” said David Lefkowitz, head of Americas equities at UBS Global Wealth Management. “As long as rates are rising for the right reasons, that’s fine for stocks.”

The S&P 500 added 27.49 points to 3,940.59. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 103.23 points, or 0.3%, to 32,731.20. The Nasdaq climbed 162.31 points to 13,377.54. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies slid 20.70 points, or 0.9%, to 2,266.84.

Stocks ended last week in the red as a rise in bond yields caused selling in many parts of the market. Bond yields have been moving steadily higher all year as investors have bet that the U.S. economy is poised to strongly recover later this year as vaccinations and trillions of dollars of government stimulus take effect.

But a rise in bond yields causes parts of the stock market to appear more expensive than others, the dominant example being technology stocks. Big technology stocks rose sharply last year, and their high valuations make them a prime target for selling when investors can find safer places to park their money.

Traders seized on the pullback in bond yields to snap up shares in some of the Big Tech companies Monday. Amazon rose 1.2% and Apple gained 2.8%, while Microsoft rose 2.4%.

Bank stocks fell. Lower yields potentially mean banks will only be able to charger lower interest rates to borrowers. The KBW Bank Index of the 24 largest banks fell more than 2%.

Shares in several travel-related companies, including airlines, cruise operators and booking sites, fell. Carnival slid 5.1%, while American Airlines dropped 4.6%. Expedia Group lost 3.8%.

ASX 200 futures pointing lower
The Australian share market looks set to edge lower today despite strong gains being recorded in the United States. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is poised to open the day 12 points or 0.2% lower this morning.

On closing on Wall Street, the Dow Jones is up 0.32%, the S&P 500 is up 0.70%, and the Nasdaq is trading 1.23% higher. A pullback in bond yields gave equities a boost.

Tech shares could jump
It could be a good day for ASX tech shares such as Afterpay Ltd (ASX: APT) and Zip Co Ltd (ASX: Z1P) on Tuesday after US tech stocks stormed higher overnight following a pullback in bond yields. US giants Apple, Facebook, and Tesla are all recording solid gains and helping to drive the tech-focused Nasdaq index 1.23% higher. As the local tech sector has a tendency of following the Nasdaq’s lead, this bodes well for Tuesday’s trade.

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https://apnews.com/article/financia...rus-pandemic-9773b0e21ee6619853a666cfe536f7d1

Technology companies lead stocks higher on Wall Street

By DAMIAN J. TROISE and ALEX VEIGA



Technology companies led stocks higher on Wall Street Monday, reversing some of the market’s losses from last week, as investors welcomed some easing in long-term bond yields.

The S&P 500 index rose 0.7%, as gains in technology, communication and other stocks outweighed a pullback in financial companies. The rally in tech stocks pushed the Nasdaq composite 1.2% higher.

A steady rise in bond yields over the past month has been luring investors away from high-flying tech stocks, but traders have also been quick to snap up tech stocks on days when bond yields decline or only rise slightly.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 1.69% after trading as high as 1.74% last week. Amazon, Apple, and Microsoft all made solid gains.

The prospect of higher interest rates as bond yields rise has some investors concerned that economic growth could slow. There are also concerns that the rise in bond yields could be a harbinger of inflation.

“There will be a pickup in inflation, no doubt about that, as the recovery progresses,” said David Lefkowitz, head of Americas equities at UBS Global Wealth Management. “As long as rates are rising for the right reasons, that’s fine for stocks.”

The S&P 500 added 27.49 points to 3,940.59. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 103.23 points, or 0.3%, to 32,731.20. The Nasdaq climbed 162.31 points to 13,377.54. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies slid 20.70 points, or 0.9%, to 2,266.84.

Stocks ended last week in the red as a rise in bond yields caused selling in many parts of the market. Bond yields have been moving steadily higher all year as investors have bet that the U.S. economy is poised to strongly recover later this year as vaccinations and trillions of dollars of government stimulus take effect.

But a rise in bond yields causes parts of the stock market to appear more expensive than others, the dominant example being technology stocks. Big technology stocks rose sharply last year, and their high valuations make them a prime target for selling when investors can find safer places to park their money.

Traders seized on the pullback in bond yields to snap up shares in some of the Big Tech companies Monday. Amazon rose 1.2% and Apple gained 2.8%, while Microsoft rose 2.4%.

Bank stocks fell. Lower yields potentially mean banks will only be able to charger lower interest rates to borrowers. The KBW Bank Index of the 24 largest banks fell more than 2%.

Shares in several travel-related companies, including airlines, cruise operators and booking sites, fell. Carnival slid 5.1%, while American Airlines dropped 4.6%. Expedia Group lost 3.8%.

The U.S.-traded shares of British drug company AstraZeneca rose 4%% after British and U.S. health officials said the company’s COVID-19 vaccine was safe and earlier reports of blood clots were outweighed by the health benefits of the vaccine.

Kansas City Southern jumped 11.1% for the biggest gain in the S&P 500 after a Canadian railroad announced it would buy the company for $25 billion.

Apollo Global Management rose 4.5% after the private equity company announced that its longtime chairman Leon Black would be retiring. Black’s reputation had been damaged in the last couple of years by his association with disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein.

The Turkish lira nosedived 7.8% after the country’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, fired his third central bank head in less than two years over the weekend. The latest abrupt change raised concerns about a possible return to the unconventional monetary policy favored by the Turkish president.
 

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Stocks close broadly lower on Wall Street as banks stumble

Stocks closed broadly lower on Tuesday and gave back nearly all of their gains from a day earlier as technology, industrial and bank stocks fell.

The S&P 500 fell 30.07 points, or 0.8%, to 3,910.52. Technology stocks were the biggest drag on the market and pushed the Nasdaq 149.85 points lower, or 1.1%, to 13,227.70. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 308.05 points, or 0.9% to 32,423.15.

Stocks of smaller companies, which have far outpaced the rest of the market this year, fell even more. The Russell 2000 index gave back 3.6%.

Industrial and health care companies also accounted for a good part of the selling. Energy stocks helped drag down the market too as oil prices fell.

Bond yields declined. That weighed on banks and other financial companies which look to yields as a benchmark for the interest rates they charge on mortgages and other loans.

Investors continue to be focused on the future outlook for the U.S. economy as millions of Americans get vaccinated every day. Investors are wavering between optimism that coronavirus vaccines that might allow business and travel to return to normal and fears of higher inflation after struggling economies were flooded with credit and government spending.

“The market feels like it is in this inflection point,” said Darrell Cronk, chief investment officer of Wells Fargo Wealth and Investment Management. “It’s a good day for reflection.”

The price of U.S. crude oil dropped 6.2% to $57.76 a barrel, pulling energy companies lower. Energy prices have been steadily climbing this year until recently, as the global economy recovers and oil demand worldwide increases while production remains constrained. Marathon Oil fell 6.1%.

Another drop in long-term bond yields pulled bank stocks lower. When bond yields fall they mean lower interest rates on loans such as mortgages, and weaker profits for banks and other lenders. Bank of America fell 2.0% and Wells Fargo dropped 1.9%. American Express slid 2.8%.

The yield of the 10-year Treasury note fell to 1.63%. The yield was well above 1.70% last week, which had put some pressure on the stock market.

The S&P 500 hit a pandemic-era low exactly one year ago, on March 23, 2020, having dropped nearly 34% in about a month. That wiped out three years’ worth of gains. The index wound up roaring back in the coming months, and recovered all its losses by August. Through Monday, it had surged 76% from that low point.

ASX 200 futures pointing lower


The Australian share market is poised to edge lower on Wednesday following a weak night of trade on Wall Street. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is expected to open the day 2 points lower this morning.

On closing on Wall Street, the Dow Jones was down 0.94%, the S&P 500 is down 0.76%, and the Nasdaq had fallen 1.12%. This was despite bond yields falling again!

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https://apnews.com/article/financia...rus-pandemic-f48c14d18f54f10a2c9b0f01c528ed09

Stocks close broadly lower on Wall Street as banks stumble

By DAMIAN J. TROISE and ALEX VEIGA

Stocks closed broadly lower on Tuesday and gave back nearly all of their gains from a day earlier as technology, industrial and bank stocks fell.

The S&P 500 fell 30.07 points, or 0.8%, to 3,910.52. Technology stocks were the biggest drag on the market and pushed the Nasdaq 149.85 points lower, or 1.1%, to 13,227.70. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 308.05 points, or 0.9% to 32,423.15.

Stocks of smaller companies, which have far outpaced the rest of the market this year, fell even more. The Russell 2000 index gave back 3.6%.

Industrial and health care companies also accounted for a good part of the selling. Energy stocks helped drag down the market too as oil prices fell.

Bond yields declined. That weighed on banks and other financial companies which look to yields as a benchmark for the interest rates they charge on mortgages and other loans.

Investors continue to be focused on the future outlook for the U.S. economy as millions of Americans get vaccinated every day. Investors are wavering between optimism that coronavirus vaccines that might allow business and travel to return to normal and fears of higher inflation after struggling economies were flooded with credit and government spending.

“The market feels like it is in this inflection point,” said Darrell Cronk, chief investment officer of Wells Fargo Wealth and Investment Management. “It’s a good day for reflection.”

The price of U.S. crude oil dropped 6.2% to $57.76 a barrel, pulling energy companies lower. Energy prices have been steadily climbing this year until recently, as the global economy recovers and oil demand worldwide increases while production remains constrained. Marathon Oil fell 6.1%.

Another drop in long-term bond yields pulled bank stocks lower. When bond yields fall they mean lower interest rates on loans such as mortgages, and weaker profits for banks and other lenders. Bank of America fell 2.0% and Wells Fargo dropped 1.9%. American Express slid 2.8%.

The yield of the 10-year Treasury note fell to 1.63%. The yield was well above 1.70% last week, which had put some pressure on the stock market.

The S&P 500 hit a pandemic-era low exactly one year ago, on March 23, 2020, having dropped nearly 34% in about a month. That wiped out three years’ worth of gains. The index wound up roaring back in the coming months, and recovered all its losses by August. Through Monday, it had surged 76% from that low point.

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell told Congress on Tuesday that more must be done to limit the economic damage from the coronavirus pandemic. Powell also stressed that he does not expect programs aimed at reviving the economy will trigger unwanted inflation.

Cronk said many of the signs in the market point to an early-stage recovery. Interest rates are rising as the economy strengthens, commodities like oil are making steady gains and sectors tied closely to economic growth are doing well. “It’s playing out exactly as it should play out.”

AstraZeneca fell 3.5% after U.S. authorities said that the drug company’s COVID-19 vaccination trial data contained “incomplete” information, which may impact its efficacy. AstraZeneca’s vaccine is being primarily used in Europe.

GameStop, whose stock price soared in January after a social media-fueled frenzy, reported a jump in fourth-quarter profit because of a hefty tax benefit, but the company’s latest results fell short of Wall Street forecasts. The report was released after the close of regular stock trading. The stock fell 3% in after-hours trading.
 

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A late slide, led by Big Tech, leaves US stock indexes lower

A late-afternoon burst of selling on Wall Street erased an early gain for stocks Wednesday, pulling the market further below the all-time high it reached just a week ago.

The S&P 500 dropped 0.5% after having been up 0.8% in the early going. Technology and communication services companies accounted for the heaviest selling, outweighing gains in financial, energy and industrial stocks. Bond yields mostly fell after rising earlier this week.

“The markets are kind of choppy and sideways and everything is sort of trying to figure out who’s in charge, where’s the equilibrium — and it creates uncertainty,” said Randy Frederick, vice president of trading & derivatives at Charles Schwab. “When people don’t know what to do, they either do nothing or they sell. They very rarely buy.”

The S&P 500 fell 21.38 points to 3,889.14. The benchmark index is on track for its second straight weekly decline. The Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 3.09 points, or less than 0.1%, to 32,420.06, after a 364-point gain vanished by late afternoon. The Nasdaq slid 265.81 points, or 2%, to 12,961.89.

Smaller company stocks fared worse than the broader market. The Russell 2000 index lost 51.42 points, or 2.4%, to 2,134.27.

Investors had their eye on Washington, where Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen spoke before the Senate about the government's efforts to combat the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic. The Biden administration is considering up to $3 trillion in additional spending on infrastructure, green energy, and education.

Yellen believes the U.S. government has more room to borrow, but said higher taxes would likely be required in the long run to finance future spending increases. Meanwhile, Powell reiterated that the recent jump in the yield on the 10-year Treasury, which soared from less than 1% at the beginning of the year to 1.62% Wednesday, was mostly a sign of confidence among investors that the economy is improving.

Bond yields have risen this year as traders have been watching the potential for inflation pressures to pick up after struggling economies were flooded with credit and government spending. That has depressed U.S. bond prices, prompting some to shift money out of stocks.

While rising interest rates are a key concern, the pandemic remains a dominant topic for investors. Stocks fell on Tuesday after Germany, Europe’s biggest economy, and the Netherlands extended lockdowns and imposed new travel and business curbs in response to spikes in infection. That followed similar moves earlier by Italy and France.

Traders are also juggling worries about the speed of vaccine distribution, COVID-19 cases and the potential for future tax changes crimping corporate profits, said Brad McMillan, chief investment officer for Commonwealth Financial Network.

“There’s a feeling that we’re not quite done with COVID-19 yet at all,” McMillan said. “That, combined with other concerns, is creating a lot of uncertainty.”

Technology and communication stocks dragged the market lower Wednesday. Apple fell 2%, while Facebook lost 2.9%.

Bank stocks, which took a beating on Tuesday, were among the best performers. Banks have been volatile the last couple of weeks as investors try to gauge the impact of higher interest rates on the U.S. economy. Higher interest rates can slow economic momentum, but they also allow banks to charge more for loans. JPMorgan Chase added 0.8%.


ASX 200 futures pointing lower​


The Australian share market looks set to edge lower on Thursday morning following a mixed night of trade on Wall Street. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is poised to open the day 9 points or 0.1% lower this morning.

On closing on Wall Street, the Dow Jones was down 0.01%, the S&P 500 down 0.55%, and the Nasdaq is down 2.01%.


Tech shares on watch​


It could be a tough day for ASX tech shares such as Xero Limited (ASX: XRO) and Zip Co Ltd (ASX: Z1P) on Thursday after US tech stocks came under pressure again during overnight trade. The tech-focused Nasdaq index was down 2.01%. This follows declines by a number of tech giants.

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https://www.wokv.com/news/late-slid...ock-indexes-lower/ORQZFEYD5AXAN4OQMNLLRK77X4/

A late slide, led by Big Tech, leaves US stock indexes lower

March 24, 2021 at 4:54 pm EDT

By DAMIAN J. TROISE and ALEX VEIGA
A late-afternoon burst of selling on Wall Street erased an early gain for stocks Wednesday, pulling the market further below the all-time high it reached just a week ago.

The S&P 500 dropped 0.5% after having been up 0.8% in the early going. Technology and communication services companies accounted for the heaviest selling, outweighing gains in financial, energy and industrial stocks. Bond yields mostly fell after rising earlier this week.

“The markets are kind of choppy and sideways and everything is sort of trying to figure out who’s in charge, where’s the equilibrium — and it creates uncertainty,” said Randy Frederick, vice president of trading & derivatives at Charles Schwab. “When people don’t know what to do, they either do nothing or they sell. They very rarely buy.”

The S&P 500 fell 21.38 points to 3,889.14. The benchmark index is on track for its second straight weekly decline. The Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 3.09 points, or less than 0.1%, to 32,420.06, after a 364-point gain vanished by late afternoon. The Nasdaq slid 265.81 points, or 2%, to 12,961.89.

Smaller company stocks fared worse than the broader market. The Russell 2000 index lost 51.42 points, or 2.4%, to 2,134.27.

Investors had their eye on Washington, where Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen spoke before the Senate about the government's efforts to combat the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic. The Biden administration is considering up to $3 trillion in additional spending on infrastructure, green energy, and education.

Yellen believes the U.S. government has more room to borrow, but said higher taxes would likely be required in the long run to finance future spending increases. Meanwhile, Powell reiterated that the recent jump in the yield on the 10-year Treasury, which soared from less than 1% at the beginning of the year to 1.62% Wednesday, was mostly a sign of confidence among investors that the economy is improving.

Bond yields have risen this year as traders have been watching the potential for inflation pressures to pick up after struggling economies were flooded with credit and government spending. That has depressed U.S. bond prices, prompting some to shift money out of stocks.

While rising interest rates are a key concern, the pandemic remains a dominant topic for investors. Stocks fell on Tuesday after Germany, Europe’s biggest economy, and the Netherlands extended lockdowns and imposed new travel and business curbs in response to spikes in infection. That followed similar moves earlier by Italy and France.

Traders are also juggling worries about the speed of vaccine distribution, COVID-19 cases and the potential for future tax changes crimping corporate profits, said Brad McMillan, chief investment officer for Commonwealth Financial Network.

“There’s a feeling that we’re not quite done with COVID-19 yet at all,” McMillan said. “That, combined with other concerns, is creating a lot of uncertainty.”

Technology and communication stocks dragged the market lower Wednesday. Apple fell 2%, while Facebook lost 2.9%.

Bank stocks, which took a beating on Tuesday, were among the best performers. Banks have been volatile the last couple of weeks as investors try to gauge the impact of higher interest rates on the U.S. economy. Higher interest rates can slow economic momentum, but they also allow banks to charge more for loans. JPMorgan Chase added 0.8%.

GameStop sank 33.8% after reporting results that missed Wall Street's forecasts, though the stock is still up more than sixfold since the beginning of the year after it became a social media darling for a swarm of online investors. The company took no questions from investors on its quarterly conference call late Tuesday.
 

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Stocks pull mostly higher, shaking off some early wobbles

Stocks regained their footing after an early slide and closed broadly higher Thursday, led by gains in financial and industrial companies.

The S&P 500 rose 0.5% after having been down 0.9% in the early going. The gain is the benchmark index’s first in three days after a recent stretch of back-and-forth trading the last few weeks. Even so, the S&P 500 was still on track for a small weekly loss.

Banks and industrial companies powered much of the market’s late-afternoon turnaround, offsetting weakness in Microsoft, Netflix, Facebook and other Big Tech stocks. Treasury yields initially eased, then edged higher following encouraging reports on weekly jobless claims and fourth-quarter U.S. economic growth.

Stocks regained their footing after an early slide and closed broadly higher Thursday, led by gains in financial and industrial companies.

The S&P 500 rose 0.5% after having been down 0.9% in the early going. The gain is the benchmark index’s first in three days after a recent stretch of back-and-forth trading the last few weeks. Even so, the S&P 500 was still on track for a small weekly loss.

Banks and industrial companies powered much of the market’s late-afternoon turnaround, offsetting weakness in Microsoft, Netflix, Facebook and other Big Tech stocks. Treasury yields initially eased, then edged higher following encouraging reports on weekly jobless claims and fourth-quarter U.S. economic growth.

Investors have been moving money away from expensive tech stocks as part of a broader shift to stocks tied more closely to economic growth. There’s a good chance the recovery could be surprisingly strong with little interference from the Federal Reserve, said Andrew Slimmon, portfolio manager at Morgan Stanley Investment Management.

“There is a very clear message that the Fed is going to sit back and let the economy grow at a hotter rate because their number one priority is unemployment,” he said. “That means there’s a good chance the economy overshoots.”

The S&P 500 rose 20.38 points to 3,909.52. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 199.42 points, or 0.6%, to 32,619.48. The index had been down more than 348 points.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq composite had been down 1.4% before clawing back 15.79 points, or 0.1%, to 12,977.68. The Russell 2000 index of smaller stocks outdid the rest of the market, climbing 48.86 points, or 2.3%, to 2,183.12.

The market has been mostly tumbling in place recently, with support for stocks coming from expectations that the economy will soar soon thanks to COVID-19 vaccinations and huge amounts of spending by Washington. A quick rise in interest rates has undercut stocks at the same time, though.

ASX 200 expected to rise

The Australian share market looks set to end the week on a positive note. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is expected to open the day 22 points or 0.3% higher this morning.

This follows a positive night on Wall Street, which on closing sees the Dow Jones up 0.62%, the S&P 500 up 0.52%, and the Nasdaq trading 0.12% higher.

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https://apnews.com/article/africa-e...cial-markets-0e5f4434abc5d8094577b32ac392eab0

Stocks pull mostly higher, shaking off some early wobbles

By STAN CHOE and DAMIAN J. TROISE and ALEX VEIGA

Stocks regained their footing after an early slide and closed broadly higher Thursday, led by gains in financial and industrial companies.

The S&P 500 rose 0.5% after having been down 0.9% in the early going. The gain is the benchmark index’s first in three days after a recent stretch of back-and-forth trading the last few weeks. Even so, the S&P 500 was still on track for a small weekly loss.

Banks and industrial companies powered much of the market’s late-afternoon turnaround, offsetting weakness in Microsoft, Netflix, Facebook and other Big Tech stocks. Treasury yields initially eased, then edged higher following encouraging reports on weekly jobless claims and fourth-quarter U.S. economic growth.

Stocks regained their footing after an early slide and closed broadly higher Thursday, led by gains in financial and industrial companies.

The S&P 500 rose 0.5% after having been down 0.9% in the early going. The gain is the benchmark index’s first in three days after a recent stretch of back-and-forth trading the last few weeks. Even so, the S&P 500 was still on track for a small weekly loss.

Banks and industrial companies powered much of the market’s late-afternoon turnaround, offsetting weakness in Microsoft, Netflix, Facebook and other Big Tech stocks. Treasury yields initially eased, then edged higher following encouraging reports on weekly jobless claims and fourth-quarter U.S. economic growth.

Investors have been moving money away from expensive tech stocks as part of a broader shift to stocks tied more closely to economic growth. There’s a good chance the recovery could be surprisingly strong with little interference from the Federal Reserve, said Andrew Slimmon, portfolio manager at Morgan Stanley Investment Management.

“There is a very clear message that the Fed is going to sit back and let the economy grow at a hotter rate because their number one priority is unemployment,” he said. “That means there’s a good chance the economy overshoots.”

The S&P 500 rose 20.38 points to 3,909.52. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 199.42 points, or 0.6%, to 32,619.48. The index had been down more than 348 points.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq composite had been down 1.4% before clawing back 15.79 points, or 0.1%, to 12,977.68. The Russell 2000 index of smaller stocks outdid the rest of the market, climbing 48.86 points, or 2.3%, to 2,183.12.

The market has been mostly tumbling in place recently, with support for stocks coming from expectations that the economy will soar soon thanks to COVID-19 vaccinations and huge amounts of spending by Washington. A quick rise in interest rates has undercut stocks at the same time, though.

Yields in the Treasury market rose Thursday, but at a modest pace after the 10-year yield spiked above 1.70% last week, its highest level since before the pandemic started. The 10-year Treasury yield, which helps set rates for all kinds of loans, rose to 1.63%, from 1.61% late Wednesday.

The Labor Department said the number of workers filing for unemployment benefits eased to its lowest level since before the pandemic erupted a year ago. Another report said the U.S. economy grew at a faster pace at the end of 2020 than earlier estimated.

Moves in Treasury yields have been a major reason for the swings in the stock market in recent weeks. When bonds pay more in interest, they make investors less willing to pay high prices for stocks. Businesses that are asking investors to wait many years for their big profits to begin rolling in are affected even more.

Technology stocks have borne the brunt of the pain of higher interest rates, and they’re also among the biggest companies in the market in terms of value.

Big tech stocks swung back and forth in earlier trading and were nearly evenly split within the broader S&P 500 index. Microsoft fell 1.3%, while Hewlett Packard Enterprise rose 3.9%.

Other Big Tech stocks fell. Netflix dropped 3.4% and Facebook lost 1.2%.

Treasury yields have been broadly rising with expectations for stronger economic growth and the inflation that may accompany it.
 

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S&P 500 Returns to a Record High After Best Day in Weeks​

U.S. stocks burst to their best day in three weeks on Friday, helping Wall Street return to record heights and avoid what could have been a second straight weekly loss.​


The S&P 500 added 65.02 points, or 1.7%, to 3,974.54, with a quarter of that rise coming in the last five minutes of trading alone. Some of the biggest gains came from companies whose profits would jump the most if COVID-19 vaccinations and massive U.S. government spending programs juice the economy as much as economists expect. The index locked in a 1.7% gain for the week after losing 0.8% last week.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 453.40 points, or 1.4%, to 33,072.88, and both it and the S&P 500 set all-time highs. The Nasdaq composite climbed 161.05, or 1.2%, to 13,138.72, though it remains 6.8% below its record set last month.

Stock prices have been churning in recent weeks, and momentum has often shifted sharply, sometimes by the hour. Rising expectations for a supercharged economic recovery are supporting many stocks on one hand, while worries about the possibility of higher inflation and rising interest rates are undercutting the market on the other.

This past week, everything from President Joe Biden doubling his goal for COVID-19 vaccinations to a skyscraper-sized ship blocking one of the world's most important canals sent markets swinging.

“It's natural that you would have people looking at" stocks of companies that would benefit the most from a rejuvenated economy, said Tom Plumb, portfolio manager and president of Plumb Funds. “But there are times when you are going to have a fair amount of volatility because a recovery like we are in has never been smooth.”

Much of the stock market's recent turbulence has been an after-effect of movements in the bond market, where Treasury yields have been largely climbing since last autumn. Higher yields can make investors less willing to pay high prices for stocks, with companies seen as the most expensive taking the most pain. Companies that ask their investors to wait many years for the payoff of big profit growth have also been hit hard.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 1.67% from 1.61% late Thursday. But that’s still below where it was last week, when it rose above 1.70% and touched its highest level since before the pandemic began.

A report on Friday also showed that a gauge of inflation that the Federal Reserve likes to use was weaker last month than economists expected. That took off some of the pressure of inflation worries in the near term.

The higher yields helped lift stocks of banks, in part because higher interest rates allow them to make bigger profits from making loans. Financial stocks also got a boost after the Federal Reserve said it will soon allow banks to resume buying back their own stock and to send bigger dividend payments to shareholders. The Fed restricted such moves last summer to force banks to hold onto cash cushions amid the coronavirus-caused recession.



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https://www.usnews.com/news/busines...ks-advance-on-optimism-over-pandemic-recovery

S&P 500 Returns to a Record High After Best Day in Weeks​

U.S. stocks burst to their best day in three weeks Friday, helping Wall Street to return to record heights and avoid what could have been a second straight weekly loss.​

By Associated Press, Wire Service Content March 26, 2021, at 4:39 p.m.

By DAMIAN J. TROISE and STAN CHOE, AP Business Writers

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks burst to their best day in three weeks on Friday, helping Wall Street return to record heights and avoid what could have been a second straight weekly loss.

The S&P 500 added 65.02 points, or 1.7%, to 3,974.54, with a quarter of that rise coming in the last five minutes of trading alone. Some of the biggest gains came from companies whose profits would jump the most if COVID-19 vaccinations and massive U.S. government spending programs juice the economy as much as economists expect. The index locked in a 1.7% gain for the week after losing 0.8% last week.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 453.40 points, or 1.4%, to 33,072.88, and both it and the S&P 500 set all-time highs. The Nasdaq composite climbed 161.05, or 1.2%, to 13,138.72, though it remains 6.8% below its record set last month.

Stock prices have been churning in recent weeks, and momentum has often shifted sharply, sometimes by the hour. Rising expectations for a supercharged economic recovery are supporting many stocks on one hand, while worries about the possibility of higher inflation and rising interest rates are undercutting the market on the other.

This past week, everything from President Joe Biden doubling his goal for COVID-19 vaccinations to a skyscraper-sized ship blocking one of the world's most important canals sent markets swinging.

“It's natural that you would have people looking at" stocks of companies that would benefit the most from a rejuvenated economy, said Tom Plumb, portfolio manager and president of Plumb Funds. “But there are times when you are going to have a fair amount of volatility because a recovery like we are in has never been smooth.”

Much of the stock market's recent turbulence has been an after-effect of movements in the bond market, where Treasury yields have been largely climbing since last autumn. Higher yields can make investors less willing to pay high prices for stocks, with companies seen as the most expensive taking the most pain. Companies that ask their investors to wait many years for the payoff of big profit growth have also been hit hard.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 1.67% from 1.61% late Thursday. But that’s still below where it was last week, when it rose above 1.70% and touched its highest level since before the pandemic began.

A report on Friday also showed that a gauge of inflation that the Federal Reserve likes to use was weaker last month than economists expected. That took off some of the pressure of inflation worries in the near term.

The higher yields helped lift stocks of banks, in part because higher interest rates allow them to make bigger profits from making loans. Financial stocks also got a boost after the Federal Reserve said it will soon allow banks to resume buying back their own stock and to send bigger dividend payments to shareholders. The Fed restricted such moves last summer to force banks to hold onto cash cushions amid the coronavirus-caused recession.

Some of Friday's biggest gains came from energy stocks, which benefited from a $2.41 rise in the price of U.S. oil, settling at $60.97 per barrel.

Marathon Oil gained 5.3%, and energy stocks across the S&P 500 rose 2.6% for the biggest gain among the 11 sectors that make up the index.

Stocks of companies that would benefit from more investment in infrastructure were also rallying sharply. Steelmaker Nucor climbed 8.9% for the biggest gain in the S&P 500, and miner Freeport-McMoRan rose 5.9%.

President Joe Biden is pushing for big spending on the nation's infrastructure, as many past presidents have done to little effect. “Whether or not it happens or doesn't happen, the market feels like there's more of a possibility that it will happen,” Plumb said.

Other companies that stand to benefit from more widespread coroanvirus vaccinations and the U.S. government's spending plan to rescue the economy were also particularly strong. Victoria’s Secret and Bath & Body Works owner L Brands gained 3.7% after raising its profit forecast for the first quarter, citing higher sales as stimulus checks reach people and COVID-19 restrictions are relaxed.

Since interest rates began rising last autumn, tech stocks have been most caught within the the market's crosswinds. They were among the biggest winners earlier in the pandemic, and their high stock prices and long runways of profit growth have made them susceptible to weakness when interest rates have been on the rise.

Such high-growth stocks were turning in a mixed performance on Friday. Apple rose 0.5%, but only after swinging between gains and losses numerous times through the day. Microsoft rallied 1.8%, and Facebook climbed 1.5%, but Tesla dropped 3.4%.

Stocks also rose across most international markets. Indexes rallied 1% or more from London to Seoul.
 

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ASX 200 futures pointing higher​


It looks set to be a strong start to the week for the Australian share market following a positive finish on Wall Street. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is expected to open the week 49 points or 0.7% higher this morning. On Wall Street on Friday night, the Dow Jones rose 1.4%, the S&P 500 jumped 1.7%, and the Nasdaq stormed 1.25% higher. This appears to have been driven partly by weak US inflation data.
 

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Late fade pushes S&P 500 slightly below its record high

U.S. stock indexes closed mostly lower Monday, pulling the S&P 500 slightly below the all-time high it set last week, while nudging the Dow Jones Industrial Average to another record high.

The S&P 500 slipped 0.1%, recovering most of a 0.8% slide earlier in the day. Banks had some of the sharpest losses amid worries about how much pain they’ll incur following soured trades made by a major U.S. hedge fund. Technology stocks also fell broadly as China announced more tax breaks to bolster its own chip sector. Gains for Facebook and other market heavyweights helped to limit the S&P 500’s losses.

Treasury yields rose. A widely followed measure of nervousness in the stock market climbed 10.4%. The VIX index, which shows how much volatility traders are bracing for from the S&P 500, remains close to its lowest level since the pandemic rocked markets a year ago.

“It’s high, which indicates people are nervous, but it’s not panicky,” said Tom Martin, senior portfolio manager with Globalt Investments.

The S&P 500 dropped 3.45 points to 3,971.09. The Dow rose 98.49 points, or 0.3%, to 33,171.37. The S&P 500 climbed to an all-time high last week. The Nasdaq lost 79.08 points, or 0.6%, to 13,059.65.

The Russell 2000 index of smaller company stocks fell more than the broader market, shedding 62.80 points, or 2.8%, to 2,158.68. The index is on track to close out March with its first monthly loss since September, though it has still racked up bigger gains so far this year than the other major indexes.

The market’s movements mark the latest ebb for Wall Street, which has been mostly climbing in a series of stops and starts. Supporting the market have been rising expectations that a supercharged economic recovery is on the way thanks to COVID-19 vaccinations, immense spending by the U.S. government and continued low rates from the Federal Reserve. Weighing on stocks at the same time, though, are worries about a coming rise in inflation and possibly too-ebullient prices across the market.

Several key reports on the economy are scheduled for this week, which could help show whether stocks deserve the lofty prices they’ve reached. Among the headliners is Friday’s jobs report, where economists expect to see a big acceleration in hiring.

On Wednesday, President Joe Biden will also give details about his proposal to rebuild roads, bridges and other infrastructure. Shares of raw-material producers have rallied recently on rising expectations for infrastructure spending by Washington, even though many past presidential administrations have failed to make it happen.

On Monday, though, the market’s spotlight was squarely on financial companies after Japanese bank Nomura Holdings and Swiss bank Credit Suisse said they’re facing potentially significant losses because of their dealings with a major client, though the exact magnitude is still unclear.

Nomura estimated the claim against its client could be about $2 billion.

ASX 200 futures pointing higher

The Australian share market looks set to rebound on Tuesday. According to the latest SPI future, the ASX 200 is poised to open 41 points or 0.6% higher this morning.

This is despite it being a mixed night of trade on Wall Street. On closing, the Dow Jones is up 0.30% but the S&P 500 is down 0.09% and the Nasdaq index has fallen 0.60%. The forced liquidation of positions held by the multibillion-dollar family office Archegos Capital Management has been weighing on US shares.


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https://apnews.com/article/financia...ong-shanghai-5dc87738d8abd74048d24dcca92b67f0

Late fade pushes S&P 500 slightly below its record high

By STAN CHOE, DAMIAN J. TROISE and ALEX VEIGA

U.S. stock indexes closed mostly lower Monday, pulling the S&P 500 slightly below the all-time high it set last week, while nudging the Dow Jones Industrial Average to another record high.

The S&P 500 slipped 0.1%, recovering most of a 0.8% slide earlier in the day. Banks had some of the sharpest losses amid worries about how much pain they’ll incur following soured trades made by a major U.S. hedge fund. Technology stocks also fell broadly as China announced more tax breaks to bolster its own chip sector. Gains for Facebook and other market heavyweights helped to limit the S&P 500’s losses.

Treasury yields rose. A widely followed measure of nervousness in the stock market climbed 10.4%. The VIX index, which shows how much volatility traders are bracing for from the S&P 500, remains close to its lowest level since the pandemic rocked markets a year ago.

“It’s high, which indicates people are nervous, but it’s not panicky,” said Tom Martin, senior portfolio manager with Globalt Investments.

The S&P 500 dropped 3.45 points to 3,971.09. The Dow rose 98.49 points, or 0.3%, to 33,171.37. The S&P 500 climbed to an all-time high last week. The Nasdaq lost 79.08 points, or 0.6%, to 13,059.65.

The Russell 2000 index of smaller company stocks fell more than the broader market, shedding 62.80 points, or 2.8%, to 2,158.68. The index is on track to close out March with its first monthly loss since September, though it has still racked up bigger gains so far this year than the other major indexes.

The market’s movements mark the latest ebb for Wall Street, which has been mostly climbing in a series of stops and starts. Supporting the market have been rising expectations that a supercharged economic recovery is on the way thanks to COVID-19 vaccinations, immense spending by the U.S. government and continued low rates from the Federal Reserve. Weighing on stocks at the same time, though, are worries about a coming rise in inflation and possibly too-ebullient prices across the market.

Several key reports on the economy are scheduled for this week, which could help show whether stocks deserve the lofty prices they’ve reached. Among the headliners is Friday’s jobs report, where economists expect to see a big acceleration in hiring.

On Wednesday, President Joe Biden will also give details about his proposal to rebuild roads, bridges and other infrastructure. Shares of raw-material producers have rallied recently on rising expectations for infrastructure spending by Washington, even though many past presidential administrations have failed to make it happen.

On Monday, though, the market’s spotlight was squarely on financial companies after Japanese bank Nomura Holdings and Swiss bank Credit Suisse said they’re facing potentially significant losses because of their dealings with a major client, though the exact magnitude is still unclear.

Nomura estimated the claim against its client could be about $2 billion.

Credit Suisse said that it “and a number of other banks” are exiting trades they made with a significant U.S.-based hedge fund, which defaulted on a “margin call” last week. A margin call happens when a broker tells a client to put up cash after it borrowed money to make trades. Neither Credit Suisse nor Nomura named the client, but news reports identified it as New York-based Archegos Capital Management.

Shares of Credit Suisse and Nomura each fell at least 16% in their home countries, and U.S. banks got caught in the downdraft as investors question whether the soured trades will stay isolated or have a more widespread effect through the system.

“This is sort of an example of the leverage you don’t see,” Martin said. “We all know there’s a fair amount of debt out there, but what we don’t know is how much of this is out there.”

Morgan Stanley fell 2.6%, and financial stocks across the S&P 500 lost 0.9% for one of the sharpest losses among the 11 sectors that make up the index.

Among the winners was Boeing, which rose 2.3% after Southwest Airlines said it will order 100 737 MAX airplanes. Regulators in the United States and other countries have cleared the plane model to resume flying, after it was grounded worldwide in 2019 after two crashes that killed 346 people.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 1.71% from 1.66% late Friday.
 

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US stocks slip in mixed trading as rate pressure ratchets up

By STAN CHOE, DAMIAN J. TROISE and ALEX VEIGA

Rising Treasury yields put pressure once more on big technology companies Tuesday, pulling U.S. stock indexes further below their recent all-time highs.

The S&P 500 lost 0.3%. Health care stocks also dragged down the market, outweighing gains by banks, industrial stocks and companies that rely on consumer spending. Smaller companies bucked the downward trend, powering the Russell 2000 index to a 1.7% gain.

Treasury yields perked higher after a report showed that consumers are feeling even more confident than economists expected, a big deal for an economy that’s primarily made up of consumer spending. Meanwhile, President Joe Biden was set to unveil details Wednesday about plans to spend what could be more than $3 trillion on infrastructure and other measures to help the economy and environment.

The consumer confidence report, and the prospect of more massive government spending, fueled a sell-off in U.S. bonds, driving their yields higher.

“This is spooking debt investors,” said Megan Horneman, director of portfolio strategy at Verdence Capital Advisors.

The S&P 500 slid 12.54 to 3,958.55, its second decline in a row. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 104.41 from the all-time high it set a day before, or 0.3%, to 33,066.96. The Nasdaq composite fell 14.25, or 0.1%, to 13,045.39. The Russell 2000 rose 37.11 to 2,195.80.

The spotlight was again on the bond market, where the yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 1.73% from 1.72% late Monday. It has jumped from roughly 0.90% at the start of the year with rising expectations for coming economic growth and possibly inflation.

When bonds pay more in interest, they can make investors less willing to pay high prices for stocks, particularly those seen as the most expensive. Companies that ask their investors to wait years for big profit growth to come to fruition are also hard hit, which has many big technology stocks feeling the most pain from rising rates.

Broadcom fell 3.5% and Cisco Systems dropped 1.4%. Tech giants also fell, including a 1.2% slide by Apple and a 1.4% drop by Microsoft. They were some of the biggest winners earlier in the pandemic, rallying on expectations that they can grow in the future, regardless of whether the economy is locked down by a virus.

Despite the pressure on big tech stocks, most professional investors remain optimistic that the broader market can keep rising. A stronger economy thanks to COVID-19 vaccinations and massive spending by the U.S. government should help boost profits for many companies this year, particularly those like banks, energy producers and industrial companies.

Much of the market’s choppiness is reflecting that expectation. Investors have been shifting money away from companies like Amazon and Netflix, which benefited from a world on lockdown, to airlines, automakers and others that are poised to benefit from a broader reopening.

“Big picture-wise, we’re moving in the direction of a rebalance trade,” said Greg Bassuk, chairman and CEO of AXS Investments. “In the next immediate period we’re going to continue to see significant volatility.”

Financial stocks rallied, in part because higher longer-term interest rates mean bigger profits from making loans.

ASX 200 expected to rebound

The Australian share market looks set to rebound on Wednesday despite a weak night of trade on Wall Street. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is expected to open the day 55 points or 0.8% higher this morning.

Wall Street closing, saw the Dow Jones down 0.31%, the S&P 500 down 0.32%, and the Nasdaq was down 0.11%

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https://apnews.com/article/financia...cial-markets-814aa07fbc9f414376a60306f0949227

US stocks slip in mixed trading as rate pressure ratchets up

By STAN CHOE, DAMIAN J. TROISE and ALEX VEIGA

Rising Treasury yields put pressure once more on big technology companies Tuesday, pulling U.S. stock indexes further below their recent all-time highs.

The S&P 500 lost 0.3%. Health care stocks also dragged down the market, outweighing gains by banks, industrial stocks and companies that rely on consumer spending. Smaller companies bucked the downward trend, powering the Russell 2000 index to a 1.7% gain.

Treasury yields perked higher after a report showed that consumers are feeling even more confident than economists expected, a big deal for an economy that’s primarily made up of consumer spending. Meanwhile, President Joe Biden was set to unveil details Wednesday about plans to spend what could be more than $3 trillion on infrastructure and other measures to help the economy and environment.

The consumer confidence report, and the prospect of more massive government spending, fueled a sell-off in U.S. bonds, driving their yields higher.

“This is spooking debt investors,” said Megan Horneman, director of portfolio strategy at Verdence Capital Advisors.

The S&P 500 slid 12.54 to 3,958.55, its second decline in a row. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 104.41 from the all-time high it set a day before, or 0.3%, to 33,066.96. The Nasdaq composite fell 14.25, or 0.1%, to 13,045.39. The Russell 2000 rose 37.11 to 2,195.80.

The spotlight was again on the bond market, where the yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 1.73% from 1.72% late Monday. It has jumped from roughly 0.90% at the start of the year with rising expectations for coming economic growth and possibly inflation.

When bonds pay more in interest, they can make investors less willing to pay high prices for stocks, particularly those seen as the most expensive. Companies that ask their investors to wait years for big profit growth to come to fruition are also hard hit, which has many big technology stocks feeling the most pain from rising rates.

Broadcom fell 3.5% and Cisco Systems dropped 1.4%. Tech giants also fell, including a 1.2% slide by Apple and a 1.4% drop by Microsoft. They were some of the biggest winners earlier in the pandemic, rallying on expectations that they can grow in the future, regardless of whether the economy is locked down by a virus.

Despite the pressure on big tech stocks, most professional investors remain optimistic that the broader market can keep rising. A stronger economy thanks to COVID-19 vaccinations and massive spending by the U.S. government should help boost profits for many companies this year, particularly those like banks, energy producers and industrial companies.

Much of the market’s choppiness is reflecting that expectation. Investors have been shifting money away from companies like Amazon and Netflix, which benefited from a world on lockdown, to airlines, automakers and others that are poised to benefit from a broader reopening.

“Big picture-wise, we’re moving in the direction of a rebalance trade,” said Greg Bassuk, chairman and CEO of AXS Investments. “In the next immediate period we’re going to continue to see significant volatility.”

Financial stocks rallied, in part because higher longer-term interest rates mean bigger profits from making loans.

Big financial stocks also climbed as investors see losses for the industry due to soured trades for a big U.S. hedge fund last week staying isolated to a few players, rather than cascading through the financial system. Japanese bank Nomura and Swiss bank Credit Suisse said Monday that they’re facing potentially significant losses because of their dealings with a major client. Nomura estimated the claim against its client could be about $2 billion. JPMorgan banking analyst Kian Abouhossein said in a research note Tuesday that the total overall losses could range between $5 billion to $10 billion.

Comerica gained 5.1%. Goldman Sachs rose 1.9%, and Morgan Stanley gained 1.6%. Reports said the two financial giants were able to limit their losses by quickly selling stocks held by the hedge fund, which amassed big ownership stakes in companies using borrowed money. The banks have not named the fund, but reports have identified it as Archegos Capital Management.

ViacomCBS and Discovery rose 3.6% and 5.4%, respectively, snapping a multiday slump. The stocks had been in a skid, reportedly as part of heavy selling related to the Archegos saga.
 

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S&P 500 climbs, closing out its 4th straight quarterly gain​

Wall Street closed out March with a mostly higher finish for U.S. stock indexes and the market’s fourth straight quarterly gain.

The S&P 500 rose 0.4% Wednesday, bringing its gain for the first three months of the year to 5.8%, despite a loss for January. The gain for the benchmark index, which tracks large U.S. companies, was eclipsed by the 12.4% jump in a popular index that tracks small-company stocks.

Technology stocks powered much of S&P 500’s latest gains, even though more stocks in the index fell than rose. Solid gains by Apple, Microsoft and Nvidia, and companies that rely on consumer spending, outweighed a pullback in financial, energy and materials stocks.

After the stock market closed, President Joe Biden started a speech in which he’ll discuss his plan to spend $2 trillion on strengthening the nation’s infrastructure, and how to pay for it.

The S&P 500 rose 14.34 points to 3,972.89. It was the index’s first gain since it set a record high at the end of last week. A late-afternoon fade pulled the Dow Jones Industrial Average 85.41 points lower, or a drop of 0.3%, to 32,981.55. The tech-heavy Nasdaq composite climbed 201.48 points, or 1.5%, to 13,246.87.

Stocks of smaller companies once again posted a strong showing. The stocks have outpaced the broader market on rising expectations for the economy. The Russell 2000 index rose 24.72 points, or 1.1%, to 2,220.52. It ended the quarter with a 12.4% gain, more than double that of the big stocks in the S&P 500.

Tech stocks and companies expected to deliver big growth in the future were big winners. Apple climbed 1.9%, and Tesla rose 5.1%. It’s a reprieve for the group, which led the market earlier in the pandemic but has since lost momentum amid a sharp rise in Treasury yields.

The 10-year Treasury yield inched up to 1.74%, though it remains close to its highest level since before the pandemic rocked markets a year ago. COVID-19 vaccinations and massive spending plans by Washington have raised expectations for supercharged economic growth and a possible rise in inflation, which has pushed yields higher.

Investors will be closely watching for details on the infrastructure plan to get a better sense of future priorities, said Rob Haworth, senior investment strategy director at U.S. Bank Wealth Management. Friday’s government jobs report is also highly anticipated.

“The question for the market is, what’s next?” said Rob Haworth, senior investment strategy director at U.S. Bank Wealth Management. “March in particular has been a bit of a pause for the market to recalibrate.”

Within the S&P 500 index, the leaderboard of performance during the first quarter ended up being virtually the mirror image of earlier in the pandemic, with energy producers, financial businesses and industrial companies leading the way.

The index’s 11 sectors notched gains in the first quarter, with energy topping the list with a nearly 30% gain. A year ago, it was down 37.3%. Technology, which a year ago led the market with a 42.2% gain, rose just 1.7% in the first three months of this year. Banks closed out the quarter with a 15.4% gain. The consumer staples sector lagged the rest of the market with a 0.5% gain.

ASX 200 futures pointing higher

The Australian share market looks set to start the month in a positive fashion following a solid night of trade on Wall Street. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is poised to open the day 30 points or 0.45% higher. On closing Wall Street, the Dow Jones is down 0.26%, the S&P 500 had risen 0.36%, and the Nasdaq jumped 1.54%.

Tech shares on watch

It could be a good day for ASX tech shares such as Xero Limited (ASX: XRO) and Zip Co Ltd (ASX: Z1P) on Thursday after US tech stocks surged higher during overnight trade. On closing, the tech-focused Nasdaq index is up a sizeable 1.54%. Strong gains by a number of tech giants have helped drive the index higher.

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https://wtmj.com/ap-news/2021/03/31/sp-500-climbs-closing-out-its-4th-straight-quarterly-gain-3/

S&P 500 climbs, closing out its 4th straight quarterly gain​

By STAN CHOE, DAMIAN J. TROISE and ALEX VEIGA
AP Business Writers

Wall Street closed out March with a mostly higher finish for U.S. stock indexes and the market’s fourth straight quarterly gain.

The S&P 500 rose 0.4% Wednesday, bringing its gain for the first three months of the year to 5.8%, despite a loss for January. The gain for the benchmark index, which tracks large U.S. companies, was eclipsed by the 12.4% jump in a popular index that tracks small-company stocks.

Technology stocks powered much of S&P 500’s latest gains, even though more stocks in the index fell than rose. Solid gains by Apple, Microsoft and Nvidia, and companies that rely on consumer spending, outweighed a pullback in financial, energy and materials stocks.

After the stock market closed, President Joe Biden started a speech in which he’ll discuss his plan to spend $2 trillion on strengthening the nation’s infrastructure, and how to pay for it.

The S&P 500 rose 14.34 points to 3,972.89. It was the index’s first gain since it set a record high at the end of last week. A late-afternoon fade pulled the Dow Jones Industrial Average 85.41 points lower, or a drop of 0.3%, to 32,981.55. The tech-heavy Nasdaq composite climbed 201.48 points, or 1.5%, to 13,246.87.

Stocks of smaller companies once again posted a strong showing. The stocks have outpaced the broader market on rising expectations for the economy. The Russell 2000 index rose 24.72 points, or 1.1%, to 2,220.52. It ended the quarter with a 12.4% gain, more than double that of the big stocks in the S&P 500.

Tech stocks and companies expected to deliver big growth in the future were big winners. Apple climbed 1.9%, and Tesla rose 5.1%. It’s a reprieve for the group, which led the market earlier in the pandemic but has since lost momentum amid a sharp rise in Treasury yields.

The 10-year Treasury yield inched up to 1.74%, though it remains close to its highest level since before the pandemic rocked markets a year ago. COVID-19 vaccinations and massive spending plans by Washington have raised expectations for supercharged economic growth and a possible rise in inflation, which has pushed yields higher.

In his speech in Pittsburgh, Biden was giving details about where he wants to steer federal dollars to rebuild roads, bridges and the electric grid. Such programs could mean gushers of revenue for everything from raw-material producers to electric-vehicle makers.

To help pay for it, though, businesses may be looking at higher corporate tax rates, which would pressure their profits. Some investors also worry that all the spending and borrowing by the U.S. government could eventually lead to even higher interest rates for the economy.

Investors will be closely watching for details on the infrastructure plan to get a better sense of future priorities, said Rob Haworth, senior investment strategy director at U.S. Bank Wealth Management. Friday’s government jobs report is also highly anticipated.

“The question for the market is, what’s next?” said Rob Haworth, senior investment strategy director at U.S. Bank Wealth Management. “March in particular has been a bit of a pause for the market to recalibrate.”

Within the S&P 500 index, the leaderboard of performance during the first quarter ended up being virtually the mirror image of earlier in the pandemic, with energy producers, financial businesses and industrial companies leading the way.

The index’s 11 sectors notched gains in the first quarter, with energy topping the list with a nearly 30% gain. A year ago, it was down 37.3%. Technology, which a year ago led the market with a 42.2% gain, rose just 1.7% in the first three months of this year. Banks closed out the quarter with a 15.4% gain. The consumer staples sector lagged the rest of the market with a 0.5% gain.

Energy producers, banks and industrial companies have shot higher, along with smaller stocks, on expectations that a return to normalcy for the economy and Washington’s huge spending will mean big jumps in profit later this year. It’s a turnaround from earlier in the pandemic, when they plunged on uncertainty about when airplanes may be full again and burning jet fuel.

Stocks of companies that had been winners in the stay-at-home economy or that had been bid up on expectations for strong growth many years into the future, meanwhile, have lagged. Apple declined 7.9% in the first quarter, for example, while American Airlines Group climbed 51.6% higher.

App-based meal delivery service Deliveroo slumped 26.3% in its U.K. stock market debut. The weak showing came even after the stock was priced at the bottom of its potential range, reflecting investor wariness about whether Deliveroo could turn a profit as well as a growing backlash against “gig economy” companies and concerns over how they treat their workers.
 

bigdog

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Wall Street closes higher, pushing S&P 500 past 4,000 points

NYSE will be re-open on Monday April 5 for trading

Wall Street kicked April off with a milestone Thursday, as a tech company rally helped drive the S&P 500 past the 4,000 mark for the first time.

The benchmark index finished 1.2% higher a day after closing out the first three months of the year with its fourth straight quarterly gain. Microsoft, Apple, Facebook and Google’s parent company were among the winners, along with smaller companies, which stand to benefit from a quickly growing economy. Health care, household goods stocks and utilities were the only laggards.

Technology stocks benefited from another drop in bond yields, which have been the driving force for the market for several weeks. The yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note fell to 1.69% from 1.73% the day before. Higher bond yields make stocks seem more expensive by comparison, and tech stocks are among the most expensive after their significant rise last year. Microsoft rose 2.8%, Facebook gained 1.4%, Amazon.com added 2.2% and Google parent Alphabet closed 3.3% higher.

“What a great way to start the second quarter,” said J.J. Kinahan, chief strategist with TD Ameritrade. “There’s money out there looking to be put to work, and with the quarter ending it looks like people are finding new ways in a new quarter to find opportunities.”

The S&P 500 rose 46.98 to 4,019.87. The index’s latest all-time high is its second in seven days. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 171.66 points, or 0.5%, to 33,153.21. The technology-heavy Nasdaq climbed 233.23 points, or 1.8%, to 13,480.11.

Smaller companies continued to notch solid gains. The Russell 2000 index picked up 33.38 points, or 1.5%, to 2,253.90.

The rally capped a holiday-shortened week for the stock market. U.S. stock exchanges will be closed in observance of Good Friday, though bond trading will be open for half a day, closing at noon Eastern.

Companies that would benefit from greater sales of electric vehicles also rose Thursday, a day after President Joe Biden outlined various measures to support their use as part of his massive infrastructure plan. Part of that plan includes installation of thousands of additional charging stations around the country. Electric vehicle charger operator ChargePoint gained 11.8%.

Investors continue to monitor news about how well the U.S. economy is recovering from the coronavirus pandemic, now that millions of vaccines are being administered daily to Americans as well as around the world


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https://apnews.com/article/joe-bide...tralia-tokyo-d654f27faccf28a64210b928702b09fe

Wall Street closes higher, pushing S&P 500 past 4,000 points

By DAMIAN J. TROISE and ALEX VEIGA

Wall Street kicked April off with a milestone Thursday, as a tech company rally helped drive the S&P 500 past the 4,000 mark for the first time.

The benchmark index finished 1.2% higher a day after closing out the first three months of the year with its fourth straight quarterly gain. Microsoft, Apple, Facebook and Google’s parent company were among the winners, along with smaller companies, which stand to benefit from a quickly growing economy. Health care, household goods stocks and utilities were the only laggards.

Technology stocks benefited from another drop in bond yields, which have been the driving force for the market for several weeks. The yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note fell to 1.69% from 1.73% the day before. Higher bond yields make stocks seem more expensive by comparison, and tech stocks are among the most expensive after their significant rise last year. Microsoft rose 2.8%, Facebook gained 1.4%, Amazon.com added 2.2% and Google parent Alphabet closed 3.3% higher.

“What a great way to start the second quarter,” said J.J. Kinahan, chief strategist with TD Ameritrade. “There’s money out there looking to be put to work, and with the quarter ending it looks like people are finding new ways in a new quarter to find opportunities.”

The S&P 500 rose 46.98 to 4,019.87. The index’s latest all-time high is its second in seven days. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 171.66 points, or 0.5%, to 33,153.21. The technology-heavy Nasdaq climbed 233.23 points, or 1.8%, to 13,480.11.

Smaller companies continued to notch solid gains. The Russell 2000 index picked up 33.38 points, or 1.5%, to 2,253.90.

The rally capped a holiday-shortened week for the stock market. U.S. stock exchanges will be closed in observance of Good Friday, though bond trading will be open for half a day, closing at noon Eastern.

Companies that would benefit from greater sales of electric vehicles also rose Thursday, a day after President Joe Biden outlined various measures to support their use as part of his massive infrastructure plan. Part of that plan includes installation of thousands of additional charging stations around the country. Electric vehicle charger operator ChargePoint gained 11.8%.

Investors continue to monitor news about how well the U.S. economy is recovering from the coronavirus pandemic, now that millions of vaccines are being administered daily to Americans as well as around the world.

Consumer sentiment has been improving along with construction spending and other measures. The improving economy is prompting investors to shift more money into companies and sectors that will benefit from people getting back to some semblance of a pre-pandemic normal.

The market has been churning while dealing with that shift as beaten-down sectors like airlines and industrial companies start to recover.

“In a way, the churn has reflected health, because more sectors are participating in the moves,” said Ross Mayfield, investment strategy analyst at Baird.

While investors are optimistic that things will recover soon, there’s still a lot of economic pain to go around.

Airlines have been making gains this year as more people bet on a budding recovery for travel, but the industry still faces turbulence ahead. Discount carrier Frontier Airlines underwhelmed on its first day of public trading. The Denver-based airline opened at $18.61, below the low end of a $19 to $21 price target, and closed at $18.85.

The Labor Department said the number of Americans who filed for unemployment benefits last week rose to 719,000 last week from 658,000 the previous week. That figure was expected to decline. The government will release its monthly jobs report on Friday.

“The employment market is going to be the thing to watch,” Mayfield said. “We’re kind of in a transition period and at some point we’re going to need to see improvement there.”
 

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Stocks close broadly higher following big job gains in March

Stocks on Wall Street notched broad gains Monday as investors welcomed more signs that the economy is on the path to recovery,

The S&P 500 rose 1.4% to an all-time high after closing above the 4,000-point mark for the first time last Thursday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average also set a record high, as the market extended its recent run of gains. Technology companies powered much of the rally, which was a reaction to encouraging data on the economy.

The U.S. government reported last week that employers went on a hiring spree in March, adding 916,000 jobs, the most since August. Traders had a delayed reaction to the encouraging jobs report, which was released on Friday when stock trading was closed. Investors were further encouraged by a report Monday showing that the services sector recorded record growth in March as orders, hiring and prices surged.

Both employment and the services industry have been lagging other areas of the economy throughout the recovery. Analysts have said that both need to show signs of growth in order for the recovery to remain on track. COVID-19 and the potential for a spike in cases remains a concern, but the strong rollout of vaccinations is making an eventual return to normal for many people seem clearer and closer.

“The jobs report underscored the rebound in the labor market,” said Quincy Krosby, chief market strategist at Prudential Financial. “The only thing that can stymie this rebound, this recovery, will be that COVID-19 launches another wave.”

The S&P 500 rose 58.04 points to 4,077.91. The benchmark index is coming off two straight weekly gains. The Dow picked up 373.98 points, or 1.1%, to 33,527.19. The Nasdaq composite gained 225.49 points, or 1.7%, to 13,705.59.

Small company stocks, which are outgaining the broader market so far this year, also rose Monday. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies added 10.98 points, or 0.5%, to 2,264.89. The index is up 14.7% so far this year, while the broader market S&P 500 index is up 8.6%.

The gains were widespread Monday, with nearly every sector closing higher. Companies that stand to benefit from a broader reopening of the economy and economic growth also did well. Norwegian Cruise Line jumped 7.2% for the biggest gain in the S&P 500 as it seeks permission to restart cruises out of U.S. ports in July with a vaccination requirement for passengers and crew members. Rival Carnival rose 4.7% and Royal Caribbean gained 2.9%.

Technology and communications stocks accounted for a big slice of the gains Monday. Apple rose 2.4%, Microsoft gained 2.8% and Facebook climbed 3.4%. Tesla surprised investors with a report that vehicle deliveries doubled during the first quarter. Its shares surged 4.4%.

Energy companies lagged the broader market as crude oil prices fell, including a 4.6% slide in the price of U.S. crude. Occidental Petroleum dropped 7..6% and Marathon Oil slid 5.1%.

ASX 200 futures pointing higher


The Australian share market could have a strong start to the week. According to the most recent SPI futures, the ASX 200 is expected to open the week 23 points or 0.3% higher. However, it is worth noting that these contracts are based on pre-Easter trading. Since then, the US market has stormed to record highs, so the gains could be far stronger at the open. On Monday night the Dow Jones rose 1.13%, the S&P 500 climbed 1.44%, and the Nasdaq jumped 1.67%.

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https://apnews.com/article/financia...andemic-asia-8e71376da78ee26e499bbdb9713fadc1

Stocks close broadly higher following big job gains in March

By DAMIAN J. TROISE and ALEX VEIGA

Stocks on Wall Street notched broad gains Monday as investors welcomed more signs that the economy is on the path to recovery,

The S&P 500 rose 1.4% to an all-time high after closing above the 4,000-point mark for the first time last Thursday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average also set a record high, as the market extended its recent run of gains. Technology companies powered much of the rally, which was a reaction to encouraging data on the economy.

The U.S. government reported last week that employers went on a hiring spree in March, adding 916,000 jobs, the most since August. Traders had a delayed reaction to the encouraging jobs report, which was released on Friday when stock trading was closed. Investors were further encouraged by a report Monday showing that the services sector recorded record growth in March as orders, hiring and prices surged.

Both employment and the services industry have been lagging other areas of the economy throughout the recovery. Analysts have said that both need to show signs of growth in order for the recovery to remain on track. COVID-19 and the potential for a spike in cases remains a concern, but the strong rollout of vaccinations is making an eventual return to normal for many people seem clearer and closer.

“The jobs report underscored the rebound in the labor market,” said Quincy Krosby, chief market strategist at Prudential Financial. “The only thing that can stymie this rebound, this recovery, will be that COVID-19 launches another wave.”

The S&P 500 rose 58.04 points to 4,077.91. The benchmark index is coming off two straight weekly gains. The Dow picked up 373.98 points, or 1.1%, to 33,527.19. The Nasdaq composite gained 225.49 points, or 1.7%, to 13,705.59.

Small company stocks, which are outgaining the broader market so far this year, also rose Monday. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies added 10.98 points, or 0.5%, to 2,264.89. The index is up 14.7% so far this year, while the broader market S&P 500 index is up 8.6%.

The gains were widespread Monday, with nearly every sector closing higher. Companies that stand to benefit from a broader reopening of the economy and economic growth also did well. Norwegian Cruise Line jumped 7.2% for the biggest gain in the S&P 500 as it seeks permission to restart cruises out of U.S. ports in July with a vaccination requirement for passengers and crew members. Rival Carnival rose 4.7% and Royal Caribbean gained 2.9%.

Technology and communications stocks accounted for a big slice of the gains Monday. Apple rose 2.4%, Microsoft gained 2.8% and Facebook climbed 3.4%. Tesla surprised investors with a report that vehicle deliveries doubled during the first quarter. Its shares surged 4.4%.

Energy companies lagged the broader market as crude oil prices fell, including a 4.6% slide in the price of U.S. crude. Occidental Petroleum dropped 7..6% and Marathon Oil slid 5.1%.

GameStop fell 2.4% after announcing a stock sale.

Treasury yields were mostly lower. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note, which influences interest rates on mortgages and other consumer loans, slipped to 1.71% from 1.72% last last week.
 

bigdog

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Stocks slip on Wall Street as market eases back from records

A wobbly day of trading on Wall Street left stocks slightly lower Tuesday, pulling the market back from the all-time highs it reached a day earlier.

The S&P 500 snapped a three-day winning streak, slipping 0.1% after wavering between small gains and losses much of the afternoon. Stocks within the benchmark index were nearly evenly split between gainers and losers. Technology and health care stocks accounted for much of the decline.

Financial stocks fell as bond yields eased. That countered broader gains from companies that are depending on continued economic growth to recover. Oil prices rose.

Much of the gyrations within the market lately are occurring as Wall Street assesses the health and speed of the economic recovery.

There’s been strong support for many of the sectors and companies beaten down by the pandemic as vaccine distribution helps businesses reopen, while government stimulus helps shore up businesses in the interim. Even as that shift occurs, technology and other stocks that benefitted from the shutdowns still look fundamentally strong, said Jeff Buchbinder, equity strategist at LPL Financial.

“We’re seeing this battle play out here in markets every day,” he said. “That’s going to drive some churn.”

The S&P 500 lost 3.97 points to 4,073.94. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 96.95 points, or 0.3%, to 33,430.24. Both indexes set all-time highs Monday. The tech-heavy Nasdaq composite slipped 7.21 points, or 0.1%, to 13,698.38.

Small company stocks, which have been outgaining the broader market this year, also fell. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies gave up 5.73 points, or 0.3%, to 2,259.15. The index is up 14.4% so far this year, while the S&P 500, which tracks large companies, is up 8.5%.

Bond yields fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury slipped to 1.65% from 1.72% late Monday. That helped pull banks lower, as they rely on higher yields to charge more lucrative interest on loans. JPMorgan Chase fell 0.7%.

Investors have been weighing concerns about higher inflation as the economy grows, along with expectations that retailers and other service sector stocks will make solid gains as the world moves past the pandemic and returns to some semblance of normalcy.

ASX 200 expected to fall


The Australian share market looks set to give back some of its gains on Wednesday. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is expected to open the day 9 points or 0.1% lower this morning. This follows a weak night of trade on Wall Street, which saw the Dow Jones fall 0.29%, the S&P 500 drop 0.1%, and the Nasdaq edge lower by 0.05%.

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https://apnews.com/article/financia...andemic-asia-fd2d26fa7aaea9f21a8fae6554ac93ba

Stocks slip on Wall Street as market eases back from records

By DAMIAN J. TROISE and ALEX VEIGA

A wobbly day of trading on Wall Street left stocks slightly lower Tuesday, pulling the market back from the all-time highs it reached a day earlier.

The S&P 500 snapped a three-day winning streak, slipping 0.1% after wavering between small gains and losses much of the afternoon. Stocks within the benchmark index were nearly evenly split between gainers and losers. Technology and health care stocks accounted for much of the decline.

Financial stocks fell as bond yields eased. That countered broader gains from companies that are depending on continued economic growth to recover. Oil prices rose.

Much of the gyrations within the market lately are occurring as Wall Street assesses the health and speed of the economic recovery.

There’s been strong support for many of the sectors and companies beaten down by the pandemic as vaccine distribution helps businesses reopen, while government stimulus helps shore up businesses in the interim. Even as that shift occurs, technology and other stocks that benefitted from the shutdowns still look fundamentally strong, said Jeff Buchbinder, equity strategist at LPL Financial.

“We’re seeing this battle play out here in markets every day,” he said. “That’s going to drive some churn.”

The S&P 500 lost 3.97 points to 4,073.94. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 96.95 points, or 0.3%, to 33,430.24. Both indexes set all-time highs Monday. The tech-heavy Nasdaq composite slipped 7.21 points, or 0.1%, to 13,698.38.

Small company stocks, which have been outgaining the broader market this year, also fell. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies gave up 5.73 points, or 0.3%, to 2,259.15. The index is up 14.4% so far this year, while the S&P 500, which tracks large companies, is up 8.5%.

Bond yields fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury slipped to 1.65% from 1.72% late Monday. That helped pull banks lower, as they rely on higher yields to charge more lucrative interest on loans. JPMorgan Chase fell 0.7%.

Investors have been weighing concerns about higher inflation as the economy grows, along with expectations that retailers and other service sector stocks will make solid gains as the world moves past the pandemic and returns to some semblance of normalcy.

Retailers, cruise lines and hotel operators were among the winners Tuesday. Gap rose 2.5%, Norwegian Cruise Line added 4.6%, and Wynn Resorts gained 4%. Alaska Air Group climbed 3.7%, while Delta Air Lines closed 2.8% higher.

The International Monetary Fund expects global economic growth to accelerate this year as vaccine distribution ramps up and the world rebounds. The 190-country lending agency said it expects the world economy to expand 6% in 2021, up from the 5.5% it had forecast in January. That would be the fastest expansion in IMF records dating back to 1980.

The Labor Department in the U.S. reported that job openings reached the highest level on record in February, a harbinger of healthy hiring and a hopeful sign for those looking for work. That upbeat report follows encouraging reports over the last week on job growth and improvements in the services sector, which is one of the hardest hit areas of the economy from the pandemic.

Swiss bank Credit Suisse said it expects a $4.7 billion loss related to a default of by a U.S. hedge fund. Two top executives are leaving the bank. Credit Suisse also suspended a stock buyback program and cut its dividend. The bank’s U.S.-listed shares, which already fell sharply last week after initial news of the default came out, rose 0.9% Tuesday.
 

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US stocks close mixed; S&P 500 notches another record high

Wall Street capped another choppy day of trading Wednesday with a mixed finish for stock indexes and another all-time high for the S&P 500.

The benchmark index inched up 0.1% after spending much of the day wavering between small gains and losses. Technology, communication and financial companies helped lift the market, offsetting a pullback led by industrials, materials and health care stocks. Treasury yields were also mixed.

The broader market has been mostly subdued this week as investors remain cautiously optimistic about the economic recovery. Vaccine distribution has been ramping up and President Joe Biden has bumped up his deadline for states to make doses available to all adults by April 19. The vaccines are helping to fuel a recovery, but the virus is still very much a threat as variants are discovered and threaten additional lockdowns.

The S&P 500 rose 6.01 points to 4,079.95. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 16.02 points, or 0.1%, to 33,446.26. The Nasdaq composite slipped 9.54 points, or 0.1%, to 13,688.84. The S&P 500 and Dow each set record highs on Monday.

Small company stocks, which have been outgaining the broader market this year, took the brunt of the selling. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies gave up 36.10 points, or 1.6%, to 2,223.05. The index is up 12.6% so far this year, while the S&P 500, which tracks large companies, is up 8.6%.

Analysts expect the economy to recover this year, but they also anticipate the market remain choppy as investors shift money to companies and industries that stand to benefit as the pandemic eases.

Carnival, which essentially shut down during the pandemic, rose 1.4% Wednesday. The company said bookings have picked up. Other cruise line operators also gained ground as they plan to restart operations.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury inched up to 1.66% after moving up and down for much of the day. A sharp increase in bond yields since the beginning of the year reflects a growing concern among investors that inflation could return as economic growth heats up and the U.S. pulls out of its pandemic-induced recession. Higher yields can slow down the economy by making it more expensive for people and businesses to borrow money.

The stock indexes were little changed Wednesday following the release of minutes from the Federal Reserve’s latest meeting on interest rate policy.

ASX 200 futures pointing higher


The Australian share market looks set to continue its positive run on Thursday despite a mixed night of trade on Wall Street. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is poised to open the day 33 points or 0.5% higher.

Over in the United States, the Dow Jones rose 0.05%, the S&P 500 climbed 0.15%, and the Nasdaq edged 0.07% lower.

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https://apnews.com/article/joe-bide...rus-pandemic-c965b3a748354b852bb08c2d88ee83b3

US stocks close mixed; S&P 500 notches another record high

By DAMIAN J. TROISE and ALEX VEIGA

Wall Street capped another choppy day of trading Wednesday with a mixed finish for stock indexes and another all-time high for the S&P 500.

The benchmark index inched up 0.1% after spending much of the day wavering between small gains and losses. Technology, communication and financial companies helped lift the market, offsetting a pullback led by industrials, materials and health care stocks. Treasury yields were also mixed.

The broader market has been mostly subdued this week as investors remain cautiously optimistic about the economic recovery. Vaccine distribution has been ramping up and President Joe Biden has bumped up his deadline for states to make doses available to all adults by April 19. The vaccines are helping to fuel a recovery, but the virus is still very much a threat as variants are discovered and threaten additional lockdowns.

The S&P 500 rose 6.01 points to 4,079.95. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 16.02 points, or 0.1%, to 33,446.26. The Nasdaq composite slipped 9.54 points, or 0.1%, to 13,688.84. The S&P 500 and Dow each set record highs on Monday.

Small company stocks, which have been outgaining the broader market this year, took the brunt of the selling. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies gave up 36.10 points, or 1.6%, to 2,223.05. The index is up 12.6% so far this year, while the S&P 500, which tracks large companies, is up 8.6%.

Analysts expect the economy to recover this year, but they also anticipate the market remain choppy as investors shift money to companies and industries that stand to benefit as the pandemic eases.

Carnival, which essentially shut down during the pandemic, rose 1.4% Wednesday. The company said bookings have picked up. Other cruise line operators also gained ground as they plan to restart operations.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury inched up to 1.66% after moving up and down for much of the day. A sharp increase in bond yields since the beginning of the year reflects a growing concern among investors that inflation could return as economic growth heats up and the U.S. pulls out of its pandemic-induced recession. Higher yields can slow down the economy by making it more expensive for people and businesses to borrow money.

The stock indexes were little changed Wednesday following the release of minutes from the Federal Reserve’s latest meeting on interest rate policy.

The minutes revealed that Fed officials were encouraged last month by evidence the U.S. economy was picking up, but they showed no sign of moving closer to ending their bond purchases or lifting their benchmark short-term interest rate from nearly zero.

Fed policymakers also said they expect inflation will likely rise in the next few months because of supply bottlenecks, but they believe it will remain near their 2% target over the longer run.

“Nothing was all that surprising from the minutes,” said Stephanie Roth, senior markets economist at J.P. Morgan Private Bank. “The Fed is watching closely, not just the unemployment rate, but they’re really focusing on bringing back the population that has fallen out of the labor force.”

The minutes are from a Fed meeting that came before last week’s March jobs report, which showed a surprisingly strong 916,000 positions were added that month, the most since August, and the unemployment rate fell to 6% from 6.2%.
 

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Stocks rise as lower bond yields help lift tech companies

Technology companies led stocks to more gains on Wall Street Thursday, nudging the S&P 500 to an all-time high for the third time this week.

The benchmark index rose 0.4% and is on track for its third straight weekly gain. Stocks within the S&P 500 were about evenly split between gainers and losers, with technology companies driving much of the rally. Those gains were tempered mainly by a slide in energy stocks and real estate companies.

Bond yields, which had been steadily ticking higher, continued to inch back from the highs they hit earlier in the month. The yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note, which influences interest rates on mortgages and other loans, fell to 1.63% from 1.65% late Wednesday. It had been as high as 1.75% on Monday.

That pullback in yields took some pressure off technology stocks, which have slipped over the last few months as yields jumped and made the shares look pricey. The sector has also seen choppy trading as investors shift more money into companies that stand to benefit from the economic recovery.

“We expect rates to rise because the economy is looking better,” said Sylvia Jablonski, chief investment officer at Defiance ETFs. “I don’t think that the 10-year (Treasury yield) moving around in the short term is really an issue for the market.”

The S&P 500 rose 17.22 points to 4,097.17. The index also set record highs on Monday and Wednesday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 57.31 points, or 0.2%, to 33,503.57. The tech-heavy Nasdaq composite climbed 140.47 points, or 1%, to 13,829.31.

Small company stocks, which have been outpacing the broader market this year, also had a good showing. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies picked up 19.54 points, or 0.9%, to 2,242.60. The index is up 13.6% so far this year, while the S&P 500, which tracks large companies, is up 9.1%.

Big Tech stocks were among the biggest beneficiaries as bond yields cooled off. Apple rose 1.9%, Microsoft gained 1.3% and Amazon added 0.6%.

Investors are showing cautious optimism about the economic recovery, especially in the U.S., where vaccine distribution has been ramping up and President Joe Biden has advanced the deadline for states to make doses available to all adults to April 19.

But it’s clear the economy has much to do when it comes to recovery. The number of Americans who filed for unemployment benefits last week rose again last week, as many businesses remain closed or partially shut down due to the pandemic.

Much of the economy is recovering, but employment needs to pick up in order for a full recovery to occur, analysts say. The market will likely continue to be choppy as investors shift money to some of the sectors and companies hardest hit by the pandemic. They are also weighing signs of economic growth against the lingering threat of COVID-19.

“We’re still at the mercy of the virus and the race between the virus and vaccines and getting a sense of the reopening of the economy,” said Liz Ann Sonders, chief investment strategist at Charles Schwab.

ASX 200 expected to edge lower

The Australian share market looks set to end the week in a subdued fashion. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is expected to open the day 5 points or 0.1% lower this morning. This is despite a solid night of trade on Wall Street, which saw the Dow Jones rise 0.17%, the S&P 500 climb 0.42%, and the Nasdaq storm 1.03% higher.


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https://apnews.com/article/financia...cial-markets-6ec099046496030bbd793cd1482250ef

Stocks rise as lower bond yields help lift tech companies

By DAMIAN J. TROISE and ALEX VEIGA

Technology companies led stocks to more gains on Wall Street Thursday, nudging the S&P 500 to an all-time high for the third time this week.

The benchmark index rose 0.4% and is on track for its third straight weekly gain. Stocks within the S&P 500 were about evenly split between gainers and losers, with technology companies driving much of the rally. Those gains were tempered mainly by a slide in energy stocks and real estate companies.

Bond yields, which had been steadily ticking higher, continued to inch back from the highs they hit earlier in the month. The yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note, which influences interest rates on mortgages and other loans, fell to 1.63% from 1.65% late Wednesday. It had been as high as 1.75% on Monday.

That pullback in yields took some pressure off technology stocks, which have slipped over the last few months as yields jumped and made the shares look pricey. The sector has also seen choppy trading as investors shift more money into companies that stand to benefit from the economic recovery.

“We expect rates to rise because the economy is looking better,” said Sylvia Jablonski, chief investment officer at Defiance ETFs. “I don’t think that the 10-year (Treasury yield) moving around in the short term is really an issue for the market.”

The S&P 500 rose 17.22 points to 4,097.17. The index also set record highs on Monday and Wednesday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 57.31 points, or 0.2%, to 33,503.57. The tech-heavy Nasdaq composite climbed 140.47 points, or 1%, to 13,829.31.

Small company stocks, which have been outpacing the broader market this year, also had a good showing. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies picked up 19.54 points, or 0.9%, to 2,242.60. The index is up 13.6% so far this year, while the S&P 500, which tracks large companies, is up 9.1%.

Big Tech stocks were among the biggest beneficiaries as bond yields cooled off. Apple rose 1.9%, Microsoft gained 1.3% and Amazon added 0.6%.

Investors are showing cautious optimism about the economic recovery, especially in the U.S., where vaccine distribution has been ramping up and President Joe Biden has advanced the deadline for states to make doses available to all adults to April 19.

But it’s clear the economy has much to do when it comes to recovery. The number of Americans who filed for unemployment benefits last week rose again last week, as many businesses remain closed or partially shut down due to the pandemic.

Much of the economy is recovering, but employment needs to pick up in order for a full recovery to occur, analysts say. The market will likely continue to be choppy as investors shift money to some of the sectors and companies hardest hit by the pandemic. They are also weighing signs of economic growth against the lingering threat of COVID-19.

“We’re still at the mercy of the virus and the race between the virus and vaccines and getting a sense of the reopening of the economy,” said Liz Ann Sonders, chief investment strategist at Charles Schwab.

In remarks to the International Monetary Fund Thursday, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said a number of factors are putting the nation “on track to allow a full reopening of the economy fairly soon.”

On Wednesday, the market largely shrugged off the release of minutes from the Federal Reserve’s latest meeting on interest rates.

The minutes revealed that Fed officials were encouraged last month by evidence the U.S. economy was picking up, but they showed no sign of moving closer to ending their bond purchases or lifting their benchmark short-term interest rate from nearly zero.
 

bigdog

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Tech company gains help push S&P 500 to record high

Wall Street capped another week of gains with more milestones Friday, as strength in technology and health care stocks helped push the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average to all-time highs.

The S&P 500 rose 0.8% for its fourth record high this week and third straight weekly gain. The Dow’s latest milestone followed an all-time high on Monday.

Stocks have benefited this week as bond yields, which had been steadily ticking higher, retreated from highs hit earlier in the month. Higher yields can slow down the economy by pushing up interest rates, making it more expensive for people and businesses to borrow money. Bond yields rose Friday, but that didn’t weigh on stocks.

“The S&P 500 finished at another all-time high today as investors have become comfortable enough with the current level of interest rates and inflation to keep putting money into equities,” said Chris Zaccarelli, chief investment officer for Independent Advisor Alliance.

A late-afternoon burst of buying pushed the major stock indexes higher. The S&P 500 rose 31.63 points to 4,128.80. The Dow gained 297.03 points, or 0.9%, to 33,800.60. The Nasdaq composite picked up 70.88 points, or 0.5%, to 13,900.19.

Small company stocks, which have outgained the broader market this year, lagged behind on Friday. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies inched up 0.88 points, or less than 0.1%, to 2,243.47. Still, the index is up 13.6% so far this year, while the S&P 500, which tracks large companies, is up 9.9%.

Big Tech stocks were among the better performers. Apple rose 2%, Microsoft gained 1% and Intel added 1.8%. Health care companies also helped lift the market. UnitedHealth climbed 3.1% and Cigna rose 3.3%.

Financial companies also rose, aided by the rise in bond yields, which translates into higher interest rates lenders can charge on mortgages and other loans. State Street gained 2.4% and Wells Fargo added 1.2%.

The yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note, which influences interest rates on mortgages and other loans, rose to 1.66% from 1.63% late Thursday. It had been as high as 1.75% on Monday.

Most analysts expect inflation to increase as the economy improves.


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https://apnews.com/article/technolo...ul-hong-kong-c58184aed19600e1e294d137bafc1f59

Tech company gains help push S&P 500 to record high

By DAMIAN J. TROISE and ALEX VEIGA

Wall Street capped another week of gains with more milestones Friday, as strength in technology and health care stocks helped push the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average to all-time highs.

The S&P 500 rose 0.8% for its fourth record high this week and third straight weekly gain. The Dow’s latest milestone followed an all-time high on Monday.

Stocks have benefited this week as bond yields, which had been steadily ticking higher, retreated from highs hit earlier in the month. Higher yields can slow down the economy by pushing up interest rates, making it more expensive for people and businesses to borrow money. Bond yields rose Friday, but that didn’t weigh on stocks.

“The S&P 500 finished at another all-time high today as investors have become comfortable enough with the current level of interest rates and inflation to keep putting money into equities,” said Chris Zaccarelli, chief investment officer for Independent Advisor Alliance.

A late-afternoon burst of buying pushed the major stock indexes higher. The S&P 500 rose 31.63 points to 4,128.80. The Dow gained 297.03 points, or 0.9%, to 33,800.60. The Nasdaq composite picked up 70.88 points, or 0.5%, to 13,900.19.

Small company stocks, which have outgained the broader market this year, lagged behind on Friday. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies inched up 0.88 points, or less than 0.1%, to 2,243.47. Still, the index is up 13.6% so far this year, while the S&P 500, which tracks large companies, is up 9.9%.

Big Tech stocks were among the better performers. Apple rose 2%, Microsoft gained 1% and Intel added 1.8%. Health care companies also helped lift the market. UnitedHealth climbed 3.1% and Cigna rose 3.3%.

Financial companies also rose, aided by the rise in bond yields, which translates into higher interest rates lenders can charge on mortgages and other loans. State Street gained 2.4% and Wells Fargo added 1.2%.

The yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note, which influences interest rates on mortgages and other loans, rose to 1.66% from 1.63% late Thursday. It had been as high as 1.75% on Monday.

Most analysts expect inflation to increase as the economy improves.

“We’re seeing some evidence of inflation creeping into the market place, but it’s not problematic,” said Terry Sandven, chief equity strategist at U.S. Bank Wealth Management.

The market’s latest gains are in line with the market’s upward tack this week as investors weigh concerns about the virus tripping up a steady economic recovery against progress in vaccinations and business re-openings.

Investors are showing cautious optimism about the economic recovery, especially in the U.S., where vaccine distribution as been ramping up and President Joe Biden has advanced the deadline for states to make doses available to all adults to April 19.

“There’s optimism on the horizon that overall economic growth will continue as the year unfolds,” Sandven said.

But it’s clear the recovery has a long way to go. The number of Americans who filed for unemployment benefits last week rose again last week, as many businesses remain closed or partially shut down due to the pandemic.

In remarks to the International Monetary Fund Thursday, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said a number of factors are putting the nation “on track to allow a full reopening of the economy fairly soon.”

Investors will turn their attention to quarterly results next week, when earnings season gets underway. The major banks are among the first to report their results, including JPMorgan, Wells Fargo and Bank of America. Analysts polled by FactSet have hiked their profit forecasts during the quarter. They expect growth of just over 24%, compared with the view back in September that companies in the S&P 500 would see 13% growth.

“On balance, we’re seeing earnings accelerate to provide valuation support,” Sandven said
 

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ASX 200 expected to rise


The Australian share market looks set to start the week on a positive note following a solid finish on Wall Street. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is expected to open the week 6 points or 0.1% higher this morning.

On Wall Street on Friday night, the Dow Jones rose 0.9%, the S&P 500 climbed 0.8%, and the Nasdaq pushed 0.5% higher. The Dow hit a record high after adding 2% for the week.
 

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Stocks end slightly below latest record highs as tech slips

The New York Stock Exchange is seen in New York, in this Monday, Nov. 23, 2020, file photo. Stocks are opening mostly lower on Wall Street as investors turn cautious following another record-setting run last week. The S&P 500 slipped less than 0.1% in the early going Monday, April 12, 2021, and other major market indexes were also lower. Big banks will be in focus this week as several of them report their latest quarterly earnings. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

U.S. stock indexes gave up some of their recent gains Monday, pulling the S&P 500 slightly below the record high it hit last week.

Technology, communication and energy stocks weighed on the market, outweighing gains by a broad mix of companies, including banks and those that rely directly on consumer spending, such as Nike and Chipotle.

Bond yields inched higher after easing most of last week. Investors have been focusing on the economic recovery as well as the risks higher inflation pose to consumers and companies. Those concerns have helped push up bond yields for much of this year.

Monday’s pullback snapped a three-day winning streak for the benchmark S&P 500, which closed out last week with its third straight weekly gain.

“It’s this back and forth as the market tries to figure out how strong the economy is going to be and how long its going to last,” said Tom Martin, senior portfolio manager with Globalt Investments.

The S&P 500 slipped 0.81 points, or less than 0.1%, to 4,127.99. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 55.20 points, or 0.2%, to 33,745.40. The tech-heavy Nasdaq composite lost 50.19 points, or 0.4%, to 13,850. The S&P 500 and Dow each set record highs Friday.

Small company stocks, which have been outgaining the broader market this year, also fell. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies gave up 9.69 points, or 0.4%, to 2,233.78. The index is up 13.1% so far this year, while the S&P 500, which tracks large companies, is up 9.9%.

Technology stocks were the biggest drag on the market. Apple fell 1.3% and Google’s parent company slid 1.1%.

The sector has been choppy as investors shift money to other industries that could see solid gains as the economy recovers. Rising bond yields have also made technology stock values look pricey after months of big gains.

The yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note, which influences interest rates on mortgages and other loans, inched up to 1.67%. It ended Friday at 1.66% and had been as high as 1.75% last Monday.

ASX 200 futures pointing higher

The Australian share market looks set to edge higher this morning despite a subdued night of trade on Wall Street. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is expected to open the day 0.1% or 6 points higher.

On Monday night the Dow Jones fell 0.16%, the S&P 500 was flat, and the Nasdaq was down 0.36%. Investors appear nervous ahead of the release of key US inflation data.

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Stocks end slightly below latest record highs as tech slips

By DAMIAN J. TROISE and ALEX VEIGA

The New York Stock Exchange is seen in New York, in this Monday, Nov. 23, 2020, file photo. Stocks are opening mostly lower on Wall Street as investors turn cautious following another record-setting run last week. The S&P 500 slipped less than 0.1% in the early going Monday, April 12, 2021, and other major market indexes were also lower. Big banks will be in focus this week as several of them report their latest quarterly earnings. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

U.S. stock indexes gave up some of their recent gains Monday, pulling the S&P 500 slightly below the record high it hit last week.

Technology, communication and energy stocks weighed on the market, outweighing gains by a broad mix of companies, including banks and those that rely directly on consumer spending, such as Nike and Chipotle.

Bond yields inched higher after easing most of last week. Investors have been focusing on the economic recovery as well as the risks higher inflation pose to consumers and companies. Those concerns have helped push up bond yields for much of this year.

Monday’s pullback snapped a three-day winning streak for the benchmark S&P 500, which closed out last week with its third straight weekly gain.

“It’s this back and forth as the market tries to figure out how strong the economy is going to be and how long its going to last,” said Tom Martin, senior portfolio manager with Globalt Investments.

The S&P 500 slipped 0.81 points, or less than 0.1%, to 4,127.99. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 55.20 points, or 0.2%, to 33,745.40. The tech-heavy Nasdaq composite lost 50.19 points, or 0.4%, to 13,850. The S&P 500 and Dow each set record highs Friday.

Small company stocks, which have been outgaining the broader market this year, also fell. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies gave up 9.69 points, or 0.4%, to 2,233.78. The index is up 13.1% so far this year, while the S&P 500, which tracks large companies, is up 9.9%.

Technology stocks were the biggest drag on the market. Apple fell 1.3% and Google’s parent company slid 1.1%.

The sector has been choppy as investors shift money to other industries that could see solid gains as the economy recovers. Rising bond yields have also made technology stock values look pricey after months of big gains.

The yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note, which influences interest rates on mortgages and other loans, inched up to 1.67%. It ended Friday at 1.66% and had been as high as 1.75% last Monday.

Traders are showing cautious optimism about the economic recovery, especially in the U.S., where vaccine distribution as been ramping up and President Joe Biden has advanced the deadline for states to make doses available to all adults to April 19.

While many economists are projecting a strong economic rebound this year, some companies that stand to benefit from the reopening of the economy were among the decliners Monday. Cruise operators Carnival and Royal Caribbean fell 5.3% and 3.1%, respectively.

Nuance Communications soared 15.9% after Microsoft said it would buy the speech technology company for about $16 billion.

Alibaba’s U.S.-listed shares jumped 9.3% after the Chinese conglomerate said it would restructure its Ant Group financial affiliate to placate Chinese government regulatory concerns.

Wall Street will be watching company earnings reports this week, particularly several from big banks. JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo report on Wednesday, while Bank of America and Citigroup report on Thursday.

Investors expect big profits for the major banks, mostly due to rising interest rates and the ability for these banks to move loans that went bad in the early weeks of the pandemic back onto the “good” side of their balance sheets.
 

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