The S&P 500 hit a new intraday record on Thursday after earnings were blown out by two of the world’s largest tech companies: Apple and Facebook. The benchmark was unable to hold that profit, however, as traders took profits and wondered if much of the positive profit news had already been priced into the markets.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average, which opened more than 200 points higher, recently rose around 100 points. The S&P 500 was up 0.3% after hitting a new all-time high at the start of trading in New York.
The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite, which started the day up 1%, was last down 0.15%.
Sales rose 54% for the quarter, with each product category posting double-digit growth, according to Apple. The company also announced it would increase its dividend by 7% and approved share buybacks of $ 90 billion. Apple shares fell 0.2%.
“The primary market trend remains positive,” said Keith Lerner, chief marketing strategist at Truist. “We expect a more troubled environment, however, as tensions between better economic growth and better earnings prospects versus the potential for higher taxes and rising interest rates as the economy normalizes,” he added.
Thursday marks the 100th day of President Joe Biden’s tenure. On Wednesday evening, he gave his first address to a joint congressional session where he unveiled his previously popular agenda, which included a $ 2 trillion infrastructure plan and a freshly unveiled $ 1.8 trillion plan for families, Includes children and students.
Thursday is also the busiest day of the quarterly earnings season. Around 11% of the S&P 500 is to be updated quarterly.
McDonald’s released its results before the opening bell, telling investors that its sales have finally topped pre-pandemic levels. The Dow component also increased the prospects for system-wide revenue growth. Nevertheless, the shares have not changed much recently.
Caterpillar, which also reported Thursday, lost 3.1% while Merck fell 5.2% after disappointing results. Amazon, Gilead Sciences, Twitter, US Steel and Western Digital will post results after the market closes.
Facebook revenue grew 48% due to higher-priced ads. The inventory increased by up to 6.5% and reached a record high. Qualcomm shares rose 3.5% after seeing sales jump 52%.
The economic data released on Thursday gave investors a glimpse of the progress of the economic recovery.
First-quarter GDP hit an annualized rate of 6.4%, according to a report released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis, a sign that the U.S. economy started accelerating in 2021. Aside from the spike in reopenings in the third quarter of last year, that was the best period for GDP since the third quarter of 2003.
The Department of Labor, meanwhile, reported that initial unemployment claims last week were 553,000, just above the Dow Jones estimate of 528,000.
The Federal Reserve said Wednesday that it would keep interest rates near zero. The S&P slid from its high after Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said during a press conference following the Federal Open Market Committee’s decision that there was some signs of froth in the market.
“Interest rates are unchanged for now, and despite the improvement in economic data, the cone talk was off the table at today’s Federal Reserve meeting,” said Bethany Payne, portfolio manager at Janus Henderson.
“As vaccination rates accelerate, employment boosts and expansive fiscal policies continue to support household and corporate incomes, investors are now looking for signs of whether the central bank’s safety net may be pulled out sooner than expected,” she added.
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