The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index closed higher on Wednesday, July 28, a day after big technology companies like Google, Apple, and Microsoft posted strong quarterly earnings, while the blue-chip S&P 500 and the Dow Jones saw small gains in an unremarkable trading session.
The S&P 500 fell 0.02% to 4,400.64. The Dow Jones shed 0.36% to 34,930.93. The NASDAQ Composite rose 0.70% to 14,762.58, and the small-cap Russell 2000 ticked up 1.51% to 2,224.96.
Investors were upbeat after the Federal Reserve reiterated that the US economic recovery is on track despite the threat posed by the Delta mutant of the Covid-19 virus. In addition, the solid earnings reports of some of the major corporate houses added to the positive sentiments.
The central bank on Wednesday decided to maintain its current interest rates after the conclusion of its two-day meeting to discuss the progress of the US economy. The participants also decided to maintain the bank’s bond-purchase policy that has been blamed for inflation in some quarters.
Fed is scheduled to release its personal consumption expenditures (PCE) price index on Friday. The index is considered an important metric to gauge the country’s inflation.
In Wednesday’s trading, the healthcare stocks provided the most significant boost to the S&P 500 index, even as communication and energy shares saw major gains. However, seven of the 11 critical sectors of the index stayed in the negative territory, with utility stocks making up the bottom rung.
Shares of Alphabet Inc. (GOOG) rose 0.18%, while Apple Inc. (AAPL) and Microsoft Corporation (MSFT) ticked down 1.54% and 0.31%, respectively. The three companies had reported their solid quarterly earnings on Tuesday. Their combined profit for the June quarter was over US$50 billion.
Drugmaker Pfizer Inc. said that it expects its sales to rise by 30% to US$33.5 billion this year, more than its initial projection in April. On Wednesday, it reported a 92% revenue growth to US$19.0 billion in the second quarter. Its earnings per share were US$1.07.
The Pfizer (PFE) stock jumped more than 3.4% after the results.
Boeing Co (BA) reported its first quarterly profit in almost two years, with a revenue boost of 44% to US$17 billion. The BA stock jumped nearly 5% on Wednesday.
In the energy sector, Exxon Mobil gained 1.22%, Chevron Corp rose 1.05%, and Royal Dutch Shell plc (RDS-A) went up by 0.75%. PetroChina (PTR) and Enbridge Inc. (ENB) advanced 3.54% and 1.19%, respectively.
In healthcare stocks, Eli Lilly and Company (LLY) gained 1.83%, Abbott Laboratories (ABT) was up 0.86%, and Novo Nordisk A/S (NVO) surged 2.24%. Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK) advanced 0.94%, while UnitedHealth Group Incorporated (UNH) ticked down 1.33%.
In consumer defensive stocks, Walmart Inc. (WMT) shed 0.42%, Procter & Gamble Company (PG) declined 1.13%, and Coca-Cola Company (KO) fell 0.81%. PepsiCo, Inc. (PEP) and Philip Morris International Inc. (PM) shed 1.11% and 0.88%, respectively.
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Top performers on S&P 500 included Advanced Micro Devices Inc (7.58%), Moderna Inc (6.34%), Monolithic Power Systems Inc (5.83%), Xilinx Inc (5.76%). On NASDAQ, top performers were Flora Growth Corp (63.12%), Infinity Pharmaceuticals Inc (61.18%), Bit Digital Inc (35.82%), Nanovibronix Inc (29.93%). On Dow Jones, Boeing Co (4.18%), Caterpillar Inc (0.73%), Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc (0.62%), Merck & Co Inc (0.62%) were the leaders.
Top laggards on S&P 500 included Humana Inc (-5.71%), CH Robinson Worldwide Inc (-3.08%), Stanley Black & Decker Inc (-3.06%), IDEX Corp (-2.93%). On NASDAQ, Alset Ehome International Inc (-35.19%), SGOCO Group Ltd (-22.09%), Newegg Commerce Inc (-15.39%), EyeGate Pharmaceuticals Inc (-14.85%). On Dow Jones, Mcdonald's Corp (-1.86%), Travelers Companies Inc (-1.71%), American Express Co (-1.69%), Visa Inc (-1.59%) were the laggards.
Top volume movers were Advanced Micro Devices Inc (23.34M), Apple Inc (19.66M), General Electric Co (13.04M), Pfizer Inc (11.38M), Ford Motor Co (11.34M), Bank of America Corp (10.74M), Microsoft Corp (8.59M), AT&T Inc (7.95M), Intel Corp (7.59M), Infinity Pharmaceuticals Inc (18.80M), Bit Digital Inc (16.89M), Tilray Inc (15.74M), Sundial Growers Inc (15.49M), Nanovibronix Inc (14.11M), JD.Com Inc (10.44M), Grove Inc (10.35M).
Futures & Commodities
Gold futures were up 0.34% to US$1,806.00 per ounce. Silver increased 1.40% to US$24.995 per ounce, while copper fell 1.51% to US$4.4757.
Brent oil trade flat at US$73.87 per barrel and WTI crude increased 1.02% to US$72.38.
The 30-year Treasury bond yields was down 0.37% to 1.882, while the 10-year bond yields trade flat at 1.234.
US Dollar Futures Index decreased 0.17% to US$92.275.