Economy|Financial Markets
Dow, S&P 500 close at records as earnings week kicks off
Earnings have been good so far, with most topping analysts’ expectations.
While earnings have been steady, investors are also assessing how companies are navigating supply-chain bottlenecks, labour shortages and inflationary pressures to sustain growth [File: Brendan McDermid/Reuters]
25 Oct 2021
The Dow Industrials and S&P 500 closed at record highs on Monday, as earnings season kicked in to high gear in one of the heaviest reporting weeks of the quarter with bellwethers in multiple sectors poised to announce results.
While the Dow and S&P hit new highs, the Nasdaq outperformed on the day, buoyed by gains in Tesla and PayPal, and the tech-heavy index stands less than 1 percent away from a record.
Tesla Inc jumped to its own new high and breached $1 trillion in market capitalization, after car rental firm Hertz placed an order for 100,000 Tesla cars, while Morgan Stanley raised its price target on the stock to $1,200 from $900 per share.
“Tesla, there is a lot of the chatter out there today and Hertz placing a big order has created some excitement,” said Tim Ghriskey, chief investment strategist at Inverness Counsel in New York.
Tesla, which has risen in nine of the past ten sessions and is up more than 28 percent for the month, provided the biggest boost to the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq. Also helping to lift the two indexes was PayPal Inc, which gained after the payments company scrapped plans to buy the digital pinboard site Pinterest Inc for as much as $45bn. Shares of Pinterest slumped.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.18 percent, to 35,741.15, the S&P 500 gained 0.47 percent, to 4,566.48 and the Nasdaq Composite added 0.9 percent to end the session at 15,226.71.
United States President Joe Biden on Monday held out hope for an agreement on his major spending plans before attending a climate summit in Scotland, while the White House said Democratic negotiators were closing in on a deal.
The majority of the 11 major S&P sectors advanced, with energy and consumer discretionary shares the best performing, as energy names received a boost from another rise in oil prices to multiyear highs on tight supply.
Shares of Facebook Inc were up ahead of its quarterly results due after market close. Investors fear that like Snap Inc, the social media giant’s ad revenue could face the brunt of Apple Inc’s privacy changes.
Other mega-cap names scheduled to report this week include Apple, Microsoft Corp and Google parent Alphabet Inc .
This week, 165 components of the S&P 500 are expected to post quarterly results, according to Refinitiv data. Analysts expect earnings at S&P 500 companies to grow 34.8 percent year-on-year for the third quarter.
Investors are also assessing how companies are navigating supply-chain bottlenecks, labor shortages and inflationary pressures to sustain growth. Of the 119 companies in the S&P 500 that have reported earnings through Monday morning, 83.2 percent have topped analysts’ expectations.
“We are obviously in the heart of earnings season here, and that is a lot of what is going on and earnings are coming in better than expected and there was real fear we would see some bad earnings reports because of supply-chain issues and reduced outlooks, again because of supply-chain issues. So far, so good,” said Ghriskey.
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