Wednesday, May 18

Wall St rises as recovery in growth stocks offsets mixed earnings


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US shares rose on Wednesday as a rebound in growth stocks on falling yields and strong results from Delta Air Lines offset declines in JPMorgan after the bank reported a slump in first-quarter profit in a mixed start to the earnings season.

Megacaps Apple Inc and Microsoft Corp rose 1.7% each, while Nvidia Corp and Advanced Micro Devices Inc gained 2.7% and 1.9%, respectively, after chipmakers’ shares got battered this week.

The Philadelphia index climbed 2.2% after dropping nearly 20.9% so far semiconductor this year.

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The benchmark US 10-year Treasury yield fell, helping tech and tech-adjacent stocks that have been under pressure in the last few weeks, even as data showed producer prices increased more than expected in March amid a surge in demand for services.

“The market is coming to the conclusion that the March data is likely to be the peak,” said Sam Stovall, chief investment strategist at CFRA Research.

Eight of the 11 major S&P 500 sectors advanced. Industrial stocks gained 0.8% helped by a surge in airline shares.

Delta Air Lines Inc jumped 4.3% after posting a smaller-than-expected quarterly loss and forecasting a return to profit in the current quarter on the back of booming travel demand.

“Delta Airlines is in the sweet spot of the reopening trade,” said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at National Securities in New York.

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“Investors have been taking a wait and see attitude, but it looks like a very positive response to Delta and likely the other travel and leisure names.”

Other airlines such as American Airlines Group Inc, United Airlines Holdings Inc and Southwest Airlines Co gained between 5.2% and 9.0%.

Meanwhile, capping market gains, JPMorgan Chase & Co fell 2.9% as CEO Jamie Dimon warned of economic uncertainties arising from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and soaring inflation, after first-quarter profits at the largest US bank slumped 42%.

Other big banks Citigroup Inc, Wells Fargo & Co , Goldman Sachs Group Inc, Morgan Stanley and Bank of America Corp, which report later this week and next week, fell between 0.2% and 1.0%.

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At 12:23 pm ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 189.79 points, or 0.55%, at 34,410.15, the S&P 500 was up 34.01 points, or 0.77%, at 4,431.46, and the Nasdaq Composite was up 215.23 points, or 1.61 %, at 13,586.81.

Analysts expect S&P 500 earnings to have increased by about 6% in the first quarter, compared to the 32.1% jump in the fourth quarter of 2021, according to IBES data from Refinitiv, as an aggressive Fed, soaring inflation and geopolitical uncertainty due to the Ukraine conflict muddies the outlook for the earnings season.

Advancing issues outnumbered decliners for a 2.84-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and a 2.75-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.

The S&P index recorded 17 new 52-week highs and 11 new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 34 new highs and 141 new lows. (Reporting by Bansari Mayur Kamdar and Praveen Paramasivam in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta)

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