Wall Street traded in a tight range after opening slightly lower following a weaker-than-expected jobs report — and more in Wednesday’s stock market update.
Strength returned after additional comments from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, both Democrats, indicated progress on bipartisan coronavirus relief negotiations.
Meanwhile, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell assured the Fed will continue to offer substantial support to the economy and will not pull back its measures until it’s confident the accommodation is unnecessary.
The Dow rose 0.2% following the intraday trip to 29,902.
The S&P 500 also gained 0.2% while trading to a final-hour high of 3,670.
The Russell 2000 nudged up 0.1% with the late-day peak reaching 1,842.
The Nasdaq was down 0.1% despite testing an afternoon high of 12,360.
Energy and Financials led sector strength after rising 3.3% and 1.1%, respectively. Materials and Real Estate paced sector laggards after giving back 1.3% and 1.1%.
NetApp Inc. (Nasdaq: NTAP) rallied 9% after reporting upbeat earnings while providing better-than-expected, current-quarter guidance. The company reported a profit of $1.05 a share on revenue of $1.42 billion versus forecasts for 73 cents a share on revenue of $1.31 billion.
Kroger Inc. (NYSE: KR) is scheduled to announce third-quarter results ahead of Thursday’s opening bell with a possible 5%-10% move forthcoming.
The company is expected to report earnings of 67 cents a share on revenue just south of $30 billion. The high estimate is at 77 cents a share with the low estimate at 58 cents, meaning a beat of 10 cents or a miss of nine cents a share.
Kroger has topped estimates by 18, 13 and two cents over the past three quarters while missing by a penny in the year-ago period. Out of the 26 analysts that follow the stock, there are five “Strong Buy” ratings, four “Buy” ratings and 14 “Hold” recommendations. The other three ratings are “Underperform” and “Sell.”
European markets were mixed despite U.K. regulators formally approving the Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE) and BioNTech (Nasdaq: BNTX) coronavirus vaccine.
UK’s FTSE 100 advanced 1.2% and France’s CAC 40 nudged up a point, or 0.03%. Germany’s DAX 30 fell 0.5% and the Belgium20 was off 0.2%. The Stoxx 600 slipped 0.1%.
Asian markets were also mixed following news that U.S. President-elect Joe Biden may not immediately remove the China tariffs installed by President Donald Trump.
South Korea’s Kospi soared 1.6%. Japan’s Nikkei edged up 0.1% and Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 was up roughly 2 points, or 0.03%. China’s Shanghai and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng slipped 0.1%.
MBA Mortgage Applications dipped -0.6% after rising 3.9% in the prior week. The refi index fell -4.6% while giving back its 4.5% bounce in the prior week. The purchase index surged 9% after advancing 3.5% previously. All of the indexes accelerated on a 12-month basis with the headline index climbing to a 71.7% year-over-year clip versus 55.8% last week. The refi index surged to a 102.1% year-over-year rate from 78.7%, while the purchase index rose to 28.1% from 18.5%. The 30-year mortgage rate held at a record low of 2.92% for the second-straight week.
ADP reported private payrolls rose 307,000 in November versus forecasts for 420,000. The number rose 404,000 previously. Strength remained in the service sector which added 276,000 jobs. Employment rose 31,000 in the goods sector, helped by a 22,000 increase in construction.
The iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond ETF (Nasdaq: TLT) extended its losing streak to three sessions with the intraday low reaching $155.48. Prior and upper support from mid-November at $155.50-$155 was tripped but held. A close below the latter would indicate additional weakness towards $154.50-$154 with the November bottom at $154.63.
Lowered resistance is at $157-$157.50 followed by $158.50-$159.
The iPath S&P Vix Short-Term Futures (NYSEArca: VIX) was higher for the second straight session despite tapping an intraday low of 20.04. Near-term and upper support at 20-19.50 was challenged but held. A close below the latter would indicate a further pullback towards 18.50-18.
Resistance remains at 21-21.50 followed by 22.50-23 with Wednesday’s peak reaching 21.25.
The SPDR S&P 500 ETF (NYSE: SPY) was up for the second straight session with the second-half peak reaching $366.96. Resistance at $366.50-$367 was cleared and held. A close above the latter and Tuesday’s all-time peak at $367.68 would suggest continued upside towards $368.50-$369.
Current support is at $364.50-$364 followed by $363-$362.50.
RSI is back in an uptrend after clearing and holding lower resistance at 65-70 holding. A move above the latter would signal a retest towards 75-80 and levels from late August/early September. Key support is at 60.
The SPDR S&P Retail ETF (NYSE: XRT) was up for the second straight session despite tagging an intraday low of $59.79. Current and upper support at $60-$59.50 was breached but held. A close below the latter would signal additional weakness towards $58.50-$58.
Lower resistance at $61-$61.50 with the recent all-time peak at $61.40.
RSI is in a slight uptrend with resistance at 75-80 holding and the latter representing the monthly top and overbought levels. Support is at 70-65.
Check back after the closing bell for the most important news and numbers in the WealthPress stock market update.