Apple and company carry Nasdaq to new heights
21-Jan-21 16:15 ET
Dow -12.37 at 31176.01, Nasdaq +73.67 at 13530.92, S&P +1.22 at 3853.07 https://www.briefing.com/stock-market-update
[BRIEFING.COM] The Nasdaq Composite (+0.6%) and S&P 500 (+0.03%) closed at new record highs on Thursday, largely due to continued strength in several mega-cap stocks that disproportionately benefited the Nasdaq. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (-0.04%) finished on the negative side of its flat line, and the Russell 2000 declined 0.9%.
Apple (AAPL 136.87, +4.84, +3.7%) was the most influential mover today with a 3.7% gain, which was aided by a price-target increase to $152 from $144 at Morgan Stanley. Amazon (AMZN 3306.99, +43.61, +1.3%) and Facebook (FB 272.87, +5.39, +2.0%) joined Apple as mega-cap leaders and extended their weekly gains to between 6-8%.
These household names propped up the S&P 500 information technology (+1.3%), consumer discretionary (+0.6%), and communication services (+0.3%) sectors. Semiconductor, homebuilding, and retail stocks also contributed to their positive performances.
These were the only S&P sectors that closed higher, though. The energy sector (-3.4%) succumbed to profit-taking interest that trimmed its monthly gain to 11.5%. The materials (-1.5%), financials (-1.1%), and industrials (-0.8%) sectors also finished as laggards.
Providing more color on the homebuilding and semiconductor stocks, these spaces drew support from a better-than-expected housing starts and building permits report for December and a strong earnings report from Intel (INTC 62.46, +3.79, +6.5%), which was released early.
The iShares US Home Construction ETF (ITB 61.38, +0.90, +1.5%) and Philadelphia Semiconductor Index (+1.5%) closed at record highs.
In other developments, weekly initial claims remained elevated at 900,000 (Briefing.com consensus 845,000); Travelers (TRV 148.72, +3.70, +2.6%) beat EPS estimates on below-consensus revenue; and President Biden signed many executive orders, including one to invoke the Defense Production Act to help increase the supply of PPE to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
Longer-dated U.S. Treasuries finished on a lower note. The 2-yr yield was flat at 0.12%, and the 10-yr yield increased two basis points to 1.11%. The U.S. Dollar Index declined 0.4% to 90.08. WTI crude futures declined 0.3%, or $0.16, to $53.12/bbl.
Reviewing Thursday's economic data:
Initial claims for the week ending January 16 declined by 26,000 to 900,000 (Briefing.com consensus 845,000). Continuing claims for the week ending January 9 decreased by 127,000 to 5.054 million.
The key takeaway from the report should speak for itself. The level of initial claims is still terribly high and indicative of why calls for more jobless assistance are being made.
Housing starts increased 5.8% m/m in December to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.669 million (Briefing.com consensus 1.560 million). That was the strongest pace of starts since September 2006. Building permits rose 4.5% m/m to 1.709 million (Briefing.com consensus 1.600 million), which was the strongest pace since August 2006.
The key takeaway from the report is that the growth was driven entirely by single-unit dwellings. The growth there was strong, too, which is a good indicator for the homebuilding stocks.
The Philadelphia Fed Index jumped to 26.5 in January (Briefing.com consensus 12.0) from an upwardly revised 9.1 in December (from 8.5).
Looking ahead, investors will receive Existing Home Sales for December and the flash IHS Markit Manufacturing and Services PMIs for January on Friday.
Russell 2000 +8.4% YTD
Nasdaq Composite +5.0% YTD
S&P 500 +2.6% YTD
Dow Jones Industrial Average +1.9% YTD
Dow 31176.01 -12.37 (-0.04%)
Nasdaq 13530.92 +73.67 (0.55%)
SP 500 3853.07 +1.22 (0.03%)
10-yr Note -23/32 1.099
NYSE Adv 1223 Dec 1908 Vol 890.2 mln
Nasdaq Adv 1675 Dec 2132 Vol 7.1 bln
Strong: Information Technology, Consumer Discretionary, Communication Services
Weak: Energy, Industrials, Financials, Materials
Moving the Market
-- S&P 500 and Nasdaq close at record highs, although the benchmark index finished marginally higher
-- Continued strength in mega-cap stocks, while most sectors finished lower
-- Better-than-expected housing starts and building permits data for December
WTI crude futures settle slightly lower, energy stocks fall
21-Jan-21 15:25 ET
Dow +17.67 at 31206.05, Nasdaq +87.38 at 13544.63, S&P +6.22 at 3858.07
[BRIEFING.COM] The S&P 500 continues to trade higher by 0.2% while the Nasdaq is trading at session highs with a 0.7% gain.
One last look at the S&P 500 sectors shows information technology (+1.4%), consumer discretionary (+0.8%), and communication services (+0.4%) still trading in positive territory. The energy sector is the weakest link with a 3.1% decline, followed by the materials sector with a 1.3% decline.
WTI crude futures settled lower by 0.3%, or $0.16, to $53.12/bbl.