Stock Market News – Stocks Rise After Strong Earnings, Economic Data
U.S. stocks rose Thursday as blue-chip companies reported strong earnings and fresh economic data showed a sharp improvement in consumer spending and the labor market.
Investors will be watching earnings reports in the coming weeks as they assess whether stocks can grind higher after a powerful rally. Analysts expect that S&P 500 earnings jumped 29% in the first quarter from the same period a year earlier, according to FactSet.
On Thursday they rewarded shares of several reporting companies.
rose 1% after it reported a sharply higher first-quarter profit and said it was shutting down most of its consumer-banking operations in Asia, Europe and the Middle East.
gained 2.8% after the asset manager reported that quarterly profit rose nearly 50%.
shares climbed 3.6% after the healthcare services company posted a larger profit and stronger revenue on the year in the first quarter.
Money managers also parsed new data as they look for signs of improvement in the economy. U.S. retail sales—a measure of purchases at stores, at restaurants and online—jumped 9.8% last month. Household incomes have benefited from recent fiscal stimulus measures that saw $1,400 checks hit some Americans’ bank accounts.
Fresh data also showed that 576,000 Americans applied for first-time unemployment benefits in the week ended April 10, a decrease from the 769,000 who applied in the week prior. The Federal Reserve has said employment is one of the factors it is watching to determine when to eventually lift interest rates.
An anticipated economic recovery has led some investors to buy shares of companies sensitive to a rebound, such as energy, travel and banks, which has helped send indexes to repeated record highs this year.
“We want to see that the 2021 numbers—even the 2022 numbers—are going to continue to look good,” said
head of global market strategy at Natixis Investment Solutions. “We want to see what guidance is going to be. For a lot of 2020, we had no guidance.”
Among individual stocks, newly listed cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase rose 2.9% to $337.83. Shares rose as high as $429.54 during the stock’s trading debut Wednesday and ended the session at $328.28.
Overseas, the Stoxx Europe 600 gauge added 0.3%. The Shanghai Composite Index declined 0.5%, and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index edged 0.4% lower. South Korea’s Kospi added 0.4%.
In bond markets, the yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note ticked down to 1.587%, from 1.637% Wednesday.
—Karen Langley contributed to this article.
Write to Caitlin Ostroff at [email protected] Zoom.com
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