Dow ends higher for 6th session, but Treasury yields pressure market

BY Reuters | TREASURY | 05/08/24 06:23 AM EDT

By David French

(Reuters) - The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended higher on Wednesday, stretching its winning streak to six straight sessions and closing above 39,000 points for the first time in five weeks, as investors kept betting on supportive U.S. monetary policy.

The other Wall Street benchmarks cooled a touch as momentum stalled and U.S. Treasury yields rose on the day of a 10-year notes auction. The S&P 500 ended unchanged after four sessions of gains, and the Nasdaq Composite slipped to a second consecutive decline.

There was not much news to move the indexes, outside of reports from individual companies.

"We're just waiting for the next catalyst to jump-start the direction in the market, and we're probably going to get that next week," said Ameriprise Chief Market Strategist Anthony Saglimbene. The Producer Price Index (PPI) is due on May 14, and the Consumer Price Index (CPI) is scheduled for May 15.

"I think traders are reluctant to take broader stocks or broader averages higher, until they get a fresh update on inflation," he added.

The S&P 500 has leveled off close to the 5,200 mark, which it last closed above on April 9. On Wednesday, it was hampered by sliding shares of Uber (UBER) which posted a surprise quarterly loss and issued a downbeat forecast.

The ride-hailing platform fell 5.7%, was among the S&P 500's biggest decliners, after it forecast second-quarter gross bookings would not meet expectations.

Tesla fell 1.7% after Reuters reported U.S. prosecutors were examining whether the company committed securities or wire fraud by misleading investors and consumers about self-driving capabilities of its electric vehicles.

Other megacap stocks such as Nvidia (NVDA), Amazon (AMZN) and Alphabet slipped between 0.2% and 1.1%, as the 10-year Treasury yield edged up.

Rising yields helped dampen optimism spurred by a positive earnings season and softer-than-expected labor market data last week that had tempered concerns about the Federal Reserve keeping interest rates higher for longer.

Traders are pricing in a 67% chance of the Fed cutting rates by at least 25 basis points in September, according to the CMEGroup's Fedwatch tool, up from about 54% a week ago.

Fed policymakers who spoke on Wednesday stayed consistent to recent messaging, including at the U.S. central bank's policy meeting last week.

Boston President Susan Collins said the current setting of monetary policy will slow the economy in the way she believes will be necessary to get inflation back to the Fed's 2% target.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 172.13 points, or 0.44%, to 39,056.39, the S&P 500 lost 0.03 points, or 0.00%, to 5,187.67 and the Nasdaq Composite lost 29.80 points, or 0.18%, to 16,302.76.

Among S&P sectors, utilities rose 1.1%, extending its run of higher finishes to 14 out of the last 16 sessions, boosted as Vistra Corp (VST) jumped 9.1% after reporting strong earnings.

However, seven of the 11 sectors declined, with real estate, materials and consumer discretionary the worst performers.

Intel (INTC) fell 2.2% after warning of a sales hit from the U.S. revoking some of the chipmaker's export licenses for China.

Tripadvisor (TRIP) tumbled 28.7%, its largest ever one-day percentage drop, after the online travel agency ruled out a possible sale at this time and posted a surprise quarterly loss.

Uber (UBER) rival Lyft (LYFT) climbed 7.1% after projecting higher-than-expected gross bookings and a core profit for the current quarter.

The S&P 500 posted 32 new 52-week highs and 3 new lows while the Nasdaq recorded 100 new highs and 83 new lows.

(This story has been refiled to add 'sessions' in paragraph 1)

(Reporting by Sruthi Shankar and Shristi Achar A in Bengaluru and David French in New York; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli, Devika Syamnath and David Gregorio)

In general the bond market is volatile, and fixed income securities carry interest rate risk. (As interest rates rise, bond prices usually fall, and vice versa. This effect is usually more pronounced for longer-term securities.) Fixed income securities also carry inflation risk and credit and default risks for both issuers and counterparties. Unlike individual bonds, most bond funds do not have a maturity date, so avoiding losses caused by price volatility by holding them until maturity is not possible.

Lower-quality debt securities generally offer higher yields, but also involve greater risk of default or price changes due to potential changes in the credit quality of the issuer. Any fixed income security sold or redeemed prior to maturity may be subject to loss.

Before investing, consider the funds' investment objectives, risks, charges, and expenses. Contact Fidelity for a prospectus or, if available, a summary prospectus containing this information. Read it carefully.

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