The New York Stock Exchange opened higher on Thursday, favorably positioned by good macroeconomic indicators and some good corporate results, and finished digesting the announcements of the American central bank (Fed) on Wednesday.
At around 3.20pm GMT, the Dow Jones was up 1.55%, the Nasdaq, which includes many technology stocks, was up 1.28%, and the S&P 500 was up 1.55%.
“The market appears satisfied with several macro indicators,” Schwab analysts said in a note.
In the fourth quarter, US growth reached 6.9% on an annual basis, against 5.6% expected.
For 2021 as a whole, U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) grew 5.7%, its biggest gain since 1984.
Other good news, the decline in weekly jobless claims, numbering 260,000, after three weeks of increase.
On the microeconomic side, several listed celebrities, such as Tesla and Intel, published results that exceeded expectations in the fourth quarter.
“A battle is underway between the + bulls + (which are pushing the market up) and the + bears +”, which are seeing it go down, said Adam Sarhan, founder and managing director of 50 Park Investments, which explains the significant oscillation of the indices in recent days.
“Fundamentally, you can’t draw any conclusions. Half of the market thinks everything is fine because the economy is strong,” the manager reports, “the other half says the market peaked with the good news and can only go down”.
Investors “need more data before deciding what to do”, considers Adam Sarhan.
After the Federal Reserve (Fed) announcements on Wednesday, the market “still doesn’t know” exactly what it will do in the coming months, according to the manager, the institution’s chairman Jerome Powell sparingly, in his speech , the possibility of changing monetary policy according to the health of the American economy.
On the merits, Jerome Powell “seemed more concerned” by the fight against inflation “than by the correction in progress on the markets”, judged, in a note, Patrick O’Hare, of Briefing.com, which increases the nervousness of the operators.
After climbing to 1.86%, the benchmark 10-year US government bond rate eased sharply to 1.79%.
In this context, according to Adam Sarhan, corporate results play a crucial role in determining market sentiment.
However, if they are good, on the whole, several references have disappointed since the start of the season, whether by their figures for the last quarter or their forecasts.
Thursday, McDonald’s fell (-0.25% to 249.22 dollars) after missing the target set by analysts for its quarterly sales and profit.
Revenues rose 13% year-on-year, but fell in China and Australia due to health measures to combat the resurgence of the coronavirus. In the United States, margins were affected by rising labor costs.
Above expectations, Tesla was also penalized even more significantly (-5.65% to 884.47 dollars). Despite the record profit in 2021, some dwelt on comments from CEO Elon Musk, who said there was continued supply difficulties.
Others regretted that the electric car manufacturer had not announced the arrival of new models.
Boeing advanced (+ 1.22% to 196.64 dollars), driven by an order for four 777 cargo version aircraft by the Taiwanese company China Airlines, for a list price of 1.4 billion dollars.
Intel lost ground (-6.49% to 48.33 dollars), although having done significantly better than expected in the fourth quarter, both in terms of turnover and net profit.
Investors, however, found the group’s forecasts a little disappointing and also worried about a deterioration in margins. The semiconductor giant has made massive investments, with the planned construction of factories in Europe and the United States.
Netflix jumped (+7.71% to 387.45 dollars). Investment company Pershing Square announced on Wednesday evening that it had acquired 3.1 million shares of the online video platform, or just under 1% of outstanding shares.
Known for his activism, Pershing said he took this stance to profit from the growth of the subscription service, not to demand a change in strategy.