Market Snapshot: U.S. stocks edge lower as investors wade into earnings deluge


U.S. stocks were suffering a second day of losses Tuesday, with investors wading into a deluge of corporate results as earnings reporting season moves into full swing.

What are major indexes doing?
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average

    fell 126.98 points, or 0.4%, to 33,950.65.
  • The S&P 500

    was down 10.29 points, or 0.3%, at 4,152.97.
  • The Nasdaq Composite

    shed 14.53 points, or 0.1%, to trade at 13,900.23.

On Monday, stocks suffered modest losses, with the Dow shedding 123.04 points, or 0.4%, while the S&P 500 fell 0.5% as both indexes pulled back from record finishes posted Friday. The Nasdaq Composite shed 1%.

What’s driving the market?

Earnings reports, which are off to a strong start for the quarter, will remain under scrutiny as investors gauge the strength of the economic recovery from COVID-19 pandemic, analysts said. Guidance from companies on the outlook for the year ahead may be even more important in determining market direction.

“Corporate outlooks may indicate whether the rally from last year’s low could continue,” said Charalambos Pissouros, senior market analyst at JFD Group, in a note.

Read: Why it may still be early days for the stock-market reflation trade

“In our view, with most major central banks suggesting that any spikes in inflation this year are likely to prove to be temporary, and staying committed to keeping their monetary policies extra loose, we believe that even if the earnings disappoint somewhat, there is a decent chance for equities to rebound again and continue trending north,” he said.

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A pickup in new COVID-19 cases even as the vaccine rollout continues was seen putting a damper on sentiment, analysts said. The U.S. has averaged 67,175 new cases a day in the past week, up 4% from the average two weeks ago. But the global new case tally almost hit a record of more than 750,000 on Sunday and Monday, according to the Washington Post, as India and Brazil remain hot spots. 

See: Why the rise in COVID-19 cases is keeping Morgan Stanley bullish on risky assets

Which companies are in focus?

See: Tobacco stocks get sashed after report that Biden administration could require nicotine cutbacks

What are other markets doing?
  • The yield on the 10-year Treasury note
    rose 1.2 basis points to 1.604%.
  • The ICE U.S. Dollar Index
    a measure of the currency against a basket of six major rivals, was up 0.1% at 91.157.
  • Oil futures edged higher, with the U.S. benchmark

    up 0.3% at $63.63 a barrel.
  • Gold futures

    edged lower, fall ing 0.2% to $1,767.70 an ounce.
  • In Europe, the Stoxx 600

    fell 1.3%, while London’s FTSE 100

    was down 1.2%.
  • In Asia, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index

    rose 0.1%, while the Shanghai Composite

    fell 0.1% and Japan’s Nikkei 225

    dropped 2%.

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