Microsoft brings S&P 500, Nasdaq back into record territory

Written by on October 29, 2021

October 29, 2021

By Devik Jain and Shashank Nayar

(Reuters) -The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq crept back up to record territory on Friday after a boost from Microsoft, which overtook Apple Inc as the world’s most valuable company after the iPhone maker posted downbeat quarterly revenue on hit from supply chain disruptions.

Wall Street’s tech titans Google-owner Alphabet Inc, Meta Platforms (Facebook Inc) and Tesla Inc rose between 1.2% and 2.3%, while Microsoft Corp gained 1.3% to provide the biggest boost to all the three major indexes.

Microsoft’s shares touched a record high and crossed a market capitalization of $2.46 trillion, above Apple Inc’s $2.45 trillion market cap.

Markets had earlier taken a hit from a 2.2% drop in shares of Apple after it warned the impact of supply chain disruptions will be even worse during the current holiday sales quarter. Its shares rose 2.5% in the previous session.

After gaining 3.8% in the run-up to its earnings report since Monday, shares of Amazon.com Inc dropped 2.8% as it forecast downbeat holiday-quarter sales amid labor shortages.

“It seems like the weakness is pretty much contained to these names and hasn’t spread out to the broader market very much,” said Dan Eye, chief investment officer at Fort Pitt Capital Group.

“Even a business like Apple that said they saw something like a $6 billion headwind … the markets kind of allow us to look past that, especially because we have seen or heard some commentary recently that some of these supply chain issues seems to be working themselves out.”

Market participants have been closely watching how corporate America navigates through these challenges along with concerns about rising inflation, after largely upbeat earnings reports so far helped investors look past a mixed macro-economic picture.

Data showed U.S. consumer spending increased solidly in September, but was partly flattered by higher prices as inflation remained hot.

The report came ahead of the Federal Reserve’s policy meeting next week, where it is expected to announce the start of its tapering of monthly bond purchases.

At 12:47 p.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 87.75 points, or 0.25%, at 35,818.23, the S&P 500 was up 5.84 points, or 0.13%, at 4,602.26, and the Nasdaq Composite was up 8.81 points, or 0.06%, at 15,456.93.

Caterpillar Inc added 0.6%, building up on a 4% rally in the previous session after its quarterly results.

AbbVie Inc gained 4.1% as the U.S. drugmaker raised its 2021 adjusted profit forecast for the third time this year.

Starbucks Corp tumbled 7.4% after the coffee chain said it expects fiscal 2022 operating margin to be below its long-term target due to inflation and investments.

Declining issues outnumbered advancers for a 1.27-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and for a 1.08-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.

The S&P index recorded 45 new 52-week highs and four new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 97 new highs and 54 new lows.

(Reporting by Devik Jain and Shashank Nayar in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)


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