Business Standard

U.S. Stocks: Tech rebound, earnings lift mood at end of torrid month


By Shreyashi Sanyal
(Reuters) - U.S. stocks rose for a second day on Wednesday, as investors snapped up technology favorites and strong results for General Motors and a host of others lifted spirits at the end of a torrid month for global equities.
Shares of Facebook Inc jumped 2.7 percent after the social media giant said margins would stop shrinking after 2019 as costs from scandals ease.
The S&P communication services index, which also houses Alphabet and Netflix, rose 2.03 percent. Inc and Apple Inc, other members of the FAANG group, also jumped 4.0 percent and 2.6 percent, respectively.
The high-flying group has powered U.S. stock market's decade-long bull run, but fears of rising borrowing costs, global trade dispute and possible slowdown in U.S. corporate profits have pummeled the stocks recently.
"A lot of these high-growth names have really been in bear market territory because of the slump this month, but the valuation correction is allowing some of the bulls to be opportunistic and to jump in at the right moment," said Ryan Nauman, market strategist at Informa Financial Intelligence in Zephyr Cove, Nevada.
Shares in General Motors Co jumped 7.5 percent and were on track to post their biggest one-day gain since late May after the No.1 U.S. automaker posted robust quarterly results and forecast strong full-year earnings.
At 11:40 a.m. ET the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 320.21 points, or 1.29 percent, at 25,194.85, the S&P 500 was up 37.72 points, or 1.41 percent, at 2,720.35 and the Nasdaq Composite was up 149.01 points, or 2.08 percent, at 7,310.66.
Although the S&P 500 is on track to post its first two-day gains for the month on Wednesday, it is still set for its worst monthly performance in more than seven years. The Nasdaq was on pace for its worst monthly loss since November 2008.
Defensive sectors were the only decliners, with the S&P consumer staples index falling 1.03 percent, dragged down by losses in Kellogg Co.
Kellogg fell 7.5 percent after cutting its full-year profit forecast due to higher advertising and distribution costs.
Among other gainers, Yum Brands Inc rose 4.0 percent and Yum China Holdings Inc 14.4 percent as strong KFC sales drove results.
Financial stocks also gained on the U.S. Federal Reserve's proposal to ease regulations for banks with less than $700 billion in assets. The S&P financial index rose 2.10 percent, while the S&P 500 regional banks index jumped 3.17 percent.
Advancing issues outnumbered decliners by a 2.24-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and by a 2.20-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.
The S&P index recorded seven new 52-week highs and four new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 22 new highs and 62 new lows.
(Reporting by Shreyashi Sanyal in Bengaluru; additional reporting by Sruthi Shankar in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila and Anil D'Silva)

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First Published: Oct 31 2018 | 10:04 PM IST

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