Wall Street closes in scattered order, rates rise

The floor of the New York Stock Exchange (GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA/AFP/SPENCER PLATT)

The New York Stock Exchange closed mixed on Thursday, with the broader S&P 500 index and the Nasdaq finishing in the red for the fifth session in a row.

The Dow Jones index is almost stable (+0.06%) at 37,775.38 points, the Nasdaq, predominantly technological, lost 0.52% to 15,601.50 points and the S&P 500 lost 0.22% to 5,011.12 points.

Bond yields are up, at almost 4.64% for ten-year rates compared to 4.58% the day before.

Several indicators published Thursday showed that American activity is still relatively dynamic, which pushes back the long-awaited first rate cuts a little further.

Weekly applications for unemployment benefits stagnated at 212,000, a sign that the job market remains strong.

Activity in the Philadelphia industrial region jumped in April to 15.5 points when analysts expected it to stagnate. This is a two-year high.

Another element depicting an economy in good shape, the American central bank (Fed) published its Beige Book on Wednesday.

This report, which comes two weeks before the next monetary meeting of the Fed, “brought largely good news”, estimated Art Hogan of B. Riley Wealth Management.

In March, American activity “increased slightly and entrepreneurs declared themselves cautiously optimistic,” added the analyst.

“The shares are not finding buyers,” commented Karl Haeling of LBBW.

“With the Fed looking set to delay rate cuts, investors are pulling out of the stock market, not because they believe the economy is going to get worse, but because they thought when the Fed would cut rates , buyers were going to come back to the market,” he explained.

Investors who, just a few weeks ago, were counting on a first rate cut by the Fed in June, are now expecting it more for September, or even November, according to CME Group’s estimate.

On Thursday, New York Fed President John Williams reiterated that he saw “no urgency” to lower rates. As for Raphael Bostic of the Atlanta Fed, he stuck to his projection of a single rate cut towards the end of the year.

On the value side, Netflix lost 3.16% in electronic exchanges after the close despite quarterly results which exceeded expectations.

The streaming giant gained an additional 9.3 million subscribers during the first quarter of 2024, bringing its total to nearly 270 million.

The American company achieved $9.37 billion in revenue and $2.3 billion in net profit in the first quarter, according to its press release, results higher than its forecasts and those of analysts.

Traders shunned the shares of Taiwanese semiconductor giant TSMC, listed in Taiwan but also on the New York Stock Exchange, which published a quarterly profit that was up 9% year-on-year to $6.97 billion.

The title of the manufacturer of chips for artificial intelligence, which counts Apple and Nvidia among its clients, fell 5.25% to 86.88 dollars.

Apple for its part dropped 0.57% to 167.04 dollars and Nvidia gained 0.76%.

The stock of Snap, the parent company of the social network Snapchat, soared 6.74% as the US House of Representatives will once again examine on Saturday a bill which provides for the ban of the rival application TikTok.

Meta (Facebook) ended up 1.54% after putting into service a new version of its generative artificial intelligence assistant Llama 3.

© 2024 AFP

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