Midday Market Update: Earnings, Data Drive Stocks Up

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Stocks were mixed with most sectors up Thursday. Risk sentiment was generally strong, as positive earnings reports and jobless claims data rolled in. 

The S&P 500 was essentially flat, pressured by large cap tech stocks, as the NYSE FANG Index fell 1%. The 10-Year Treasury yield, on a tear of late, rose to 0.85% and was at 0.71% about a week ago. In a general sense, investors are positive on the ongoing economic recovery, although stocks have taken a bit of a breather in the past week or so as the pace of the economic recovery has indeed slowed down, a pace that hinges on fiscal stimulus and coronavirus vaccines.

Positively, Coca-Cola  (KO) - Get Report beat revenue and earnings estimates, posting revenue of a touch more than $8 billion for the quarter, a few hundred million dollars higher than analyst’s estimates. Revenue declines are improving to single digits in percentage terms year-over-year, as restaurant and sports-related sales take a pandemic-induced dive. The stock rose 1.6%.

Also, initial jobless claims for the past week were 787,000 against estimates 860,000 and lower than last week’s reading of 842,000. This speaks to an apparent improvement in the labor market and may quell anxieties that the slowing economic recovery can resume its previous pace.

The Vanguard S&P 500 Value ETF  (VOOV) - Get Report rose 0.65%. By midday, rising stocks on the New York Stock Exchange outnumbered decliners by a 6 to 5 ratio. 

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