On a day when Federal Reserve officials predicted faster-than-expected rate hikes by the third or fourth quarters of 2022 and oil prices skidded more than 1%, the broad-based Dow Jones Industrial Average settled virtually flat, reflecting Wall Street’s inherent despite uncertainties about the economy and inflation.
The blue-chip S&P 500 and the tech-heavy Nasdaq rode to all-time highs on stellar earnings from Tesla and other US corporate heavyweights such as banking icon Goldman Sachs, healthcare giant Johnson & Johnson, consumer products behemoth Procter & Gamble and streaming services provider Netflix.
“Earnings continue to impress as 84% of S&P 500 companies have topped expectations,” Ed Moya, analyst at online trading platform OANDA, said, noting that the US economy appeared on “solid footing” after latest weekly jobless claims released on Thursday showed filings for unemployment benefits at a new pandemic-era low.
The S&P 500 index closed up 15 points, or 0.3%, at 4,551. The index, which tracks the top 500 US stocks on the New York Stock Exchange, hit a record high of 4,552 earlier. The S&P 500 is also up 5.7% for October and 21% for the year.
Nasdaq, comprising Big Tech names such as Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix and Google, settled up 94 points, or 0.6%, at 15,216. It is up 5.3% on the month and 18% on the year.
The Dow shed 6 points, or 0.02%, to close at 35,603. It hit a record high of 35,670 on Wednesday and is up 5.2% for October and 16% for the year.