Wall Street stocks ended another session with increases ahead of the reporting season. At the same time, the investors are looking forward to the US President Donald Trump’s speech on the economic environment.
The blue-chip index Dow Jones Industrial Average ended with a growth of 170, driven by Apple and Intel. The technology index Nasdaq Composite recorded an increase of 0.7%, while the S&P 500 rose by 0.47% against a background of good performance in the technology and consumer sectors.
In bond markets, the yields on government Treasuries declined while investors expected Trump’s speech. The yields on 10-year bonds declined to around 2.707% and 30-year bonds fell to 3.041%.
In currency markets, the US dollar raised its value against a basket of currencies.
The US dollar index recorded an increase of 0.21% to 96.06 points. The benchmark, which hit its highest level more than a week earlier in the session of 96.12 points, marks a minor change for the year.
On the commodity markets, the crude oil prices went through shuffled trade, retreating from their 2-month highs, as weak US factory orders resurfaced concerns about slowing the economy. The futures on US crude oil WTI ended the session down by 0.90 USD, or 1.7%, to 53.66 USD per barrel. The futures on Brent variety declined by 0.41 USD to 62.10 USD per barrel.
Corporate stocks performance
Alphabet, Seagate Technology and Estee Lauder are among the companies that presented better-than-expected reports. The stocks of Alphabet, however, traded slightly after the company showed a decline in advertising prices and rising costs.
Seagate’s stock also declined by 1%.
At the same time, Estee Lauder’s stock price jumped 12% on the background of better-than-expected results.
The stocks of Netflix are up by 1.17%, while those of Facebook appreciated by 1.13%. Other participants in FAANG are also on greed with Apple rising by 1.7% and Amazon appreciating by 1.56%.
Corporate earnings reports
Almost half of the S&P 500 companies have published their financial reports so far, and about 70% of them have surpassed analysts’ forecasts.
Viacom managed to surpass analysts’ forecasts for its profit, encouraged by higher fees for US cable and satellite operators as well as the success of the movie “Bumblebee”. The revenue, however, was slightly below the forecast of Wall Street and amounted to 3.09 billion USD, compared to the expected 3.12 billion USD. This reflects weaker advertising revenue and the impact of currency fluctuations. Revenue from its domestic units, or charges levied by US cable and satellite operators and online distributors, rose by 5% to 969 million USD. Moreover, the company, which owns MTV, Comedy Central, and Nickelodeon, said the total revenue of its affiliates rose by 3% to 1.17 billion USD, surpassing the 1.11 billion USD forecast.
In November, Viacom made a deal for several productions with Netflix and promised to make more films and TV shows for other companies.
Viacom’s movie division, which includes Paramount Pictures, has risen by 14% to 621 million USD. Excluding some effects, Viacom earned 1.12 USD per share, above the average estimate of 1.03 USD per share. The company’s net profit fell to 321 million USD, or 0.80 USD per share, in the first quarter ended December 31.
Another company that published its financial statement today was Ralph Lauren. The fashion brand also beat the market estimates and reported higher than expected profit. The marketing campaign with supermodels and Instagram helped Ralph Lauren attract more customers and report a new quarter with higher-than-expected sales and profit.
Marketing investments helped Ralph Lauren to sell more coats, t-shirts, and accessories at higher prices even when the market was flooded with Christmas discounts. Overall net revenue rose by 5.1% YoY to 1.73 billion USD, surpassing analysts’ average forecast of 1.66 billion USD.
Without single effects, the profits amounted to 2.32 USD per share, which is also above 2.15 USD. This is the 9th consecutive quarter with better than expected sales and profit for Ralph Lauren.