The US markets failed to find a single direction at the beginning of one of the busiest weeks in the current reporting season.
The blue-chip index Dow Jones Industrial Average grew by 0.21% to 24,579.96 points awaiting the earnings report of the technology giant Apple. However, the other two major indexes were unable to report growth. The broader S&P 500 reported a decline of 0.15% to a level of 2,640 points, while the technology benchmark Nasdaq Composite was down by 0.8% to 7,028.29 points.
Apple shares fell by more than 1%, before the company’s quarterly financial report, which should be published after the end of the stock market session.
This will be the busiest week of the current reporting season, with over 100 companies in the S&P 500 posting their financial performance at the end of last year. By early Tuesday, more than 70% of S&P 500 companies have been able to meet analysts’ expectations.
The markets are largely focused on trade pressure, but hopes for an agreement between China and the United States have diminished after the US government filed criminal charges against Huawei.
The news came shortly before China’s Deputy Prime Minister Liu He to visit Washington for the new round of trade talks.
In the commodity markets, the price of crude oil is rising. The US light crude WTI increased its value by 2.27% to 53.17 USD per barrel. On the other hand, futures on the international Brent variety rose by 2.05% to 61.16 USD per barrel.
Gold is also on green territory with a price increase of 0.57% to 1,310.50 USD per ounce.
The yields on US bonds declined, with 10-year bonds falling to 2.708%, while for 30-year bonds it is 3.038%
The dollar index, which measures the strength of US money against a basket of competing currencies, rose slightly by 0.07% to a level of 95.81 points.
Corporate earnings reports
The US conglomerate 3M was also one of the companies that presented their report on Tuesday, which boosted its stock price by nearly 2%. On the other hand, Allergan and Verizon, which also showed stronger than expected earnings data.
After facing liabilities stemming from wildfires in Northern California in 2017 and 2018, power provider PG&E filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Tuesday. The company’s shares, however, traded sharply higher on Tuesday, up 16.5% by the end of the session.
Pfizer Inc rose 3% after reporting solid fourth-quarter earnings but issuing weaker-than-expected 2019 guidance.
The shares of Lockheed Martin Corp rose by 1% after improved 2019 outlook.
Corporate earnings reports
Pfizer reported solid fourth-quarter earnings but issued weaker-than-expected 2019 guidance as the exclusivity of its key epilepsy treatment Lyrica comes to an end. The stock rose 3%. Pfizer said earnings for the three months ended in December were 64 cents a share, topping the Wall Street consensus of 63 cents. Revenue was 13.98 billion USD, up 2% from the fourth quarter of 2017 and ahead of the estimates of the analysts.
Verizon Communications reported earning per share of 1.12 USD on an adjusted basis in the fourth quarter, topping analysts’ estimates by 3 cents, as revenue of 34.3 billion USD came in slightly below forecasts. The company said fourth-quarter retail postpaid net additions were 1.2 million, including 653,000 phone net additions and 873,000 postpaid smartphone net additions. The telecommunications giant said it expects adjusted earnings in 2019 similar to 2018’s adjusted profit of 4.71 USD per share.
Lockheed Martin posted modestly weaker-than-expected fourth-quarter earnings but said its 2019 outlook has improved thanks to demand for its F-35 aircraft.