U.S. stock indexes ended mixed on Thursday as traders weighed retail earnings. Roughly 67% of the companies in the S&P 500 fell, though gains by large technology companies and big retailers helped offset losses in other sectors as investors sized up the latest batch of corporate earnings reports.
A late slide, led by Big Tech, left U.S. stock indexes lower Wednesday. The S&P 500 dropped 0.5% after having been up 0.8% in the early going.
U.S. stocks stepped back from all-time highs in choppy trading on Tuesday. The S&P 500 fell 0.2% after wobbling between small gains and losses most of the day.
A tech rout Thursday pulled the Nasdaq down 3.5%, the index’s biggest loss since last October, while the S&P 500 dropped 2.4%.
Tech gains sent stock indexes higher Thursday even as other stocks fell. The S&P 500 rose 0.3% after rallying back from an earlier 0.6% loss as investors weighed new government data showing an increase in the number of Americans who sought unemployment aid last week.
U.S. stock indexes closed lower Tuesday on mixed company earnings. The major indexes wavered for much of the day between small gains and losses as investors weighed a mixed batch of earnings reports from McDonald’s, Procter & Gamble and other big companies.
The S&P 500 snapped a two-day losing streak Tuesday. A last-minute burst of buying nudged the benchmark index into positive territory after spending most of the day flat or down.
The S&P 500 index closed at a record high Thursday as the recent stock rally continued. It gained 27.72 points, or 0.9%, to close at 1,954.18. Thursday’s rally came as investors balanced optimism over the possibility that the Federal Reserve will cut interest rates in response to a slowing global economy with jitters about the prospects of dimmer corporate profits should a severe slowdown take hold.
U.S. stocks posted meager gains on Tuesday. The S&P 500 spent much of the day hovering below its previous high, but edged up in the last few minutes of trading to set a new record.
It was a mixed finish for U.S. stock indexes Thursday. Losses in banks and retailers and consumer products makers offset gains in health care stocks, technology companies and elsewhere in the market as investors weighed new data showing retail sales slumped in December amid a disappointing holiday shopping season.
The U.S. and China officially began taxing larger amounts of each other’s goods Monday, and the Wall Street Journal reported that China pulled out of talks that could have led to a new round of negotiations to end the trade war. After that global stocks dropped.
U.S. stock indexes struggled to move higher Tuesday, led by technology companies. The gains were enough to mark more record highs for several of the indexes, though not the Dow Jones Industrial Average.
Retail gains and bank losses left U.S. stocks little changed Thursday. Energy companies again headed lower after a sharp drop in oil prices the day before. Amazon and media company Viacom led consumer-focused companies higher.