NEW YORK (AFP) – Wall Street stocks finished at records on Tuesday (Nov 2), extending a recent bullish run fuelled by strong corporate earnings ahead of a closely watched Federal Reserve decision.
Following a choppy session, all three major indices finished at records for the third straight day, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average up 0.4 per cent at 36,052.63, its first close above 36,000 points.
The broad-based S&P 500 gained 0.4 per cent to 4,630.65, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 0.3 per cent to 15,649.60.
Shares of Pfizer, Clorox and Under Armour all climbed following earnings releases, extending a successful quarter that has resulted in numerous all-time highs for Wall Street shares.
Markets are looking ahead to Wednesday’s Fed meeting at which the US central bank is expected to announce actions to begin to trim its stimulus package after months of signalling the shift.
“We are on the taper bandwagon: on Wednesday we expect the Fed to announce asset purchase reductions,” said a note from Wells Fargo analysts.
“They probably will go into effect for the mid-November to mid-December purchase schedule. This is clearly the consensus call and should produce a limited market reaction.”
Markets are also trying to assess the prospects of President Joe Biden’s infrastructure and social spending agenda in a splintered Congress, while also awaiting key labour data later in the week.
Among individual companies, Tesla fell 3 per cent after founder Elon Musk said the electric car company had not reached a final agreement to supply Hertz with 100,000 electric autos.
Hertz’ announcement of the deal last week helped push Tesla’s valuation above US$1 trillion (S$1.3 trillion). Shares of Hertz climbed 2.7 per cent, boosted by a surge in shares of rival Avis Budget.
That company’s shares more than doubled to US$357.17 after it reported US$674 million in profits on a booming car rental market.