April 20, 2024

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Stocks decline after February jobs report

Stocks decline after February jobs report

Stocks lost momentum and headed lower during afternoon trading on Friday, as investors retreated somewhat after a strong rally led by major technology names. The February jobs report also showed a slight rise in the unemployment rate, boosting investor confidence that the Federal Reserve will cut interest rates after its June meeting.

The S&P 500 (^GSPC) trended near the flat line after posting another record close on Thursday, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI) rose nearly 0.3%. The Nasdaq Composite (^IXIC) lost 0.3% after sharp gains the previous day.

Friday's nonfarm payrolls report showed the U.S. economy added 275,000 jobs in February, again beating Wall Street expectations. However, the unemployment rate rose to 3.9%, its first increase in four months. Futures on the three major averages were trading in the red numbers ahead of the jobs data.

The market received a boost this week as Chairman Jerome Powell told lawmakers that the Fed is “not far from” confident that inflation is in the right place for the central bank to start lowering borrowing costs.

And in a show of how the wind is blowing elsewhere, policymakers from the European Central Bank lined up to support interest rate cuts ahead of the summer break as inflation falls faster than expected. Meanwhile, Bank of Japan officials are said to welcome the idea of ​​finally raising interest rates out of negative territory.

On the corporate front, Costco ( COST ) shares fell 7% after its quarterly sales overshadowed the earnings beat. Broadcom ( AVGO ) revenue beat and expectations of $10 billion in sales of AI-related chips failed to impress investors, sending the stock down more than 6%.

In commodities, gold futures (GC=F) continued to rise, with spot gold eyeing its biggest weekly jump in five months amid optimism about a mid-year Fed rate cut.

He lives7 updates

  • Stocks trended in afternoon trading

    Here are some of the stocks topping Yahoo Finance's trending trends page during Friday afternoon:

    Bitcoin (Bitcoin-dollar): The world's largest cryptocurrency reached an all-time high on Friday, surpassing $70,000 for the first time, but it quickly rose to around $68,000 as some investors took their profits. The recent rush of excitement around the cryptocurrency has pushed the price to levels not seen since late 2021.

    nvidia (NVDA): Shares at the heart of Wall Street's artificial intelligence excitement fell nearly 5% during afternoon trading, as the company's dizzying rise took a breather. In recent months, investor frenzy around the stock has intensified as technology companies that rely on Nvidia's technology have doubled down on investing in this rapidly developing field.

    costco (it costs): Shares of the warehouse retailer fell more than 7% on Friday after the company reported mixed second-quarter results.

    Rivian (Raven): Shares of the all-electric car company rose 2% during afternoon trading after the company disclosed its shares Two new SUVs at a lower price. The first two vehicles, a midsize SUV called the R2, will start at around $45,000, and Rivian plans to ship in the first half of 2026. The move is designed to appeal to a broader consumer base, similar to the Tesla Model 3.

  • Stocks fluctuate in afternoon trading

    After the strong rally, investors are taking a breath, sending stocks mostly lower during Friday afternoon, halting the tech-led rally.

    The S&P 500 (^GSPC) trended near the flat line after posting another record close on Thursday, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI) rose nearly 0.3%. The Nasdaq Composite (^IXIC) lost 0.3% after sharp gains the previous day.

  • RealPage expects “muted” rental growth in 2024

    Renters across the country can breathe easier this year as an influx of apartment supply puts pressure on rent growth.

    Demand for professionally managed apartment rentals rose just 0.2% in February from a year earlier, according to Data from RealPage. This is significantly lower than the historical average of 0.6% dating back to 2010.

    “Weak rent growth is expected to continue throughout 2024 as supply continues to put downward pressure on rents,” RealPage said in a report.

    Austin was the furthest laggard in rent growth, falling 6.7% annually in February. Meanwhile, Virginia Beach led with rent increases of 3.3%.

    While strategists were anticipating a slowdown in rents, one measure of inflation, the Consumer Price Index, showed rents holding steady. Analysts say this is due to a lag in the data. The Consumer Price Index for February will be released on Tuesday.

    Overall, apartment occupancy held steady at 94.1% in February, according to RealPage, marking the third straight month at that rate.

    RealPage noted that record construction activity in the apartment sector is challenging occupancy levels this year, with approximately 962,000 units under construction nationally at the end of 2023 and 672,000 units expected to be completed this year.

  • Bitcoin briefly reaches $70,000

    Bitcoin (BTC-USD) reached an all-time high on Friday, surpassing $70,000 for the first time, but fell quickly as some investors took their profits.

    The recent rush of excitement around the world's largest cryptocurrency has lifted the price to levels not seen since late 2021. Earlier this week, investors pushed the price to nearly $69,000, matching the previous high set during Acute phase of the epidemic. But Bitcoin fell below the $60,000 level again within hours, highlighting the market's volatility.

    The recent trading frenzy has fueled a remarkable comeback for Bitcoin after the 2022 crash that caused huge losses to investors and led to the downfall of several big players in the industry, including cryptocurrency exchange FTX and its founder Sam Bankman-Fried, Yahoo Finance's David Hollerith reports.

  • Stocks are trending in morning trading

    Here are some of the stocks topping Yahoo Finance's ETFs page during morning trading on Friday:

    Rivian (Raven): Shares of the all-electric car company rose 6% during morning trading after the company was unveiled Two new SUVs at a lower price. The first two vehicles, a midsize SUV called the R2, will start at around $45,000, and Rivian plans to ship in the first half of 2026. The move is designed to appeal to a broader consumer base, similar to the Tesla Model 3.

    costco (it costs): Shares of the warehouse retailer fell sharply on Friday after the company reported mixed results for the second quarter.

    gap (Global Positioning System): The apparel company rose 3% on Friday after reporting fourth-quarter earnings that beat expectations for both the top and bottom line. The latest quarterly results arrive about six months into the tenure of CEO Richard Dixon, whose mission has been to turn the company around.

    Broadcom (Afgo): Shares of the semiconductor manufacturer fell 3% after announcing first-quarter results that beat analyst estimates on both the bottom and top lines. However, the report was not the blowout many investors were hoping for, sending shares slightly lower.

  • Stocks are headed for a win after a week of jobs report

    Wall Street had a positive trading day, with stocks rising after the February jobs report showed an increase in the unemployment rate. A slightly weaker jobs market strengthens the case for the Fed to cut interest rates this summer, adding to investor optimism.

    The S&P 500 (^GSPC) rose 0.2%, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI) was flat. The Nasdaq Composite (^IXIC) rose 0.3%.

  • Costco is Costco

    Costco (COST) being a Costco has historically worked very well for investors.

    The company sells giant $1.50 hot dogs in its food court (they taste great, as you can see below in my 2022 photo with retiring CEO Craig Jelinek). Last quarter, an 18% increase in online sales was driven by demand for gold bullion. Surprisingly, I found (and bought) two tomahawk steaks from my local Costco a few weeks ago for $40 (about five pounds of meat).

    Costco does things differently, and it's part of their DNA. The stock has risen in the past five years because members are happy to shop there: +245%.

    So I wasn't surprised when I heard Costco CFO Richard Galanti (soon-to-retire) reveal his foray into the sushi business on an earnings call last night:

    “We recently opened our first fully-operated sushi counter in Issaquah, Washington, across the street from our headquarters, and two more are scheduled to open in the very near future. This operation is what we have done successfully for years — for many years — and throughout Costco Asia And many countries there. The sushi program has proven to be a category where we can succeed in terms of quality and price, and we look forward to seeing more of that in the future.”

    Sign me up for the California concert, Rich.

    Costco hot dogs are on point.  On the right, now-retired Costco CEO Craig Jelinek.Costco hot dogs are on point.  On the right, now-retired Costco CEO Craig Jelinek.

    Costco hot dogs are on point. On the right, now-retired Costco CEO Craig Jelinek. (Yahoo Finance)