Stock Market Today: Stocks Close Mixed as Banks Sink, Tech Rebounds
The Dow and S&P 500 lost ground amid a slide in financial shares, while Facebook helped the Nasdaq come back from a steep loss in the previous session.
Stocks finished the week in mixed fashion as the Dow Jones Industrial Average was weighed down by financial stocks, but the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite rebounded following yesterday's heavy selloff.
Big banks turned lower after the Federal Reserve declined to extend a pandemic-era exemption that allowed them to hold less loss-absorbing capital on their books. Because banks use money to make money, the market typically boos any increase in capital requirements, which lowers banks' revenue potential. JPMorgan Chase (JPM, -2.3%) and Goldman Sachs (GS, -1.0%) were among the Dow's top laggards as a result.
Tech stocks, meanwhile, returned to their winning ways after a Thursday spike in bond yields stoked inflation fears that sent traders scrambling out of the highest-flying names. Facebook (FB, +4.1%) popped on news that it is working on a version of its Instagram site suitable for children under the age of 13.
"Treasury yields pulled back slightly overnight following yesterday’s scary-looking spike, and that helped the bounce in the tech sector even as global risk assets remained under pressure in the wake of yesterday's dip on Wall Street," wrote Ken Berman, founder and CEO of GorillaTrades. "The fact that the Fed didn't extend an emergency rule that allowed banks to keep less reserves caused some turmoil among financials in early trading, but volatility remained relatively low in the other sectors."
At Friday's closing bell, the blue-chip Dow lost 0.7% to close at 32,628, while the Nasdaq gained 0.8% to 13,215. The broader S&P 500 split the difference, dipping 0.1% to finish at 3,913.
Other action in the stock market today:
- Visa (V) plunged 6.2% on a report that the Justice Department is opening an antitrust probe.
- FedEx (FDX) jumped 6.1% after beating analysts' earnings estimates.
- The small-cap benchmark Russell 2000 added 0.9% to 2,287.
- Gold futures managed a 0.5% improvement to $1,741.90 per ounce.
There's something to be said for sticking to what's working.
Despite a couple of days of underwhelming performance, the Dow is outpacing the Nasdaq by a wide margin so far this year.
Partly that's because investors in priced-to-perfection tech stocks have been quick to sell after years of big gains. And partly that's because the Dow contains some of the largest and most liquid ways to play promising contemporary trends.
After all, if you're investing in stocks set to benefit from the return of travel, leisure and hospitality, you're surely checking out Dow stock Walt Disney (DIS). If you're looking for stocks that offer exposure to a wider reopening of the economy, you'll recognize longtime Dow component Coca-Cola (KO) as a smart play. And there's no way you can add bets on big-time infrastructure spending to your portfolio without including Dow stalwart Caterpillar (CAT).
Indeed, whether you're looking to bet on a rotation into more value-oriented names or the potential outperformance of the most cyclical stocks, the Dow's 30 stocks contain multitudes. To get an idea of what the blue-chip average can do for you, have a look at how analysts' rate all 30 Dow stocks at this point in the economic cycle.