Stock Market Today: Stock Rally Continues; Twitter Soars on Musk U-Turn

The Tesla CEO said he now wants to buy Twitter at his original offer price.

blue bird sign outside of Twitter headquarters
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Stocks ran higher for a second straight day, building on Monday's gains which saw the three major indexes each rally more than 2%.

There were two different catalysts behind Tuesday's surge. Both raised hopes that the streak of aggressive Fed rate hikes could end sooner rather than later. One came from the Reserve Bank of Australia, which overnight issued a lower-than-expected rate hike. The other was this morning's Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) that showed job openings in the U.S. declined by 10% in August while layoffs edged higher.

"A hot labor market continues to be a challenge to the Fed's goal," says Matt Dyer, investment analyst at institutional asset management firm Penn Mutual Asset Management. But while "this morning's JOLTS data release shows some signs of cooling, the labor market is still running extremely hot with job openings outweighing the number of job seekers," Dyer adds.

Subscribe to Kiplinger’s Personal Finance

Be a smarter, better informed investor.

Save up to 74%
https://cdn.mos.cms.futurecdn.net/flexiimages/xrd7fjmf8g1657008683.png

Sign up for Kiplinger’s Free E-Newsletters

Profit and prosper with the best of Kiplinger’s expert advice on investing, taxes, retirement, personal finance and more - straight to your e-mail.

Profit and prosper with the best of Kiplinger’s expert advice - straight to your e-mail.

Sign up

Sign up for Kiplinger's FREE Investing Weekly e-letter for stock, ETF and mutual fund recommendations, and other investing advice.

The day's headlines weren't all about global central banks and economic data, though. In single-stock news, Twitter (TWTR, +22.2%) rallied after Bloomberg reported that Tesla (TSLA, +2.9%) CEO Elon Musk will reverse course and go through with his original $44 billion bid to buy the social media company. The two parties were scheduled to go to court later this month after Musk in August accused Twitter of fraud and said he wanted to walk away from the deal.

"It's the latest twist in the dramatic takeover saga, and comes just two days before he was set to be deposed by Twitter's lawyers, raising speculation that 'Team Musk' believe the chances of the court ruling in his favor were slim," says Susannah Streeter, senior investment and markets analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown. "If Elon Musk loses, it could mean he'd be forced to complete the deal or be made to pay billions or more for breach of contract."

At the close, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 2.8% at 30,316. The S&P 500 Index (+3.1% at 3,790) and the Nasdaq Composite (+3.3% at 11,176) also finished with solid gains.

price chart for Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq on 10/04

(Image credit: YCharts)

 

Other news in the stock market today:

  • The small-cap Russell 2000 rocketed 3.9% to 1,775.
  • U.S. crude futures jumped 3.5% to finish at $86.52 per barrel ahead of tomorrow's highly anticipated OPEC+ meeting.
  • Gold futures gained 1.7% to end at $1,730.50 per ounce.
  • Bitcoin rose 3.4% to $20,220.13. (Bitcoin trades 24 hours a day; prices reported here are as of 4 p.m.)
  • Poshmark (POSH) popped 13.1% after the online second-hand apparel marketplace said it will be acquired by South Korean internet firm Naver for $1.2 billion, or $17.90 per POSH share. Today, the stock closed just below here at $17.61. "E-commerce has been one of the toughest sub-groups in our coverage over the past 12-18 months, with the average of our six e-commerce names trading ~80% below their 52-week highs," says Wedbush analyst Tom Nikic (Neutral). "This deal, however, may have created a 'floor' for this beaten-down group. Admittedly, POSH does have some key advantages that make them relatively more attractive to potential acquirers (healthy cash balance, asset-light business model, large user base, 'social network' characteristics, etc.), but some of the other e-commerce names in our coverage look particularly cheap in light of the proposed takeout."
  • Rivian Automotive (RIVN (opens in new tab)) soared 13.9% after the electric vehicle (EV) maker said production in the third quarter was up 67% from Q2. The company also confirmed that it is on pace to reach its 2022 goal of building 25,000 vehicles. 

Midterm Elections and Stocks

 

Another potentially positive driver for the stock market is right around the corner: the midterms. Congressional midterm elections will occur on Tuesday, Nov. 8, and determine which political party controls the House of Representatives and the Senate for the next two years. 

A lot can happen between now and the midterm election races, but odds seem increasingly likely for a split Congress – which tends to be the most bullish outcome for the stock market. "Historically, split governments have been the best for equities," says Savita Subramanian, head of equity and quantitative strategy at BofA Securities. "Q4 has seasonally been the strongest quarter (+4.5% on average and positive 81% of the time), particularly in midterm years (+7.7% on average and 86% positive hit rate)." 

But returns aren't the only impact elections can have on the stock market. Here, we explore what else the midterms could mean for investors.

Karee Venema
Contributing Editor, Kiplinger.com

With over a decade of experience writing about the stock market, Karee Venema is an investing editor and options expert at Kiplinger.com. She joined the publication in April 2021 after 10 years of working as an investing writer and columnist at Schaeffer's Investment Research. In her previous role, Karee focused primarily on options trading, as well as technical, fundamental and sentiment analysis.