The Dow Jones, S&P 500 and Nasdaq ended at records simultaneously for the 23rd time this year on Wednesday. The Dow Jones, in particular, closed above 23,000 points for the first time ever. The blue-chip index had closed above 22,000 for the first time on Aug 2, and since then the best-performing components have been Boeing Co (BA - Free Report) , Caterpillar Inc. (CAT - Free Report) , Goldman Sachs Group Inc (GS - Free Report) , Home Depot Inc (HD - Free Report) and 3M Co (MMM - Free Report) . You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Upbeat corporate earnings results, mostly, by technology and financial companies helped the broader equity market gain traction. International Business Machines Corp. (IBM - Free Report) was the biggest gainer among the Dow components, while its shares registered the biggest one-day percentage gain since 2009 driven by better-than-expected earnings results.
Financial stocks continued to move north, especially, after Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley (MS - Free Report) successfully navigated a difficult trading environment in the third quarter. An impressive investment banking performance helped both the financial behemoths improve their bottom-line numbers. Needless to say, that their earnings and revenues both had already topped Wall Street expectations on Tuesday morning.
Stock Market – Movers & Shakers!
The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed at 23,157.60, gaining 0.7%. The Dow posted its fourth straight daily rise, including its 13th gain of the past 16 trading sessions. The S&P 500 Index (INX) increased almost 0.1% to close at 2,561.26. The S&P 500 gained for a fourth consecutive day and recorded its 14th positive session of the past 17. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index (IXIC) edged up 0.56 point to 6,624.22.
About 5.6 billion shares were traded on Wednesday, lower than the last 20-session average of 5.9 billion shares. Advancing issues outnumbered decliners on the NYSE by 1.09-to-1 ratio.
IBM – The Key Mover
Shares of IBM soared 9% on Wednesday after the company posted better-than-expected earnings results. In fact, IBM saw its biggest jump in share prices in eight years. It has remained an underperformer for several years, with its shares had fallen more than 20% since 2012. Bespoke Investment Group added that it was also for the third time in the last 18 quarters that IBM’s share price moved higher following a quarterly report.
Analysts are encouraged to see higher-than-expected adjusted earnings per share of $3.30 in the third quarter, even though revenues fell for the 22nd quarter in a row. Big Blue’s cloud revenues, however, soared 20% in the quarter to hit $4.1 billion.
IBM CFO Martin Schroeter said in an interview said that “we said we’d have a better second half than first, and we did a bit better on the revenue line”. He added that “we’re well positioned to deliver exactly what we said in the fourth quarter” (read more: Why IBM Stock Is Soaring Despite Slumping Revenue).
What is Data Saying About the Economy?
The Fed’s Beige Book report did show that the economy has expanded at a modest to moderate range, but, a report on housing data showed that both housing starts and building permits were down last month.
According to the Commerce Department, home starts fell by 4.7% to 1.13 million in September, while permits dropped by 4.5% at 1.27 million (read more: Monthly New Residential Construction, September 2017).
Stocks That Made Headlines
eBay Revenues Beat Estimates, Stock Slumps on Soft Guidance
eBay Inc. (EBAY - Free Report) released its third-quarter 2017 financial results, posting earnings of 48 cents per share and revenues of $2.4 billion (Read More)
AXP - Free Report) %20just%20released%20its%20third-quarter%202017%20financial%20results,%20posting%20earnings%20of%20%241.50%20per%20share%20and%20revenues%20of%20%248.44%20billion">American Express Posts Q3 Earnings and Revenue Beats
American Express Company (AXP - Free Report) released its third-quarter 2017 financial results, posting earnings of $1.50 per share and revenues of $8.44 billion (AXP - Free Report) %20just%20released%20its%20third-quarter%202017%20financial%20results,%20posting%20earnings%20of%20%241.50%20per%20share%20and%20revenues%20of%20%248.44%20billion">Read More)
United Continental Q3 Earnings & Revenues Top Estimates
United Continental (UAL - Free Report) released its third-quarter 2017 financial results, posting earnings of $2.22 per share and revenues of $9,878 million (Read More)
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