Stocks Slip Ahead of Busy Earnings Week
By Joe Wallace
U.S. stocks inched lower Monday at the start of a busy week of
corporate earnings and economic data.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.2%. The S&P 500 was
little changed and the Nasdaq Composite lost 0.4%.
Investors said they were positioning for the start of earnings
season, as well as data that will help to gauge whether a coming
burst of inflation will prove transitory.
Among the reports expected this week are those from JPMorgan
Chase, Bank of America and Wells Fargo -- and companies ranging
from Delta Air Lines to PepsiCo to UnitedHealth Group. Meanwhile,
inflation data due on Tuesday are expected to show consumer prices
picked up in March.
"All of these things need to deliver in quite a Goldilocks
manner for the current gains to remain intact," said Edward Park,
chief investment officer at U.K. investment firm Brooks
Shares of technology giants have taken back control of the rally
in U.S. stocks over the past month, helping to push major indexes
to a series of records. Investors' concerns about owning shares
that are sensitive to rising interest rates have been assuaged by a
retreat in yields on U.S. government bonds. Some say the shift into
economically sensitive sectors went too far at a time when major
economies such as the European Union and India are grappling with
fresh coronavirus outbreaks.
There is "a bit of a question mark in markets just saying: We're
seeing strong gains; is this quite right?" Mr. Park said.
Shares of Nuance Communications jumped 16% after Microsoft said
it agreed to acquire the speech-recognition firm for $19.7
American depository receipts for Alibaba Group Holding rose 8.5%
after companies founded by billionaire Jack Ma announced changes to
operations and structure to placate regulators. Alibaba said Monday
it would invest in measures to support merchants on its platform,
two days after China's antitrust regulator imposed a record fine.
Later on Monday, financial-technology giant Ant Group said it would
apply to become a financial holding company overseen by China's
Meanwhile, Ingersoll-Rand shares fell 0.8% after the
manufacturer said it had agreed to sell its unit that makes golf
carts and other vehicles to Platinum Equity for $1.68 billion.
In bond markets, the yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note
ticked up to 1.674% from 1.664% Friday. Yields, which move in the
opposite direction to bond prices, have fallen back from their
closing high of 1.749% in late March, but are still up from a low
of 0.915% in early January.
U.S. crude oil added 0.6% to $59.70 a barrel. The Organization
of the Petroleum Exporting Countries is due to release a regular
forecast of global supply and demand of oil Tuesday.
In overseas markets, the Stoxx Europe 600 edged down 0.5%,
pressured by declines in shares of travel & leisure
Among individual European equities, shares of Suez rose roughly
7.7% in Paris after the French waste- and water-management company
said Monday that it had agreed to merge with Veolia
Stocks pulled back in major Asian markets. China's Shanghai
Composite fell 1.1%, and Japan's Nikkei 225 lost 0.8%.
Akane Otani contributed to this article
Write to Joe Wallace at Joe.Wallace@wsj.com
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
April 12, 2021 16:20 ET (20:20 GMT)
Copyright (c) 2021 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.