Stocks Grapple With Geopolitical Pressures, Gold Eyes $2,400, Bitcoin Falls Below $62,000: What's Driving Markets Tuesday?

Zinger Key Points
  • IMF raises U.S. growth forecast; potential Fed rate cuts amid easing inflation, but Middle East tensions could complicate the picture.
  • Stocks mixed, Treasury yields rise to 4.65%, gold holds strong at $2,390, oil softens and Bitcoin down to $61,900.

Investors remain on edge as geopolitics continue to shape market trends, with Israel mulling a response to Iran while the U.S. and key allies explore further sanctions against Tehran.

U.S. major averages display mixed performances as of midday trading Tuesday. The S&P 500 holds steady at 5,200 points, while blue-chip stocks outperform the broader market, and small caps experience some declines.

In its April World Economic Outlook, the International Monetary Fund raised growth projections for the U.S. economy, while eyeing the possibility of Federal Reserve rate cuts this year as inflation declines. Yet, an escalation in the Middle East could complicate the picture, pushing oil and inflation higher and forcing central banks to tighten again.

Treasury yields continue to kick higher, with the yield on the 10-year Treasury bond reaching 4.65%. Bond-related ETFs declined further, with the iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond ETF TLT down 0.5%.

Despite the uptick in yields and a stronger dollar, gold continues to showcase an impressive strength, with the yellow metal up 0.3% to $2,390 per ounce, on track for a record-high close.

Oil prices were slightly softer, down 0.4%. Bitcoin BTC/USD is down 2.5% to $61,900, marking a 15% drop since last week’s high.

Tuesday’s Performance In Major U.S. Indices, ETFs

Major IndicesPrice1-day %chg
Dow Jones37,910.280.5%
Nasdaq 10017,759.960.3%
S&P 5005,066.920.1%
Russell 2000195.34-0.2%
Updated at 12:30 p.m. EDT

The SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust SPY held steady at $504.71, the SPDR Dow Jones Industrial Average DIA rose 0.4% to $379.06 and the tech-heavy Invesco QQQ Trust QQQ held steady at $431.91, according to Benzinga Pro data

Sector-wise, the Health Care Select Sector SPDR Fund XLV outperformed, up 0.4%. The Energy Select Sector SPDR Fund XLE was the major laggard, down 0.9%.

Tuesday’s Stock Movers

  • Tesla, Inc, TSLA fell more than 2.8%, on track to close at the lowest level in a year, after analysts interpreted the recent layoff announcement as a negative sign for the company’s outlook.
  • Companies reacting to earnings were Bank of America Corp. BAC, down 3.3%; Morgan Stanley MS, up 3.4%; Northern Trust Corp. NTRS, down 4%; PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. PNC, down 1.9%; Jonson & Johnson JNJ, down 2.4%; and UnitedHealth Group Inc. UNH, up over 6%.
  • Skillsoft Corp. SKIL fell nearly 40%, after a revenue miss and departure of its CEO.
  • Hawaiian Electric Industries, Inc. HE fell 18%, falling below last year’s lows, after the company announced readiness to implement rolling blackouts owing to reduced wind and solar power generation, along with the temporary outage of several large generators.
  • Notable names reporting earnings after the close are J.B. Hunt Transport Services, Inc. JBHT, United Airlines Holdings, Inc. UAL and Interactive Brokers Group Inc. IBKR.

Read Now: Homebuilder Stocks Tumble As Housing Starts Fall By 14.7%: ‘A Poor Time To Buy A Home,’ Says Economist

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