Stocks Rebound From 2022 Lows As Market Digests Fed Chair Powell's Congressional Testimony

Zinger Key Points
  • Shares of drugstore chain Rite Aid gained more than 40% this week after its first-quarter report.
  • In the week ahead, investors will see more quarterly reports from Nike, Bed Bath & Beyond and Walgreens.

The SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust SPY bounced back from its recent weakness in a holiday-shortened trading week, with all major indexes trading higher.

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell completed his two-day semiannual economic testimony to Congress on Wednesday and Thursday. Powell told Congress the Fed's commitment to reducing inflation is "unconditional" and acknowledged a U.S. economic recession is "certainly a possibility."

On Wednesday, President Joe Biden called on Congress to enact a three-month federal gasoline tax holiday to help bring down gas prices nationwide. U.S. gas prices are hovering near $5 per gallon, and drivers currently pay about 18 cents per gallon in federal gas taxes and 26 cents in state gas taxes.

On Tuesday, leading packaged food company Kellogg Company K approved a plan to split its business into three separate companies by spinning off its North American cereal and plant-based foods businesses. Following the spin-off, Kellogg investors will own shares of three independent public companies: Global Snacking Co, North American Cereal Co and Plant Co.

On Friday, the House Financial Services Committee released a new report on the trading frenzy in GameStop Corp. GME and other so-called meme stocks that created unprecedented volatility in the market in early 2021. In the report, Committee Chairwoman Maxine Waters condemned the "gamification" of the stock market and criticized popular trading app Robinhood Markets Inc HOOD for "troubling business practices, inadequate risk management, and a culture that prioritized rapid growth above stability."

The Rite Stuff: Shares of drugstore chain Rite Aid Corporation RAD gained more than 40% this week after the company reported a narrower-than-expected first-quarter loss and raised its full-year revenue guidance.

In the week ahead, investors will get more quarterly earnings reports from Nike Inc NKE on Monday, Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. BBBY on Wednesday and Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc WBA and Micron Technology, Inc. MU on Thursday.

Despite the year-to-date S&P 500 weakness, 56.9% of all current analyst ratings on S&P 500 stocks are Buy ratings and 37.7% are Hold ratings, according to FactSet.

Economic Numbers: In the wake of Powell’s congressional testimony, Wall Street will get key economic updates on Wednesday when European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde and Fed Chair Powell participate in a policy panel at the ECB Forum on Central Banking.

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