S&P 500 Trims Weekly Gain Following Better-Than-Feared Earnings Reports

The SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust SPY traded higher on the week as Wall Street digested a batch of earnings reports that were better than feared.

On Monday, new Treasury Department data indicated China is no longer the largest holder of U.S. debt. China now holds just $980.8 billion in U.S. Treasuries, making Japan the largest U.S. debtholder at $1.2 trillion.

National U.S. gasoline prices dropped to just $4.413 per gallon on Friday, down from $4.955 a month ago. New data suggest U.S. gasoline demand has dropped nearly 8% from a year ago as record prices at the pump have kept summer travelers off the road.

Related Link: Russia's Surprise 1.5% Interest Rate Cut Takes Russian Rates Below Pre-War Levels

Novavax, Inc. NVAX shares traded lower on the week even after the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention unanimously approved the company's COVID-19 vaccine for adults aged 18 and older on Tuesday. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration granted emergency use authorization for Novavax's vaccine on July 13.

The CDC also dropped its voluntary COVID-19 testing program for the cruise industry on Tuesday, which is good news for cruise stocks Carnival Corp CCL, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd NCLH and Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd RCL. Cruise companies are now free to set their own COVID-19 policies related to vaccination, testing and quarantines.

Cold Snap: Shares of Snapchat parent company Snap Inc SNAP traded lower by more than 38% on Friday after the company reported second-quarter earnings and revenue that fell well short of Wall Street's expectations.

In the week ahead, the second-quarter earnings season rolls on with reports from big tech companies Alphabet, Inc. GOOG GOOGL and Microsoft Corporation MSFT on Tuesday, Meta Platforms, Inc. META on Wednesday and Apple, Inc. AAPL and Amazon.com, Inc. AMZN on Thursday.

S&P 500 net profit margins are down year-over-year for the second consecutive quarter, according to FactSet.

Economic Numbers: In the week ahead, investors will get key economic updates on Wednesday when the Federal Reserve releases its latest interest rate decision and accompanying commentary and on Thursday when the Bureau of Economic Analysis releases its preliminary estimate of second-quarter U.S. GDP growth.

Photo: Jo Panuwat D via Shutterstock

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