U.S. stocks traded higher midway through trading, with the Dow Jones gaining around 450 points on Thursday.
The Dow traded up 1.42% to 32,484.03 while the NASDAQ rose 2.40% to 11,949.60. The S&P 500, also rose, gaining, 1.70% to 4,004.07.
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Leading and Lagging Sectors
- Information technology shares jumped by 2.9% on Thursday. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included VNET Group, Inc. VNET, up 22%, and Kingsoft Cloud Holdings Limited KC, up 16%.
- In trading on Thursday, consumer staples shares rose by just 0.3%.
Accenture ACN reported better-than-expected Q2 results. The company also disclosed its plan to reduce 19,000 jobs.
The company reported revenue growth of 5% year-over-year to $15.81 billion, beating the consensus of $15.59 billion. Adjusted EPS of $2.69 beat the consensus of $2.50.
Equities Trading UP
- Worthington Industries, Inc. WOR shares shot up 19% to $63.02 after the company reported better-than-expected Q3 results.
- Shares of scPharmaceuticals Inc. SCPH got a boost, shooting 23% to $8.51 after the company reported better-than-expected Q4 EPS results.
- Steelcase Inc. SCS shares were also up, gaining 15% to $8.28 after the company reported better-than-expected Q4 financial results and issued Q1 EPS and revenue guidance above estimates.
Equities Trading DOWN
- Society Pass Incorporated SOPA shares tumbled 17% to $1.01 after the company reported worse-than-expected Q4 sales results.
- Shares of JanOne Inc. JAN were down 18% to $1.05 after the company announced a registered direct offering of common stock priced at-the-market.
- Cidara Therapeutics, Inc. CDTX was down, falling 16% to $1.6050 after the company reported worse-than-expected Q4 EPS and sales results.
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In commodity news, oil traded up 0.4% to $71.19 while gold traded up 1.9% at $1,986.10.
Silver traded up 2.1% to $23.255 on Thursday while copper rose 1.5% to $4.1035.
European shares were mostly lower today. The eurozone’s STOXX 600 fell 0.38%, London’s FTSE 100 fell 0.73% while Spain’s IBEX 35 Index fell 0.18%. The German DAX declined 0.12%, French CAC 40 fell 0.06% and Italy’s FTSE MIB Index fell 0.04%.
The Bank of England increased its key bank rate by 25bps to 4.25% at its March meeting, in line with estimates.
Asia Pacific Markets
Asian markets closed mixed on Thursday, with Japan’s Nikkei 225 dropping 0.17%, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index rising 2.34% and China’s Shanghai Composite Index gaining 0.64%. India’s S&P BSE Sensex fell 0.5%.
The annual inflation rate in Hong Kong rose to 1.7% in February versus a 2.4% increase in the prior month. The Hong Kong Monetary Authority increased the base rate by 25bps on March 23. The Reuters Tankan sentiment index for manufacturers in Japan came in at -3 for March.
- US initial jobless claims fell by 1,000 to 191,000 for the week ending March 18, versus markets expectations of 197,000.
- The Chicago Fed National Activity Index declined to -0.19 in February from January’s reading of +0.23.
- The current account deficit in the US shrank to $206.8 billion in the final quarter of 2022, compared to market estimates of a $213.2 billion gap.
- US new home sales rose 1.1% month-over-month to an annualised rate of 640,000 in February, below expectations of 650,000.
- US natural-gas supplies dropped 72 billion cubic feet last week, the EIA said.
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The U.S. has the highest number of coronavirus cases and deaths in the world, reporting a total of 106,037,020 cases with around 1,152,520 deaths. India confirmed a total of at least 44,699,410 cases and 530,810 deaths, while France reported over 39,726,030 COVID-19 cases with 165,420 deaths. In total, there were at least 682,914,620 cases of COVID-19 worldwide with more than 6,822,800 deaths.
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